Notable Paperbacks

Browse all of our paperback releases, including picture books, middle grade, young adult, and adult crossover books!

Picture BooksMiddle Grade BooksYoung Adult BooksAdult Crossover

Black Jack: The Ballad of Jack Johnson by Charles R. Smith Jr., illustrated by Shane W. Evans
On sale 12/06/2022

This nonfiction picture book from author Charles R. Smith Jr and illustrated by Shane W. Evans tells the story of the world’s first black heavyweight champion, the charismatic Jack “Black Jack” Johnson.

★ “This book is sure to be championed by reluctant readers with energy and restlessness just like Johnson’s, but it is a strong selection for library and classroom read-alouds as well.” — School Library Journal, starred review

★ “A rousing story, one that celebrates Johnson’s dignity, pride, and determination.” —Publishers Weeklystarred review

★ “The elegant simplicity and rat-a-tat rhythms land some stunners . . . enhanced by Evans’ lithe and swaggering artwork, which lends a tremendous visual charisma, grace, and grandeur.” —Bookliststarred review


Ruby’s Chinese New Year by Vickie Lee; illustrations by Joey Chou
On sale 12/06/2022

In this picture book by Vickie Lee celebrating Chinese New Year, animals from the Chinese zodiac help a little girl deliver a gift to her grandmother.


Before John Was a Jazz Giant: A Song of John Coltrane by Carole Boston Weatherford; illustrations by Sean Qualls
On sale Now!

A lyrical picture book biography of John Coltrane that focuses on his childhood.

A 2009 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor Book and a 2009 Bank Street – Best Children’s Book of the Year

“Even children who are unfamiliar with jazz in general and John Coltrane in particular may find their interest piqued.” —Horn Book

“Weatherford’s evocative poem traces Coltrane’s influences simply and stunningly. Qualls’s muted palette of rich hues suggests the smoky jazz moods he would create.” —School Library Journal


Who Likes Rain? by Wong Herbert Yee; illustrations by Wong Herbert Yee
On sale Now!

It’s time to put on your rain gear for a rainy-day romp!

2008 Bank Street Best Children’s Book of the Year

“This delightful story is the perfect panacea for the rainy-day blues and, in turn, creates its own bright spot.” —Publishers Weekly

All the Impossible Things by Lindsay Lackey
On sale Now!

A bit of magic, a sprinkling of adventure, and a whole lot of heart collide in All the Impossible Things, Lindsay Lackey’s extraordinary middle-grade novel about a young girl navigating the foster care system in search of where she belongs.

★ “Lackey tackles difficult topics including addiction and loss with infinite gentleness.” – School Library Journalstarred review

“Lackey deftly draws readers into Red’s tumultuous emotional journey; with its strong narrative voice, interspersed with letters and journal entries in Red’s own words, the text resonates with a mixture of hope and hurt, strength and vulnerability.” – The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books


How to Train Your Dad by Gary Paulsen
On sale 10/04/2022

From the legendary author of Hatchet, a laugh-out-loud misadventure about a boy, his free-thinking dad, and the puppy-training pamphlet that turns their summer upside down.

“Breezy and light, with a grounding touch of tenderness, this is both an entertaining solo read and a solid suggestion for family sharing.” —The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

“The tall-tale, anecdotal quality of Carl’s story is entertaining with its recitation of disastrous, smelly, embarrassing, dangerous, and misguided moments . . . Funny, sure-handed, wise.” —Kirkus Reviews


The Prettiest by Brigit Young
On sale Now!

A must-read for young feminists, The Prettiest is an incisive, empowering novel by Brigit Young about fighting back against sexism and objectification.

★ “A compelling and topical narrative that leaves its characters—and readers—stronger and wiser.” —Bookliststarred review

★ “A novel that addresses issues of bullying, sexism, objectification, and harassment while equally centering empowerment, the bonds of friendship, and self-acceptance. Highly recommended to inspire discussion among thoughtful young readers.” —School Library Journalstarred review

“A sensitive story about sexual harassment and bullying, with a feel-good ending.” —Kirkus Reviews


The Magical Imperfect by Chris Baron
On sale Now!

For fans of Wonder, Chris Baron’s The Magical Imperfect is an affecting middle grade story of two outcasts who become friends…

A Junior Library Guild Selection

★ “Highly recommended…satisfyingly blends empathy, a range of diversity, and youthful possibility with serendipity’s sparkle. Perfect for readers of Wonder and Erin Entrada Kelly’s Hello, Universe.” Booklist magazine, starred review

“Etan’s honest and lovable voice, and its growing strength, that carries this tender novel.” —Publishers Weekly

“Written in first person, this lyrical novel-in-verse invites readers into Etan’s world, who will be drawn in by his very silence and how friendship relies on listening just as much as speaking.”—School Library Journal


All You Knead Is Love by Tanya Guerrero
On sale 09/06/2022

Tanya Guerrero’s All You Knead Is Love is a contemporary middle grade coming-of-age novel about a twelve-year-old multiracial Filipino and Spanish girl who goes to live with her grandmother for the summer, gaining confidence through a newly discovered passion for baking, perfect for fans of Hello, Universe and Merci Suarez Changes Gears.

“Layered with explorations of topics such as family dynamics, abuse, and identity, Alba’s first-person narrative is one of growth, forgiveness, and acceptance…A delightful read.” — Kirkus Reviews

A cast of unique characters, beautiful surroundings, and delicious food will have readers wishing they were part of Alba’s world.” — Booklist


Cuba in My Pocket by Adrianna Cuevas
On sale 09/20/2022

By Adrianna Cuevas, author of 2021 Pura Belpré Honor Book The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez, comes a sweeping, emotional middle grade historical novel about a twelve-year-old boy who leaves his family in Cuba to immigrate to the U.S. by himself, based on the author’s own family history.

★ “Inspired by stories from her father’s childhood, Cuevas’ latest is a triumph of the heart…A compassionate, emotionally astute portrait of a young Cuban in exile.”
— Kirkus, starred Review

★ “Cuevas’ intense and immersive account of a Cuban boy’s experience after the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion brings a specific point in history alive … Drawing from her father’s boyhood experiences, Cuevas does an outstanding job of eliciting the confusing array of emotions Cumba feels as he is thrown into life in a new country.” — Booklist, starred Review

Cuevas packs this sophomore novel with palpable emotions and themes of friendship, love, longing, and trauma, attentively conveying tumultuous historical events from the lens of one young refugee.” — Publishers Weekly, starred Review


Generation Misfits by Akemi Dawn Bowman
On sale 10/11/2022

Generation Misfits by Akemi Dawn Bowman is a heartwarming, fish-out-of-water own voices story about an eleven-year-old Japanese-American girl who finds her true friends—through the power of J-Pop!

★ “This character-centered coming-of-age novel features authentic dialogue with a fully realized cast of diverse characters, and celebrates the power, importance, and value of friendship. Highly recommended for school and public library collections.” —School Library Journal, starred Review

★ “…the book is uncondescending and happily celebratory about the fandom experience and what it means to the kids. Never mind cool: sincerity and enthusiasm rule here in a book that believes fervently in the value and joy of friendship.” —Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books (BCCB), starred Review


Never After: The Stolen Slippers by Melissa de la Cruz
On sale 12/06/2022

Real life and fairy tales collide in Never After: The Stolen Slippers, book two of the funny and thrilling middle grade Chronicles of Never After series from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Descendants series Melissa de la Cruz.

True or False: A CIA Analyst’s Guide to Spotting Fake News by Cindy L. Otis
On sale 07/26/2022

A former CIA analyst unveils the true history of fake news and gives readers tips on how to avoid falling victim to it in this highly designed informative YA nonfiction title.

A necessary and engaging resource that should be required reading for all high school students. …The book’s droll tone and quick pace will thoroughly engage even those who dislike nonfiction; all readers will be empowered with a more critical eye when browsing their news feeds.” —School Library Journal, starred Review

Written in an easy, conversational style matched by a user-friendly design with pullouts, exercises, and photographs, it’s a book that teachers and civic leaders will want to make required reading.” — Publishers Weekly, starred Review


Descendant of the Crane by Joan He
On sale 09/27/2022

In New York Times and Indie bestselling author Joan He’s debut novel, Descendant of the Crane, a determined and vulnerable young heroine struggles to do right in a world brimming with deception. This gorgeous, Chinese-inspired fantasy is packed with dizzying twists, complex characters, and intricate politics.

★ “A compelling, immersive book. Young adults will find a story and a world that is a joy to explore in this highly original mystery.” – Foreword, starred review

“The plot twists are truly dizzying at times, and everyone, from villain to ally, has an intriguing backstory… With complex world-building and character development, readers tired of cookie-cutter stories will find some surprise twists here.” – Kirkus Reviews


Jane Against the World: Roe v. Wade and the Fight for Reproductive Rights by Karen Blumenthal
On sale Now!

A riveting look at the extraordinary and tumultuous history of abortion rights in the United States from the 19th century to the landmark case of Roe v. Wade, by award-winning author and journalist Karen Blumenthal.

★ “An account of the tumultuous struggle for abortion rights in the United States…Gripping reading; necessary for every library serving teens.“— Kirkus Reviews, starred review

★ “This essential guide, which gives voices to vulnerable populations, demands to be heard.”—Booklist, starred review


Unbeatable: How Crispus Attucks Basketball Broke Racial Barriers and Jolted the World by Phillip Hoose
On sale Now!

One city. One team. One victory for racial justice that the history books forgot.

★ “Hoose balances this exposé of basketball’s racist history with thrilling game accounts, character insight, and great sympathy.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

★ “Excessively readable, this should appeal to sports fans and those looking for a good book about the civil rights era. Exemplary notes and sources will push readers—adults included—to learn even more.” —Bookliststarred review


So Many Beginnings: A Little Women Remix by Bethany C. Morrow
On sale 09/06/2022

Four young Black sisters come of age during the American Civil War in So Many Beginnings, a warm and powerful YA remix of the classic novel Little Women, by bestselling author Bethany C. Morrow.

★ “Morrow’s ability to take the lingering stain of slavery on American history and use it as a catalyst for unbreakable love and resilience is flawless. That she has remixed a canonical text to do so only further illuminates the need to critically question who holds the pen in telling our nation’s story.” —Bookliststarred review

★ “Morrow’s nuanced take on what life was like for newly freed Black people at this time will prompt readers to reconsider the simplistic good vs. evil, North vs. South mythologies that characterize too many Civil War narratives. … Alcott fans and newcomers alike will find much to appreciate in Morrow’s sophisticated remix.” —BookPagestarred review

★ “Impressive … Via delicately written characterizations, each March woman exemplifies the notion that the wounds of bondage don’t disappear simply because freedom is at hand, and the racist catalyst of enslavement doesn’t disappear with the stroke of a pen, as a beloved story gains new meaning through the lens of enduring Black resilience, love, and hope.” —Publishers Weeklystarred review


A Clash of Steel: A Treasure Island Remix by C.B. Lee
On sale 09/06/2022

Two intrepid girls hunt for a legendary treasure on the deadly high seas in this YA remix of the classic adventure novel Treasure Island.

★ “Lee (the Sidekick Squad series) elegantly situates Robert Louis Stevenson’s 1882 Treasure Island against a richly embroidered Qing dynasty backdrop in this carefully crafted queer interpretation. … Inspired by female pirate Zheng Yi Sao, this deeply immersive adventure features deftly interwoven Chinese and Vietnamese, luscious culinary descriptions, and well-rendered explorations of imperialism, treasure, found family, and love.” —Publishers Weeklystarred review

“Excessively readable, this should appeal to sports fans and those looking for a good book about the ci”‘Fun’ doesn’t even begin to describe this rich and imaginative retelling of Treasure Island. … It’s obvious that this book was a labor of love, which made it all the more enjoyable to read. Pirate stories don’t get much better than this.” —Hypable


Little Thieves by Margaret Owen
On sale 03/28/2023

A scrappy maid must outsmart both palace nobles and Low Gods in a new YA fantasy by Margaret Owen, author of the Merciful Crow series.

★ “Part heist, part adventure, with a slow-burning romance at its heart…a story to savor.”—Publisher’s WeeklyStarred Review

★ “Packed with heists, gods, and monsters…readers will love rooting for Owen’s clever antiheroine with ambition….Highly recommended and not to be missed.”—School Library JournalStarred Review

★ “A lush and lively adventure replete with romance, revenge, and robbery.”—Kirkus ReviewsStarred Review

★ “A breathlessly inventive, never-a-dull-moment adventure of found family and second (or fourth or fifth) chances. If you’re not careful, it’ll steal your heart, too.”—BooklistStarred Review

★ “An endlessly entertaining fantasy tale about characters on their worst behavior learning to be their best selves.” —BookPageStarred Review


Strongman: The Rise of Five Dictators and the Fall of Democracy by Kenneth C. Davis
On sale 10/04/2022

From the bestselling author of the Don’t Know Much About® books comes a dramatic account of the origins of democracy, the history of authoritarianism, and the reigns of five of history’s deadliest dictators.

Washington Post Best Book of the Year! A Bank Street College of Education Best Book of the Year! A YALSA 2021 Nonfiction Award Nominee!

★ “History’s warnings reverberate in this gripping read about five dictatorial strongmen. A pitch-perfect balance of nuanced reflection and dire warning.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

★ “A fascinating, highly readable portrayal of infamous men that provides urgent lessons for democracy now.” —Publishers Weeklystarred review

★ “Kenneth C. Davis (Don’t Know Much About series) conveys his plentiful knowledge of dictators in this powerful, spine-tingling biographic work.” —Shelf Awareness, starred review


Black Girl Unlimited The Remarkable Story of a Teenage Wizard by Echo Brown

On sale Now!

Heavily autobiographical and infused with magical realism, Black Girl Unlimited fearlessly explores the intersections of poverty, sexual violence, depression, racism, and sexism—all through the arc of a transcendent coming-of-age story for fans of Renee Watson’s Piecing Me Together and Ibi Zoboi’s American Street.

A William C. Morris Award Finalist

★ “[An] empowering autobiographical novel fused with magical realism and allegory . . . with the nods to Langston Hughes, Maya Angelou, Malcolm X, and Alice Walker. This revelatory YA book deserves space on bookstore and library shelves for its healing power for all readers to break the chains of intergenerational pain and trauma.“—School Library Journalstarred review

“A graphic look at the magical black girls who are often forgotten or fetishized. Through Echo’s lessons, readers learn what it’s like to persist despite hopelessness, survive in a world propelled by oppressive and exploitative systems, and cope with feelings of connection and disconnect. A much-needed story. Just brilliant.“—Kirkus Reviews

Three Sisters by Heather Morris
On 09/06/2022

From Heather Morris, the New York Times bestselling author of the multi-million copy bestseller The Tattooist of Auschwitz and Cilka’s Journey: a story of family, courage, and resilience, inspired by a true story.

★ “Morris (The Tattooist of Auschwitz) follows the real-life Meller sisters, who all survived imprisonment at Auschwitz-Birkenau and a winter death march during WWII, in her extraordinary latest. Morris skillfully chronicles the lives of the sisters from childhood to old age, balancing fictional invention with extensive research and immersion into the Mellers’ lives. Readers will be greatly inspired by this story of resilience. Publisher’s Weekly starred review

Three Sisters … takes readers on an emotional roller coaster … As fascinating as the novel is, the story of how Morris came to discover the women whom she based her plot around is equally compelling.” —Hadassah Magazine