New Release Round Up – August 31, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everyone! I can’t wait to share the new releases I am most looking forward to this week with you all, so let’s dive right in!

As always, these titles will have inclusive characters (think racial and cultural diversity, LGBTQ+ representation, diverse family structures, disability representation, and more), and fall into a range of genres in both fiction and nonfiction categories.

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Board Books

You Are Home by Mackenzie Porter, Illustrated by Xin Li

“This lovely board book reassures young ones that wherever they go, they carry the love of a parent. So no matter where they roam, they’ll always be home.

So if you ride to the corner, to the mountains, the sea,
there’s not a place in this world that I won’t be.
Wherever you travel and wherever you roam,
just know, my sweet child, you will always be home.

Home begins as a parent’s arms, and as the child in this story grows up, home then has grass, and sky, and a street that doesn’t end. The parent in this story reassures their child that they can keep going, they can find new homes, because wherever they go, they’ll carry the parent’s love. After all, home is where the heart is.”

Courage Is… by Jason and True Kander, Illustrated by Alyssa Gonzalez

“Jason Kander knows what courage is. With help from his son, True, he introduces the concept to future leaders in this powerful board book.

A military veteran, voting rights activist, and rising democratic star, Kander elegantly illustrates everyday courage in a way that will resonate with the preschool set. It is not, he explains, about not feeling fear. Courage is about being scared—and doing the scary things anyway. Whether it’s going to the dentist, trying a strange new food, asking for help, or going to sleep all by yourself, this book addresses the many surprising ways that little ones can develop courage and character.”

Picture Books

Tomatoes For Neela by Padma Lakshmi, Illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal

“Neela loves cooking with her amma and writing down the recipes in her notebook. It makes her feel closer to her paati who lives far away in India. On Saturdays, Neela and Amma go to the green market and today they are buying tomatoes to make Paati’s famous sauce. But first, Neela needs to learn about all the different kinds of tomatoes they can pick from. And as Neela and Amma cook together, they find a way for Paati to share in both the love and the flavors of the day.

Bestselling author and host of Bravo’s Top Chef and Hulu’s Taste the Nation Padma Lakshmi takes young readers on an intergenerational journey full of delicious flavors and fun food facts that celebrates a family’s treasured recipes. And Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator Juana Martinez-Neal brings this circle of women to life with vivid detail and warmth. Tomatoes for Neela lovingly affirms how we can connect to other cultures, as well as to our own, through food.”

My Little Golden Book About Kamala Harris by Rajani LaRocca, Illustrated by Ashley Evans

Help your little one dream big with a Little Golden Book biography all about the first female Vice President Kamala Harris! The perfect introduction to nonfiction for preschoolers!

This Little Golden Book about Kamala Harris–the first woman, first African American woman, and first Indian American woman to be elected Vice President of the United States–is an inspiring read-aloud for young girls and boys.

Read all the Little Golden Book biographies: My Little Golden Book About Kamala Harris, My Little Golden Book About Frida Kahlo, My Little Golden Book About Ruth Bader Ginsburg, My Little Golden Book About Betty White, My Little Golden Book About Jackie Robinson, My Little Golden Book About Martin Luther King Jr., My Little Golden Book About George Washington, My Little Golden Book About Abraham Lincoln, My Little Golden Book About Balto, and My Little Golden Book About Johnny Appleseed.”

Goodnight Ganesha by Nadia Salomon, Illustrated by Poonam Mistry

“A gorgeously illustrated goodnight story that celebrates the nighttime rituals of two young children visiting their grandparents in India.

As nighttime falls over the city, two children visiting their grandparents in India find there’s so much fun to be had! Whether it’s listening to epic stories or observing rituals in the puja room, there are many moments that make this time together special.

In this beautiful, rhyming ode to bedtime, the only thing more universal than getting ready for bed and saying goodnight is the love between children and their grandparents.”

Three Lines in a Circle by Michael G. Long, Illustrated by Carlos Vélez

“One line straight down. One line to the right. One line to the left, then a circle. That was all–just three lines in a circle.

This bold picture book tells the story of the peace symbol–designed in 1958 by a London activist protesting nuclear weapons–and how it inspired people all over the world. Depicting the symbol’s travels from peace marches and liberation movements to the end of apartheid and the fall of the Berlin Wall, Three Lines in a Circle offers a message of inspiration to today’s children and adults who are working to create social change. An author’s note provides historical background and a time line of late twentieth-century peace movements.”

Middle Grade

Dovey Undaunted by Tonya Bolden

“Dovey Johnson Roundtree was most famous for her successful defense of an indigent Black man accused of the murder of Mary Pinchot Meyer, a prominent white Washington, DC, socialite, in 1965. Despite her triumph in this high-profile case, Roundtree continued to represent the poor and the underserved. She was the first lawyer to bring a bus desegregation case before the Interstate Commerce Commission, clinching the ruling that enabled Robert F. Kennedy to enforce bus integration. She was also among the first Black women to enter the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps, and was one of the first ordained female ministers in the African Methodist Episcopal Church.Tracing Roundtree’s life from her childhood in Jim Crow North Carolina through her adulthood, Tonya Bolden illuminates a little-known figure in American history who believed the law should serve the people, and places her firmly in the context of twentieth-century civil rights and African American culture.”

The Flyers by Beth Turley

“With the arrival of a glossy, cream-colored envelope in the mail, Elena Martinez’s dreams come true: she’s been chosen for the Spread Your Wings Magazine’s Young Flyers program—a week-long summer internship where she’ll get to learn the ins and outs of working for the most popular teen magazine. She heads to New York City, anxious to get away from her best friend, Summer, who is suddenly spending so much time with another girl from school and being so secretive about it.

Once there Elena meets her fellow Young Flyers: Harlow, who can get to the bottom of any story, Whitney, who has spot-on fashion sense, and Cailin, a social media star with thousands of followers and an eye for photography.

As the four new friends explore the city that never sleeps, each girl brings a piece of home, and a few secrets, with them and learns that no one’s life is as glossy as it may appear. But with courage, teamwork, and lots of passion, there’s no stopping a Flyer.”

Fast Pitch by Nic Stone

“Shenice Lockwood, captain of the Fulton Firebirds, is hyper-focused when she steps up to the plate. Nothing can stop her from leading her team to the U12 fast-pitch softball regional championship. But life has thrown some curveballs her way.

Strike one: As the sole team of all-brown faces, Shenice and the Firebirds have to work twice as hard to prove that Black girls belong at bat.

Strike two: Shenice’s focus gets shaken when her great-uncle Jack reveals that a career-ending—and family-name-ruining—crime may have been a setup.

Strike three: Broken focus means mistakes on the field. And Shenice’s teammates are beginning to wonder if she’s captain-qualified.

It’s up to Shenice to discover the truth about her family’s past—and fast—before secrets take the Firebirds out of the game forever.”

We Are Family by Lebron James and Andrea Williams

“Jayden Carr has been training all summer to be ready for Hoop Group—the free afterschool basketball program where his hero, NBA superstar Kendrick King, got his start. But when his beloved coach tells him there’s not going to be a Hoop Group this year, Jayden is heartbroken.

And he’s not the only one. Coach Beck’s daughter, Tamika, was planning to be the first girl ever to start for the squad. Chris King, Kendrick’s only nephew, spent the summer bragging that his uncle was coming home just to watch him play. For Anthony Pierson, Hoop Group was supposed to be his way out of trouble. And for Dexter Donyel, all 4’6” of him, Hoop Group was his chance to finally be part of a team, instead of just watching from the stands.

For each kid, Hoop Group was more than just a chance to ball; it was an escape, a dream, a family. Now their prospects seem all but impossible—but then the world hasn’t met Jayden, Tamika, Chris, Anthony, and Dex before. Determined to have their shot, the five new friends scrap, hustle, fight, and play hard to save their season to prove that sometimes a chance is all it takes.”

Stolen Science by Ella Schwartz, Illustrated by Gaby D’Alessandro

“A fresh approach to a timely topic, Stolen Science is a fascinating compendium of stories of uncredited scientists and inventors throughout the ages.

Over the centuries, women, people from underrepresented communities, and immigrants overcame prejudices and social obstacles to make remarkable discoveries in science–but they weren’t the ones to receive credit in history books. People with more power, money, and prestige were remembered as the inventor of the telephone, the scientists who decoded the structure of DNA, and the doctor who discovered the cause of yellow fever. This book aims to set the record straight and celebrate the nearly forgotten inventors and scientists who shaped our world today.”

Graphic Novels

Friends Forever by Shannon Hale, Illustrated by LeUyen Pham

“Shannon is in eighth grade, and life is more complicated than ever. Everything keeps changing, her classmates are starting to date each other (but nobody wants to date her!), and no matter how hard she tries, Shannon can never seem to just be happy.

As she works through her insecurities and undiagnosed depression, she worries about disappointing all the people who care about her. Is something wrong with her? Can she be the person everyone expects her to be? And who does she actually want to be?

With their signature humor, warmth, and insight, Shannon Hale and LeUyen Pham have crafted another incredible love letter to their younger selves and to readers everywhere, a reminder to us all that we are enough.”

That’s all I have for today. I hope you all enjoyed reading about these new releases, and hopefully you found one or two to add to your young reader’s shelves!

Did I miss any releases you’re excited for? Be sure to share in the comments below!

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