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School Library Journal 2018 Best Books






The School Library Journal  Best Books of 2018 were announced today! See who is on the list below:

Picture Books

  • The Patchwork Bike by Maxine Beneba Clarke, Illus. Van Thanh Rudd (Candlewick)
  • Zola’s Elephant by Randall De Sève, Illus. Pamela Zagarenski (Chronicle)
  • A Parade of Elephants by Kevin Henkes (Greenwillow)
  • Saffron Ice Cream by Rashin Kheiriyeh (Levine/Scholastic)
  • Drawn Together by Minh Lê, Illus. Dan Santat (Disney-Hyperion)
  • Black Bird Yellow Sun by Steve Light (Candlewick)
  • A Big Mooncake for Little Star by Grace Lin (Little,Brown)
  • Julián Is a Mermaid by Jessica Love (Candlewick)
  • Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal (Candlewick)
  • Thank You, Omu! By Oge Mora
  • The Field by Baptiste Paul, Illus. By Jacqueline Alcántara (North South)
  • Fox & Chick: The Party and Other Stories by Sergio Ruzzier (Chronicle)
  • Me and My Fear by Francesca Sanna (Flying Eye)
  • Blue by Laura Vaccaro Seeger (Neal Porter/Roaring Brook)
  • They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki (Abrams)
  • Mommy’s Khimar by Jamilah Thompkins-Bigelow (Salaam Reads/S&S)
  • The Day You Begin by Jacqueline Woodson, Illus. Rafael López (Nancy Paulsen/Penguin)


Chapter Books & Middle Grade

  • Hurricane Child by Kheryn Callender (Scholastic)
  • Marcus Vega Doesn’t Speak Spanish by Pablo Cartaya (Viking)
  • Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi (Disney-Hyperion)
  • Finding Langston by Lesa Cline-Ransome (Holiday House)
  • The Journey of Little Charlie by Christopher Paul Curtis (Scholastic)
  • The Serpent’s Secret by Sayantani Dasgupta (Scholastic)
  • Blended by Sharon M. Draper (Caitlyn Dlouhy/Atheneum)
  • Meet Yasmin! By Saadia Faruqi, Illus. Hatem Aly (Capstone)
  • The Night Diary by Veera Hiranandani (Dial)
  • The Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson (Levine/Scholastic)
  • You Go First by Erin Entrada Kelly (Greenwillow)
  • The Season of Styx Malone by Kekla Magoon (Wendy Lamb)
  • Merci Suárez Changes Gears by Meg Medina (Candlewick)
  • Love Sugar Magic: A Dash of Trouble by Anna Meriano (Walden Pond/HarperCollins)
  • Dactyl Hill Squad by Daniel José Older (Levine/Scholastic)
  • Swallow’s Dance by Wendy Orr (Pajama Press)
  • Amal Unbound by Aisha Saeed (Nancy Paulsen/Penguin)
  • Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson (Nancy Paulsen/Penguin)
  • Front Desk by Kelly Yang (Levine/Scholastic)


Young Adult

  • The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo (HarperTeen/HarperCollins)
  • Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi (Holt)
  • Love, Hate and Other Filters by Samira Ahmed (Soho Teen)
  • All That I Can Fix by Crystal Chan (Simon Pulse)
  • Mirage by Somaiya Daud (Flatiron)
  • Give Me Some Truth by Eric Gansworth (Levine/Scholastic)
  • Picture Us in the Light by Kelly Loy Gilbert (Disney-Hyperion)
  • Dread Nation by Justina Ireland (Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins)
  • Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson (Katherine Tegen/HarperCollins)
  • Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough (Dutton)
  • Blanca & Roja by Anna-Marie McLemore (Feiwel & Friends)
  • The Astonishing Life of After by Emily X.R. (Little, Brown)
  • After the Shot Drops by Randy Ribay (HMH)
  • A Room Away from the Wolves by Ren Nova (Algonquin)
  • Sadie by Courtney Summers (Wednesday Books)
  • When Light Left Us by Leah Thomas (Bloomsbury)
  • Pride by Ibi Zoboi (Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins)



  • Facing Frederick: The Life of Frederick Douglass, a Monumental American Man by Tonya Bolden (Abrams)
  • Eat This!: How Fast Food Marketing Gets You to Buy Junk (And How You Can Fight Back) by Andrea Curtis, Illus. By Peggy Curtis (Red Deer)
  • Memphis, Martin, and the Mountaintop: That Sanitation Strike of 1968) by Alice Faye Duncan, Illus. R. Gregory Christie (Calkins Creek)
  • Not My Idea: A Book About Whiteness by Anastasia Higginbotham (Dottir)
  • Spooked! How a Radio Broadcast and The War of the Worlds Sparked the 1938 Invasion of America by Gail Jarrow (Calkins Creek)
  • Prickly Hedgehogs! By Jane McGuinness (Candlewick)
  • Dreamers by Yuyi Morales (Neal Porter/Holiday House)
  • I Have the right To: A High School Survivor’s Story of Sexual Assault, Justice, and Hope by Chessy Prout with Jenn Abelson (Margaret K. McElderry/S&S)
  • Otis and Will Discover the Deep: The Record-Setting Dive of the Bathysphere by Barb Rosenstock, Illus. Katherine Roy (Little, Brown)
  • Americanized: Rebel Without a Green Card by Sara Saedi (Knopf)
  • We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga by Traci Sorell, Illus. Frané Lessac (Charlesbridge)
  • The Triumphant Tale of the House Sparrow by Jan Thornhill (Groundwood)



  • Jabberwalking by Juan Felipe Herrera (Candlewick)
  • Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Black Boy by Tony Medina, Illus. various (Penny Candy Books)
  • Martin Rising: Requiem for a King by Andrea Davis Pinkney, Illus. Brian Pinkney (Scholastic)
  • Seeing into Tomorrow by Richard Wright and Nina Crews, Photo Nina Crews (Millbrook)


Graphic Novels & Nonfiction

  • Speak:The Graphic Novel by Laurie Halse Anderson, Illus. By Emily Carroll (Farrar, Straus, Giroux / Macmillan)
  • The Faithful Spy: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the Plot To Kill Hitler by John Hendrix (Amulet / Abrams)
  • Hey, Kiddo: How I Lost My Mother, Found My Father, and Dealt with Family Addiction by Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Graphix / Scholastic)
  • Photographic: The Life of Graciela Iturbide by Isabel Quintero, Illus. by Zeke Pena (Getty / Abrams)
  • The Cardboard Kingdom by Chad Sell (Knopf / Penguin)
  • The Promised Neverland: Vol. 1; Grace Field House by Kaiu Shirai,  Trans. By Satsuki Yamashita, Illus. By Posuka Demizu (Viz Media)
  • Tiger vs. Nightmare by Emily Tetri (First Second / Macmillan)
  • On a Sunbeam by Tillie Walden (First Second / Macmillan)
  • The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang (First Second / Macmillan)



Read more about all of these titles at School Library Journal here.

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