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Today In Books

30 Debut Authors Pick Fave Books Of Decade: Today In Books

30 Debut Authors Pick Fave Books Of Decade

Bustle asked 30 authors who had a debut book in the last decade what their favorite book of the decade was to create this very eclectic and awesome list of books. Bonus: the authors explain why they chose their pick.

Charles Dickens And The Literary Pirates That Kept Stealing His Work

Watching or reading your annual rewatch/reread of A Christmas Carol? Why not also read about the pirating of Charles Dickens’ famous ghostly Christmas story in the 1840s and how the trial affected his later work.

A Warm Welcome To The Library

The nonprofit organization Operation Warm has organized the event A Warm Welcome to the Library with participating libraries, helping librarians teach families the resources available to them along with giving out new coats and books. “‘These events attracted families who had never been inside their neighborhood library,’ McChesney says. ‘We find that if we can get a child into their neighborhood library, they are very likely to return.’”

Riot Rundown


The Stack


The Goods

Most Popular Bookish Goods of 2019

We feature a *lot* of awesome bookish goods each year at the Riot. Here are a few of the most popular items from the year that was!

This sweet Winnie the Pooh quote print comes in at #1 and sells for just $11 and up.

Keep your spot with a personalized bookmark, starting at $8.50.

Of the approximately one floppity jillion Harry Potter-themed gifts we featured this year, this downloadable bookmark ranked highest.

Take note with these cheeky reading-themed pencils, $12 for a set of 5.

Tis the season of big adaptations! If you’re always Team “The Book Was Better,” here’s your uniform.

These beautiful personalized bookplates will help you keep your collection intact and (accidental) book thieves at bay.

See more of the most popular bookish goods of 2020 in the original post at Book Riot.

The Kids Are All Right

New Children’s Book Releases for December 2019!

Hi Kid Lit Friends,

This is the last newsletter of 2019, and what a wonderful year for children’s literature! Thank you for subscribing and sharing your love for children’s books with me. I am including the remainder of the new releases for the rest of the year. The Kids Are All Right newsletter will be on break for the holidays and will be back on January 5th with my most anticipated children’s books for the first half of 2020. Stay tuned!

As always, all book descriptions come from the publisher. Happy reading!


Board Book New Releases

Kindness Makes Us Strong by Sophie Beer (12/24/19, Dial)

Kindness is a friendly hello. A roaring cheer. A quick boost. Kindness is what makes us strong! This joyful board book shows various children as they extend kindness in all kinds of situations: on the playground, at lunchtime, on a bike path, and on a neighborhood street. This sweet preschool read-aloud shows the way kindness helps build friendship and community.

Backlist Bump: Do Cows Meow? by Salina Yoon


Early Readers and Chapter Book New Releases

Surf’s Up! by Luke Flowers (12/26/19, Scholastic)

Moby Shinobi and his dog Toby are excited for a day at the beach! Moby tries to use his ninja skills to build a huge sand castle, catch some fish, and save a leaking sailboat… but each try ends in a mess! What if Moby isn’t right for the job? But with some help from Toby, he discovers that teamwork makes every job easier! With easy-to-read rhyming text and full-color artwork throughout, this early reader series is sure to be a hit with beginning readers!

Backlist Bump: Mac and Cheese by Sarah Weeks and Jane Manning

Don’t Worry, Bee Happy by Ross Burach (12/26/19, Scholastic)

Bumble and Bee love to buzz around the pond and make mischief. Their cranky best friend Froggy prefers the peace and quiet of sitting on a lily pad. They may be an unlikely trio, but no matter what these friends dream up — from picture day problem-solving to a comical cure for the hiccups — you can count on hilarious, unexpected FUN!

Backlist Bump: Ling and Ting: Not Exactly the Same by Grace Lin

Baby-Sitters Little Sister by Katy Farina, based on the novel by Ann M. Martin (graphic novel) (12/26/19, Scholastic)

Karen Brewer lives next door to Mrs. Porter, who wears long robes and has wild gray hair. Mrs. Porter has a black cat named Midnight and always seems to be working in her garden. Karen isn’t supposed to spy on her neighbor, but she’s determined to prove that Mrs. Porter is a witch named Morbidda Destiny! Mrs. Porter is getting ready to have a special meeting at her house, and Karen is sure the meeting is for witches. Are they going to cast a spell on Karen? Or will she be brave enough to send them away — once and for all?

Backlist Bump: Bad Kitty: Kitten Trouble by Nick Bruel

Diary of a Pug: Pug’s Snow Day by Kyla May (12/26/19, Scholastic)

It’s a snow day, and Bella is thrilled. There’s no school, so she and Bub can play outside all day. Trouble is, Bub does not like the snow – it’s slippery, freezing cold, and wet! What’s even worse, there’s a new kid next door, and he has a scary, monster-sized pet. Can Bub get past his fear of the snow and make a new friend at the same time?

Backlist Bump: My Big Fat Zombie Goldfish by Mo O’Hara


Picture Book New Releases

Lola Dutch: I Love You So Much by Kenneth and Sarah Jane Wright (12/31/19, Bloomsbury

This is Lola Dutch, a delightfully creative girl who loves her friends SO much. When they’re having a bad day, Lola knows just what to do to make each of them feel better: She sews cozy pajamas for Gator, constructs the perfect reading nook for Crane, and takes Pig to the park! Lola loves showing her friends how much she loves them! But there’s one special friend she’s forgotten–Bear! Can Lola decide on the perfect way to express how much he means to her

Backlist Bump: How Are You / ¿Cómo estás? by Angela Dominguez


Middle Grade Books New Releases

The Fierce 44: Black Americans Who Shook Up the World by Staff of the Undefeated, illustrated by Robert Ball (nonfiction) (12/24/19, HMH)

Meet forty-four of America’s most impressive heroes in this collective biography of African American figures authored by the team at ESPN’s From visionaries to entrepreneurs, athletes to activists, the Fierce 44 are beacons of brilliance, perseverance, and excellence. Each short biography is accompanied by a compelling portrait by Robert Ball, whose bright, graphic art pops off the page.

Backlist Bump: Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison

A Girl on Schindler’s List by Rena Finder with Joshua M. Greene (memoir) (12/26/19, Scholastic)

Rena Finder was only eleven when the Nazis forced her and her family — along with all the other Jewish families — into the ghetto in Krakow, Poland. Rena worked as a slave laborer with scarcely any food and watched as friends and family were sent away. Then Rena and her mother ended up working for Oskar Schindler, a German businessman who employed Jewish prisoners in his factory and kept them fed and healthy. But Rena’s nightmares were not over. She and her mother were deported to the concentration camp Auschwitz. With great cunning, it was Schindler who set out to help them escape.

Backlist Bump: Refugee by Alan Gratz

Mac B. Kid Spy: Mac Cracks the Code by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Mike Lowery (12/26/19, Scholastic)

Ravens have been stolen from the Tower of London! Mac B.’s top-secret mission? Travel to Iceland and retrieve the ravens… or Britain is ruined! In Iceland, Mac discovers secret submarines, hungry polar bears, mysterious blueprints… and his old archnemesis! Is the KGB man behind this birdnapping? Can Mac get the ravens to safety? It’s time for an epic, top secret smackdown between these two secret agents!

Backlist Bump: El Deafo by Cece Bell

Beetle Battles by Doug Emlen (nonfiction) (12/24/19, Roaring Brook)

Doug Emlen is a scientist. He studies beetles. Specifically, he studies the evolution of beetle weapons―how their horns and armor change to better suit them in different environments. This book starts with a mystery: Doug wanted to know why a particular type of beetle developed a massive evolutionary weapon. He wanted to know how these changes happened and what advantages these enormous weapons gave the tiny dung beetles. So, he went to visit. Part travel diary and part scientific exploration, Beetle Battles takes you deep into the South American rainforest to monitor beetles in their own habitat.

Backlist Bump: Shark Lady: The True Story of How Eugenie Clark Became the Ocean’s Most Fearless Scientist by Jess Keating and Marta Alvarez Miguens


What are you reading these days? I want to know! Find me on Twitter at @KarinaYanGlaser, on Instagram at @KarinaIsReadingAndWriting, or email me at

Until next time!

*If this e-mail was forwarded to you, follow this link to subscribe to “The Kids Are All Right” newsletter and other fabulous Book Riot newsletters for your own customized e-mail delivery. Thank you!*

Today In Books

CARRIE Is Back: Today In Books

Carrie Is Back

Another Stephen King adaptation is in the works: Carrie is being adapted into an FX limited series. While there isn’t a lot of info yet, the one thing coming from sources is that “Carrie White will likely be played by either a trans performer or an actress of color…” Give me #ownvoice writer(s) and all the popcorn will be made.

Another Remake Of An Adaptation

Nick Hornby’s High Fidelity was adapted to film in 2000 starring John Cusack as the heartbroken list making man and Lisa Bonet as his love interest. Now Hulu is adapting the story into a series starring Zoë Kravitz, Lisa Bonet’s daughter, in the titular role. I see what they did there and I like it! You can check out the teaser trailer for the show that will premiere February 14th.


Ijeoma Oluo, writer and author of So You Want To Talk About Race, was recently swatted: trolls called 911 with a false report of a double murder in her home. The goal of swatting is to have police basically show up swat style endangering and terrifying the target. In order to stop this process of weaponizing of the 911 system “Seattle police are sharing their know-how with law enforcement agencies throughout the country, while calling on lawmakers to make swatting a federal crime.”

Check Your Shelf

Close Out the Year With These “Best Of” Lists

Welcome to Check Your Shelf! This is your guide to help librarians like you up your game when it comes to doing your job (& rocking it).

This is my last newsletter before Book Riot goes on break, so I hope everyone has a safe, happy, and healthy holiday season with lots of reading time!

Collection Development Corner

New & Upcoming Titles

Best Books of 2019

Best Books of the Decade

RA/Genre Resources

On the Riot

All Things Comics


Book Lists, Book Lists, Book Lists



On the Riot

Level Up (Library Reads)

Do you take part in LibraryReads, the monthly list of best books selected by librarians only? We’ve made it easy for you to find eligible diverse titles to nominate. Kelly Jensen created a database of upcoming diverse books that anyone can edit, and Nora Rawlins of Early Word is doing the same, as well as including information about series, vendors, and publisher buzz.


All right, everyone! Catch you on the flip side!

Katie McLain Horner, @kt_librarylady on Twitter. Currently reading Magic For Liars by Sarah Gailey.

Swords and Spaceships

Swords and Spaceships for December 24: A Celebration of Small Press and Indie

Happy Tuesday, shipmates! We’ve almost powered through the home stretch of this year. Just a few more days (and an obstacle course composed mostly of cookies and fudge if your life is like mine) stands between us and a bright new year of new books! It’s Alex, with one last book celebration for the year, and just a little news on the side.

If you need an absolutely delightful Twitter thread for your day, here’s one of scientists explaining what they do in all-too-plain terms.

Also, there will not be a newsletter coming to you next Friday (December 27th) or Tuesday (December 31st), so I’ll see you in 2020!

14 Small Press and Indie Books From 2019

Of Dawn and Embers by Kyoko M – This is the third book of a series about conservation, dragons, and bad people cloning dragons. The first book is Of Cinder and Bone.

Retaking Elysium by M. Darusha Wehm – Jules Morales takes a trip out to Mars, a planet “caught between capitalist exploitation and human exploration” intending to just make a buck, maybe have an adventure. They get more than they bargained for.

The Demon Door by Kim Alexander – This is a whole four book series, and I love Kim’s quick summary: “Two worlds, a hot depressed hero, a fierce and passionate heroine, his mother, her sister(s), his best friend, his best friend’s boyfriend, a bunch of evil wizards, a snotty little girl who is also a wizard, and a whole lot of poor decision making!”

Five Minutes at Hotel Stormcove edited by E.D.E. Bell is anthology of flash and short fiction and contains stories like this gorgeous one by Jasre’ Ellis: By the Light of the New Moon

The Evolved Ones: Awakening by Natasha Oliver – Humanity seems more curious than afraid of the Evolved Ones among them, with scientists trying to discern why some humans are developing abilities while others do not. For humans, it’s exciting. For the Evolved Ones, it’s hide or disappear.

The Trans Space Octopus Congregation by Bogi Takács – A collection of LGBTQ SFF stories that go from space opera to a bit of body horror.

Strangers by V.S. Holmes – the third book of a trilogy about lesbian archaeologists in space. The first book is Travelers.

By Dark by T. Thorn Coyle – Part of the Witches of Portland series, which is paranormal urban fantasy with a little bit of romance in it, set in (yup) Portland. Book one is By Earth.

Trinity Sight by Jennifer Givhan – An anthroplogist pregnant with twins wakes up to find herself in a terrifying wasteland, a post-apocalyptic New Mexico. As volcanoes erupt and long-dead monsters wake, she must reclaim the heritage she once denied if she’s to have a hope of saving herself or her children.

Salvage by R.J. Theodore – Floating island nations, aliens, gods, and airships. Book one is Flotsam.

Double Edged by Jessie Kwak – When your arch nemesis dies, it’s incredibly rude of them to leave one last puzzle sitting on your doorstep. When it’s a puzzle that could stop a civil war or maybe just kill everyone, that’s even ruder.

The Hammer Falls by Travis Heermann – A gene modified pit fighter has to save the woman he loves–before his heart, damaged by too manny injuries and resurrections, gives out.

Caleuche by Jonathan Ward – The last ship of refugees to escape a world ruined by self-replicating killing machines is the Caleuche. Those on board are frightened, traumatized, and face a new fight for their lives as they try to survive.

The Best Vegan Science Fiction and Fantasy Stories of 2018 edited by B. Morris Allen – Metaphorosis has several anthologies out this year, but this one caught my eye because of the concept. Vegan SFF stories are ones that involve no meat, no hunting, no leather, no use of animals for things such as horseback riding, etc.

News and Views

After thinking about it, I’m not linking to any The Rise of Skywalker news for this week, since I know there are a hideous amount of spoilers floating around out there.

2010-2019: A Decade of Change in Science Fiction and Fantasy

An art exhibit that brings together Star Wars and Southwestern Indigenous artists: The Force is With Our People

The Pen Ten did an interview with Amal El-Mohtar, and you must read it. Amal is half the team that brought you This Is How You Lose the Time War, and you should also check out The Honey Month.

How genre is inspiring Season 18 of Project Runway.

Hulu will not be adapting Anne Rice’s vampire novels after all.

This is an interesting one from the Mary Sue – all of the bestselling books this decade have had female leads.

Looking for Leia is now streaming on SYFY.

A really chewy piece here for us SFF fans: The Decade Fandom Went Corporate

On Book Riot

6 Book Recommendations for Douglas Adams fans

15 of the Best Night Circus quotes from Morgenstern’s Classic

JK Rowling no. JK Rowling why. (CW: Transphobia)

19 Magical Books Like The Night Circus

See you in the new year, space pirates. You can find all of the books recommended in this newsletter on a handy Goodreads shelf. If you’d like to know more about my secret plans to dominate the seas and skies, you can catch me over at my personal site.