August’s New Books

Every month we feature all the new middle grade and young adult releases that include diversity. August brings seven new middle grade and eleven new young adult novels, including the third book in Simone Elkeles’ bestselling Perfect Chemistry series, Chain Reaction, and a graphic novel adaptation of Cynthia Leitich Smith’s Tantalize.

By “diversity” we mean: (1) main characters or major secondary characters (e.g., a love interest or best friend kind of character) who are of color or are LGBT; or (2) written by a person of color or LGBT author. Unfortunately due to time constraints we are unable to include each book’s summary, but we encourage you to click on the book covers to be taken to Indie Bound, where you can read a description of the book.


Middle Grade


Young Adult

Did we miss any books? Tell us about them in the comments!

15 thoughts on “August’s New Books

  1. I’m in the middle of reading Misfit, and I don’t see how it fits here. Wait a minute! Is Jael’s father from a Middle Eastern background? Or did I totally read over some reference to a LGBT character? I guess I need to go back and reread.

  2. Jael’s mother is from a [spoiler redacted but non-white] background. I think that issues of biracial identity are pretty thoroughly woven throughout the book. But I won’t tell you how! 🙂

  3. Yay! I had to click on this when I saw it in my Twitter feed. I am new to the YA arena, and my first novel was published last fall. My main characters are fraternal twins, Nate and Larissa Pantera, who are were-panthers, and one of the reasons that I first put pen to paper was to write a book for my cousin, so that he could see someone who looked like him in this genre that he really loves. Yay! Keep it up. We need to raise awareness about the writing that people of color are doing in this genre. 🙂

  4. I was actually saving that for September because my research had September listed as the pub month. I can add it to August though!

  5. I think it’s great that you’re celebrating these books. All the top YA has been extremely white. I teach Alexie’s Part-Time Indian as a way to change it up for my high schoolers. My wife is multi-racial, and it has been a major issue in our family lives. I made sure to make my first main character’s girlfriend African-American when I sat down to write my first novel. It’s time the literature we read matches the reality of the times.

  6. it includes major people of color characters
    and side lgbt characters. it’s one of my favorite
    YA high fantasy series. i highly recommend it!

  7. william, if you ever need more
    books featuring diverse characters across
    all genres in middle grade and young adult,
    we feature the books as well as many of the
    authors to guest blog.

    thanks for visiting and commenting, william!

  8. Just like to add–both my recent middle grade novels have a best friend of color. In WHAT HAPPENED ON FOX STREET and MO WREN, LOST AND FOUND (both HarperCollins), Mercedes Walcott, whose mother is black and father white, plays a major role!

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