The Door of No Return by Kwame Alexander
Little, Brown Young Readers
September 27, 2022
Kofi Offin experiences the joys and difficulties of village life in 1860’s Ghana. He enjoys the storytelling of his elders and swimming in the nearby river, while maintaining friendships and rivalries with his peers. When Kofi’s brother accidentally kills a member of a rival tribe in a wrestling match, the bonds of tradition and family run deep and strong. Though repeatedly warned not to leave the confines of the village after dark, Kofi goes for a nighttime swim. Tragically, he is captured into the slave trade, and taken to ‘the door of no return’ where a terrifying trans-Atlantic journey begins.
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The Summer of Bitter and Sweet by Jen Ferguson
May 10, 2022
The summer after she graduates high school, Lou is working at her family’s ice-cream shack, waiting to head off for university in the fall.
Lou is Metis, and lives with her mother in farmland in small-town Alberta. While she knows her mother’s family, who are Indigenous, she knows nothing for certain about her white father or his family.
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The Red Palace by June Hur
Feiwel & Friends
Publication Date: January 25, 2022
In 1758 Joseon (Korea), 18-year-old Hyeon worked hard to become a palace nurse, one of the very few positions an illegitimate daughter can hold, with the hopes of doing a good job and earning her father’s approval, but her hopes are dashed when her mentor is accused of murdering four girls and Hyeon chooses to risk her life and position to help clear her mentor’s name.
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The Lesbiana’s Guide to Catholic School by Sonora Reyes
Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: May 17, 2022
Yamilet Flores is doing the best she can. She’s working part-time to be able to afford the tuition at her new fancy private school and she’s trying to keep her brother on the straight and narrow. But it’s hard when you’re the new girl, with a supposedly difficult to pronounce name who also happens to be Mexican and queer but just wants to blend in. Add in a really nice, cute, and smart, openly queer girl named Bo and it becomes even harder.
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The Last Mapmaker by Christina Soontornvat
Publication Date: April 12, 2022
Twelve year old Sai is assistant to Mangkon’s most celebrated mapmaker. No one knows that she has been harboring a secret; her father is a conman. When they set out on a journey to chart the southern seas, she has no idea that the ship may actually be heading to the fabled Sunderlands, a land thought to be guarded by dragons. As Sai struggles to conceal her identity aboard the ship, she discovers that she is not the only one with a secret.
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When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord
Publication Date: January 4, 2022
Millie Price is dead set on becoming a Broadway star, but her introverted dad is reluctant to let her leave home to attend a special musical theater school. When Millie discovers her dad’s LiveJournal from 2003, she decides that a deep dive into this history will help her find out who her birth mother is, in hopes that her newly found mom will support her dreams.
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Daughters of a Dead Empire by Carolyn Tara O’Neil
Roaring Brook Press
Publication Date: February 22, 2022
Anastasia Romanov is the sole survivor of the slaughter of Russia’s royal family at the hands of the Bolshevik Red Army. Anastasia knows she must get to safety before the Red Army realizes she is not among the dead and tracks her down to finish the job. Anastasia enlists the reluctant help of a teen Bolshevik villager named Evgenia and, in spite of their differences, the two form an uneasy alliance as the Red Army closes in.
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All My Rage by Sabaa Tahir
Razorbill / Penguin Random House
Publication Date: March 2, 2022
Salahudin (Sal) and Noor are two Pakistani American teens trying to make the best of it before graduating and escaping Juniper, the California desert town where they have few prospects. Noor has had to apply for college in secret, since her abusive uncle expects her to stay and help run the liquor store as payment for him taking her in. Sal has recently lost his loving mother, Misbah, and he’s struggling to keep his family’s motel afloat while his alcoholic father descends into grief. Sal and Noor used to rely on each other, but since The Fight, things are awkward between them. Yet just as they start to reconnect and trust each other again, maybe even fall in love, Sal’s desperate attempts to make money to save his family’s motel endangers them both.
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All That’s Left in the World by Erik J. Brown
Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: March 8, 2022
Andrew and Jamie, both with secrets of their own, lost everyone they cared about after a deadly pathogen killed off much of the population, but they find each other when they need it most and begin a dangerous trek together to search for civilization.
All That’s Left in the World is told from the point of view of Andrew, an expert at telling hilarious sarcastic jokes, and Jamie, a hopeful and kind person who loves Hallmark movies. Andrew is looking for help after he gets his leg stuck in a bear trap when he comes across Jamie’s cabin, and the rest is history.
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Answers in the Pages by David Levithan
Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: May 10, 2022
Three different storylines intertwine to reveal the importance of stories, representation, and standing up for the right to read. The story opens from the perspective of Donovan who is reading a book titled, The Adventurers for school. His mom reads the last sentence of the book and goes on to challenge the title in front of the school board based on her presumption that the book contains LGBTQIA+ themes. This storyline is intersected with actual excerpts from The Adventurers, as well as the story of Gideon, a boy who is experiencing new feelings towards a boy who just moved to his school.
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