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Summer Reading List for July

Something about the summer just pulls at the heart and soul, begging you to crack open a good book and lounge on the beach, by the pool, on the front porch, or beneath the shade of an old tree in the park. Summer is a time to unwind, to getaway, and to be free. What better way to allow yourself to travel to endless destinations, than within the pages of a beautifully crafted piece of literature?


Caste By: Isabel Wilkerson

An eye opening must read work of non-fiction. Supported by impeccable research, readers are awakened to an unspoken phenomenon that is occurring right here in America. This book explains how our entire culture is shaped by a hidden caste system, a “rigid hierarchy of human rankings.” Harsh realities of race, class, stigma, and blood lines are explored to reveal eye opening truths. More importantly, the work goes beyond revealing these truths to discuss how we as a country can acknowledge, address, and overcome them.

What’s Mine and Yours By: Naima Coster

This work tells a narrative set in North Carolina. A new initiative calls for black students from one portion of town to attend a different school where the majority of the student body is white. In some cases the integration causes tension and chaos, and in others it causes understanding and connection. Gee and Noelle, two high school students, find their families becoming unexpectedly intertwined. Gee’s mother is striving to raise her black son to find his place and voice in today’s America. Noelle’s mother refuses to allow her half hispanic daughter to identify as anything other than white in an effort to protect her. As both parents try to build a better life for their children, the choices they make may impact their families in a myriad of ways.

Code Talker By: Joseph Bruchac

Navajo Code Talkers played a critical role in the success of US forces during WWII. Their ability to communicate in unbreakable codes based on their native language helped keep information classified and protected and ultimately saved many American lives. Ned Begay was only 16 years old when he became a Code Talker. This novel shares his story, and that of several others like him, finally bringing the Navajo Code Talkers the honor and notoriety they deserve.

Young Adults

Take Me Home Tonight By: Morgan Matson

Two best friends seek a night of adventure. They leave the comfortable yet suffocating monotony of their suburban homes for a night of endless adventure and memories in the making, by embarking on a journey to the city that never sleeps, New York NY! Despite their grand plans, they hit a few speed bumps and chaos ensues. The unexpected events of their adventurous night lead them to new discoveries about themselves, each other, and their future goals.

The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl Paperback By: Stacy McAnulty

A great easy summer read for middle schoolers. Lucy was an average girl, that is until the day she was struck by lightning. The lightning strike altered her brain, suddenly making her a genius! She spends her time at home doing calculus for fun. She likes being homeschooled, this way no one can make fun of her. At 12 years old she is already college bound. Well, academically at least. But at the insistence of her grandmother, Lucy must agree to one year of middle school. In this quirky story of self discovery Lucy learns that there is more to life than being smart, friendship and life experiences are invaluable!

Every Last Word Paperback By: Tamara Ireland Stone

Samantha is perfect. Beautiful, popular, and trendy. But she is hiding something from her peers. Samantha struggles with Purely-Obsessional OCD. She constantly obsesses over dark thoughts and second guesses every decision, every thought, and every move she makes.

Chapter Books

The Accidental Apprentice

Fans of Harry Potter will be thrilled to find a new series that delights readers with fantastical beasts, endless adventure, and the powers of friendship. This is the first book in the series and follows the (unwanted) adventures of Barclay Thorne, the new apprentice to the town’s mushroom farmer. Barclay finds himself in a dire situation after wandering into the mysterious and danger laden woods. He bonds with a beast and is driven out of town by an angry mob. In an attempt to break the unwanted bond, Barclay travels in search of the Lore Keepers, the only ones who might understand his peril. Upon finding the Lore keepers, Barclay is faced with a decision that will affect the rest of his life forever. Should he stay bonded with a magical, mysterious, and yes, dangerous world? Or should he return to the quiet life he once knew. 

The Secret Explorers and The Rainforest Rangers By: SJ King

Follow a group of young explorers to the exotic rainforests of Borneo. The group is composed of youth from around the world who bring a variety of insight, knowledge, and skills. When a baby orangutan goes missing, the group is on a mission to find him. The story also touches on the importance of conservation and each book in the series will delight readers with a fantastic adventure to far off places, packed with action, facts, quizzes, mission notes, and more!

Crenshaw By: Katherine Applegate

Jackson’s family is struggling. They have no money, no food, and very little hope. The family is on the verge of ruin and is now facing the very real possibility that the last place for them to go for shelter, might just be the family van. It’s been a while since Crenshaw the cat made an appearance in Jackson’s life. A cat isn’t odd, a large cat might not even be considered outrageous… But a large imaginary cat? Now that’s something different. Jackson’s imaginary friendship with Crenshaw not only offers comfort and escape from the struggles he and his family are facing, but may also help provide the answers the family is looking for.

Picture Books

Change Sings By: Amanda Gorman

Presidential inaugural poet Amanda Gorman has gifted the world with a beautiful work of art. This lyrical piece is a poetic call to action. It speaks to the endless possibilities that can occur when we all band together in unity. This work inspires youth to use their gifts and talents to make changes big and small and to never give up on their desire to make an impact.

Summer Song By: Kevin Henkes

A true celebration of summer told through whimsical rhyme, colorful illustrations, and plenty of playful examples of the sounds we hear during the excitement of the summer months. Available in both hardcover picture book, and a board book perfect for babies and toddlers!

Jelani J Sessions: Cloudy Days By: Sabrina Cotton

Sabrina Cotton is an LCSW. Her new book is an interactive educational story about conquering depression. JJ is a seven-year-old boy who has been sad for a while. JJ notices a dark cloud is around him hanging over his head and following him everywhere. One day his big brother notices the cloud and reassures JJ that it is ok to see a counselor. Together JJ and Mrs. Bright create a plan to fight the cloud together! A beautiful introduction to mental health for children.

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