Guys, I think I'm going to blame the tardiness of this roundup on Summer Reading Program and the resultant brain-fry. Yeah, that sounds good. Let's go with that.
By the Numbers
Review Copies: 16
Teen: Across a Star Swept Sea by Diana Peterfreund
The Scarlet Pimpernel . . . IN SPACE. Well, no, not really. But the classic adventure of deliberately mistaken identity gets a sci-fi sheen and that's good enough for me.
Tween: The Grand Plan to Fix Everything by Uma Krishnaswami
Got a middle-grade girl (or boy, possibly) who loves sweet and charming and rather unlikely? Give them this one.
Children: Journey into the Deep: discovering new ocean creatures by Rebecca L Johnson
Every page was full of wild and weird aliens from this very planet. Truth really is cooler than fiction.
Because I Want To Awards
I Know the Feeling: This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales
This story of a girl trying to find her place in the world while remaining true to herself echoed most of my teenage years. Especially the poetry castle part.
What's This I Hear? Non-White Fantasy Protagonist?: Mortal Fire by Elizabeth Knox
While rather rambling, this book gets points for the setting (the New Zealandish Southland) and the ethnicity of the protagonist (native islander with an illustrious mother).
Speaking of Adorably Unlikely: Better Nate Than Ever by Tim Federle
What do you do when you have Broadway dreams in Janksburg, Pennsylvania? Hop a bus to NYC and the open auditions for ET: The Musical! (Yes, really.) I especially liked that he had very tween-appropriate attractions. By which I mean, he was noticing boys and men, but in the way that tweens do, mostly by blushing and looking away.
Protagonist Most in Need of a Hug: Small as an Elephant by Jennifer Richard Jacobson
I spent most of the book going, "Oh, honey!" because Jack was so clearly used to taking care of himself at an age when somebody should have been taking care of him.