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Kids and Teen Blog

Tag: Teens

New Releases: Kids and Teen Highlights January 2015

by Dan
Kids + YA Fiction / January 08, 2015

Happy New Year! Here's sneak peek at some of the new kids and teen books coming from Raincoast Books this month...



Gone Too Far 

Natalie D. Richards

Keeping secrets ruined her life. But the truth might just kill her.

Piper Woods can't wait for the purgatory of senior year to end. She skirts the fringes of high school like a pro until the morning she finds a notebook with mutilated photographs and a list of student sins. She's sure the book is too gruesome to be true, until pretty, popular Stella dies after a sex-tape goes viral. Everyone's sure it's suicide, but Piper remembers Stella's name from the book and begins to suspect something much worse...


Ages 13+

Available Now



The Kanin Chronicles #1

Amanda Hocking

The first book in a magical new YA series from New York Times bestselling author Amanda Hocking that invites readers back to the beloved world of the Trylle.

Bryn Aven is an outcast among the Kanin, the most powerful of the troll tribes. Set apart by her heritage and her past, Bryn is a tracker who's determined to become a respected part of her world. She has just one goal: become a member of the elite King’s Guard to protect the royalty. But all her plans for the future are put on hold when Konstantin—a fallen hero who she once loved —appears to be up to something dangerous, kidnapping changelings. Bryn is sent in to help stop him, but will she lose her heart in the process?

Ages 12-17

Available Now


The Lunar Chronicles

Marissa Meyer

In this stunning bridge book between Cress and the forthcoming Winter, Queen Levana’s story is finally told.

Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her “glamour” to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress, Levana lived a very different story—a story that has never been told... until now.


Ages 12+

Available January 27



Bad Kitty: Puppy's Big Day

Nick Bruel

Bad Kitty's in a bad mood . . . a very bad mood, and Puppy is not helping.

Enter Uncle Murray, who's tasked with taking care of Puppy for the day, but that's when the trouble begins. When they go on a walk through the park, Uncle Murray almost gets himself arrested while Puppy ends up in the pound, where he meets some very peculiar new pals.




Ages 7-10 

Available Now

Tuck Everlasting

40th Anniversary Edition

Natalie Babbitt; foreword by Gregory Maguire 

Doomed to-or blessed with-eternal life after drinking from a magic spring, the Tuck family wanders about trying to live as inconspicuously and comfortably as they can. When ten-year-old Winnie Foster stumbles on their secret, the Tucks take her home and explain why living forever at one age is less a blessing that it might seem. Complications arise when Winnie is followed by a stranger who wants to market the spring water for a fortune.

Ages 10-14

Available January 20



The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh

Sally M Walker; illustrated by Jonathan D. Voss

When Harry Colebourn saw a baby bear at a train station, he knew he could care for it. Harry was a veterinarian. But he was also a soldier in training during World War I.

Harry named the bear Winnie, short for Winnipeg, his company's home town, and he brought her along to the military camp in England. Winnie followed Harry everywhere and slept under his cot every night. Before long, she became the regiment’s much-loved mascot.

But who could care for the bear when Harry went to battle? Harry found just the right place for Winnie—the London Zoo. There a boy named Christopher Robin played with Winnie—he could care for this bear too!

Ages 4-8

January 20


Stephen Savage

When the city is hit by a colossal snowstorm, only one superhero can save the day. But who is this mysterious hero, and why does he disappear once his job is done?

Find out in this snowy tale about a little truck with a very big job, the second of Steve Savage's vehicle-based picture books.

Ages 2-6

Available Now

Sweet Dreams, Pout-Pout Fish

Deborah Diesen; illustrated by Dan Hanna

Feeling sleepy? It's time for bed! Toddlers will love swimming along with the Pout-Pout Fish as he turns little frowns into sleepy smiles.

Debbie Diesen and Dan Hanna's best-selling Pout-Pout Fish comes flippering and swishing into the hearts and minds of very young children with this compact and fun new tale sure to delight the sleepiest of guppies.

Ages 1-4

Available January 15

The Secret Garden

A BabyLit Flower Primer

Jennifer Adams; illustrated by Alison Oliver

BabyLit® is a fashionable way to introduce your toddler to the world of classic literature. With clever, simple text by Jennifer Adams, paired with stylish design and illustrations by Sugar's Alison Oliver, these books are a must for every savvy parent's nursery library.

Ages Infant-3

Available January 15


All For Stilton, Stilton For All!

Geronimo Stilton Graphic Novels #15

Geronimo, Trap, Pandora, Benjamin and Patti return to the era of Louis XIII on the trail of the Pirate Cats. At Fontainebleu Castle they enroll in Richelieu's army of mousketeers and are commanded by the cardinal to oppose two brigands in the area. The mice discover that the brigands are no other than Cattardone and Tersilla who have replaced Louis XIII with Bonzo! Our heroes must find the real Louis XIII and and put him back on the throne.



Ages 7-11

Available January 13

Ares: Bringer of War

Olympians #7

The myth continues in the tenth year of the fabled Trojan War where two infamous gods of war go to battle. The spotlight is thrown on Ares, god of war, and primarily focuses on his battle with the clever and powerful Athena. As the battle culminates and the gods try to one-up each other to win, the human death toll mounts. Who will win this epic clash of power? And how many will have to die first?



Ages 9-14

Available January 27

New Releases: Kids & Teen Highlights March 2014

by Dan
Kids + Picture Books + YA Fiction / February 24, 2014

There are so many great books for kids and teens coming in out in March! Here's a look at some of the highlights.... 


My Life with the Walter Boys

Ali Novak

Wattpad's most loved story with over 26 million views, published for the first time!

Sixteen-year-old Jackie Howard is devastated when her parents are killed in a car accident. She has no one to turn to except for her mom's best friend Katherine Walter. Jackie quickly discovers that Katherine is no stranger to being a mom—she's got twelve boys! And every single one is a handful...

Ages 12-17

Available March 1

The Winner's Curse

Marie Rutkoski

The Winner's Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart. In the tradition of Kristin Cashore and Cassandra Clare,it is a brilliant, unputdownable, star-crossed romance about the curse of winning.

Ages 12-17

Available March 4


Paperback Original

Searching for Beautiful

Nyrae Dawn

From the bestselling author of Charade, a heartbreaking look at a failed teen pregnancy and how a broken girl can love again, told in alternating chapters from the before and the after.

Ages 13+

Available March 4

The Nightmare Dilemma

Arkwell Academy #2

Mindee Arnett

Following The Nightmare Dilemma, the thrilling new fantastical Arkwell Academy mystery series from YA author Mindee Arnett continues with The Nightmare Dilemma. 

Ages 13-18

Available March 11

16 Things I Thought Were True 

Janet Gurtler

Morgan isn't thrilled to take a summer job at the local amusement park the summer before her senior year. Her super-hot manager, Adam, makes it bearable...until she gets fired. And when Morgan's mom gets sick and confesses that Morgan's dad is not actually dead, she becomes determined to find him. To her shock, Adam agrees to help. Road trip with a cute guy? Summer is finally starting to look up.

Ages 13+

Available March 11


Canada Doodles 

Megan Radford & illustrated by Peter Cook

Explore the rugged beauty of Canada's varied landscape as you travel on highways, in trains and planes, and even floating in bathtubs. Enjoy a plate of poutine and other tasty treats, admire the world's biggest tomahawk, and take in a hockey game.

Ages 8+

Available Now

Edgar Gets Ready For Bed

A BabyLit First Steps Picture Book

Jennifer Adams & illustrated by Ron Stucki

Meet the plucky toddler Edgar the Raven! He's mischievous, disobedient, and contrary. Dinnertime, clean-up time, and bedtime are all met with one word: NEVERMORE! But as the evening winds to a close, Edgar's mom knows just what to do to get her son into bed—a bedtime story.

Infant to 3

Available Now

The Big Book of Superheroes

Bart King

As a child, Bart King discovered he could punch people into outer space. Sadly, he lost a lot of friends that way. Today, Bart is one of the world's most in-demand superhero experts. So if you're wondering if you have what it takes to be a superhero-of course you do! All you need is a burning desire to fight evildoers. Oh, and also a secret identity, the perfect name, a cool costume, some terrific superpowers, and an archenemy. Actually, you know what? You better get this book!


Ages 8+

Available March 1

The Cupcake Club: Baby Cakes

Sheryl Berk and Carrie Berk

Delaney is shocked to find out her mom is expecting twins! She LIKES being an only child. It's been 10 years, and she's had her parents-and her room-all to herself. But her cupcake club pals are excited to bake for the baby shower-until Delaney's mom wants a giant stork made out of cupcakes! Meanwhile, Delaney wonders what kind of a big sis she'll be. She's never babysat and definitely has never changed a diaper. The girls of Peace, Love & Cupcakes are about to give her a crash course in Baby 101!


Ages 9-12

Available March 4

Daddy Wrong Legs

Nina Laden

Every daddy is different—and here's the proof! Featuring Nina Laden's colourful artwork and trademark humour, this interactive format will delight the youngest readers (and their fathers) as they mix and match the split pages to create a bevy of daddies that are part hairy, part scaly... and wholly fun.

Infant to 3

Available March 4

I Didn't Do My Homework Because...

Davide Cali & illustrated by Benjamin Chaud

How many excuses are there for not doing homework? Let us count the ways: Giant lizards invaded the neighbourhood. Elves hid all the pencils. And then there was that problem with carnivorous plants...The excuses go on and on, each more absurd than the next and escalating to hilarious heights.

Ages 6-9

Available March 4

642 Things to Write About

Young Writers Edition

826 Valencia

Write a to-do list for a villain. Describe your dream tree house. Create a haiku about your shoes. Young writers will get their creative juices flowing with this collection of smart, funny, and thought-provoking writing exercises. Kids can open to any page to find inspiration, express themselves, and jump-start their literary genius.

Ages 8-12

Available March 4

Bedtime Math 2

This Time It's Personal

Laura Overdeck & illustrated by Jim Paillot

Inside Bedtime Math 2, families will find fun, mischief-making math problems to tackle-math that isn't just kid-friendly, but actually kid-appealing. With over 100 math riddles on topics from missing socks and glitter to your favorite wild pet and how fast you can run, kids will find math isn't just fun, it can be found in their everyday lives.

Ages 3-8

Available March 11

The Riverman

Aaron Starmer

Alistair Cleary is the kid who everyone trusts. Fiona Loomis is not the typical girl next door. Alistair hasn't really thought of her since they were little kids until she shows up at his doorstep with a proposition: she wants him to write her biography. What begins as an odd vanity project gradually turns into a frightening glimpse into the mind of a potentially troubled girl.

Ages 10-14

Available March 18

Presto Change-o!

A Book of Animal Magic

Edouard Manceau

See the raccoon hiding in a magic cauldron? The owl pretending to be a clock? The lion masquerading as a flower? A rabbit hiding in a hot-air balloon? Kids will love working magic with just a few simple turns-and a few rhyming verses-that transform everyday objects into familiar creatures.

Ages 3+

Available March 18

Two Hands to Love You

Diane Adams & illustrated by Paige Keiser

With two loving hands, an adoring mother cradles her baby after bath time and a devoted father lifts his newborn to look into a nest. Sister, brother, grandma, and grandpa all can't wait to share what they love best with their newest family member. And when it is time to step out into the world, this caring family is right there alongside their littlest one. 

Ages 2-4

Available March 25

Lately Lily

The Adventures of a Travelling Girl

Micah Player

Where has Lily been lately? Everywhere! In this heartfelt picture book from illustrator Micah Player, Lily—a world travelling girl with boundless curiosity—goes on enviable adventures with her best friend Zeborah, travelling by plane, train, boat, and even by camel. Whether venturing far away or staying close to home, Lily knows that the joy of discovery is the best way to travel each and every day.

Ages 3-5

Available March 25

The Glorkian Warrior Delivers a Pizza

James Kochalka

The Glorkian Warrior isn't the brightest bulb in the box, so it's good he's got his trusty talking backpack to advise him as they set out on a perilous journey to deliver a pizza. The pizza's got clams and peanut butter on it, so it's not clear who's going to want it, but deliver it they will. With bright, lively illustrations and classic pratfalls, this graphic novel for kids is 112 pages of super icky gross-out humor and ludicrously bad decisions

Ages 5-9

Available March 25

Scarlet Set to Launch February 5!

by Megan
February 01, 2013


Why Marissa Meyer, what kickin' reads you have!

Marissa Meyer’s epic Lunar Chronicles series kicks into high gear next week with the release of book #2, Scarlet (Check out the Facebook fan page for the latest release information). Cinder and Scarlet’s dystopian take on the fairytale aren’t your average damsel-in-distress, singing-drawf stories. I am so excited for Scarlet’s release, I’ll be wearing my red cloak and bionic leg all weekend (family, watch out, you’re about to be embarrassed). Here’s a quick recap to get y’all in the mood:



Not Your Average Dystopia: Raises questions about what it means to be human when the androids are often more empathetic than the warmbloods.

Not Your Average Fairytale: Androids? Plague? Cyborgs? YES! So much for tiaras and tulle.

Girl meets boy. Girl is cyborg, boy is prince of New Beijing, and, oh yeah, the world is being threatened by both a deadly plague and a race of eerie moon people who seem bent on intergalactic domination.

Cinder is a cyborg, a second-class citizen with a mysterious past who is both reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her sister’s illness. After becoming intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai, Cinder becomes caught in an intergalactic struggle. Cinder must uncover secrets about her own past in order to protect the future of the world.



Not Your Average Dystopia: Raises questions about permanence, leaving a mark on this earth. Can a person’s essence be captured in a microchip? Is destiny something to be embraced, or avoided?

Not Your Average Fairytale: Grandma ain’t goin’ down without a fight. Take that, wolfie.

A young girl and her missing grandmother. A big bad (and handsome) wolf. A vicious lunar queen trying to hunt them down.

Scarlet Benoit is searching for her missing grandmother. In the search, she discovers secrets about her grandmother’s life and her own, and the grave danger they have both been in for their entire lives. Scarlet meets Wolf, a street fighter who promises to have information about her grandmother. The two are drawn to one another, growing closer in their search. Cinder also appears, trying to break out of prison and in the process, becoming the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.

In honour of the Lunar Chronicles and their awesomeness, I’ve taken down a list of recommendations à la Scarlet for other fairytale creatures (listen up, gnomes):

  1. Always travel with an android if you can swing it, preferably one with a smart mouth and a celebrity obsession. Much more entertaining than singing dwarves.
  2. Cyborg parts are SO HANDY! Run out of pockets for your magic wand/spare change/poisoned apple? Simply open up that metal panel in your thigh and stick 'em inside! Ikea storage taken to a new level.
  3. If you’re going to be bitten by a wolf, make sure he’s tall, dark, and mysterious.
  4. Train your grandmother to kick butt. And not just a little, but a LOT.  A grandma with a wicked sidekick is much more excellent when it comes to battling evildoers than one who just pulls the covers tighter and gets eaten.
  5. Take note Hansel and Gretel: it’s much easier to navigate dark forests and fairytale settings with an internet connection in your brain. Not to mention the money you’ll save on breadcrumbs. 

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Tough Issues, Great Reads: When Teen Life Isn’t All Rainbows and Sock-Hops

by Megan
January 25, 2013

Sometimes, being a teenager sucks.

Sometimes it goes beyond plain-old suckage and into downright nasty, over-the-top suck-tastic territory.

Adult fiction loves the coming-of-age tale, but what if that coming of age is horrendous, cataclysmic, short… or doesn’t happen at all?

There’s been an ongoing spate of attention to the so-called genre of “sick lit” for teens (a term that doesn’t leave much wiggle room for argument). What is "sick lit"? (I cringe whenever I type that term... Every time I read about so-called “sick lit” I hear a shrill shriek in my head of “Won’t somebody please think of the children!"). Essentially it describes  books for teens that explore topics such as death, disease, and anything not particularly PC.

This subject got a lot of attention from the success of last year’s The Fault in Our Stars by John Green, a story about two teens with cancer. Whether you think the whole sick lit argument is a somewhat bogus idea that doesn’t give teens enough credit [full disclosure here: I DO! ], or an argument with some merit, it can hardly be disputed that bad things happen to kids, bad things act as good discussion points, and bad things can make a pretty compelling story.

Here are a couple of good books on the horizon that I’ve been reading that do it right, and some good discussion points raised therein.


(Spring 2013)

Much like the Marleys were dead to begin with, Paige is dead from the get-go after a freak fall from the school roof during her physics class. Seemingly doomed to be confined in ghostly form to the high school that was the scene of her death (as nightmarish an idea as any I’ve ever heard), Paige feels hopeless as rumors circulate that her death wasn't an accident, but a suicide... until she discovers that she can possess living people when they think about her. Can she use this new ability to stop the rumors swirling about her death?

Why you’ll talk about it: There is a mystery involved in this story, and the borders between the living and the dead are not so rigid as they would seem.

Discussion points: Questions of free will are raised, the labels we assign to people, and the idea of reputation, that bastion of obsessed high-school attention, extended to life after death.


My Life After Now
(April 2013)

Theatre-loving Lucy is sixteen and happy, with a boyfriend, her best friends, and an upcoming role in the school play. But after her boyfriend makes a less-than-graceful exit with another girl and Lucy's choice role in the school play goes to said girl, Lucy loses it and does something completely out of character. After an unplanned night, Lucy becomes HIV positive. Yikes. Now there’s a yearbook summary from hell for you.

Why you’ll talk about it: This is no “don’t have sex or bad things will happen” kind of book, but a book of what happens "after". As the protagonist notes, what happens when you need to know information beyond the “practice safe sex, kids” lessons of sex ed class?

Discussion points: How do you go to high school being HIV positive? How do you deal with the misinformation and fear around the disease? How do you forgive yourself for a costly mistake? 

BIG Discussion Point: As the authors notes in the "Facts and Figures" section at the end of the book, though teenagers make up only 25% of the sexually active population, young peole (13-29) accounted for 39% of all new HIV cases in the USA in 2009. That is a scary number.

(BONUS: the book includes book Reader's Guide discussion questions and an HIV Resource Guide For Teens at the back).

Apocalyptic Reads - Upcoming YA Dystopia

by Megan
January 18, 2013

If you’re feeling a little chafed that ye olde Mayan apocalypse failed to materialize (really, how bothersome), fear no more frustrated mortals. There are some amazing dystopian reads floating like a mushroom cloud above the horizon for Winter and Spring 2013, filled with destruction, magical realism, adventure, and introspection.

If you’re like me, there’s nothing better than curling up with a great dystopian read, some cheesie poofs (official foodstuff of the apocalypse) and letting glimpses into the possible future take over your imagination. Here are some recommended dystopian reads, and some suggested survival accessories.


Love in the Time of Global Warming

Essential Survival Accessories Kit: Flippers, snorkel, giant-repellent, a copy of Homer’s Odyssey.


After losing everything to a tidal wave that sweeps across her city, 16-year-old Penelope sets off on an Odysseus-esque quest that will bring her face to face with life and death, and all the choices therein. The beautiful language and writing will pull you in, and the gripping story will keep those pages turning.



The Fury

Essential Survival Accessories Kit: Burn ointment for those pesky radiation burns, a tape measure to determine quarantine distances, running shoes.


Three normal kids discover that their families and friends are suddenly overtaken with rage and have an unstoppable mission to kill them. Just another Saturday night for some, but the scope of this epic story ensures it is anything but ordinary. This page-turner will keep you guessing: who are the real bad guys in a setting where survival itself may be the worst thing one can do to a person?



Essential Survival Accessories Kit: Social insurance card and birth certificate, lifejacket, parachute.


Being in a plane crash probably isn’t the most fun thing  in the world. Being the sole survivor and media target, as well as losing your memory completely? Probably even less so. This book is all the more intriguing and alarming for how completely around-the-corner it feels. Science running rampant? No way, that would never happen…





Essential Survival Accessories Kit: Toolbox with ALL screwdriver heads (no skimping), degree in mechanical and/or computer engineering, up-to-date vaccinations.


The second book in the Lunar Chronicles series, this book continues to follow Cinder as her story crosses with that of the fiery Scarlet, as well as her grandmother and, oh yeah, a futuristic big bad wolf. Intergalactic espionage and fighting forces Cinder to finally accept, acknowledge, and embrace a destiny that will change everything she has ever known.


Siege and Storm

Essential Survival Accessories Kit: Warm clothes for those brisk northern snowstorms, pickled herring (mmmmm), boating license.


Fantasy with an overlay of dystopia, this book, the second in the Grisha series (FYI waiting for the third book feels like my own personal dystopia—I want it now!) further pushes main character Alina’s personal powers to a brink that could either sever the natural world or save it. This book will make