16 August 2013

Imprint Friday: Introducing Algonquin Young Readers

Algonquin Young ReadersWelcome to Imprint Friday and today's featured imprint: Algonquin Young Readers. Stop by each week to be introduced to a must-read title from one of my favorite imprints. I know you'll be adding many of these books to your wish list.

Did you know that Algonquin Books launched a new imprint this month? I can't tell you how excited I am about Algonquin Young Readers and the five books that are coming out in their first season. Before I introduce the books, let me share what Algonquin has to say about their new venture:

Algonquin Young Readers, launching Fall 2013, features books for readers seven to seventeen. From short illustrated novels for the youngest independent readers to timely and topical crossover young adult fiction, what ties our books together are unforgettable characters, absorbing stories and superior writing.

Our imprint is dedicated to publishing works of the same literary merit and enduring quality that are the hallmarks of our parent imprint, Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill.
It's this commitment to outstanding books, no matter the age of the audience, that makes me thrilled to feature Algonquin Young Readers. Visit the imprint's website, and you'll quickly notice the sincerity behind their tag line "A Well-Read Life Begins Here." Motivated readers of all ages as well as parents, teachers, homeschoolers, and book clubs will find plenty of resources for learning and for reinforcing the idea that reading is fun and broadens your horizons.

The extra materials vary by title, and include essays by the authors, guides to the main characters, videos, educator guides, and reader guides. The materials are available as printable PDFs that are eye-catchingly designed with colorful graphics and fun fonts. Young or old, don't miss these great resources.

Now let's take a look at the initial catalog. I think you'll be as impressed as I am.

If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan & The Time Fetch by Amy Herrick

August. If You Could Be Mine by Sara Farizan (ISBN-13: 9781616202514) is like no book you've ever read. It's the story of two teenage girls who have been in love for most of their lives. But the stumbling blocks for Sahar and Nasrin are insurmountable. In their native Iran, homosexuality is a state crime, punishable by imprisonment or death. When Nasrin's parents make arrangements for her marriage, Sahar seriously contemplates sex reassignment surgery because, oddly, this is a legal choice in Iran. Farizan's debut novel, written for high schoolers, examines homosexuality, transgender identity, contemporary life in Iran, gender roles, love, marriage, families, and cultural expectations.

Amy Herrrick's The Time Fetch (ISBN-13: 9781616202200), written for middle grade readers, is an exciting fantasy adventure. When Edward disturbs a Time Fetch by mistake, the creature sends out his foragers, whose sole mission is to snatch up moments of time. When things get out of hand, and the entire structure of the universe threatens to collapse, Edward and three friends must find a way to defeat the Fetch and put things to right. Kids and adults alike will love the relationship among the friends and will be fascinated by the concept of missing time. Other themes revolve around ancient tales of the winter solstice as well as family, environmental issues, and teamwork.

September. Author Hollis Seamon took her own life experiences and put them into her novel, Somebody Up There Hates You (ISBN-13: 9781616202606), which explores the serious issue of childhood cancer. In all but one respect, Richard Casey is a regular, sometimes annoying, teenage boy. That one thing, though, is huge: he has terminal cancer and has moved into a hospice. Although you might think the story of a sick boy would be depressing, Seamon shows us that life goes on, even for the very sick. Richard meets Sylvie, another teen resident of the facility, and their friendship, hopes, and dreams show that, as the author says, teens will be teens no matter what the circumstances. This is a surprisingly uplifting and inspiring story, written for high schoolers.

Early readers (and adults!) will fall in love with Kate Klise and M. Sarah Klise's Three-Ring Rascals: The Show Must Go On! (ISBN-13: 9781616202446). When circus owner Sir Sidney decides he'd rather sleep than travel, he puts an ad in the paper looking for a new manager who "must love children, popcorn, and animals." Barnabas Bumbles, a trained animal trainer, is sure he can keep the show going. Unfortunately, his ideas are too grandiose to be practical. The good news is that Leo the Lion, Elsa the Elephant, and the rest of the gang pull to together and save the circus. Kids will love the pencil drawings, short cartoons, and other cute illustrations that break up the text, making this delightful story loads of fun to read. Talking animals, silly jokes, and a few underlying messages of friendship and working together make this a winner.

Anton and Cecil: Cats at Sea by Valerie and Lisa MartinOctober. Sea-loving Cecil and land-lubber Anton are brothers who live in a coastal town and star in the exciting new novel Anton and Cecil: Cats at Sea by Lisa Martin and Valerie Martin (ISBN-13: 9781616202460). When finicky Anton is captured by sailors and pressed into service as an on-board ratter, the more easygoing Cecil jumps aboard another ship, hoping to rescue his brother. Middle grade readers will be entranced by the world of the cats and their adventures at sea, all the while hoping that the siblings are somehow reunited. This beautifully written story of high-seas adventure, with its marvelous cast of cats, rats, dolphins, and whales is sure to become a classic, read and reread by young and old alike. Maps and charming black-and-while drawings illustrate the story.

For more about Algonquin Young readers, visit their website, like their Facebook page, and follow them on Twitter.


rhapsodyinbooks 8/16/13, 7:46 AM  

I love Algonquin and am very happy they started this division!

bermudaonion 8/16/13, 8:00 AM  

I'm really excited about this imprint since I equate Algonquin with quality.

Heather 8/16/13, 10:28 AM  

This is so awesome!. I love Algonquin books, so I know they will be publishing some awesome books for young readers.

Vasilly 8/16/13, 10:38 AM  

Algonquin books for young readers are always good. Thanks for highlighting the upcoming releases.

Laurie C 8/18/13, 10:21 AM  

This sounds like a wonderful avenue for Algonquin to take and I only wish it had been around when I was a young reader!

Christi Craig 8/18/13, 11:47 AM  

Ooh, I love Algonquin books! I'm going to have to get my hands on a few of these books for my young readers too!

Daryl 8/19/13, 8:58 AM  

these sound great and i have some friends with kids and grandkids who would love these, thanks!

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