Flygirl - Sherri L. Smith

During WWII women started getting new ideas and odds-defying young women took to the skies. Sherri L. Smith’s Ida Mae Jones eschews the easy life when she signs up to be a Flygirl (Putnam, $16.99), part of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs), a government program for female pilots to fly supplies to non-combat zones. But Ida has a secret. This exciting narrative traces Ida’s ascent as she stretches the truth about who she is in order to do what she loves. Ages 13-16.

Perpetual Check - Rich Wallace

The Mansfield brothers, Zeke and Randy, vie for the chess championship of the Northeast Pennsylvania Regional Competition. When it becomes clear that they may face each other in the semi-finals, their rivalry becomes toxic, especially when their outrageous, bullying father starts coaching from the sidelines. In Rich Wallace’s short, tense novel, the brothers feel like they are in Perpetual Check (Knopf, $15.99) until they decide together to change their lives. Ages 12-16.

The Girl Who Threw Butterflies - Mick Cochrane

After her dad’s untimely death, Molly Williams seeks a way to avoid pity and still preserve memories of her father. While sorting through the baseball gloves that she and her dad used, Molly is inspired to try out for the baseball team since her dad had taught her how to throw the perfect knuckleball. As the only girl to try out, Molly tenaciously weathers the challenges in The Girl Who Threw Butterflies (Knopf, $15.99). Author Mick Cochrane provides just the right mix of details about the game of baseball, humorous touches, and memorable characters in this story of loss and survival. Ages 11-13.