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Astoria Bookshop Staff Picks - Young Readers

Astoria Bookshop Staff Picks - Young Readers

These are our staff picks for middle grade and young adult books from years past!

Playlist Tags: Astoria Bookshop genre: Children's audience: middle grade audience: tweens audience: teens bookstore-created audience: kids

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The Poet X

By Elizabeth Acevedo
Narrated by: Elizabeth Acevedo
Length: 3 hours 30 minutes

The Poet X

“Getting to listen to the author herself read her poetry, which are clearly a testament to the spoken word and the art of slam, is absolutely the best way to devour this novel-in-verse. Acevedo puts everything into her words, and no one else could do them justice the way she does herself. Despite possible age/cultural/religious differences, any listener will immediately relate to this teenage girl desperately trying to both find herself and her voice, and live up to her family's expectations.”

Quail Ridge Books image Amber, Quail Ridge Books
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Monday's Not Coming

By Tiffany D. Jackson
Narrated by: Imani Parks
Length: 10 hours 6 minutes

Monday's Not Coming

“This heartbreaking, mind-bending thriller reads like truth: Monday Charles, a young black girl who lives in poverty, whose care has been shifted from one agency to another until no one knows who is supposed be looking out for her, disappears at the beginning of a long, hot, DC summer. But only her best friend Claudia registers her disappearance. Everyone else assumes she's moved, she's living with another relative, she's dropped out of school. As Claudia struggles to find allies to help her in her search for Monday, she also struggles to reconcile the Monday she thought she knew with the girl who was fighting for her life against the ponderous bulk of an uncaring system. This book is a tragic wake-up call in an era where the lives of some missing girls are still given more weight than the lives of others.”

Inklings Bookshop image Emily, Inklings Bookshop
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The Light Between Worlds

By Laura E. Weymouth
Narrated by: Fiona Hardingham & Moira Quirk
Length: 9 hours 34 minutes

What happens when you return to the real world after being in a fantastical one like Narnia? This YA debut by Laura E. Weymouth is perfect for fans of Melissa Albert’s The Hazel Wood and Lev Grossman’s The Magicians.

Six years ago, sisters Evelyn and Philippa Hapwell were swept away to a strange and beautiful kingdom called the Woodlands, where...

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All We Can Do is Wait

By Richard Lawson
Narrated by: Holly Linneman
Length: 9 hours 19 minutes

Debut author and Vanity Fair film critic Richard Lawson makes your heart stop and time stand still in his extraordinary and life-affirming novel that's perfect for fans of If I Stay and We All Looked Up.

In the hours after a bridge collapse rocks their city, a group of Boston teenagers meet in the waiting room of Massachusetts General... Read more »

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The Serpent's Secret

Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond: Book #1

By Sayantani DasGupta
Narrated by: Sayantani DasGupta
Length: 8 hours 14 minutes

A new middle-grade fantasy series packed with action and adventure, perfect for fans of Rick Riordan and Soman Chainani. MEET KIRANMALA: INTERDIMENSIONAL DEMON SLAYER (Only she doesn't know it yet.) On the morning of her twelfth birthday, Kiranmala is just a regular sixth grader living in Parsippany, New Jersey . . . until her parents... Read more »

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City of Ghosts (City of Ghosts #1)

City of Ghosts

By Victoria Schwab
Length: 5 hours 1 minutes

From #1 NYT bestselling author Victoria Schwab comes a sweeping, spooky, evocative adventure, perfect for fans of "Stranger Things" and Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children.

Ever since Cass almost drowned (okay, she did drown, but she doesn't like to think about it), she can pull back the Veil that separates the living from the dead... Read more »

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The Hazel Wood

A Novel
The Hazel Wood: Book #1

By Melissa Albert
Narrated by: Rebecca Soler & James Fouhey
Length: 10 hours 30 minutes

The Hazel Wood

“What happens when fairy tales mix with reality? What happens when those fairy tales aren't all happy endings? Alice experiences this first hand in the novel, The Hazel Wood, by Melissa Albert. I listed through Libro.fm as Rebecca Soler narrated the tale of Alice, a teenager, constantly on the move with her mother, Ella, as bad luck always seems to find them. Ella is striving to turn their straw house into a brick one, when something terrible happens and mother and daughter are separated. Alice discovers her own dark and magical past on the journey to the Hazel Wood to save her mother, but what she becomes isn't the good kind of fairy tale. Soler's narration was over dramatic for my taste. Albert's use of words was beautiful and descriptive and didn't need the at times sinister twist Soler's point of view put on it. Focusing on Albert's writing made me enjoy the story more. I loved how Albert put words together. Some of the things she described in NYC were so spot on I laughed out loud. I couldn't put this book down (or should I say turn off?). The book was a little farfetched, but what would you expect from a fairy tale? Albert had me hooked. I give it a comb, a bone and a feather from the Hinterland a.k.a. 9 out of 10.”

M. Judson Booksellers image Kelly, M. Judson Booksellers
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I Stop Somewhere

By TE Carter
Narrated by: Laurel Schroeder
Length: 8 hours 38 minutes

From TE Carter comes a highly-anticipated audiobook debut. I Stop Somewhere promises to keep listeners hooked from the very first track.

Ellie Frias disappeared long before she vanished.

Tormented throughout middle school, Ellie begins her freshman year with a new look: she doesn’t need to be popular; she just needs to blend in with the...

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Children of Blood and Bone

Legacy of Orisha: Book #1

By Tomi Adeyemi
Narrated by: Bahni Turpin
Length: 17 hours 44 minutes

Children of Blood and Bone

“Children of Blood & Bone, is a story told in a world where magic no longer exists. Years ago, this was not the case. Once, magic and the Gods were celebrated. Now, Diviners (those with Maji blood, but no magic) are treated poorly, and all the Maji have been killed. One of those including our main protagonist, Zélie’s, mother. Determined to find a way to bring back magic, Zélie, along with her brother Tzain, and Orïsha’s only princess, Amari (gone rogue), set out on a quest against all odds. Told from Zélie, Amari and Amari’s brother and crown prince, Inan’s viewpoints, Tomi Adeyemi weaves together a tale so beautifully and tragically relevant, it will leave you craving for answers and more.”

Vroman's Bookstore image Jen, Vroman's Bookstore
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Sky in the Deep

Sky and Sea: Book #1

By Adrienne Young
Narrated by: Khristine Hvam
Length: 8 hours 40 minutes

"Fearless in its exploration of family, forgiveness, loyalty, and love, Sky in the Deep is fierce, vivid, and violently beautiful. This book will wage a war with your heart as brutal and as bold as the battles inked in its pages." - Stephanie Garber, New York Times Bestselling author of Caraval

In her highly-anticipated debut audiobook, Adrienne...

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The Cruel Prince

The Folk of the Air: Book #1

By Holly Black
Narrated by: Caitlin Kelly
Length: 12 hours 36 minutes

The Cruel Prince

“Holly Black is a master at her craft, dropping us into the land of Faerie in a way that captures the attention as effortlessly as one of the Folk of the Air enchants humans in her story. Jude is our guide through the strange, beautiful, and terrifying world of Elfhame where she was raised by Madoc, her half-sister’s father, after he murdered their mother and Jude’s human father. All she’s ever wanted was to belong, wishing to become a knight. But it’s not easy being a human in Elfhame, even when you’ve been raised by a fierce and widely respected Faerie. At least not for Jude. With unexpected twists and characters you’ll love and hate, sometimes at the same time, this is one Faerie tale you don’t want to miss. And once you’ve had a taste, you won’t want to stop until you’ve finished the entire series as quickly as you can.”

Rediscovered Books image Dany, Rediscovered Books
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Emergency Contact

By Mary H. K. Choi
Narrated by: Joy Osmanski & Jacques Roy
Length: 9 hours 6 minutes

“Smart and funny, with characters so real and vulnerable, you want to send them care packages. I loved this book.” —Rainbow Rowell

From debut author Mary H.K. Choi comes a compulsively readable novel that shows young love in all its awkward glory—perfect for fans of Eleanor & Park and To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before.

For Penny Lee, high... Read more »

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Dry

By Neal Shusterman & Jarrod Shusterman
Narrated by: Neal Shusterman, Jarrod Shusterman, Jenni Barber, Noah Galvin, Michael Crouch & Kivlighan De Montebello
Length: 11 hours 6 minutes

Dry

“In the near-future, the drought in SoCal has reached catastrophic proportions despite years of warnings and restrictions...and it becomes downright apocalyptic once a water supply deal falls through and the water is turned off entirely. The main story of Dry follows Alyssa, her brother, and their prepper neighbor as they try to survive in this new world while society crumbles around them. The Shustermen have clearly done their research when it comes to the effects of dehydration and desperation — something that is viscerally and terrifyingly conveyed throughout the book. Told through the point of view of several characters, the timely plot grabs you from page one and pulls you at a breakneck pace all the way through to the end, with each person having their own distinct voice and coping mechanisms. Just be sure to have a glass of water handy while you’re reading — you’ll need it.”

Mysterious Galaxy Books image Darcy, Mysterious Galaxy Books
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Merci Suárez Changes Gears

Merci Suárez: Book #1

By Meg Medina
Narrated by: Frankie Corzo
Length: 7 hours 9 minutes

Winner of the 2019 Newbery Medal

Thoughtful, strong-willed sixth-grader Merci Suarez navigates difficult changes with friends, family, and everyone in between in a resonant new novel from Meg Medina.

Merci Suarez knew that sixth grade would be different, but she had no idea just how different. For starters, Merci has never been like the other kids...

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