October New Releases


It’s that time of the month…October is upon us in all its spooky glory. We’ve got brand-new books out this month from two of our members…Congratulations Helene and Tami!

Keep reading though, because we’ve also put together a list below of the many other new middle-grade books releasing this month, too!

From The Mixed-Up Files Authors:

KEEP OUT! (Nimbus) – Helene Boudreau. Lucas and Andre try to solve the mystery of who, or what, has destroyed the endangered piping plover’s nest of Prince Edward Island National Park. And Lucas hatches a plan to get Andre to keep his dirty socks on his side of the room! Watch the trailer.

SOAR, ELINOR! (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux) – Tami Lewis Brown. Plucky Elinor Smith dreamed of making her living as a professional pilot, but not everyone thought that girls should fly. When male pilots and newspapermen mocked her, Elinor decided to perform an aerial maneuver they thought was impossible. It would take training and preparation. But this aviation pioneer was determined to show that with talent, hard work, and plenty of grit, a girl could climb to any height.


More October Releases:

♦ A GOOD HORSE (Knopf) – Jane Smiley. When eighth grader Abby Lovitt looks out at those pure-gold rolling hills, she knows there’s no place she’d rather be than her family’s ranch—even with all the hard work of tending to nine horses. But some chores are no work at all, like grooming young Jack. At eight months, his rough foal coat has shed out, leaving a smooth, rich silk, like chocolate. Then a letter arrives from a private investigator – the letter states that Jack’s mare may have been sold to the Lovitts as stolen goods. A mystery unfolds, more surprising than Abby could ever expect. Will she lose her beloved Jack to his rightful owners? Smiley is the author of many books for adults, including the Pulitzer Prize–winning, A Thousand Acres.

♦ BECAUSE OF MR. TERUPT (Delacorte) – Rob Buyea. It’s the start of fifth grade for seven kids at Snow Hill School. There’s Jessica, the new girl, smart and perceptive, who’s having a hard time fitting in; Alexia, a bully, your friend one second, your enemy the next; Peter, class prankster and troublemaker; Luke, the brain; Danielle, who never stands up for herself; shy Anna, whose home situation makes her an outcast; and Jeffrey, who hates school. Only Mr. Terupt, their new and energetic teacher, seems to know how to deal with them all. He makes the classroom a fun place, even if he doesn’t let them get away with much . . . until the snowy winter day when an accident changes everything—and everyone.

♦ BIG NATE STRIKES AGAIN (HarperCollins) – Lincoln Peirce. Big Nate will surpass all others! But it won’t be easy. He’s stuck with Gina, his all time enemy, who just might ruin everything! Will Nate win or lose? Pass or fail? Or end up in detention . . . again?

♦ CHARLES DARWIN (GIANTS OF SCIENCE) (Viking) – Kathleen Krull. All his life, Charles Darwin hated controversy. Yet he takes his place among the Giants of Science for what remains an immensely controversial subject: the theory of evolution. Darwin began piecing together his explanation for how all living things change or adapt during his five-year voyage on HMS Beagle. But it took him twenty years to go public, for fear of the backlash his theory would cause.

♦ CITY KIDS: STREET AND SKYSCRAPER RHYMES (Tradewinds) – X.J. Kennedy, Phillippe Beha, (Illustrator). Funny poems and silly illustrations make a perfect combination.

♦ DANGER AND DIAMONDS (MYSTERY AT SEA) (Roaring Brook Press) – Elizabeth Levy. Phillipa has always loved Agatha Christie mysteries, but it’s not until the new captain’s son and some interesting guests come aboard the cruise ship where she lives (and her parents work), that she finally gets a chance to do some sleuthing of her own.

♦ ENCYCLOPEDIA BROWN AND THE CASE OF THE SECRET UFO (Dutton) – Donald J. Sobol. Encyclopedia Brown is back, protecting Idaville from swindlers, con men, and thieves. Since 1963 this brainy crime-stopper has been a favorite character among middle-grade readers. Sobol, the creator of Encyclopedia Brown, was presented a special Edgar Award by the Mystery Writers of America for this well-loved series.

♦ GIRL’S BEST FRIEND (MAGGIE BROOKLYN MYSTERY) (Bloomsbury USA) – Leslie Margolis. Dogs are disappearing in her neighborhood, and Maggie Brooklyn Sinclair knows all about it. After all, she has a semi-secret after-school gig as a professional (ok, amateur) dog-walker. Maggie hates to see a pup in trouble, so she’s even willing to help her ex-best friend Ivy recover her rescue-dog, Kermit. Kermit’s being held for ransom, and Maggie has noticed some suspicious behavior lately. But she never suspected her crush Milo could be involved.

♦ HOW TIA LOLA LEARNED TO TEACH (THE TIA LOLA STORIES) ( Knopf) – Julia Alvarez. Tía Lola has been invited to teach Spanish at her niece and nephew’s elementary school. But Miguel wants nothing to do with the arrangement. On the other hand, Miguel’s little sister, Juanita, can’t wait to introduce her colorfully dressed aunt with her migrating beauty mark to all her friends at school—that is, if she can stop getting distracted long enough to remember to do so. Before long, Tía Lola is organizing a Spanish treasure hunt and a Carnaval fiesta at school. Will Miguel be willing to join the fun? Will Juanita get her head out of the clouds and lead her classmates to victory in the treasure hunt? Sequel to HOW TIA LOLA CAME TO VISIT STAY.

♦ KICKERS #3: BENCHED (Knopf) – Rich Wallace. It’s a race to the Kickers soccer league play-offs. Nine-year-old Ben is pretty sure that if the Bobcats win two of their last three games, they’ll earn a tournament spot. But in their game against the Tigers, the Bobcats are a mess on the field and Ben decides to take control. Then the whistle blasts, the red card waves, and Ben is out—benched for dangerous moves. Not only that, he’s barred from the next game, too. How can he possibly help his team to the play-offs from the sidelines?

♦ NANCY AND PLUM (Knopf) – Betty MacDonald. Re-issue of the classic story by Betty MacDonald, which was originally published in 1952, with illustrations by Hary Potter illustrator, Mary GrandPré, and an introduction by Jeanne Birdsall.

♦ MARY ENGELBREIT’S FAIRY TALES: TWELVE TIMELESS TREASURES (HarperCollins) – Mary Engelbreit. Twelve class fairy tales with more than one hundred gorgeous illustrations, including Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, the Little Mermaid, Rapunzel, cinderalla, and Thumbelina. Engelbreit is also the author of the New York Times bestselling The Night Before Christmas, Mary Engelbreit’s Mother Goose, and Mary Engelbreit’s Nursery Tales.

♦ MEANICURES (Egmont USA) – Catherine Clark. Three best friends decide to banish their enemies by holding a ceremony and burning slips of paper with the names of mean girls on them. But soon afterwards, they discover themselves becoming mean, and they must find a way–with a little help from the owner of their local beauty shop–to reverse the ceremony and revert to their sweet (mostly), kind (if slightly imperfect) personalities.

♦ MERLIN’S DRAGON, BOOK 3: ULTIMATE MAGIC (Philomel) – T. A. Barron. Avalon is on the verge of total destruction: an army of warriors, a swarm of fire dragons, and a lethal plague are all laying waste to Merlin’s beloved land. But Merlin is nowhere to be found. Leading the fight in his place is Basil, the once tiny lizard who is now the most powerful dragon in Avalon. But to restore peace, the mastermind behind this chaos, Doomraga, will need to be discovered and destroyed before his power grows stronger and Avalon and its inhabitants are beyond saving. For Basil to triumph, he and his friends may need to make the ultimate sacrifice. Final book in the Merlin’s Dragon trilogy.

♦ MOOMINPAPA AT SEA (MOOMINTROLLS) (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux) – Tove Jansson. Leave Moominvalley? Even the Moomin family need a change of scenery sometimes, so they’re off to live in a lighthouse on a tiny island. Here they find space to grow, and to do things they couldn’t in their comfortable, cluttered valley home. As they discover their new home, the family also discovers surprising, and wonderfully funny, new things about themselves. From the Moomintroll series.

♦ MOOMINVALLEY IN NOVEMBER (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux) – Tove Jansson. Now that autumn is turning into winter, a group of unlikely friends—including the Fillyjonk, the Hemulen, and Toft—are waiting in Moominvalley to see the Moomins, for winter doesn’t seem right without them. But the Moomins are not at home. So all the visitors settle down to await their return, and oddly enough find themselves warming up to their new life together. For Moominvalley is Moominvalley still, even without the Moomins in it. From the Moomintroll series.

MOON OVER MANIFEST (Delacorte) – Clare Vanderpool. Abilene Tucker feels abandoned. Her father has put her on a train, sending her off to live with an old friend for the summer while he works a railroad job. Armed only with a few possessions and her list of universals, Abilene jumps off the train in Manifest, Kansas, aiming to learn about the boy her father once was. Having heard stories about Manifest, Abilene is disappointed to find that it’s just a dried-up, worn-out old town. But her disappointment quickly turns to excitement when she discovers a hidden cigar box full of mementos, including some old letters that mention a spy known as the Rattler. These mysterious letters send Abilene and her new friends, Lettie and Ruthanne, on an honest-to-goodness spy hunt, even though they are warned to “Leave Well Enough Alone.”

♦ MURDER AFLOAT (Disney*Hyperion) – Jane Leslie Conly. Benjamin Franklin Orville is a boy without a care in the world until the day his mother sends him to market to get a chicken for dinner. Suddenly Benjy is caught up in a scuffle, kidnapped with a group of immigrants and forced to work aboard the Ella Dawn–one of the most ill-reputed oystering vessels in Baltimore. Soon the boy knows only hard work and hunger, a little bit of German, and a whole lot about injustice. And in between his growling stomach and his aching muscles, he also experiences the joys of the sea. Will Benjamin ever see his home again? And if he does, will he know what to do there?

♦ PERCY JACKSON AND THE OLYMPIANS: THE LIGHTNING THIEF: THE GRAPHIC NOVEL (Disney*Hyperion) – Rick Riordan, Robert Venditti, Attila Futaki (Illustrator), and Jose Villarrubia (Illustrator). You’ve read the book. You’ve seen the movie. And now, at last, you get the graphic novel. Mythological monsters and the gods of Mount Olympus seem to be walking out of the pages of twelve-year-old Percy Jackson’s textbooks and into his life. And worse, he’s angered a few of them. Zeus’s master lightning bolt has been stolen, and Percy is the prime suspect. Now, he and his friends have just ten days to find and return Zeus’s stolen property and bring peace to a warring Mount Olympus.

♦ PHILIPPA FISHER AND THE FAIRY’S PROMISE (Candlewick) – Liz Kessler. Philippa is excited to spend her vacation with her friend Robyn, but she has no idea just how much excitement awaits. When a magic spell carved on a mysterious circle of rocks transports Philippa to fairy godmother headquarters, she learns that her own mother is in danger. To protect her mom from a serious accident, Philippa must pretend to be a fairy, while Daisy, her fairy godsister, returns to Earth as Philippa! And that’s just the beginning of their adventure. Third book in the series.

RANGER’S APPRENTICE, BOOK 9: HALT’S PERIL (Philomel) – John Flanagan. The renegade outlaw group known as the Outsiders may have been chased from Clonmel, but not before killing Halt’s only brother. Now Rangers Halt and Will, along with the young warrior Horace, are in pursuit. The Outsiders have done an effective job of dividing the kingdom into factions and are looking to overtake Araluen. It will take every bit of skill and cunning for the Rangers to survive. Some may not be so lucky.

♦ REALLY, REALLY BIG QUESTIONS ABOUT SPACE AND TIME (Kingfisher) – Mark Brake. A fun introduction to space science and astrophysics, exploring such unanswered questions as,  does the Universe have a shape? What makes sunshine? Do stars explode? How do you build a time machine? And do aliens look like me?

♦ REX ZERO, THE GREAT PRETENDER (Farrar, Straus, and Giroux) – Tim Wynne-Jones. Rex Zero’s family is moving, again, this time to a different school district, and his old friends will probably forget he even exists. What’s more, a trio of bullies is out to get him. Rex’s wild and funny adventures continue as he stumbles into seventh grade, pretending to be someone he’s not, and using his overactive imagination to resolve one of life’s most vexing problems: just when everything is going well, why does it have to change?

♦ RUDE STORIES (Tundra Books) – Jan Andrews. Meet Mr. Mosquito, drawn from a Gypsy story. He’s cantankerous and nasty enough to raise belly laughs along with the eyebrows of the polite. In a story inspired by Australian bush tales, we meet Ella and Bella, two hilarious (and flatulent) sisters. Angelina’s earthy wit is memorialized in a story from Swahili tradition. The eight stories in Rude Stories have roots from Japan to Canada, from Africa to Eastern Europe, but they all share a sense of irreverence, and, because they are the work of a true storyteller, they beg to be read aloud, told aloud and shared. Francis Blake’s hilarious askew art brings the characters to life in this spicy stew of international stories to satisfy every child’s appetite for the deliciously absurd.

♦ SUPER CHICKEN NUGGET BOY VS. DR. NED-GRANT AND HIS EGGPLANT ARMY(Disney*Hyperion) – Josh Lewis. The nugget is back! After his tasty alter-ego felled the Furious Fry, Fern Goldberg went back to being a normal fourth grader. But not for long. Bert Lahr Elementary is about to be thrown into chaos by a mad food scientist and an army of evil eggplants bent on world domination!

♦ THE BATTLE OF NASHVILLE (Knopf) – Benson Bobrick.  A dynamic Civil War book with a fresh angle.  Bobrick profiles General George H. Thomas, an overlooked scion of the Civil War, and shows the military choices that saved the Union.  Also examined are President Lincoln, the causes of the war and the various personalities who have shaped our understanding of the war today.

♦ THE BOY WHO HOWLED (Bloomsbury USA) – Timothy Power. As far back as Callum can really remember, he’s been living in the Wild as the furless mascot of a wolf pack. But when his pack sends him back to live with his own kind—humans—fitting in is quite a challenge. He doesn’t remember English very well, so he accidentally says his name is “Clam.” He’s spent most of his life eating fresh-killed elk, so dining with vegetarians is tricky. And when he tries to impress the Alpha student in the school cafeteria by stealing food, people seem offended!

♦ THE BUCK STOPS HERE: THE PRESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES (Viking) – Alice Provensen. In this book, you’ll find 41 “delicious slices of history,” with feature portraits of each president, rendered in the artist’s folksy paintings. Included are lively depictions of the issues, achievements (and, in some cases, missteps and misconducts) that marked each chief executive’s years in office. Rhyming couplets incorporate each name and number with easy-to-remember phrases about each presidency: “Teddy Roosevelt, Twenty-six / Whisper softly, wave big sticks.” All of these details manage to convey the larger-than-life qualities that helped carry these men to the White House and, at the same time, remind us that presidents are only human.

THE BUTLER GETS A BREAK: A BELLWEATHER TALE (Egmont USA) – Kristin Clark Venuti. Sequel to LEAVING THE BELLWEATHERS. After much thought, Tristan Benway has decided to remain in the employ of the Bellweather family, and the children, especially, have tried to mend their ways. But old habits die hard, and when the triplets – Brick, Spike, and Sassy – experiment in negative space on the lighthouse stairs, Benway ends up in the hospital with a broken leg, and the Bellweathers are left without a butler. The family’s efforts to find an interim servant fail miserably. Their troubles mount as they become mixed-up with a band of roving Gypsies, paleontological discoveries gone awry, and encounters with rare attack squirrels.  But letting the recuperating Benway know of their plight is not an option. As the Bellweathers spin increasingly amazing stories of their “new servant” at Benway’s bedside, the poor butler starts to wonder if he was ever needed.

♦ THE COMING OF THE DRAGON (Random House) – Rebecca Barnhouse. Barnhouse weaves Norse gods, blood feuds, and a terrifying dragon into this spectacular retelling of the end of the Old English poem Beowulf.

THE COMPLETE BOOK OF THE FLOWER FAIRIES (Warne) – Cicely Mary Barker. Twenty years after her death, Cicely Mary Barker continues to charm and delight readers in this complete compilation of all her world-famous fairy illustrations and poems.

♦ THE HEALING WARS: BOOK II: BLUE FIRE (Balzer + Bray) – Janice Hardy. Part fugitive, part hero, fifteen-year-old Nya is barely staying ahead of the Duke of Baseer’s trackers. Wanted for a crime she didn’t mean to commit, she risks capture to protect every Taker she can find, determined to prevent the Duke from using them in his fiendish experiments. But resolve isn’t enough to protect any of them, and Nya soon realizes that the only way to keep them all out of the Duke’s clutches is to flee Geveg. Unfortunately, the Duke’s best tracker has other ideas. Nya finds herself trapped in the last place she ever wanted to be, forced to trust the last people she ever thought she could. More is at stake than just the people of Geveg, and the closer she gets to uncovering the Duke’s plan, the more she discovers how critical she is to his victory. To save Geveg, she just might have to save Baseer—if she doesn’t destroy it first.

THE HEROES OF OLYMPUS, BOOK ONE: THE LOST HERO (Disney*Hyperion) – Rick Riordan. After Percy and friends save Olympus from the evil Titan lord, Kronos (Percy Jackson series), Riordan returns us to Percy’s Camp Half-Blood, where a new group of heroes will inherit a quest. But to survive the journey, they’ll need the help of some familiar demigods. Listen to Riordan talk about the series.

♦ THE YOUNGEST TEMPLAR, BOOK 3: ORPHAN OF DESTINY (Putnam) – Michael Spradlin. Tristan and his companion, the fiery archer Robard Hode and the assassin maid Maryam, have escaped to England. But tragedy has occurred to Tristan’s beloved abbey while they were on the Third Crusade, and Robard’s home in Sherwood Forest suffers under the rule of the Sheriff of Nottingham. Many obstacles still prevent them from delivering the Holy Grail into safe hands. Tristan must defeat the evil Sir Hugh and learn the secret of his birth, a secret Richard the Lionheart and Eleanor of Aquitaine are willing to kill to protect.

♦ TOLLINS: MORE EXPLOSIVE TALES FOR CHILDREN (HarperCollins) – Conn Iggulden and Lizzy Duncan. “A deliciously subversive vein runs through this story collection,” following Iggulden’s and Duncan’s previous EXPLOSIVE TALES FOR CHILDREN, which first  introduced us to the explosive, magical and adventurous world of the Tollins ( don′t ever call them fairies).

♦ TRUTH WITH A CAPITAL T (Delacorte) – Bethany Hegedus. With grace and humor and a heaping helping of little-known facts, Hegedus incorporates the passions of the North and the South and bridges the past and the present in this story about one summer in the life of a sassy Southern girl and her trumpet-playing adopted Northern cousin.

♦ UNDER THE GREEN HILL  (Henry Holt) – Laura L. Sullivan. Meg and her siblings have been sent to the English countryside for the summer to stay with elderly relatives. The children are looking forward to exploring the ancient mansion and perhaps discovering a musty old attic or two filled with treasure, but never in their wildest dreams did they expect to find themselves in the middle of a fairy war. When Rowan pledges to fight for the beautiful fairy queen, Meg is desperate to save her brother. But the Midsummer War is far more than a battle between mythic creatures: Everything that lives depends on it. How can Meg choose between family and the fate of the very land itself?

♦ WRITE ON, CALLIE JONES (Egmont USA) – Naomi Zucker. The adventures of Callie Jones and her loveable, eccentric family continue as Callie takes on the school paper.

  1. Congrats Helene, Tami, and all the other authors with October releases!

    I can’t wait to add a bunch of these great books to my must-read pile. 🙂

  2. looks like a great list! thanks for compiling it. and HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY to Helene and Tami!

  3. Thanks for the great list and summaries…I see a few to add to my stack!

  4. I love it when you do this every month. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!