Forthcoming children’s and YA historical novels for 2021

Linda Proud

The Historical Novel Society lists mainstream and small press titles for readers aged 4 – 18. Details are compiled by Fiona Sheppard using publisher descriptions and recommended age suitability.

This is a work in progress. Please visit again soon. Other than short excerpts, please remember to link to this page rather than copying the entries – thank you!

Last updated April 17, 2021

January 2021

Gill Arbuthnott, illus. Mike Phillips, The Amazing Life of Mary, Queen of Scots, Kelpies, Age 7-10 (life of Mary told for Young Readers)

Glenda Armand, illus. Brittany Jackson, Song in a Rainstorm, Albert Whitman, Age 5-6 (story of musical prodigy Blind Tom Wiggins in 19th-century)

Natasha Bacchus-Buschkiel, illus. Francesca Ficorilli, Maria and the Plague, Stone Arch, Age 8-11 (a graphic format Black Death survival story)

Anne Blankman, The Blackbird Girls, Puffin Books, Age 9-12 (dual-timeline story shows that hatred, intolerance, and oppression are no match for the power of true friendship)

Sarwat Chadda, City of the Plague God, Rick Riordan Presents, Age 8-12 (13-year-old Sikander teams up with the hero Gilgamesh to stop the ancient god of plagues)

Maya Chhabra, illus. Eric Freeberg, Stranger on the Home Front, North Star Editions, Age 8-14 (a story of Indian immigrants and World War I – I Am America series)

Judy Dodge Cummings, illus. Eric Freeberg, When the Earth Dragon Trembled, North Star Editions, Age 8-14 (a story of Chinatown during the San Francisco earthquake and fire – I Am America series)

Deborah L. Delaronde, illus. Sheldon Dawson, Louis Riel Day, Theytus Books, Age 4-6 (with help from his grandfather a boy discovers how the fur trade began)

Melanie Dickerson, Court of Swans, Thomas Nelson, YA (first in new series set in late 14th-c England)

Fabrice Erre, illus. Sylvain Savoia, Magical History Tour #1: The Great Pyramid, Papercutz, Age 8-12 (new series where kids travel through time to follow the Threads of History and uncover its secrets!)
Also: Magical History Tour #2: The Great Wall of China

Julie Gilbert, illus. Francesca Ficorilli, Constance and the Dangerous Crossing, Stone Arch, Age 8-11 (a graphic format Mayflower survival story)

Nikki Grimes, Legacy, Bloomsbury Children’s, Age 10+ (new collection of poetry celebrating little-known women poets of the Harlem Renaissance)

Susan Kusel, illus. Sean Rubin, The Passover Guest, Neal Porter Books, Age 4-8 (picture book retelling of the classic I.L. Peretz story, best known through Uri Shulevitz’s 1973 adaptation The Magician)

Malinda Lo, Last Night at the Telegraph Club, Dutton BfYR, YA (story of love and duty set in San Francisco’s Chinatown during the 1950s)

Donna Jo Napoli, In a Flash, Wendy Lamb, Age 8-12 (story of two devoted sisters, Italian citizens, who must survive in WWII Japan)

Peter Sis, Nicky & Vera, Norton BfYR, Age 8-12 (story of Nicholas Winton who rescued nearly 700 children from Nazi-occupied Prague)

M.J. Thomas, The Secret of the Hidden Scrolls, Worthykids, Age 6-8 (time-traveling chapter book sends Peter and Mary back to Jerusalem, where a teacher named Jesus has started teaching and performing miracles)

Peggy Thomas, illus. by Stacy Innerst, Lincoln Clears a Path, Calkins Creek, Age 7-10 (picture book spotlighting the positive change driven by Lincoln’s passion for agricultural and his country)

Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace, Race Against Time: The Untold Story of Scipio Jones and the Battle to Save Twelve Innocent Men, Calkins Creek, Age 10-14 (tells how a self-taught attorney who was born enslaved led a series of court cases to save 12 black men unjustly sentenced to death)

Jenni L. Walsh, illus. Jane Pica, Hettie and the London Blitz, Stone Arch, Age 8-11 (a graphic format WWII survival story)

February 2021

Kate Albus, A Place to Hang the Moon, Margaret Ferguson, Age 9-12 (tale of three orphaned siblings who are evacuated from London in 1940 to live in the countryside with the secret hope of finding a permanent family)

Amy Bearce, Rome Reframed, Jolly Fish Press, Age 10-14 (after a cryptic palm reader hands him a weird-looking coin to throw in the Trevi Fountain, Lucas finds himself transported to ancient Rome)

Brittany Cavallaro, Muse, Katherine Tegen, YA (story of a girl who confers powers with her touch and plans to escape the men trying to control her in a reimagined 19th-century American monarchy)

Cassandra Clare, Chain of Gold, Walker UK, YA (historical fantasy set in Edwardian London)

Melanie Crowder, Mazie, Philomel, YA (Mazie has always longed to be on Broadway, so when an opportunity presents itself to spend six weeks auditioning, she jumps at the chance)

Caroline George, Dearest Josephine, Thomas Nelson, YA (dual-narrative love story that prompts us to reimagine what it means to be present with the people we love)

Marianne Hering, Terror in the Tunnel, Focus on the Family, Age 6-8 (Book 23 in the Imagination Station series finds cousins Beth and Patrick nearing Washington, D.C., on the train with Abraham Lincoln, heading to his first inauguration)

Megan Hoyt, illus. by Iacopo Bruno, Bartali’s Bicycle: The True Story of Gino Bartali, Italy’s Secret Hero, Quill Tree, Age 4-8 (picture-book biography of a secret champion in the fight for human rights during World War II)

Lori Banov Kaufmann, Rebel Daughter, Delacorte Children’s, YA (a young woman survives the unthinkable in this tale of family, love, and resilience, set against the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE)

Supriya Kelkar, Strong as Fire, Fierce as Flame, Tu Books, Age 8-12 (1857 India -12-year-old Meera escapes a life she has no say in–and certain death on her husband’s funeral pyre–only to end up a servant to a British general in the East India Company)

Liz Kessler, When the World Was Ours, S&S Australia, Age 10+ (novel about three childhood friends living during the Second World War)

Tamzin Merchant, illus. Paola Escobar, The Hatmakers, Norton YR, Age 9-12 (set in an alternate 18th-c London where magic is infused in clothing and 11-year-old Cordelia Hatmaker’s father has disappeared)

Tilman Roehrig, Erik the Red, Arctis Books, YA (love and destruction, toil and triumph blend in an account of the life of Erik the Red, taking him from Iceland into the great unknown as he searches for his place in the world)

Sigal Samuel, illus. Vali Mintzi, Osnat and Her Dove, Levine Querido. Age 4-8 (Osnat was born 500 years ago – at a time when very few believed that girls should learn to read)

Lauren Tarshis, illus. Álvaro Sarraseca, I Survived the Nazi Invasion, 1944, Scholastic Graphix, Age 8-12 (includes back matter with historical photos and facts about World War II and the Holocaust)

Carole Boston Weatherford, illus. by Floyd Cooper, Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre, Carolrhoda, Age 8-12 (picture book)

Diane Zahler, Daughter of the White Rose, Holiday House, Age 8-12 (based on the real royal scandal of the Princes in the Tower)

March 2021

Eli Brown, illus. by Karin Rytter, Oddity, Walker US, Age 10-14 (the daughter of a murdered physician vows to protect the magic Oddity he left behind in an alternate 19th century where the U.S. is at war with France)

Mary Kay Carson, illus. Nigel Chilvers, Escape from . . . the Titanic, little bee, Age 7-10 (an Irish bellboy and a young girl passenger try to survive the sinking of the unsinkable ship)

Cassandra Clare, Chain of Iron, Margaret K. McElderry, YA (the Shadowhunters must catch a killer in Edwardian London. Romance fantasy)

Kathleen A. Dinan, illus. Iris M. Kirkwood, Kite to Freedom, Age 9-12 (fictionalized account of actual events that occurred during the construction of the Niagara International Suspension bridge connecting the U.S. and Canada at Niagara Falls)

Anne Dublin, Jacob and the Mandolin Adventure, Second Story Press, Age 9-12 (Jacob and a group of Jewish orphans cross the sea to a new life in the 1920s)

G. D. Falksen, The Secret Life of Kitty Granger, Carolrhoda Lab, YA (portrait of 16-year-old Kitty Granger, a working-class girl on the autism spectrum, who was recruited to spy for the British government in 1967)

Grant Farley, Bones of a Saint, Soho Teen, YA (set in Northern California in the ’70s, coming-of-age story examines the nature of evil, the art of storytelling, and the possibility of redemption)

Annelise Gray, Circus Maximus: Race to the Death, Zephyr, Age 9+ (twelve-year-old Dido dreams of becoming the first female charioteer at the great Circus Maximus)

Dan Gutman, Houdini and Me, Holiday House, Age 8-12 (when Houdini asks for his help in coming back to life, it seems like a chance 11-yr-old Harry Mancini doesn’t want to miss!)

Vanessa Harbour, Flight, Feiwel & Friends, Age 8-12 (a Jewish boy and a Roma girl lead a group of horses across the mountains to escape the Nazis during WWII)

Susan Hughes, illus. Marianne Ferrer, Carmen and the House that Gaudí Built, Owlkids, Age 4-8 (picture book inspired by the real Batlló family and the house Gaudí designed for them)

I Musici de Montréal, Colm Feore, Ana Gerhard, illus. Marie Gerhard, That’s My Piano, Sir!, The Secret Mountain, Age 7-9 (travel through time following a mouse called Minim as he witnesses the arrival of young Mozart and his family)
Also: A Delicious Taste of Mozzarella: Pyotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky (April 2021)
Also: Some Creatures Have All the Luck: Antonio Vivaldi (May 2021)

Nie Jun, Seekers of the Aweto #1: The Hunt Is On, Graphic Universe, Age 8-12 (Xinyue, his brother Qiliu, and their mother are seekers, hunting aweto―a rare, plantlike treasure―along the legendary Silk Road)

J. M. Lee, The Nightland Express, Erewhon, YA (in antebellum America, two teens bury their secrets and join the historic Pony Express, and soon discover the mortal world is not the only one on the brink of war)

Peter Lerangis, Throwback: Out of Time, HarperCollins, Age 8-12 (13-yr-old Corey has the power to travel back in time and try to fix some of history’s worst evils)

David MacPhail, illus. Richard Morgan, Velda the Awesomest Viking and the Voyage of Deadly Doom, Kelpies, Age 6-9 (Velda takes on terrifying tasks and makes some unlikely new friends)

Lisa Maxwell, The Devil’s Thief, Margaret K. McElderry, YA (sequel to The Last Magician, Esta and Harte set off on a cross-country chase through time to steal back the elemental stones they need to save the future of magic)

Jennifer A. Nielsen, Rescue, Scholasstic, Age 8-12 (World War II story of espionage and intrigue, as one girl races to save her father and aid the French resistance)

Wendy Orr, Cuckoo’s Flight, Pajama Press, Age 9-12 (Bronze-Age coming-of-age story as Clio battles the political power of the palace and her own feelings of inadequacy to save her town, her horses, and perhaps even herself)

Mary Pope Osborne, To the Future, Ben Franklin, Random House BfYR, Age 6–9 (Magic Tree House adventure set in Old Philadelphia in 1787)

Benjamin Richmond, Escape from . . . Pompeii, little bee, Age 7-10 (Mount Vesuvius is ready to erupt and two friends have to find a way to escape)

Laura Amy Schlitz, illus. Julia Iredale, Amber and Clay, Candlewick, Age 10-14 (blending verse, prose, and illustrated archaeological “artifacts,” this is a tale that vividly transcends time, an indelible reminder of the power of language)

Tara Sim, Scavenge the Stars, Little, Brown BfYR, YA (gender-swapped retelling of The Count of Monte Cristo)

Larissa Theule, illus. by Rebecca Green, Kafka and the Doll, Viking, Age 4-8 (historical fiction recounting a gesture of kindness from author Franz Kafka in 1923)

Erica Vetsch, The Indebted Earl, Kregel, YA (can Captain Wyvern keep his new marriage of convenience all business–or will it turn into something more?)

Gloria Whelan, illus. Kirbi Fagan, Summer of the Tree Army, Sleeping Bear, Age 7-8 (in Depression-era northern Michigan, a young boy meets a teenager serving in the Civilian Conservation Corps)

April 2021

Alane Adams, The Medusa Quest, Spark Press, Age 8-12 (Phoebe Katz is on a new mission to save Olympus, to undo the fallout from her last visit)

Naama Benziman, Lenny and Benny, Green Bean Books, Age 5+ (story Inspired by the midrash about Kamtza and Bar-Kamtza, in which an inter-communal squabble ultimately leads to the destruction of the Second Temple)

Laura Best, The Family Way, Nimbus Publishing, Age 9-13 (based on the true story of the Ideal Maternity Home, and its tragic Butterbox Babies,; an exploration of family and of Nova Scotia’s history)

Graham Brack, The Vanishing Children, Sapere (fifth book in the Master Mercurius Mystery series)

W. N. Brown, Michael Burgan, James Buckley, Jr., Great Escapes #5: Terror in the Tower of London, HarperCollins, Age 8-12 (fifth book in the historical fiction series based on real events)

Devora Busheri, illus. Menacham Halberstadt, The Donkey and the Garden, Green Bean Books, Age 8-12 (based on Midrash Hagadol, about how Rabbi Akiva overcame his fear of embarrassment to go from humble shepherd to legendary Jewish leader)

Chief Mi’sel Joe and Sheila O’Neill, My Indian, Breakwater Books, YA (In 1822, William Cormack sought the expertise of an indigenous guide who could lead him across Newfoundland)

Alyssa Colman, The Gilded Girl, FSG BfYR, Age 8-12 (set in Gilded Age New York City, follows two girls at an elite magical boarding school who form an unlikely friendship to save magic)

Karen Cushman, War and Millie McGonigle, Knopf BfYR, Age 8-12 (humorous story of WWII on the Homefront in California)

Hédi Fried, illus. Stina Wirsén, The Story of Bodri, Eermans BfYR, Age 6-10 (story about a faithful dog, a Jewish family in danger, and the power of hope in unimaginable circumstances)

Julia Golding, The Abbey Mystery, Lion Fiction, Age 9+ (it’s 1789 and a young Jane Austen turns detective as she seeks to solve the mysterious happenings at Southmoor Abbey)

Suzanne Jurmain, Murder on the Baltimore Express, Yellow Jacket, Age 10-14 (the story of Abraham Lincoln’s ride to his inauguration in Washington, D.C. as some people plan to stop him from becoming president at any cost)

Michaela Maccoll, View From Pagoda Hill, Calkins Creek, Age 9-12 (set in late 1800s – story of a Chinese American girl struggling to find her place in the world when she is forced to leave Shanghai to go to America with a father she barely knows)

Yona Zeldis McDonough, illus. Kaja Kajfez, The Woodcarver’s Daughter, Kar-Ben, Age 8-9 (after a pogrom forces Batya’s Russian Jewish family to leave their home and come to America, Batya hopes she will have a chance to become a woodcarver like her father)

Sarah Miller, Violet & Daisy, Schwartz & Wade YR, YA (story of Violet and Daisy Hilton, conjoined twins who were the sensation of the US sideshow circuits in the 1920s and 1930s)

Michelle Paver, Skin Taker, Zephyr, Age 9+ (next in the Wolf Brother series set in the Stone Age)

Lisa Westberg Peters, illus. by Victoria Tentler-Krylov, We Are a Garden, Schwartz & Wade, Age 4-8 (lyrical prose tells stories of centuries of immigrants who made North America their home)

Chris Raschka, Saint Spotting, Eerdmans BfYR, Age 4-8 (illustrated picture book introduces readers to saints and symbols through the warm bond between a mother and son)

Lisa Rose, illus. by Isabel Muñoz, The Singer and the Scientist, Kar-Ben, Age 5-11 (story of the friendship between African American singer Marian Anderson and Albert Einstein)

Pauline Vaeluaga Smith, illus. Mat Hunkin, Dawn Raid, Levine Querido, Age 8-12 (story of one ordinary girl living in extraordinary times, learning how to stand up and fight)

Ted Staunton, illus. Josh Rosen, The Good Fight, Scholastic Canada, Age 10-13 (set amidst Toronto’s turbulent summer of 1933, this graphic novel sheds light on prejudice and social injustice)

Shirley Reva Vernick, Falling Stars, Cinco Puntos, Age 8-12 (historical fiction explores a true story of the only WWII casualties in the continental U.S.)

Dan Walker, Back Home, Alaska Northwest Books, YA (set in 1960s Alaska; continues Sam Barger’s story with the homecoming of his older brother, wounded from war)

Frances Watts, The Chicken’s Curse, A & U Children, Age 8+ (amusing adventures of a runaway boy and girl, and a delightfully self-obsessed sacred chicken, set in the time of Ancient Rome)

Kelly Zekas, Tarun Shanker, illus. Amanda Perez Puentes, Championess, Legendary Comics, YA (based on a true story, in 18th century London, Elizabeth Wilkinson struggles to make ends meet for her and her sister Tess while facing the fiercest female bare-knuckle boxers of her day)

May 2021

Emma Carlson Berne, illus. Ilaria Urbinati, Books by Horseback: A Librarian’s Brave Journey to Deliver Books to Children, little bee, Age 4-8 (adventure of a heroic Pack Horse Librarian who braves the harsh terrain of rural Kentucky)

Monica Brown, illus. by Mirelle Ortega, Small Room, Big Dreams: The Journey of Julián and Joaquin Castro, Quill Tree, Age 4-8 (picture book biography of the Mexican American twin brothers who rose from poverty to become political leaders on the national stage)

Katherine Factor, Choose Your Own Adventure Spies: Spy for Cleopatra, Chooseco, Age 9-12 (interactive series whereby mid-graders can learn about different times in history)

Aida Gale, Willie Sawgrass, Pineapple Press, YA (takes place in the wilderness of Southwest Florida in the early 1900s, when the cattle and fishing industry were strong but rum running was more lucrative)

Erica George, Words Composed of Sea and Sky, Running Press, YA (multiperiod novel about a poetry-loving girl in contemporary Cape Cod who discovers the diary of a female poet from the 17th-c)

Gabriele Goldstone, Tainted Amber, Ronsdale Press, YA (1937 – coming-of-age story of two young couples living under Nazi rules of sterilization and breeding perfect Aryans)

Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, Jodi Meadows, My Calamity Jane, HarperTeen, YA (irreverent tale bursting with gunslingers, outlaws, and romance)

Blake Hoena, illus. by Daniele Dickmann, Natan Sharansky, Freedom Fighter for Soviet Jews, Kar-Ben, Age 8-11 (graphic novel story of the human rights activist who paved the way for Soviet Jews wishing to live in freedom)

Joyce Moyer Hostetter, Equal, Calkins Creek, Age 8-12 (coming-of-age story about the importance of staying true to yourself and the essential power of friendship)

Justina Ireland, Ophie’s Ghosts, Balzer + Bray, Age 8-12 (Ophelia used to live in a small house in the Georgia countryside. But that was before the night in November 1922 and the cruel act that took her father from her)

Maureen Buchanan Jones, Maud & Addie, Fitzroy Books, Age 9-12 (tale that demonstrates the courage and the resilience of two young girls when confronted with adversity. Set in 1910)

Sophie Jordan, Sixteen Scandals, HMH BfYR, YA (newly minted sixteen-year-old Primrose Ainsworth finds herself on a wayward birthday adventure through London with a mysterious hero)

Kathy Kacer, Call Across the Sea, Annick Press, Age 9-12 (brings to life a little-known part of World War II and highlights the unsung acts of heroism that moved history forward)

Barbara Krasner, 37 Days at Sea, Kar-Ben, Age 8-12 (story of a twelve-year-old Jewish refugee fleeing war-torn Europe for the US – and being turned away)

Stacey Lee, Luck of the Titanic, G.P. Putnam’s Sons BfYR, YA (imagined story of Valora and Jamie Luck, twin British-Chinese acrobats traveling aboard the Titanic on its ill-fated maiden voyage)

Mariana Llanos, illus. Mariana Ruiz Johnson, Run, Little Chaski!, Barefoot Books, Age 3-6 (picture books set in the ancient Inka Empire)

Zoe Maeve, The Gift, Conundrum Press, YA (fantastical / horror retelling of the story of Anastasia Nikolaevna and the Romanov family, the last rulers of Imperial Russia before the revolution. Graphic format)

Catherine Gilbert Murdock, Da Vinci’s Cat, Greenwillow, Age 8-12 (time-slip fantasy about rewriting history to save the present)

Ellen Oh, Finding Junie Kim, HarperCollins, Age 8-12 (while facing racist vandalism at her middle school, Junie learns of her grandparents’ experiences as lost children during the Korean War and finds her inner strength)

Kevin Sands, The Traitor’s Blade, Aladdin, Age 10-14 (fifth in series set in 17th-century London)

Manuela Santoni, Brontë, Graphic Universe, YA (story of the lives of the three famous literary sisters)

Jordyn Taylor, Don’t Breathe a Word, HarperTeen, YA (separated by sixty years, Eva and Connie’s stories become intertwined as Eva unravels the mystery of how six students went into the fallout shelter all those years ago . . . but only five came out)

Robbie Waisman and Susan McClelland, Boy from Buchenwald, BloomsburyChildrens, Age 9-11 (the memoir of a Holocaust survivor and his experience with 472 other boys at a rehabilitation center)

Jacqueline West, Long Lost, Greenwillow, Age 8-12 (Eleven-yr-old Fiona move to Lost Lake and finds a mysterious book about two sisters 100 years ago)

Rita Williams-Garcia, A Sitting in St. James, Quill Tree, YA (novel about the interwoven lives of those bound to a plantation in antebellum America – 1860 Louisiana)

June 2021

Claire M. Andrews, Daughter of Sparta, jimmy Patterson, YA (reinterpretation of the classic Greek myth of Daphne and Apollo)

Brian Bowman, illus. Richard Rudnicki & Susan Tooke, Dusty Dreams and Troubled Waters, Nimbus, Age 8-12 (story of HMCS Sackville and the Battle of the Atlantic)

Michelle Jabès Corpora, Dust Bowl: American Horse Tales, Penguin Workshop, Age 8-12 (1930s Oklahoma; story of a young girl and her family as they make the difficult decision to sell the family horse and move to California)

Sharon Dogar, Monsters, Andersen Press, YA (story of Mary Shelley—radical, rebellious and entranced, who defies tradition and society, and who draws upon the monstrous elements of her own life to create the most memorable monster of them all)

Kat Dunn, Monstrous Design, Zephyr, YA (new adventure, set amid the opulence and squalour of 18th-century London and Paris)

Judith Eagle, illus. Jo Rioux, The Secret Starling, Walker Books US, Age 10-14 (a tattered ballet slipper found under the floorboards of Braithwaite Manor may be the key to Clara’s sinister family secrets in this lightly Gothic mystery)

Erin S. Evan, The Bone Wars: The Pirates of Montana, Inkshares, YA (for 65 million years, the Badlands of Montana have held a secret hidden in their depths. Multi-period)

Elizabeth Goss, My Way West, West Margin, Age 8-12 (stories of the experiences faced by real children traveling the Oregon and California Trails between 1840 and 1869)

Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodie Meadows, My Contrary Mary, HarperTeen, YA (Mary is the queen of Scotland and the jewel of the French court. Except when she’s a mouse. Yes, Mary is a shapeshifter)

Lucy Ivison, illus. Lucy Truman, The House of Serendipity, Razorbill, Age 8-12 (middle-grade novel about two girls with a talent for dressmaking set in 1920s London)

Shing Yin Khor, The Legend of Auntie Po, Penguin Kokila, Age 10-14 (graphic novel in which 13-year-old Mei reimagines the myths of Paul Bunyan as starring a Chinese heroine, as she works in a Sierra Nevada logging camp in 1885)

Gary Northfield, Julius Zebra: Grapple with the Greeks!, Candlewick, Age 7-10 (fourth action-packed, hilarious adventure brimming with facts about the ancient world)

David Ross, Scott Lauder, The Three Hares: The Gold Monkey Key, Neem Tree, Age 8-12 (in The Met in New York, Sanjeev is catapulted to 6th century Byzantium, becoming an accomplice to murder)

Brit Sandstrom, Hollow Chest, Walden Pond, Age 8-12 (WWII-era fantasy about a young boy who braves the claws and teeth of monsters both real and fantastical in order to save his brother, his family, and himself)

Ted Staunton, illus. Josh Rosen, The Good Fight, Scholastic, Age 9+ (story set amidst Toronto’s turbulent summer of 1933, this graphic novel sheds light on prejudice and social injustice)

Amanda Strong, Four Faces of the Moon, Annick Press, YA (brings alive the oral and written history of the Michif, Cree, Nakoda and Anishinaabe Peoples and their cultural link to the buffalo)

Genzaburo Yoshino (trans. by Bruno Navasky) How Do You Live?, AlgonquinYR, Age 10-14 (first English translation of a 1937 Japanese coming-of-age tale)

July 2021

Sonis Corvaglia, illus. Anna Láng, The Adventures of Ulysses, Starry Forest Books, Age 3-7 (picture book)
Also: Hercules and Theseus and the Minotaur

Lindsay Galvin, A Discovery of Dragons, Chicken House, Age 8-12 (1835. Cabin boy Simon Covington is on the voyage of a lifetime to the Galapagos Islands with the world-famous scientist, Charles Darwin)

Jerry Mikorenda, The Whaler’s Daughter, Fitzroy Books, YA (an environmental call-to-action story set in 1910, New South Wales)

August 2021

Lesa Cline-Ransome, Being Clem, Holiday House, Age 8-12 (trilogy recreates mid-twentieth century America through the eyes of three boys – Langston, Lymon and now, Clem)

Stacy Gregg, The Forever Horse, HarperCollinsChildrensBooks, Age 9+ (Maisie finds the childhood diary of famous horse artist, Rose Bonifait, and meets the beautiful black stallion, Claude)

Lisa Sukenic, Miles from Motown, Fitzroy Books, Age 9-12 (novel in verse explores what it’s like for a young African American girl to move to a mostly white suburban neighborhood)

September 2021

Laura Best, A Sure Cure for Witchcraft, Nimbus, Age 10-12 (novel about witchery, friendship, and healing, set in the 18th century Germany and present-day Nova Scotia)

Larry Dane Brimner, illus. Maya Gonzales, Without Separation, Calkins Creek, Age 7-10 (little-known civil rights story of Roberto Alvarez, a student whose 1931 court battle against racism and school segregation is considered the first time an immigrant community used the courts to successfully fight injustice)

Jodie Callaghan (trans. Joe Wilmot), illus. Georgia Lesley, Ga’s / The Train, Second Story, Age 6-9 (dual-language edition, in English and Mi’gmaq, of story of the residential school system in Canada)

Julia Donaldson, illus. Thomas Docherty, Chariots and Champions: A Roman Play, Hachette Children’s, Age 8-12 (a short, illustrated play set in ancient Rome)
Also: Bombs and Blackberries (a short, illustrated play set in World War II)

Colm Feore, Ana Gerhard, I Musici de Montréal, illus. Marie LaFrance, Curiosity Killed the Cat: Franz Schubert, The Secret Mountain, Age 7-9 (travel through time following a charming little mouse called Minim who loves cheese and music)

Heather M. Herrman, The Corpse Queen, G. P. Putnam’s Sons BfYR, YA (1850s Philadelphia – feminist historical thriller in which a teenage girl starts a new life as a grave robber but quickly becomes entangled in a murderer’s plans)

Marthe Jocelyn, illus. Isabelle Follath, Aggie Morton, Mystery Queen: The Dead Man in the Garden, Tundra, Age 10+ (for young detective Aggie Morton and her friend Hector, a spa stay becomes a lot more thrilling when two dead bodies are found)

Torben Kuhlmann, Einstein, North South Books, Age 8-12 (“The Fantastic Journey of a Mouse Through Time and Space”)

Suzanne Meade, A Terrible Tide, Second Story, Age 9-12 (tells the tale of a forgotten disaster from the point of view of a young girl whose life is turned upside down – Nov 1929 Newfoundland)

Patricia Miller-Schroeder, Sisters of the Wolf, Dundurn, Age 12+ (can two Ice Age teens separated from their tribes, overcome their differences to outwit their pursuer and survive the unforgiving wilds?)

Philippa Murphy, illus. Roberta Tedeschi, A Discovery Disappears, Sweet Cherry, Age 7-9 (fun 1920s detective series starring twin sisters Christie and Agatha!)

H. S. Norup, The Hungry Ghost, Pushkin Children’s Books, Age 7-11 (a mysterious white-clad figure leads a girl towards an old family mystery)

Aden Polydoros, The City Beautiful, Inkyard Press, YA (Jewish historical fantasy about a city, a boy, and the shadows of the past that bind them both together- set in Chicago, 1893. LGBTQIA)

Wendy Proverbe, Aggie and Midgy, Wandering Fox, Age 9-12 (traces the long and frightening journey of two Kaska Dena sisters as they are taken from their home to attend residential school)

Edeet Ravel, A Boy is Not a Ghost, Groundwood Books, Age 9-12 (sequel to the A Boy Is Not a Bird, a boy is exiled to Siberia during World War II. Based on a true story)

Sylvain Savoia, illus. Fabrice Erre, Magical History Tour #5: Albert Einstein, Papercutz, Age 7-12 (modern day kids Annie and Nico go on a magical history tour back to meet one of the 20th-c’s greatest minds)

Megan Shepherd, Dog Star, FSG BfYR, Age 8-12 (historical fiction adventure follows a girl’s bond with Laika, the famous dog cosmonaut of the Cold War)

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch, Traitors Among Us, Scholastic Press, Age 8-12 (World War II may be over. But two sisters are far from safe)

Jane Yolen, illus. Wendell Minor, The Leather Apron Club, Charlesbridge, Age 7-10 (Benjamin Franklin introduces his son Billy to the Leather Apron Club, where it’s love at first page)

October 2021

David Bowles, illus. Raúl Gonzalez III, illus. Stacey Robinson, The Witch Owl Parliament (Clockwork Curandera #1), Tu Books, YA (graphic-novel reimagining of Frankenstein set in colonial Mexico)

Elizabeth C. Bunce, Cold-Blooded Myrtle, Algonquin YR, Age 10+ (12-year-old Victorian amateur detective Myrtle Hardcastle returns, and now she’s on the trail of a serial killer in her hometown of Swinburne)

Sharon Cameron, Bluebird, Scholastic Press, YA (historical novel, set in postwar New York City)

Wai Chim, Freedom Swimmer, Scholastic Press, YA (story of friendship, bravery, and a desperate bid for freedom, inspired by true events after China’s ‘Great Leap Forward’)

Benjamin Dickson, illus. Rachel Smith, The Queen’s Favorite Witch: The Wheel of Fortune, Papercutz, Age 7-12 (if you have a problem, it’s common to go to a witch for help. And Queen Elizabeth I is no different)

Natasha Farrant, Voyage of the Sparrowhawk, Norton YR, Age 9-12 (seafaring adventure in search of loved ones and a place to call home. Set in the aftermath of WWII)

Kallie George, illus. Geneviève Godbout, Merry Christmas, Anne, Tundra, Age 4-7 (a Christmas Anne of Green Gables picture book)

Ana Gerhard, Colm Feore, I Musici de Montréal, illus. Marie LaFrance, A Brilliant Plan!: Joseph Haydn, The Secret Mountain, Age 7-9 (covers the Battle of the Ia Drang with music and dialogue – inspirational)

Kathy Kacer, Under the Iron Bridge, Second Story, YA (inspired by the true story of the Edelweiss Pirates, a group that declared “Eternal War on the Hitler Youth,”)

Uma Krishnaswami, illus. Christopher Corr, Two at the Top: A Shared Dream of Everest, Groundwood, Age 4-6 (biographical fiction picture book in which Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary each tell their story)

Hope Larson, illus. Rebecca Mock, Salt Magic, Margaret Ferguson Books, Age 10-14 (post WWI – when a jealous witch curses her family’s well, it’s up to Vonceil to set things right in an epic journey that will leave her changed forever)

Kathryn Lasky, Faceless, HarperCollins, Age 8-12 (middle grade historical novel about young British spies on a secret mission in Germany during World War II)

Ann Scott-Moncrieff, illus. C. L. Davidson, Aboard the Bulger, Scotland Street Press, Age 8+ (in 1934, five children escape from a orphanage and steal a boat, which they sail around the Outer Hebrides where they explore uncharted new islands)

J. Torres, illus. David Namisato, Stealing Home, Kids Can Press, Age 9-12 (a fictional story woven into an historically accurate, account of the events surrounding the internment of Japanese Canadians during World War II)

November 2021

Colm Feore, Ana Gerhard, I Musici de Montréal, illus. Marie LaFrance, We Are All Ears: Niccolo Paganini, The Secret Mountain, Age 7-9 (travel through time following a charming little mouse called Minim who loves cheese and music)

Janet Graber, The Secret Chamber of Gwendolyn Riston, Fitzroy Books, Age 9-12 (adventure set during the Great Plague of 1665)

Carly Heath, The Reckless Kind, Soho Teen, YA (Norway, 1900s – centers on a wild and reckless trio who fly in the face of small-town tradition – LGBTQ+)

Jeannie Mobley, The Diamond Keeper, Viking BfYR, YA (tale of the elusive Hope Diamond’s journey across Europe during the French Revolution)

Sylvain Savoia, illus. Fabrice Erre, Magical History Tour #6: The Plague, Papercutz, Age 7-12 (Annie and Nico go on a magical history tour back to explore some of the worst infectious diseases of all time)

December 2021

Rodman Philbrick, Stay Alive, Scholastic, Age 8-12 (the Journal of Douglas Allen Deeds, The Donner Party Expedition, 1846)

January 2022

Maggie Tokuda-Hall, illus. Yas Imamura, Love in the Library, Candlewick, Age 6-9 (set in an internment camp where the US detained Japanese Americans during WWII, this love story finds hope in heartbreak)

February 2022

Avi, Loyalty, Clarion Books, Age 10-12 (story of a young Loyalist turned British spy navigating patriotism and personal responsibility during the lead-up to the War of Independence)

J. M. Lee, The Nightland Express, Erewhon, YA (in antebellum America, two teens bury their secrets and join the historic Pony Express, and soon discover the mortal world is not the only one on the brink of war)

April 2022

Dominique Conil (trans. Alison L. Strayer) No to Fear, Triangle Square, Age 10-14 (fictional story of the fearless, internationally recognized journalist who was assassinated for believing that ‘words can save lives.’)

Rachel Hausfater (trans. Alison L. Strayer), No to Despair, Triangle Square, Age 10-14 (portrait of the last days of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising and its young leader Mordechai Anielewicz)


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