MLD Choice Awards 2018 - Tween FictionThe Best Tween Fiction of the Year!
1. Dragonwatch by Brandon Mull
In the hidden dragon sanctuary of Wyrmroost, Celebrant the Just, King of the Dragons, plots his revenge. He has long seen the sanctuaries as prisons, and he wants nothing more than to overthrow his captors and return the world to the Age of Dragons, when he and his kind ruled and reigned without borders. The time has come to break free and reclaim his power.
No one person is capable of stopping Celebrant and his dragon horde. It will take the ancient order of Dragonwatch to gather again if there is any chance of saving the world from destruction. In ancient times, Dragonwatch was a group of wizards, enchantresses, dragon slayers, and others who originally confined the majority of dragons into sanctuaries. But nearly all of the original Dragonwatch members are gone, and so the wizard Agad reaches out to Grandpa Sorenson for help.
As Kendra and Seth confront this new danger, they must draw upon all their skills, talents, and knowledge as only they have the ability to function together as a powerful dragon tamer. Together they must battle against forces with superior supernatural powers and breathtaking magical abilities.
How will the epic dragon showdown end? Will dragons overthrow humans and change the world as we know it?
book 1 in the Dragonwatch series
2. The Getaway by Jeff Kinney
Greg Heffley and his family are getting out of town.
With the cold weather and the stress of the approaching holiday season, the Heffleys decide to escape to a tropical island resort for some much-needed rest and relaxation. A few days in paradise should do wonders for Greg and his frazzled family.
But the Heffleys soon discover that paradise isn’t everything it’s cracked up to be. Sun poisoning, stomach troubles, and venomous critters all threaten to ruin the family’s vacation. Can their trip be saved, or will this island getaway end in disaster?
book 12 of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series
3. The Axe of Sundering by M.L. Forman
Whalen Vankin is the world’s greatest wizard, and he has only ever personally trained two other wizards. One is Alexander Taylor, a young man who has earned a reputation as a brave adventurer, a warrior, and man of honor. The other is Jabez, Vankin’s nephew and a man whose choices have led him down a different, darker path.
Dark magic has covered Westland, and evil is stirring.
Whalen and Alex must journey together into the heart of danger, confronting a sea serpent, battling their way through a goblin army, and facing down more than one dragon. Alex must find the legendary Axe of Sundering the one weapon that offers a chance to defeat Jabez and protect the land from the dark wizard’s plans. But finding it will be an adventure of its own as the only pathway to the Axe leads through the underground tunnels and secret passages of Castle Conmar.
But Jabez has one final weapon at his disposal: the powerful Orion Stone, which could spell the end to Whalen and Alex both.
book 5 in the Adventures Wanted series
4. The Ship of the Dead by Rick Riordan
Magnus Chase, a once-homeless teen, is a resident of the Hotel Valhalla and one of Odin’s chosen warriors. As the son of Frey, the god of summer, fertility, and health, Magnus isn’t naturally inclined to fighting. But he has strong and steadfast friends, including Hearthstone the elf, Blitzen the dwarf, and Samirah the Valkyrie, and together they have achieved brave deeds, such as defeating Fenris Wolf and battling giants for Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir. Now Magnus and his crew must sail to the farthest borders of Jotunheim and Niflheim in pursuit of Asgard’s greatest threat. Will they succeed in their perilous journey, or is Ragnarok lurking on the horizon?
book 3 in the Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard series
5. The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
When Ada’s clubfoot is surgically fixed at last, she knows for certain that she’s not what her mother said she was—damaged, deranged, crippled mentally as well as physically. She’s not a daughter anymore, either. What is she?
World War II continues, and Ada and her brother, Jamie, are living with their loving legal guardian, Susan, in a borrowed cottage on the estate of the formidable Lady Thorton—along with Lady Thorton herself and her daughter, Maggie. Life in the crowded cottage is tense enough, and then, quite suddenly, Ruth, a Jewish girl from Germany, moves in. A German? The occupants of the house are horrified. But other impacts of the war become far more frightening. As death creeps closer to their door, life and morality during wartime grow more complex. Who is Ada now? How can she keep fighting? And who will she struggle to save?
book 2 in The War That Saved My Life series
6. The Dark Prophecy by Rick Riordan
Zeus has punished his son Apollo–god of the sun, music, archery, poetry, and more–by casting him down to earth in the form of a gawky, acne-covered sixteen-year-old mortal named Lester. The only way Apollo can reclaim his rightful place on Mount Olympus is by restoring several Oracles that have gone dark. What is affecting the Oracles, and how can Apollo/Lester do anything about them without his powers?
After experiencing a series of dangerous–and frankly, humiliating–trials at Camp Half-Blood, Lester must now leave the relative safety of the demigod training ground and embark on a hair-raising journey across North America. Fortunately, what he lacks in godly graces he’s gaining in new friendships–with heroes who will be very familiar to fans of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians and Heroes of Olympus series. Come along for what promises to be a harrowing, hilarious, and haiku-filled ride. . . .
book 2 in The Trials of Apollo series
7. Nightfall by Shannon Messenger
Sophie Foster is struggling. Grieving. Scrambling. But she knows one thing: she will not be defeated.
The Neverseen have had their victories—but the battle is far from over. It’s time to change tactics. Make sacrifices. Reexamine everything. Maybe even time for Sophie to trust her enemies.
All paths lead to Nightfall—an ominous door to an even more ominous place—and Sophie and her friends strike a dangerous bargain to get there. But nothing can prepare them for what they discover. The problems they’re facing stretch deep into their history. And with time running out, and mistakes catching up with them, Sophie and her allies must join forces in ways they never have before.
book 6 in the Keeper of the Lost Cities series
8. Tales from a Not-So-Secret Crush Catastrophe by Rachel Renee Russell
In Nikki Maxwell’s newest diary, it’s the countdown to the end of the school year, and Nikki’s juggling some big questions about how she’ll spend her summer. She’s also facing an unexpected crush catastrophe—there’s a new kid interested in Nikki, but the last thing she wants to do is accidentally hurt Brandon! It all comes down to a big decision Nikki has to make, and drama like she’s never faced before!
book 12 in the Dork Diaries series
9. Darkness of Dragons by Tui Sutherland
A young NightWing may have had the first true prophecy in generations . . .
Something is coming to shake the earth
Something is coming to scorch the ground
Jade Mountain will fall beneath thunder and ice
Unless the lost city of night can be found.
Will the return of Darkstalker bring a horrible future to Pyrrhia? Or can five young dragons save the world — again?
book 10 in the Wings of FIre series
10. Wishtree by Katherine Applegate
Trees can’t tell jokes, but they can certainly tell stories. . . .
Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood “wishtree”—people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red’s branches. Along with her crow friend Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red’s hollows, this “wishtree” watches over the neighborhood.
You might say Red has seen it all. Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red’s experiences as a wishtree are more important than ever.
And the Other Nominees Were…
The Frog Princess Returns by E. D. Baker
Fans of E. D. Baker’s The Frog Princess, rejoice! Fifteen years after the original, Princess Emma, Prince Eadric, and all the beloved characters are back for another magical adventure from popular author E. D. Baker.
Two weeks after Emma’s birthday, Prince Eadric — having been turned from a frog into a human again — is still in Greater Greensward. One day, a beautiful princess named Adara arrives at the castle in Greater Greensward for a visit, claiming to be Emma’s distant cousin. But Adara has other motives that threaten Emma and Eadric’s blossoming romance.
Meanwhile, something is very wrong in Greater Greensward. Crops are dying, streams are drying up, and large sections of trees in the enchanted forest are withering — all because the Fairy Queen has disappeared. Without her, there is no peace in the magical kingdom, and dangerous foes threaten to take advantage of her absence. Only brave, tenacious Emma with her knowledge of the land can restore order . . . but first she must set out on a journey unlike any before.
book 9 in The Tales of the Frog Princess series
Worlds Collide by Chris Colfer
In the highly anticipated conclusion to the Land of Stories series, Conner and Alex must brave the impossible. All of the Land of Stories fairy tale characters–heroes and villains–are no longer confined within their world!
With mayhem brewing in the Big Apple, Conner and Alex will have to win their biggest battle yet. Can the twins restore order between the human and fairy tale world?
book 6 in The Land of Stories series
The Caldera by John Flanagan
In Hallasholm, Stig is contesting the annual Maktig competition to decide Skandia’s greatest warrior. But a late-night knock on the door brings someone Stig never expected to see again, along with a request the Herons are hard-pressed to refuse: a rescue mission of epic proportions.
Across the ocean, the southern city-state of Byzantos is plagued by a crew of pirates who’ve kidnapped the son of Empress Justina. Slipping out of Hallasholm under the cover of darkness, the brotherband sets sail to recover the boy from his kidnappers, heading south to the island of Santorillos where a near-impenetrable fortress stands atop a cliff, surrounded by a lagoon–a caldera–formed by the crater of a volcano.
In this explosive seventh book in the action-packed Brotherband Chronicles, the Herons battle pirates amid stormy seas as the fate of an empire rests on their shoulders.
book 7 in the Brotherband Chronicles series
The Legend of Shadow High by Shannon Hale
A dangerous story is bubbling and almost all the Narrators are scared to tell it. Cracks in the World of Stories are spreading, and the ominous Shadow High is gaining power. Only one young, brave Narrator, Brooke Page, is ready to tell this tale.
As the first cracks show, Frankie and Draculaura are accidentally transported to Ever After High, where they meet Raven Queen and Apple White. After the girls recover from the shock of learning that fairytales and monsters are real, they discover that the Evil Queen has escaped her mirror prison in search of the ultimate power, hidden in Shadow High. Frankie, Raven, Draculaura, Apple, and Brooke must stop the Evil Queen and save the World of Stories from the evil that lurks in Shadow High!
Never Say Die by Anthony Horowitz
The world’s greatest teen spy is back in action in a thrilling new mission: destroy once and for all the terrorist organisation SCORPIA. Following the events of Scorpia Rising, Alex relocates to San Francisco as he slowly recovers from the tragic death of his best friend and caregiver, Jack Starbright, at the hands of terrorists working for SCORPIA.
With Jack gone, Alex feels lost and alone, but then, out of the blue, he receives a cryptic email – just three words long, but enough to make Alex believe that Jack may be alive. Armed with this shred of hope, Alex boards a flight bound for Egypt and embarks on a dubious quest to track Jack down.
Yet SCORPIA knows Alex’s weakness. And the question of whether Jack is alive soon takes a backseat to a chilling new terrorist plot – one that will determine the lives of many. From Egypt to France to Wales, from luxury yachts to abandoned coal mines, Alex traverses a minefield of dangers and cryptic clues as he fights to discover the truth.
book 11 in the Alex Rider series
Hello, Universe by Erin Kelly
In one day, four lives weave together in unexpected ways. Virgil Salinas is shy and kindhearted and feels out of place in his loud and boisterous family. Valencia Somerset, who is deaf, is smart, brave, and secretly lonely, and loves everything about nature. Kaori Tanaka is a self-proclaimed psychic, whose little sister Gen is always following her around. And Chet Bullens wishes the weird kids would just act normal so that he can concentrate on basketball. They aren’t friends — at least not until Chet pulls a prank that traps Virgil and his pet guinea pig at the bottom of a well. This disaster leads Kaori, Gen, and Valencia on an epic quest to find the missing Virgil. Through luck, smarts, bravery, and a little help from the universe, a rescue is performed, a bully is put in his place, and friendship blooms.
Chester and Gus by Cammie McGovern
You meet your person and you connect. You know that you’re meant to be together. Then you learn what that person needs and you do it for them. I can’t imagine anything else quite so fulfilling.
Chester has always wanted to become a service dog. When he fails his certification test, though, it seems like that dream might never come true—until a family adopts him to be a companion for their ten-year-old son, Gus, who has autism.
But Gus acts so differently than anyone Chester has ever met. He never wants to pet Chester, and sometimes he doesn’t even want him in the room. Chester’s not sure how to help Gus since this isn’t exactly the job he trained for—but he’s determined to figure it out and show he’s the right dog for the job. Because after all, Gus is now his person.
Dragon Captives by Lisa McMann
Ten years after Alex and Aaron Stowe brought peace to Quill and Artimé, their younger twin sisters journey beyond the islands in this first novel of a new sequel series to The Unwanteds, which Kirkus Reviews called “The Hunger Games meets Harry Potter.”
Identical twins Fifer and Thisbe Stowe have amazing yet uncontrollable magical abilities. They’re naturally more gifted than even their brother, Alex, the head mage of Artimé, could hope to be. But when they accidentally use their magic in the jungle of Artimé to strike down a beloved creature, Alex is furious, and threatens to lock them away until they can learn to control their power.
The threat is soon forgotten, though, when Hux, the ice blue dragon, comes to Artimé bearing the horrible news that his siblings have been enslaved by the notoriously evil Revinir, ruler of the dragon land.
Seeking a chance to right their wrong and escape their brother’s wrath, Thisbe, Fifer, and their friend Seth sneak away to rescue the dragons from grave peril. Will their untrained abilities be enough to save the dragons—and themselves—when they come face-to-face with the Revinir?
book 1 in the Unwanteds Quest series
Predator vs. Prey by Lisa McMann
In Predator vs. Prey, Charlie Wilde’s dad has been abducted by masked figures who might not even be completely human. And it will take more than her incredible bracelet—which gives her powers from the animal kingdom—to rescue him.
Luckily, Charlie’s friends now have bracelets of their own with all-new abilities…they just have to work through a few issues first. Maria’s device has hair-raising side effects. Mac can’t wait to hack into his. And their frenemy, Kelly, swears hers is a dud. If Charlie is going to have any hope of saving her dad—and the world—from their beastly foes, she’ll have to help her friends master their powers and come together as a team.
book 2 in the Going Wild series
Wrath of the Storm by Jennifer Nielsen
A quest for freedom. The magic of the gods. A storm to destroy a world.
Trouble has a way of finding Nicolas Calva, and it’s not likely to leave him alone any time soon. With Caesar’s magic bulla, the Malice of Mars, and the possibility of a Jupiter Stone in play, all the powers of Rome are circling Nic. He’ll have to maneuver his way through scheming government officials and reawakened magical beasts to save the Empire. Can he manage to keep his friends and family safe, claim his own freedom once and for all, and rescue the Empire—before the magic gets the better of him?
book 3 in the Mark of the Thief series
The Runaway by Kate O’Hearn
Fourteen-year-old Freya is a Valkyrie: a Norse goddess, a reaper of souls from human battlefields. She has the power to cause death with just one touch. But Freya has not followed in the footsteps of the legends before her. She has been to the World of Man to befriend humans – and not to reap their souls. Now she must go to the World of Man again on a new quest to track down the runaway Valkyrie of legend. There she will discover a dark secret that leads her to the Land of the Frost Giants where she must take on new enemies. But this time she has friends to rely on, and lots more to gain …and create a new VALKYRIE legend.
book 2 in the Valkyrie series
Escape to Australia by James Patterson
Rafe isn’t exactly considered a winner in Hills Village Middle School to say the least, but everything’s about to change: he’s won a school-wide art competition, and the fabulous prize is getting to jet-set off to Australia for a whirlwind adventure! But Rafe soon finds that living in the Land Down Under is harder than he could’ve ever imagined–his host-siblings are anything but welcoming, the burning temperatures are torturous, and poisonous critters are ready to sting or eat him at every step. So with the help of some new misfit friends, Rafe sets out to show everyone what he does best: create utter mayhem!
book 9 in the Middle School series
Pick the Plot by James Riley
When Owen finds himself stuck in a Pick Your Own Plot story, things get more complicated than ever in this fourth book in the New York Times bestselling series, Story Thieves—which was called a “fast-paced, action-packed tale” by School Library Journal—from the author of the Half Upon a Time trilogy.
Being able to jump into books used to seem like the greatest thing in the world to Owen Connors. But now Owen’s trapped in a time travel book where readers—that would be you—decide how the story goes.
As if that weren’t enough, Owen’s also stuck in a prison for time criminals in a prehistoric era. He’s surrounded by bizarre fellow prisoners, including Kara Dox. How does Kara recognize Owen if they’ve never met before? She seems to think they’re old friends, but that can’t be possible. Still, Kara might just be the only chance Owen has to escape. And he has to find a way out to save his friend Bethany, who’s still in grave danger. Because unless Owen can stop him, Nobody is going to split Bethany into two, separating the fictional and non-fictional worlds forever.
Will Owen be able to convince you, the reader, to help him find his way back to Bethany? Or will you feed him to dinosaurs just to teach him a lesson? It’s all up to you when you Pick the Plot.
book 4 in the Story Thieves series
Middle School Mayhem by Rachel Renee Russell
From #1 New York Times bestselling Dork Diaries author Rachel Renee Russell comes the second book in an all-new series about Max Crumbly and his daily ups and downs in middle school.
When we last left our hero, Max Crumbly, he had crash-landed on top of a Mighty Meat Monster pizza after taking a late night tumble through the vents at South Ridge Middle School—and he was completely surrounded by three ruthless criminals!
Will Max be shredded to bits like mozzarella cheese on the hard and crunchy pizza crust of doom?
Can his friend and sidekick, computer whiz Erin, help get him out of this sticky situation alive?
book 2 in the Misadventures of Max Crumbly series
Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk
Twelve-year-old Crow has lived her entire life on a tiny, isolated piece of the starkly beautiful Elizabeth Islands in Massachusetts. Abandoned and set adrift on a small boat when she was just hours old, Crow’s only companions are Osh, the man who rescued and raised her, and Miss Maggie, their fierce and affectionate neighbor across the sandbar.
Crow has always been curious about the world around her, but it isn’t until the night a mysterious fire appears across the water that the unspoken question of her own history forms in her heart. Soon, an unstoppable chain of events is triggered, leading Crow down a path of discovery and danger.
Vivid and heart wrenching, Lauren Wolk’s Beyond the Bright Seais a gorgeously crafted and tensely paced tale that explores questions of identity, belonging, and the true meaning of family.