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If you like x, try y: Kid's Edition!

Hello readers! I hope everyone is hunkering down at home with a big pile of good books and a healthy dose of Netflix to boot. I’m back with more book suggestions based on your favorite books and movies, but this time, we’re doing a KIDS ONLY version! Sorry grown-ups, none for you this round! Ordered by reading level (starting with picture books all the way up to young adult), this list is chock full of family friendly suggestions to keep your kids entertained while you’re working from home. Without further ado, check out this week’s recommendations:

 

If you love Ada Twist, Scientist, try…

Doll-E 1.0 by Shanda McCloskey: Nobody does picture books about young girls in STEM quite like Ada Twist, but Doll-E 1.0 comes pretty close! Meet Charlotte, a girl who loves to tinker and code, but who is utterly puzzled when she receives a doll as a present. Luckily, this doll has a battery pack, and it isn’t long before Charlotte is up to a whole new kind of tinkering. This charming story of friendship, science, and play is the perfect book to inspire young girls and remind them that STEM is for everyone.


If you love Everybody Poops, try…

What Do They Do With All That Poo? by Jane Kurtz: Your favorite potty-training book meets an afternoon in the zoo! I love the colorful and silly illustrations in What Do They Do in the Zoo, but even more than that, I loved learning real facts about animal poo. This book has two sets of text for each page, including both a cute rhyme about each animal and its scat at the top of the page and also fun and informational tidbits at the bottom. You’re sure to giggle as you read this one (just wait until you see the hippo squirting poo), but be prepared to learn lots too!

 

If you love Sideways Stories from Wayside School, try…

My Teacher is an Alien by Bruce Coville: If you loved the quirky shenanigans at Wayside School, then you’ll definitely enjoy this first installment of the My Teacher Books. One day Susan catches her teacher peeling his face off, and she realizes her teacher isn’t just weird, he’s an alien! Join Susan and her friend Peter as they try to save the class from their out-of-this-world teacher, and you’ll be totally captivated by this funny book full of middle school mishaps.

Wayside School Beneath the Cloud of Doom by Louis Sachar: While brainstorming for this list, I discovered some amazing news: after twenty-five years, Sachar is back and better than ever with a brand new Wayside School book, and I am here for it! Sachar advises that you read the original books first, since it will help some of the long awaited punchlines land, but either way, gear up for a funny and kooky read. Told as one narrative, rather than a series of short stories like the first book, Wayside School Beneath the Cloud of Doom is just the treat we all need while in quarantine.

 

If you love the Descendants movies, try…

The Fairy-Tale Detectives by Michael Buckley: Before fairy-tale offspring were singing and dancing their hearts out in your favorite Disney Channel movie, sisters Sabrina and Daphne Grimm were diving into a world full of fairy-tale crime! This is one of my all-time favorite books from childhood, and I revisit it often, because this rich world is so fun to get lost in. When two sisters find out they are descended from the legendary Brothers Grimm, their world is turned upside down as they meet all the characters they thought were just fiction. Get ready for an incredibly fun and fast-paced mystery as Sabrina and Daphne get to the bottom of this giant story.


If you love Percy Jackson and the Olympians, try…

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi: The first offering from Rick Riordan’s publishing imprint, this book follows much of the same format as Percy Jackson, but with its own unique characters and a magic system pulling from Hindu mythology. Aru doesn’t exactly fit in with her classmates, but she’s happy to spin elaborate lies for social capital. Caught in a lie, Aru makes a desperate decision that frees the Sleeper, an ancient demon. This sets the stage for an epic adventure, complete with intricate mythology and great characters. You’ll love this one so much, you’ll be thanking the gods, or at least applauding Chokshi’s incredible storytelling!

The False Prince by Jennifer Nielson: While the plot to this one diverges quite a bit from that of Percy Jackson, the overall tone of the book definitely hits many of the same notes. When Sage gets caught up in a secret plot to steal the crown, his wits are put to the test. But Sage has secrets of his own! This book is so full of twists and turns that you won’t see many of them coming, but you’ll love every moment of this epic race for the throne. Equally full of heart and sass, Sage will be your new favorite hero!

 

If you love Broadway musicals, try…

Alex and Eliza by Melissa de la Cruz: I’m proud to say I’ve listened to the Hamilton soundtrack on repeat so many times that I can now recite the whole three hours word for word. But nothing gets me going quite like Eliza Schuyler’s tracks, and so I was happy to discover that there is now a trilogy explicitly devoted to Eliza’s side of the story. If you’re a Hamilton fan, you know that Eliza Schuyler and Alexander Hamilton’s romance is nothing if not complicated, but in this first book, you can rewind to simpler days when Alex and Eliza were just two young folks courting each other. While this book diverges a bit from Hamilton, fans of the musical won’t be disappointed, and those who have never heard a song off the soundtrack will enjoy it as well.

Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel by Val Emmich: I’m often pretty skeptical of books adapted from TV or from plays, but I’m happy to report that Dear Evan Hansen is a beautiful rendering of this Broadway story. Maybe it’s because the creative team behind the hit musical was involved in the creation of the novelization, or maybe it’s because Emmich’s prose by itself is completely enjoyable. Either way, this story of grief, loneliness, and good intentions gone wrong will take you on an emotional ride that will stick with you for a long time. 

 

If you love The Hunger Games, try…

The Grace Year by Kim Liggett: Liggett’s newest YA book shares a lot of the same DNA as The Hunger Games, if you mixed in a bit of The Handmaid’s Tale for good measure. In this feminist dystopia, all sixteen year old girls are banished to the woods for the year, where they can release their alluring female magic before returning to become brides. What happens in those woods is never talked about, but read this book if you want to know the violent secrets in this seemingly utopian society. The Grace Year has some of the best ingredients from The Hunger Games, so you should get your hands on a copy before the movie adaptation comes out!

—Julia

Books: 
Doll-E 1.0 Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780316510318
Availability: Backordered
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - May 1st, 2018

What Do They Do with All That Poo? Cover Image
By Jane Kurtz, Allison Black (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781481479868
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Beach Lane Books - June 19th, 2018

My Teacher Is an Alien (My Teacher Books #1) Cover Image
$6.99
ISBN: 9781416903345
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Aladdin - July 1st, 2005

Wayside School Beneath the Cloud of Doom Cover Image
By Louis Sachar, Tim Heitz (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062965387
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: HarperCollins - March 3rd, 2020

Fairy-Tale Detectives (The Sisters Grimm #1): 10th Anniversary Edition Cover Image
By Michael Buckley, Peter Ferguson (Illustrator)
$8.95
ISBN: 9781419720055
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harry N. Abrams - May 2nd, 2017

Aru Shah and the End of Time (A Pandava Novel Book 1) (Pandava Series #1) Cover Image
$7.99
ISBN: 9781368023566
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Rick Riordan Presents - March 19th, 2019

The False Prince (The Ascendance Series, Book 1) Cover Image
$7.99
ISBN: 9780545284141
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scholastic Paperbacks - February 1st, 2013

Alex & Eliza (The Alex & Eliza Trilogy #1) Cover Image
$10.99
ISBN: 9781524739645
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Books - January 14th, 2020

Dear Evan Hansen: The Novel Cover Image
$18.99
ISBN: 9780316420235
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Poppy - October 9th, 2018

The Grace Year: A Novel Cover Image
$16.99
ISBN: 9781250145444
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Wednesday Books - October 8th, 2019