Yes, this list is late this year. I’ve been traveling for months and have had back to back deadlines. But it’s still brutally hot out, and the leaves haven’t changed yet, so I’m still posting the 2021 Mid-Summer Middle Grade & Young Adult Book List (even though it’s early fall!).

As I’ve mentioned before, this is NOT a best-seller or new release list. This is an ongoing, cumulative list of books the kids in my reading army have read that is updated twice a year. 

We’ve all worked hard during the pandemic to read new-to-us authors and to search for books outside our comfort zones. With so many books being published–both traditionally and independently–it’s hard to keep up. So I want to thank my preteen & teen readers for their help and suggestions, as well as my blog readers who’ve made this list such a popular download. The 2021 Mid-Winter List hit over 13,000 downloads, and this newest list is over 50 pages long. You are all so awesome!

Thank you to Amazon for embed links and blurbs.

This bi-annual compilation offers a good cross-section of genres for teens and tweens. A lot of new YA Fantasy and Sci-Fi Fiction books were recently released and we’ve also added some new Middle Grade Relationship and Non-Fiction books. There are books on the list for all readers to get them through the fall!

Below are a few highlights in no particular order. For the entire printable list, click here: 2021 Mid-Summer MG/YA Book List.

Young Adult Fiction


 When the heroes have fallen, who will take up the sword?

A strange darkness grows in Allward.

Even Corayne an-Amarat can feel it, tucked away in her small town at the edge of the sea. She soon discovers the truth: She is the last of an ancient lineage—and the last hope to save the world from destruction. But she won’t be alone. Even as darkness falls, she is joined by a band of unlikely companions:

  • A squire, forced to choose between home and honor.
  • An immortal, avenging a broken promise.
  • An assassin, exiled and bloodthirsty.
  • An ancient sorceress, whose riddles hide an eerie foresight.
  • A forger with a secret past.
  • A bounty hunter with a score to settle.

Together they stand against a vicious opponent, invincible and determined to burn all kingdoms to ash, and an army unlike anything the realm has ever witnessed.


Explosive action and swoon-worthy suspense collide in Steelstriker, the riveting conclusion to the Skyhunter duet from #1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu.

As a Striker, Talin was taught loyalty is life. Loyalty to the Shield who watches your back, to the Strikers who risk their lives on the battlefield, and most of all, to Mara, which was once the last nation free from the Karensa Federation’s tyranny. But Mara has fallen. And its destruction has unleashed Talin’s worst nightmare.

With her friends scattered by combat and her mother held captive by the Premier, Talin is forced to betray her fellow Strikers and her adopted homeland. She has no choice but to become the Federation’s most deadly war machine as their newest Skyhunter. Red is no stranger to the cruelty of the Federation or the torture within its Skyhunter labs, but he knows this isn’t the end for Mara – or Talin. The link between them may be weak, but it could be Talin and Red’s only hope to salvage their past and safeguard their future.  

While the fate of a broken world hangs in the balance, Talin and Red must reunite the Strikers and find their way back to each other in this smoldering sequel to Marie Lu’s Skyhunter.


Dustin Bridges has always had two things he could count on—his fearless instincts behind the wheel and the support of his two best friends, Tommy and Hannah Judge.

Dustin brought the speed. Tommy, the brains. And Hannah . . . she was the glue that held everyone together. Together, they were unstoppable.

From the dirt tracks of their youth to the late-night drag races under a desert moon as teens, the Judge siblings pushed and watched in awe as their friend edged closer to his dream. Always racing, always running. That was Dustin’s gift and curse. And while his life at home was unbearable, his world with the Judges always seemed perfect.

Growing up with people makes for a special bond. But sometimes life has a way of testing just how strong a relationship is. And falling in love with one of your best friends, not to mention your other best friend’s sister? Well, that can be the toughest test of all.

Heartbreak doesn’t know what it’s up against, though, because when there is a prize to be won, nobody bets against Dustin Bridges.


THE LAST THING SHE WANTED WAS TO GET BACK INTO THE HERO GAME

THE VILLAIN: The Dark One—probably not fun at parties, definitely cool with murder—was running around North America engulfing whole cities in supernatural chaos and destruction.

THE HEROES: Five Chosen Ones—ordinary strangers with nothing in common—were recruited by the government because they fit the narrow criteria of a prophecy made by [redacted]. You know the rest…heroes fought villain, heroes defeated villain, and everything went back to normal. Only…not so much.

Now, it’s ten years later, and Sloane Andrews, recovering Chosen One, has discovered that all the fame, gratitude, and parade floats in the world can’t erase what she endured—what she had to do—to take down the Dark One. All she wants now is to be left alone, but that doesn’t seem to be in the cards.

As it turns out, that plan for annihilation set in motion by the Dark One? It’s not finished yet. Last time, Sloane saved the day with a magical needle and a can-do attitude. This time, she’s fresh out of both.


Seventeen-year-old Willow Zimmerman has something to say. When she’s not on the streets advocating for her community, she’s volunteering at the local pet shelter. She seeks to help all those in need, even the stray dog she’s named Lebowitz that follows her around. But as much as she does for the world around her, she struggles closer to home-taking care of her mother, recently diagnosed with cancer. In desperation, she reconnects with her estranged “uncle” Edward, and he opens the door to an easier life.

Through simple jobs, such as hosting his private poker nights with Gotham City’s elites, she is able to keep her family afloat-and afford critical medical treatments for her mother. Then one night, Willow and Lebowitz collide with the monstrous Killer Croc and get injured, waking up able to understand each other. But when Willow discovers that Edward and his friends are actually some of Gotham’s most corrupt criminals, she must make a choice: remain loyal to the man who kept her family together, or use her new powers to be a voice for her community.


It’s been three months since the Patriarche was beheaded, leaving behind no known heir. Now, the planet of Laterre is unrecognizable. General Bonnefaçon has cleaned up the streets, fed the hungry, and restored peace while the next leader is decided upon. From the outside, Laterre seems to be flourishing. But dangerous rifts threaten to shatter the planet from within.

The Red Scar has been killing off anyone with a legitimate claim to the Regime, while the Vangarde are preparing for the return of their infamous leader. Then, it’s revealed that the Patriarche had a daughter who is still alive. A missing Paresse heir…Alouette has been locked in a secret facility for months, interrogated on the whereabouts of the General’s renegade grandson.

Marcellus is desperately searching for Alouette, knowing she’s the key to the Vangarde’s plan to overthrow the corrupt Regime, but unaware that he, himself, is being hunted by a new cyborg tasked with tracking down the planet’s most wanted criminals. Meanwhile Chatine is growing restless, living underground with a rebel group she doesn’t fit into. Until an old friend solicits her help to save the Défecteur community from a mysterious, new threat. A threat that will tie them all together.

When the general makes an explosive play for power, allegiances will shift, rebels will become leaders, barricades will rise, and the tinderbox of Laterre will finally ignite, launching a revolution five hundred years in the making.


In the realm of Jinn, enchantments and magical abilities are conceived and often exploited. At 17-years-old, Jezebel has developed a powerful shape-shifting Gift—and she’s determined to keep it a secret.

When her friends find a portal to the human world, she reluctantly follows. There, she’s tempted to embrace her Gift. After all, no one but the humans will see. Unfortunately, one of her friends witnesses her secret, and he won’t let it go. He pushes her to explore the full extent of her ability, no matter the cost.

But Jezebel hits her breaking point when he crosses a line. She has to decide if she’ll continue letting others use her like she’s always feared, or find a way to shift her future in a new direction.


A deadly contest. A vaulting ambition. How far will one cyren go to win?

Mighty cyrens have ruled the ancient lair of Saddoriel for centuries. A cavernous fortress, a subterranean labyrinth of tunnels and levels, powered by magic and music…

From the moment she was born, Roh, the daughter of an infamous criminal, has been despised by her own kind. Restricted to the Lower Sector and forced to work as a common bone cleaner, she has always believed she belongs above: where lies adventure… and power.

Opportunity arises in the form of the Queen’s Tournament, a treacherous set of trials that could see the victor crowned ruler of the entire lair. Up against the most cunning, dangerous cyrens in all the realms, does Roh stand a chance?


Before the Blight, becoming an adult was something teenagers looked forward to. But now, turning eighteen means certain death.

Unless you prove yourself worthy of the Cure.

On her seventeenth birthday, Ashen Spencer is blindfolded and escorted to the massive, mysterious building known as the Arc to begin her year of training and testing in hopes that she can earn the Cure—a powerful drug given only to those deemed worthy to survive beyond their eighteenth birthday.
Ashen has a chance to rise up from her former life of squalor and be granted a place in society, if the Panel—the mysterious group of powerful men and women in charge of the Arc—deems her year a success. She’s assigned to work for twelve months as a servant for a wealthy family whose son is the most alluring young man she’s ever met. At first, Ashen is grateful for the opportunity to earn her place in a society she’s always dreamed of inhabiting.

But as time passes and she begins to learn the truth about the people she admires so much and the home she left behind, she realizes she has a choice: Be part of the disease…Or be part of the Cure.


TV ADAPTATION “THE PLAYERS’ TABLE” STARRING HALSEY AND EUPHORIA’S SYDNEY SWEENEY COMING TO HBO MAX

In Gold Coast, Long Island, everything from the expensive downtown shops to the manicured beaches, to the pressed uniforms of Jill Newman and her friends, looks perfect. But as Jill found out three years ago, nothing is as it seems. 

Freshman year Jill’s best friend, the brilliant, dazzling Shaila Arnold, was killed by her boyfriend. After that dark night on the beach, Graham confessed, the case was closed, and Jill tried to move on. 

Now, it’s Jill’s senior year and she’s determined to make it her best yet. After all, she’s a senior and a Player–a member of Gold Coast Prep’s exclusive, not-so-secret secret society. Senior Players have the best parties, highest grades and the admiration of the entire school. This is going to be Jill’s year. She’s sure of it. 

But when Jill starts getting texts proclaiming Graham’s innocence, her dreams of the perfect senior year start to crumble. If Graham didn’t kill Shaila, who did? Jill vows to find out, but digging deeper could mean putting her friendships, and her future, in jeopardy.


Middle Grade Fiction & Non-Fiction


When twelve-year-old Zinnia Manning’s older brother Gabriel is diagnosed with a mental illness, the family’s world is turned upside down. Mom and Dad want Zinny, her sixteen-year-old sister, Scarlett, and her eight-year-old brother, Aiden, to keep Gabriel’s condition “private”—and to Zinny that sounds the same as “secret.” Which means she can’t talk about it to her two best friends, who don’t understand why Zinny keeps pushing them away, turning everything into a joke.

It also means she can’t talk about it during Lunch Club, a group run by the school guidance counselor. How did Zinny get stuck in this weird club, anyway? She certainly doesn’t have anything in common with these kids—and even if she did, she’d never betray her family’s secret.

The only good thing about school is science class, where cool teacher Ms. Molina has them doing experiments on crayfish. And when Zinny has the chance to attend a dream marine biology camp for the summer, she doesn’t know what to do. How can Zinny move forward when Gabriel—and, really, her whole family—still needs her help?


Winner of the 2020 YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Award.
Instead of giving him lunch money, Rex’s mom has signed him up for free meals. As a poor kid in a wealthy school district, better-off kids crowd impatiently behind him as he tries to explain to the cashier that he’s on the free meal program. The lunch lady is hard of hearing, so Rex has to shout.

Free Lunch is the story of Rex’s efforts to navigate his first semester of sixth grade—who to sit with, not being able to join the football team, Halloween in a handmade costume, classmates and a teacher who take one look at him and decide he’s trouble—all while wearing secondhand clothes and being hungry. His mom and her boyfriend are out of work, and life at home is punctuated by outbursts of violence. Halfway through the semester, his family is evicted and ends up in government-subsidized housing in view of the school. Rex lingers at the end of last period every day until the buses have left, so no one will see where he lives.


The Dark Rangers threaten the survival of Rangers and the kingdom.
Will our friends be able to unmask their leader and stop them before the conspiracy is completed?

An appeal has been made to convene The Great Council. The Ranger leaders will meet to study the threat of the dark secretfaction and find a way to end the threat.
The Snow Panthers will be immersed in theconspiracy and will play a critical role in its resolution. They will also continue their investigations todiscover who is trying to end the lives of Lasgol and Egil, and therelationship between the attempts.

Will they manage to catch the leader of the Dark Rangers? Will they stop the conspiracy that threatens them and the throne? Willthey find out who is behind the attempts on their lives?
Find out while you live fascinating adventureswith a group of unique characters that will make you fall in love with them.


Inside Out and Back Again is a #1 New York Times bestseller, a Newbery Honor Book, and a winner of the National Book Award!

Inspired by the author’s childhood experience as a refugee—fleeing Vietnam after the Fall of Saigon and immigrating to Alabama—this coming-of-age debut novel told in verse has been celebrated for its touching child’s-eye view of family and immigration.

Hà has only ever known Saigon: the thrills of its markets, the joy of its traditions, and the warmth of her friends close by. But now the Vietnam War has reached her home. Hà and her family are forced to flee as Saigon falls, and they board a ship headed toward hope—toward America. 

This moving story of one girl’s year of change, dreams, grief, and healing received four starred reviews, including one from Kirkus which proclaimed it “enlightening, poignant, and unexpectedly funny.” 

An author’s note explains how and why Thanhha Lai translated her personal experiences into Hà’s story. This updated digital edition also includes an interview with the author, an activity you can do with your family, tips on writing poetry, and discussion questions.


This new ebook compiles Lucy Maud Montgomery’s complete ‘Anne of Green Gables’ novels, including “Anne of Green Gables”, “Anne of Windy Poplars”, “Anne of Ingleside” and “Rainbow Valley”. 

This edition has been professionally formatted and contains several tables of contents. The first table of contents (at the very beginning of the ebook) lists the titles of all novels included in this volume. By clicking on one of those titles you will be redirected to the beginning of that work, where you’ll find a new TOC that lists all the chapters and sub-chapters of that specific work.

As soon as Anne Shirley arrived at the snug, white farmhouse called Green Gables, she knew she  wanted to stay forever… but would the Cuthberts  send her back to the orphanage? Anne knows she’s not  what they expected — a skinny girl with decidedly  red hair and a temper to match. If only she could  convince them to let her stay, she’d try very hard  not to keep rushing headlong into scrapes or blurt  out the very first thing she had to say. Anne was  not like anybody else, everyone at Green Gables  agreed; she was special — a girl with an enormous  imagination. This orphan girl dreamed of the day  when she could call herself Anne of Green Gables.


Chase Cooper here with another crazy week at my school!

Gavin is back for fun and Christopher Moss is back for revenge in what might be the most stressful week of my life! A mystery kid named Anonymoose has started posting pictures of ninjas all over the place and promises to reveal the identity of their leader – ME – on Friday at a school dance that Zoe’s been planning! Everybody, including Brody Valentine, wants to help me stop Anonymoose, but I’m pretty sure I can handle it myself. Well, at least, I HOPE I can handle it myself.


What if you could give your son all the excitement of screen time but also spark his love for reading and history?

Now you can—with Great Battles for Boys, the #1 bestselling history series written especially for boys who struggle with reading.

Each book in the series focuses on the battles, leaders, tactics, and weapons that won (or lost) history’s most significant military clashes. Filled with historic photos and written in an engaging conversational style by a middle school history teacher, Great Battles for Boys brings history to life. These true tales of courage will excite even the most reluctant readers. 

In this seventh book in the series, boys learn about The Korean War (1950-53) also known as the “The Forgotten War.” Despite more than 2 million casualties, most people—young and old—can not fully explain this international conflict or why the United States sacrificed so much treasure to fight it. But your son will learn about stunning modern warfare—ensuring history is anything but  “forgotten.”


Disclaimer: Some of these books are (or once were) controversial. Some older YAs have closed-door or open-door adult situations, and others (YA & MG) deal with harsh issues such as suicide, bullying, war, poverty, and loss of a parent. As a librarian, reader’s advisor, and mother, I’ve learned that tweens and teens tend to read within their comfort zone, both emotionally and reading-level wise. All of these books offer a chance for parents and kids to discuss which topics are appropriate now and which books are best left for another time. But I hope you all find books that will give your family new adventures and imaginary friends.

See you in February for the 2022 Mid-Winter Young Adult and Middle Grade Book List!

*The books listed in this blog post are in no particular order.



Sharon Wray is a librarian who once studied dress design in the couture houses of Paris and now writes about the men in her Amazon bestselling 
Deadly Force romantic suspense series where ex-Green Berets meet their match in smart, sexy heroines who teach these alpha males that Grace always defeats Reckoning.

Her bestselling debut book EVERY DEEP DESIRE, a sexy, action-packed retelling of Romeo and Juliet, is about an ex-Green Beret determined to regain his honor, his freedom, and his wife. It’s available at:  Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | IndieBoundKobo|  Google | Books-a-Million | Audible

Her second book, ONE DARK WISH, a passionate redemption of Othello with a HEA, is about an ex-Green Beret who must give up the woman he loves in order to redeem his honor and save the life of his men. It’s available at: Amazon |  Barnes & Noble Books-a-Million | iBooks |  Google | Kobo |IndieBound | Audible

Her third book, IN SEARCH OF TRUTH, is about an ex-Green Beret desperate to win back the woman he loves and save the men he betrayed, even if he must make the greatest sacrifice. It’s available at: Amazon |  Barnes & Noble Books-a-Million | iBooks|  Google | Kobo | IndieBound | Audible

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