Youth Book Corner: January Recommendations

Our Outreach Coordinator Leena Desai shares must-read books from recent releases.

What’s Up, Maloo?
by Genevieve Godbout

If you’re looking for a gorgeously illustrated book about an adorable kangaroo – especially when the Australian kangaroos are fighting for survival against bushfires – look no further then Genevieve Godbout’s What’s Up, Maloo? The titular Maloo is famous for his cheery hop, but sadness bogs down even the usually ebullient Maloo and he loses his hop. Seeing their friend so forlorn, Maloo’s forest mates come together and with their support and love, Maloo gets his bounce back. Beautifully illustrated by Godbout, What’s Up, Maloo? is a reminder of the importance of friends in our lives.

Grades: Preschool to 1

The Very, Very Far North
Written by Dan Bar-el
Illustrated by Kelly Pousette

In this charming chapter book, Dan Bar-el takes us on a journey across the Arctic through the eyes of the endearing – and very Winne the Pooh-esque – polar bear Duane. Duane is an inquisitive and friendly young bear, so when he gets into trouble one day by getting wedged in a fishing hole, his Arctic friends, which include a puffin, a caribou, a musk ox and a little girl, come to his rescue. Filled with soft pencil illustrations, The Very, Very Far North will enchant as well as inform young readers and whet their curiosity about what lies beyond our land and sea.

Grades: 3 to 6

by Sebastien de Castell

The seventh and last book in the Spellsinger series of fantasy and adventure books, Crownbreaker revolves around Kellen, the outlaw spellslinger, who has now become the protector of the Daroman Queen. Relying on his cunning, his powers of deception and intuition to get by, Kellen thinks he has things under control until rumblings of a war reach his ears and he must do anything – even face off the greatest spellcaster – to protect his queen and kingdom. For fans of Sebastien de Castell’s immersive world-building, Crownbreaker is a satisfying, fast-paced and riveting end to the Spellsinger saga.

Grades: 8-12


Leena Desai