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Cats News

Did you know that we’ve added quick-read staff recommendations to our website? Each month, you’ll find recommendations of some of our favorite recent reads from CATS staff members (including our cat mascots Baker and Taylor) with a brief summary of what we liked most about each title. Check them out here.

Cats News

Let’s get the New Year off to a musical start with the brand new Kids' Guide to Learning the Ukulele: 24 Songs to Learn and Play. Put your patron’s newly-acquired ukuleles to work in no time with basic instructions and chords, information on tuning, and songs to practice, plus games and activities. Author Emily Arrow has over 10 years of experience as a music educator, is an award-winning children’s songwriter and YouTube personality. Check out her whimsical YouTube channel, which includes storytime singalongs, here.




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Ongoing Series Update

Staff Picks

Nian: The Chinese New Year Dragon

Written by Virginia Loh-Hagan and Illustrated by Timothy Banks | Sleeping Bear Press | December 2019 | 9781585364138 | Reinforced | $16.99


When Mei is given a magical cane by a warrior to defeat Nian, the fierce dragon who returns every spring to feast and terrorize the villagers, she knows what she has to do. She has to defeat the dragon within fifteen days, or the warrior tells her, that Nian will be forever free. When the villagers hear the dragon’s stomach rumbling they run in fear, except Mei, who repeatedly chases off and outsmarts Nian with loud noises, bright red clothes and flags and lights. When Nian takes the bait of food, set by Mei with her magical cane, the warrior is able to capture the dragon and keep him from being evil and terrorizing the town ever again. Read More

Clean Getaway

Written by Nic Stone | Crown Publishing | January 2020 | 9781984892980 | Library | $19.99


A PERFECTLY fashioned middle grade fiction tale, this is a book about relationships, families, the stories that oftentimes are hidden for no good reason, and redemption one searches for and can ultimately find. The adventurous G’ma helps Scoob escape during spring break, offering middle grade readers that delicious plot device of escaping punishment of a father determined to teach his son a lesson. G’ma quite abruptly sold her home, and has taken the money to buy an RV! Scoob jumps at the opportunity to run away, and leaves his phone behind in the process-something we all can cheer him on for accomplishing! Read More



Meet Courtney Moulton


From Courtney Moulton, author of the acclaimed Angelfire series, comes Wardens of Eternity, an action-packed YA novel that blends history, mythology and magic. The book publishes on January 21. Read on to learn about how Wardens of Eternity came to be.
Read the interview here.

CATS In Your Library


Meet Rita King

Meet Rita King, Children’s and Teen Services Manager for the Western half of the country. She hails from the Detroit metropolitan area, and currently resides in the great state of Michigan. Learn all about Rita here.



Meet Katie LaMantia

Meet Katie LaMantia, Collection Development Librarian in our McHenry, IL office. She is from Schaumburg, IL and was a Teen Advisory Board member turned Teen Librarian there before coming to Baker & Taylor. Learn all about Katie here.



Enter to win a visit from Ruta Sepetys in your library!

Open to adult and teen librarians, the winner will receive a visit and luncheon with New York Times bestselling author and master storyteller Ruta Sepetys in their library/community. Check out the author’s Community Reads video and enter to win here. Winner announced in the May 2020 CATS Meow newsletter, with the visit to take place later in the year. Contest ends 4/15/2020.



New Titles

145th Street: Short Stories

Walter Dean Myers | RH Childrens Books; Delacorte Press | 9780593119662 | Hardcover | $17.99 | 1/14/2020

Celebrate the 20th anniversary of these powerful and poignant stories, which honors Myers's enormous legacy and brings it to a new generation of readers. Featuring new content, including tributes from those who were inspired by him.

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The Good Hawk

Joseph Elliott | Candlewick Press | 9781536207187 | Hardcover | $17.99 | 1/21/2020

Thrilling and dark yet rich with humor and compassion, this is the first book in the Shadow Skye trilogy, written by a wonderful new voice in fantasy and introducing a welcome new kind of hero.

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The Bat Book

Charlotte Milner | DK Pub. | 9781465490490 | Hardcover | $15.99 | 2/4/2020

Bright, bold, and beautiful illustrations accompany fascinating facts about these furry flying mammals and their importance to the world we live in.

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Pippa Park Raises Her Game

Erin Yun | Fabled Films Press | 9781944020262 | Hardcover | $16.99 | 2/4/2020

In this modern re-imagining of Great Expectations, Korean American Pippa Park struggles to manage her grades, basketball, friendship and cyber bullying.

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Amy Krouse Rosenthal | Disney-Hyperion | 9781484749555 | Hardcover | $16.99 | 2/4/2020

Meet Straw! He's always rushed straight to the finish. But when his speedy streak gets the best of him, it takes a friend to show Straw how to drink in the amazing world around him. A companion to Spoon and Chopsticks, this delightful story celebrates the joys of taking it slow.

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The Night Before Groundhog Day

Natasha Wing, Amy Wummer, illus. | FollettBound | 9781725447370 | Prebind | $13.99 | 1/22/2020

In the latest The Night Before… series title, the evening before Groundhog Day is filled with anticipation about whether the groundhog will see his shadow and whether winter will last another six weeks.

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