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Books for Youth
School for Bandits
By Hannah Shaw
Mr. and Mrs. Raccoon aren’t happy with their son, Ralph, who is “disturbingly well behaved.” There’s only one thing to do: send him to bandit school! Once there, Ralph doesn’t fit in. He is sure that he has no chance of winning the Best Bandit in School contest—whoever fills his sack with the most loot wins.
Story behind the Story: Nnedi Okorafor’s Akata Witch
By Gillian Engberg
The Changing Faces of Fantasy
Speculative fiction allows for infinitely diverse world building, but there is often a puzzling sameness about its human characters, an overwhelmingly Caucasian bunch. Nnedi Okorafor’s award-winning youth novels offer a refreshing contrast: wildly imagined adventures rooted deeply in Africa and parallel worlds.
Quick Tips: Groundbreaking Books of the Last 20 Years
By Gillian Engberg
In celebration of
Book Links magazine’s twentieth anniversary, we’ve asked our regular contributors to name the most groundbreaking books published in the last two decades. Their choices have appeared throughout the past year in Book Links, and we’ve collected all of them here in one celebratory list. Taken together, they represent some of the most exciting directions in books for children and young adults over the past 20 years. — Ed.
by Dav Pilkey The Adventures of Captain Underpants,
Action! Thrills! Underpants! The wildly popular saga begins with
The Adventures of Captain Underpants (1997) and features George Beard and Harold Hutchins, two young smart alecks who pull pranks and create their very own hilarious superhero: Captain Underpants. Full of Flip-O-Rama comics and toilet humor, Pilkey’s series has mesmerized elementary-school students, including even the most-reluctant readers, around the world .—Ernie J. Cox
Hot Topics: Batter Up!
By Anastasia Suen
On sandlots across the nation, teams of all ages are playing baseball during these warm months. For young fans searching for summer-reading suggestions, offer the following recent baseball biographies, which reflect the diverse backgrounds of players throughout history. Batter up!