SAMUEL BLINK AND THE FORBIDDEN FOREST and SAMUEL BLINK AND THE RUNAWAY TROLL, by Matt Haig, Puffin Books, $17.99; ages 9-12.
Samuel and Martha find themselves living in Norway with Aunt Eda only days after their parents are killed in a car accident. The thing is they didn’t even know they had an Aunt Eda. Aunt Eda has many rules, but the most important one is never ever go into the forest.
In the first book, Samuel and Martha break that rule and find all kinds of strange creatures in the forest, including Uncle Henrik. In the second book, the forest comes to Samuel in the form of Troll-son who has run away from home and wants to live with Samuel.
THE MYSTERY OF THE MARTELLO TOWER, by Jennifer Lanthier, HarperCollins Publishers, $16.99; ages 9-12.
Hazel and Ned are thrown into confusion the day their art-dealer father disappears. They find themselves in a castle on a small island with cousins they didn’t know they had. Soon, all the kids are on the case, trying to figure out how to save their father, stay away from the bad guys and discover why Hazel keeps dreaming about a tower.
The mystery goes even deeper when they realize their mother’s death is intertwined into all this craziness.
HOW TO DITCH YOUR FAIRY, by Justine Larbalestier, Bloomsbury USA Children’s Books, $16.99; ages 12 and up.
In New Avalon, everyone has a fairy. Charlie’s best friend Rochelle has a clothes-shopping fairy so, of course, her clothes always look great, fit great and are always on sale. Charlie’s fairy is a parking fairy. Fourteen, unable to drive and always smelling like gasoline, Charlie is on a mission to lose her fairy.
THE CASE OF THE LEFT-HANDED LADY, an Enola Holmes Mystery, by Nancy Springer, Sleuth Puffin, paperback $6.99; ages 9-12.
Her mother has left 14-year-old Enola in the care of her older brother, Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock thinks Enola needs to be sent away to boarding school to learn to be a proper lady, but Enola believes otherwise.
After running away, Enola finds herself hiding in London. Using aliases, disguises and ciphers, she starts her own detective agency. Her first case is to find the missing daughter of Sir Eustance Austair.
CHANGELING, by Delia Sherman, Firebird Penguin Group, paperback $8.99; ages 9-12.
Neef is a changeling, a human stolen by fairies and replaced by another fairy. She lives in New York between. It is just like New York, but isn’t. New York between is invisible to humans and is home to all kinds of folklore creatures. Neef lives with her fairy godmother, Astris, a lovely white rat. When Neef breaks the rules by going to the Solstice Dance in Central Park, her life is no longer protected.
KINGDOM KEEPERS II DISNEY AT DAWN, by Ridley Pearson, Disney Editions, $17.99; ages 9-12.
Our friends, the real-life versions of the holographic hosts at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, have finally been allowed back into the park. In the parade, they are supposed to be seen standing next to their holographic versions. But that never happens. The Overtakers are back and Wayne is missing. Finn and friends must figure out what is going on.
Sandi Pedersen is the mom of four and the Web mistress for Chicago Parent.