Summer is finally here and we have some great summer reading picture book recommendations.
Because You Are by Jael Richardson (Harper Collins) – A beautiful book about self-esteem and inner beauty, Because You Are should be in every school library and read to every child. The book is a lesson in beauty and that it comes from our words and actions, not from how we look. Nneka Myers’ illustrations bring the whole book together with an energy that pops off the page.
The Language of Flowers by Dena Seiferling (Penguin Random House) – A book with several lessons in one, The Language of Flowers is a charming book about pollination and kindness. In it we meet Beatrice the bumblebee who is adopted by flowers in a meadow. They teach her their language, setting her off to whisper words of kindness throughout the meadow. As she grows older however, she wonders what lays beyond the edge of the meadow. On top of the lessons in kindness, this book is great for introducing children to a variety of flowers and the pollination process. The illustrations alone makes this book one not to be missed.
Professor Goose Debunks Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Paulette Bourgeios (Penguin Random House) – Meet Professor Marie Curious Goose, PH.D, great-niece of Mother Goose, as she fact checks the classic fairy tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears. This is a clever and witty book, combining the story we all know and love with scientific facts. Who knew that breaking down and debunking a fairy tale could be so much fun. As a bonus, the book includes instructions on how to craft a cardboard chair.
Lizzy and the Cloud by The Fan Brothers (Simon and Schuster) – I absolutely adored this book, as did my son. On a sunny afternoon, Lizzy and her family head to the carnival, where she purchases a pet cloud. Lizzy takes care of her cloud, watering it and taking it for walks, watching as it continues to grow. Lizzy and the Cloud is a gorgeously illustrated book with a unique story bound to please children and parents alike.
Where Do Your Feelings Live? by Catherine Hernandez (Harper Collins) – A cute book about our feelings, Where Do Your Feelings Live brings to life our inner emotions and encourages readers to show compassion to themselves. The story teaches readers to not bury and lock away their feelings, but rather to accept and comfort them. Quebec illustrator Myriam Chery’s vibrant and colorful images are fantastically eye catching.
The Surprise by Zadie Smith and Nick Laird (Penguin Random House) – Meet Maude the guinea pig, who’s starting to think she’s an oddball because she’s not like the other house pets. With beautiful illustrations by Magenta Fox, The Surprise is a beautiful and quirky story about being yourself.
Our Playground Rules by Kallie George (Penguin Random House) – This is a perfect book to teach children about the unwritten rules of playground play. It reminds us to be kind, patient, wait our turn, be forgiving when accidents happen and most importantly to have fun! Illustrated by Jay Fleck, Our Playground Rules is a sweet book to introduce young readers to what it means to share a space.
All Cats Welcome by Susin Nielsen (Simon and Schuster) – This is an adorable story about finding love and friendship, even when you don’t speak the same language. Illustrator Vivian Mineker helps bring Leonard the cat to life as he meets a neighboring cat. They may not speak the same language but that doesn’t stop them from going on great adventures and forming a strong bond.
Bibi’s Got Game; A Story about Tennis, Meditation and a Dog Named Coco by Bianca Andreescu (Penguin Random House) – This charming book by tennis star Bianca Andeescu teaches young readers to keep looking for that passion that will spark joy in their lives. In the telling of how she came to love tennis, Andreescu talks about how an injury that sidelined her at a young age brought meditation into her life. Learning to balance the two has been an integral part of her success. Chelsea O’Bryne’s illustrations perfectly match the energy of the story.
A Day for Sandcastles by JonArno Lawson (Penguin Random House) – A trio of siblings set out to build a sandcastle on the beach when a series of obstacles get in their way. A story about determination, teamwork and problem-solving, A Day for Sandcastles reminds us of the power of teamwork. One thing that I love out of this book is the lack of words. Going off of Qin Leng’s wonderful illustrations, it allows the young readers to come up with their own telling of the story.
Meredith is a Disney obsessed stay-at-home mom. When she’s not planning a trip, you’ll find her with her nose in a book. Follow her on Instagram.