Small Spaces, by Katherine Arden
"Is it a mystery? A fairy tale? A horror thriller? As the suspense gripped me, I just wanted to know one thing -- WHAT HAPPENS NEXT? Terrifying and fun." -R.L. Stine, bestselling author of the Goosebumps series
Description from the book jacket: When eleven-year-old Ollie finds a disheveled, weeping woman by the river threatening to throw a book in the water, she doesn't think, she just acts -- plucking the book from the woman's hands and running away with it. As Ollie begins to read, she finds herself entranced by a creepy tale, Small Spaces. Set on a farm hundreds of years earlier, it's about a girl, the two boys who love her and a peculiar deal struck with the Smiling Man, a sinister specter who grants your most tightly held with, but only for the ultimate price.
Ollie is still reading the next day on a school trip to a local farm with a haunting history. There, Ollie discovers not only that the farm is run by the woman whose book she stole, but also the graves of the very people she'd been reading about. More alarming is what happens on the way home: the school bus breaks down, forcing Ollie's teacher to return to the farm for help, leaving his students alone with the oddest bus driver Ollie has ever met. The driver warns Ollie's class that someone or something will soon come for them. It's at this moment that Ollie receives a chilling message on her digital wristwatch, which had been broken for months. The watch suddenly spells out RUN. As night descends and scarecrows in the surrounding fields seem to crowd close - watching them - Ollie thinks the watch might be right. Joined by only two of her classmates, Ollie takes to the woods with one last word of advice from the bus driver ringing in her ears: "Avoid large places at night. Keep to small."
And with that, a deliciously creepy and spine-tingling adventure begins.
Cover art by Matt Saunders
Islandborn, by Junot Díaz, illustrated by Leo Espinosa
Every kid in Lola's school was from somewhere else. Hers was a school of faraway places.
So when Lola's teacher asks the students to draw a picture of where their families emigrated from, all of the kids are excited. Except Lola. She can't remember the Island - she left when she was just a baby. But with the help of her family and friends, and their memories, Lola's imagination takes her back on an extraordinary journey back to the Island. As she draws closer to the heart of her family's story, Lola comes to understand the truth of her abuela's words: "Just because you don't remember a place doesn't mean it's not in you."
Written by New York Times bestseller and Pulitzer Prize winner Junot Díaz and illustrated by Leo Espinosa, this picture book is a celebration of creativity, diversity and family connections.