December new releases

Holiday Sugar Cookies

New Releases is back to wish you Happy Holidays and to spread some holiday cheer with a list of middle grade books coming out in December. This includes our own Mixed-Up Files member, Helene Boudreau, who has a new title coming out this month. Congratulations, Helene!


From The Mixed-Up Files Authors:

REAL MERMAIDS DON’T WEAR TOE RINGS! (Sourcebooks Jabberwocky) – Helene Boudreau. If she hadn’t been so clueless, Jade might have seen it coming. But really, who expects to get into a relaxing bathtub after a stressful day of shopping for tankinis and come out with scales and a tail? Most. Embarassing. Moment. Ever. Jade soon discovers she inherited her mermaid tendencies from her mom. But this revelation raises a serious question: if Mom was a mermaid, how did she drown? Jade is determined to find out. But how does a plus-sized, aqua-phobic, mer-girl go about doing that, exactly? And how will Jade ever be able to explain her secret to her best friend Cori, and her crush, Luke? This summer is about to get a lot more interesting…


More December releases:

Another Whole Nother Story

♦ ANOTHER WHOLE NOTHER STORY (Bloomsbury USA) – Dr. Cuthbert Soup. WHOLE NOTHER STORY author is back with another book. Ethan Cheeseman, along with his three smart, polite, and relatively odor-free children, would travel back in time to end an ancient family curse and save their mother. Now that the LVR (a super-secret time machine) is in working order, it should be easy peasy. Except they didn’t account for one basic rule of science: Murphy’s Law, where everything that possibly could go wrong, does.

THE JAGUAR STONES, BOOK TWO: THE END OF THE WORLD CLUB (Egmont USA) – J&P Voelkel. With the end of the Mayan calendar fast approaching, fourteen-year-old Max Murphy and his new friend Lola, the modern Maya girl who saved his life in the perilous jungle, are racing against time to outwit the twelve Lords of Death. Second book in the trilogy, written by husband-wife author team, Jon and Pamela Voelkel.

♦ THE RISE AND FALL OF MOUNT MAJESTIC (Dial) – Jennifer Trafton. Ten-year-old Persimmony Smudge leads a very dull life on the Island at the Center of Everything . . . until the night she overhears a life-changing secret. It seems that Mount Majestic, the rising and falling mountain in the center of the island, is not a mountain at all–it’s the belly of a sleeping giant, moving as the giant breathes. Now Persimmony and her new friend Worvil the Worrier have to convince all the island’s other quarreling inhabitants–including the silly Rumblebumps, the impeccably mannered Leafeaters, and the stubborn young king–that a giant is sleeping in their midst, and must not be woken.

♦ FLAT STANLEY’S WORLDWIDE ADVENTURES #6: THE AFRICAN SAFARI DISCOVERY (HarperCollins) – Jeff Brown. Stanley’s not the only flat one! When a flat skull is discovered in Africa, Stanley Lambchop decides to travel there with his brother, Arthur, and their father, George. Maybe studying the skull will give them clues to Stanley’s flatness. But once in Africa, the Lambchops are in for more adventure than they bargained for. From lions to zebras to elephants, it’s the safari of a lifetime!

RUNEWARRIORS: SHIP OF THE DEAD (HarperCollins) – James Jennewein, Tom S. Parker (illustrator). Dane the Defiant is determined to free his beloved Astrid from her Valkyrie servitude. To do so, he must hunt and kill Thidrek the Terrifying, who has magically returned from the dead. Thidrek has been sent by the goddess Hel herself, ruler of the Underworld, to find the Ship of the Dead, a cursed vessel built from the bone and sinew of countless ill-fated sailors. If Dane and his fellow Rune Warriors fail to find the ship first, Thidrek will use it to lead Hel’s ghastly army of dead, decayed soldiers in a violent overthrow of mankind.

♦ THE DOOMSDAY BOX: A SHADOW PROJECT ADVENTURE (Balzer + Bray) – Herbie Brennan. When the CIA created a program to research time travel in the 1940s, they never imagined it could lead to a global pandemic decades later. But after an undercover agent, code name Cobra, exploits the time-travel operation to send the black plague into the twenty-first century, the supernatural teen spies of the Shadow Project are recruited to go back in time to Cold War-era Russia and prevent this devastating chain of events from occurring. There’s just one problem: How do four teenagers deter a seasoned CIA agent from his life-or-death mission? Michael, Danny, Opal, and Fuchsia, a new agent with mysterious abilities, will have to use their powers of astral projection—and persuasion—to convince Cobra that what’s at stake could hit closer to home than he can imagine. That is, if they can even manage to survive in Moscow in the early 1960s, where the KGB wants them dead. . . .

♦ THE STAR MAKER (HarperCollins) – Laurence Yep. If only Artie had kept his mouth shut. But his mean cousin Petey was putting him down, so Artie started bragging. Now he has to come up with enough money to buy firecrackers for all his cousins by the Lunar New Year. Luckily, there’s one person he can count on . . . Uncle Chester! Newbery Honor Book author Laurence Yep celebrates family and Chinese New Year traditions in this story of a boy and his uncle who discover that age doesn’t matter when it comes to helping out a friend.

♦ A BOY NAMED FDR: HOW FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT GREW UP TO CHANGE AMERICA (Knopf) – Kathleen Krull. Franklin D. Roosevelt was born into one of the wealthiest families in America, yet this ultimate rich kid grew up to do more for ordinary Americans than any other president.

♦ BLACK PIONEERS: HOME IS WITH OUR FAMILY (Disney*Hyperion) – Joyce Hansen. Now that she is turning thirteen, Maria Peterson envisions new adult prestige and responsibility, like attending abolitionist meetings and listening to inspiring speakers such as Sojourner Truth. The year also brings trials and tribulations for her family and friends, however. The City of New York wants to turn her community’s settlement into a park. Now that Maria has made a new friend, she’s even more determined to stay put. But soon Maria discovers that her friend has a problem even more dire than being thrown out of her home. Will Maria be able to help her? And what will happen to her own family’s home? Hansen is a four-time Coretta Scott King Honor recepient.

The Storm Before Atlanta♦ THE STORM BEFORE ATLANTA (Random House) – Karen Schwabach. At a time when most people have grown weary of the war between the states, two young children are desperate to find their way to the battlefields. Jeremy DeGroot wants nothing more than to join a troop as a drummer boy. For Dulcie, a runaway slave, freedom means she must head directly toward the fighting in the hopes that she’ll become “contraband,” that is, property of the Union troops. Both Jeremy and Dulcie find a place with the 107th New York Volunteer Regiment and even start to forge a friendship. But all that is threatened when they keep crossing paths with the mysterious Charlie, a young Confederate soldier, who may look like the enemy but feels more like a friend.

♦ TWOSOMES: LOVE POEMS FROM THE ANIMAL KINGDOM (Knopf) – Marilyn Singer,  Lee Wildish (illustrator). Do animals celebrate Valentine’s Day? Nobody knows for sure. But this funny (and punny) little book imagines how some of them declare their love, affection, or friendship any day of the year.”Nice to Meetcha! You smell delish!/Wanna share my water dish?” So asks one tail-thumping dog to another. Whereas a courting dolphin sings, “Come, leap with me and be my wife./You’re the porpoise of my life.” Ranging from dogs and cats and other pets to some you wouldn’t want to pet, such as sharks and porcupines, Singer’s captivating couplets and Lee Wildish’s expressively humorous illustrations provide a Valentine’s Day gift for kids who wouldn’t be caught dead being lovey-dovey.

Lunch Lady and the Bake Sale Bandit

♦ LUNCH LADY AND THE BAKE SALE BANDIT (Knopf) – Jarrett J. Krosoczka. The Breakfast Bunch is excited for the upcoming bake sale—and the best part is that it’s raising money for an awesome field trip.  But when all the snacks go missing, it’s no laughing matter.  Someone is sabotaging the bake sale.  But why? Lunch Lady and the Breakfast Bunch are hot on the trail . . . one brownie crumb at a time.

  1. These all catch my eye. Thanks for the list.






  2. @Laura You’re welcome! I love the monthly releases, too. It helps me keep up with what’s out there!

    @Kyle Yes, there seem to be many boy books this month. Though Lunch Lady seems to cross gender – I just became acquainted with the series recently through my daughter. I think there are several intriguing books, too, from the list. Among the many of them, I’m interested in The Rise and Fall of Mount Majestic.

  3. What a great list of boys books. I am excited to add to my stack. I love the Lunch Lady. ANOTHER WHOLE NOTHER STORY and Doomsday Box look like possible guys read book club books.

  4. I love it when you provide monthly releases! Congrats to Helene!!!