Caleb’s autism sometimes makes it difficult for Leo to be his brother, especially when public outbursts and late-night screeching are a regular occurrence. Caleb, Leo, and their parents eventually have to move because of Caleb’s behavior towards their neighbors, and Caleb isn’t responding well to the change in routine. He begins taking his frustration out on Leo, sometimes hitting him to the point of leaving bruises. Leo begins literally running away from his problems, Running Full Tilt (Charlesbridge, $17.99) mile after mile when being around Caleb is just too much. He discovers that he’s fast, and soon Leo finds himself on the school cross country team, training hard, making friends, and spending less time with Caleb— a decision that he may soon regret when tragedy strikes. Michael Currinder’s debut novel is packed with running action perfect for every athlete, as well as relationships, drama, and emotion that will satisfy all readers. Ages 14-18.
A figure skater for twelve years, Tillie Walden has been Spinning (First Second, $17.99) through life as she desperately tries to navigate the intensity of her training schedule while also living the life of a normal suburban teen. In a world where it’s so important to appear flawless, how can a person feel so uncomfortable in her own skin? In a sport where independence matters and it’s every girl for herself, how is a competitor supposed to build lasting relationships? A graphic memoir of friends, family, figure skating, and coming out, Walden’s tale of self-doubt becoming personal triumph is raw, gripping, and sure to spark emotion. Ages 14-18.
Game-winning headers, shots rocketed from midfield, overtime penalty kicks: Carli Lloyd’s honest and direct memoir includes nearly as much suspense as her soccer career. Filled with breathless play-by-play action, All Heart: My Dedication and Determination to Become One of Soccer’s Best (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $16.99) chronicles the discipline, disappointments, and grit necessary to become one of soccer’s greatest living players. Emphasizing perseverance in the face of personal and athletic challenges, the book, co-written with Wayne Coffey, will enthrall fans and serve as inspiration to anyone who has thought of herself as an underdog. Ages 10-14.