The folks over at MacMillan Children’s Publishing Group (MCPG) have one of the largest catalogs around and trying to combine them into one post would be impossible. Well, either that or I’d have to ignore some worthy titles. Since that wouldn’t be very helpful to anyone, MacMillan will be broken up by their imprints. Note that all of these imprints will be found at the MacMillan Exhibit Booth 3358. Plan on spending a lot of time at that booth!
Fiewel and Friends has the funniest names around (does anyone else automatically think of An American Tail??) but it puts out some wonderful elementary ages books. It also dips into graphic novels, chapter books and, what I concentrated on, YA titles.
Of Poseidon by Anna Banks. We dove right into this mermaid/mer-guy romance. And we preempted it before auction. Why? Because Anna Banks knows her way around myth (the world of Syrena), reality (how can anyone concentrate on high school when there’s an underwater kingdom to save?), and romance (mer-guys are sensitive–and pretty hot, too). Galen is the prince of the Syrena, sent to land to find a girl he’s heard can communicate with fish. Emma is on vacation at the beach. When she runs into Galen–literally, ouch!–both teens sense a connection. But it will take several encounters, including a deadly one with a shark, for Galen to be convinced of Emma’s gifts. Now, if he can only convince Emma that she holds the key to his kingdom… Publication Date: 5.22.2012
Wicked Sweet by Mar’ce Merrell. Revenge is sweet. We couldn’t resist the deliciousness of this debut about two good girls, two deceitful guys, and one awfully tasty plan for revenge. Spread your towel on the sand and sink your teeth into this entertaining novel! Chantal is a planner, and her summer-before-senior-year plan requires best friend Jillian, resume updating, and studying for AP classes. Jillian wants something different and is afraid to leave introverted Chantal in the dust. All that changes, though, when popular classmates Parker and Will suspiciously start hanging out with the girls. Chantal only sees one thing: Jillian ditching her for Parker–a guy who can’t even be trusted! Chantal’s new plan will expose Parker and Will for what they truly are, and along the way, get her best friend back with the littlest lie and a lot of mouthwatering cake. After all, what are best friends for? Publication Date: 6.5.2012
Monument 14 by Emmy Laybourne. Fourteen kids. One superstore. A million things that go wrong. A huge store isn’t the worst place to be stranded. There’s food and water, bedding and books. But what if it’s not safe to leave? Emmy Laybourne had us from the get-go with her utterly fresh and fast-paced debut. Six high school kids (some popular, some not), two eighth graders (one a tech genius), and six little kids are trapped together in a chain superstore. Together they build a refuge for themselves inside, while outside, a series of escalating disasters, beginning with a monster hailstorm and ending with a chemical weapon spill, seems to be tearing the world—as they know it—apart. Publication Date: 6.5.2012
Before You Go by James Preller. And anytime you feel the pain, hey Jude, refrain… James Preller’s YA debut is perfect for those pining for a relatable and heartbreaking story. Have your tissues ready. The summer before his senior year, Jude (yes, he’s named after the Beatles song) gets his first job, falls in love for the first time, and starts to break away from his parents. Jude’s house is kept dark; no one talks much—it’s been that way since his little sister drowned in a swimming pool when Jude was supposed to be watching her. He was watching her. He looked away for just a moment. He was only nine years old. And he’s never truly grieved for her, or for the emotional deaths of his parents, who refuse to talk about what happened. Seven years later, Jude is finally, finally starting to live. Really live. And then life spins out of control. Again. Acclaimed author James Preller explores life, death, love, faith, and resilience in a story that will grip readers from the book’s dramatic first few pages to its emotional end. Publication Date: 7.17.2012
The Raft by S.A. Bodeen. In her 3rd YA novel, acclaimed author S.A. Bodeen tells the harrowing story of a teen girl who is the sole survivor of a plane crash, and ends up stranded on a desert island. Is she alone? Robie is an experienced traveler. She’s taken the flight from Honolulu to the Midway Atoll, a group of Pacific islands where her parents live, many times. When she has to get to Midway in a hurry after a visit with her aunt in Hawaii, she gets on the next cargo flight at the last minute. She knows the pilot, but on this flight, there’s a new co-pilot named Max. All systems are go until a storm hits during the flight. The only passenger, Robie doesn’t panic until the engine suddenly cuts out and Max shouts at her to put on a life jacket. They are over miles of Pacific Ocean. She sees Max struggle with a raft. And then . . . she’s in the water. Fighting for her life. Max pulls her onto the raft, and that’s when the real terror begins. They have no water. Their only food is a bag of Skittles. There are sharks. There is an island. But there’s no sign of help on the way. Publication Date: 8.21.2012
Eve and Adam by Katherine Applegate, Michael Grant. And girl created boy . . . The idea was simple: revisit the idea of Adam and Eve with bestselling author and Feiwel and Friends alum, Katherine Applegate writing the girl’s voice and her husband Michael Grant, New York Times bestselling author of the Gone series, writing the boy’s. None of us were prepared for what happened when they took the idea, flipped it on its head, and ran with it. Together, this husband and wife team, both masters of the genre, have created a romantic sci-fi thriller for everyone — with strong characters, great action, and a gripping plot. In the beginning, there was an apple – And then there was a car crash, a horrible injury, and a hospital. But before Evening Spiker’s head clears a strange boy named Solo is rushing her to her mother’s research facility. There, under the best care available, Eve is left alone to heal. Just when Eve thinks she will die – not from her injuries, but from boredom—her mother gives her a special project: Create the perfect boy. Using an amazingly detailed simulation, Eve starts building a boy from the ground up. Eve is creating Adam. And he will be just perfect . . . won’t he? Publication Date: 10.2.2012
Safekeeping by Karen Hesse. Tomorrow everything could change. When Newbery Medalist Karen Hesse says that she’s working on something a little different, you take note. From the first draft, we knew this new direction was also completely brilliant. Illustrated throughout with her own hauntingly beautiful photographs, Safekeeping is a vision of a near-future America that only Karen could write: real, gripping, and deeply personal. Radley just wants to get home to her parents in Vermont. While she was volunteering abroad, the American People’s Party took power; the new president was assassinated; and the government cracked down on citizens. Travel restrictions are worse than ever, and when her plane finally lands in New Hampshire, Radley’s parents aren’t there. Exhausted; her phone dead; her credit cards worthless: Radley starts walking. Publication Date: 9.18.2012
Sequels to Watch for: