New Release Round Up – July 20, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everyone! I’m so excited to share the new releases I am most looking forward to this week with you all.

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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you

Picture Books

Kalamata’s Kitchen by Sarah Thomas, Illustrated by Jo Kosmides Edwards

“Grown-ups never seemed to notice, but Kalamata’s kitchen table was magical. Under her table, she and Al Dente could transport themselves anywhere….

Tomorrow is Kalamata’s first day at a new school, and she’s nervous! What if the kids aren’t friendly? Or worse, what if they don’t like alligators!? If only Kalamata and Al Dente could go to back to the Indian spice market they visited this summer, then maybe she’d remember how to feel brave when new experiences seem scary.

Luckily for Kalamata, all the magic required for her journey is right in her own kitchen! As Kalamata and her alligator friend, Al Dente, transport themselves to a magical land filled with tasty ingredients, she realizes being brave is exciting! And most importantly, she learns that when we’re nervous about trying new things, food can comfort us and remind us to stay curious, courageous, and compassionate.”

Sing with Me: The Story of Selena Quintanilla by Diana López, Illustrated by by Teresa Martinez

“An exuberant picture book celebrating the life and legacy of Selena Quintanilla, beloved Queen of Tejano music.

From a very early age, young Selena knew how to connect with people and bring them together with music. Sing with Me follows Selena’s rise to stardom, from front-lining her family’s band at rodeos and quinceañeras to performing in front of tens of thousands at the Houston Astrodome. Young readers will be empowered by Selena’s dedication–learning Spanish as a teenager, designing her own clothes, and traveling around the country with her family–sharing her pride in her Mexican-American roots and her love of music and fashion with the world.”

Bird Boy by Matthew Burgess, Illustrated by Shahrzad Maydani

“Take flight in this heartwarming story about a boy who learns to be true to himself at school while following his love of nature.

Nico was new, and nervous about going to school. Everyone knew what to do and where to go, but Nico felt a little lost.

So, he did what he loved to do:
Watched the insects
Sat in the grass
And most importantly… befriended the birds.

Before he knew it, Nico was known as BIRD BOY. But Nico didn’t mind. Soon, he made one friend, then two, as the other kids learned to appreciate Nico for who he was. Before long, Nico learned he could be completely, delighfully, himself. This dreamy story will encourage all readers to express who they are unapologetically.”

Mindy Kaling (Little People Big Dreams #63) by Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara, Illustrated by Roza Nozari

“In this book from the critically acclaimed, multimillion-copy best-selling Little People, BIG DREAMS series, discover the life of Mindy Kaling, the actor, writer, producer, and director.

When Mindy was a little girl, she loved TV comedy sketches; in particular, Saturday Night Live. At college, she studied theater and met a friend with whom she created her first off-Broadway production. It was there she was spotted by the writer and producer of The Office (US) for the role of Kelly Kapoor. Mindy went on to write and executive produce hilarious episodes of The Office. She then went on to create The Mindy Project, and Never Have I Ever, the Netflix Original smash hit watched by 40 million people, fulfilling her childhood dream of becoming a director and writer. This empowering book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with photos and a detailed profile of Mindy’s life.”

If the World Were 100 People: A Visual Guide to Our Global Village by Jackie McCann, Illustrated by Aaron Cushley

“Help your child become a global citizen with this accessible introduction to the people who live on our planet, with big ideas broken into bite-size chunks through clever graphic design. Perfect for home and classroom settings!

With almost 7.8 billion people sharing the earth, it can be a little hard to picture what the human race looks like all together. But if we could shrink the world down to just 100 people, what could we learn about the human race? What would we look like? Where and how would we all be living? This book answers all these questions and more!

Reliably sourced and deftly illustrated, If the World Were 100 People is the perfect starting point to understanding our world and becoming a global citizen. If we focus on just 100 people, it’s easier to see what we have in common and what makes us unique. Then we can begin to appreciate each other and also ask what things we want to change in our world.”

Chapter Books

Who Wants I Scream? (Desmond Cole Ghost Patrol #14) by Andres Miedoso, Illustrated by Victor Rivas

“A haunted ice cream truck is on the loose in this fourteenth chilling adventure in the Desmond Cole Ghost Patrol series!

Summer in Kersville is like summer in a lot of other places. The sun is bright and hot. School is closed and the pool is open. And kids know to run away as fast as they can when they hear the familiar song of the ice cream truck. Because that means the I Scream Man is here for dessert!

With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Desmond Cole Ghost Patrol chapter books are perfect for emerging readers.”

The Story of Ruby Bridges: A Biography Book for New Readers by Arlisha Norwood Alston PhD

“Discover the life of Ruby Bridges―a story about bravery and breaking down barriers for kids ages 6 to 9

Ruby Bridges was the first Black student to attend an all-white public school in the southern United States. Before she helped desegregate schools and change the course of history, Ruby had a simple childhood. She was a happy girl who helped take care of her younger siblings and loved to play outside. Her life changed when she was chosen to attend William Frantz Elementary, where she became a civil rights leader at a very young age. Explore how Ruby went from being a thoughtful girl growing up in Mississippi to a national leader in the fight for equality.

The Story of Ruby Bridges includes:

Core curriculum―Learn the Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How of Ruby’s life, and take a quick quiz to test your knowledge.
Her lasting legacy―Explore how Ruby Bridges made the world a better place for future generations, including you!
Word definitions―Discover easy-to-understand explanations of some of the more advanced words and ideas inside the book.
How will Ruby’s courage inspire you?”

Middle Grade

Linked by Gordon Korman

“Link, Michael, and Dana live in a quiet town. But it’s woken up very quickly when someone sneaks into school and vandalizes it with a swastika.

Nobody can believe it. How could such a symbol of hate end up in the middle of their school? Who would do such a thing?

Because Michael was the first person to see it, he’s the first suspect. Because Link is one of the most popular guys in school, everyone’s looking to him to figure it out. And because Dana’s the only Jewish girl in the whole town, everyone’s treating her more like an outsider than ever.

The mystery deepens as more swastikas begin to appear. Some students decide to fight back and start a project to bring people together instead of dividing them further. The closer Link, Michael, and Dana get to the truth, the more there is to face-not just the crimes of the present, but the crimes of the past.

With Linked, Gordon Korman, the author of the acclaimed novel Restart, poses a mystery for all readers where the who did it? isn’t nearly as important as the why?”

Graphic Novels

Clash by Kayla Miller

“There’s a new kid in town! From the moment Natasha sets foot in class, it’s clear she’s one of the coolest kids in sixth grade. Everyone wants to be her friend, including Olive . . . but things might not be so easy.

Olive tries her best to befriend Nat, but it seems like the only thing they have in common is that they both want to hang out with Olive’s friends! Watching as Natasha gets closer with some of her best buds, Olive can’t help but worry that they’re starting to like Nat more than they like her . . . and who could blame them? Nat is just that cool . . . and Olive is, well, just Olive.

The New York Times best-selling author-illustrator Kayla Miller delivers a nuanced look at navigating middle school friendships and the importance of both empathy and respect.”

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!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – July 13, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everybody! It feels like it’s been about a year since the last round up, but I’ve got a great list for you today.

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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Board Books

Nerdy Babies: Dinosaurs by Emmy Kastner

Nerdy Babies is a series that will ignite curiosity in even the youngest readers and encourage them to ask questions and explore the world around them.

In Nerdy Babies: Dinosaurs, follow our intrepid babies into the Mesozoic Era. Experience the different shapes, sizes, and colors of the reptiles that roamed the Earth before us. Plus, learn about how dinosaurs evolved over millions of years until becoming extinct in this simple text written in question-and-answer format.

With bright artwork by Emmy Kastner, Nerdy Babies is a series that the very littlest nerds will want to return to again and again.

Stay curious. There’s more to learn about everything!”

Nerdy Babies: Transportation by Emma Kastner

“In Nerdy Babies: Transportation, follow our intrepid babies when they’re on the go. Experience skating on rollerblades, flying on air balloons, exploring underwater in a submarine, and riding cross-country on a car. Plus, learn about how different air, land, and sea travel can be in this simple text written in question-and-answer format.

With bright artwork by Emmy Kastner, Nerdy Babies is a series that the very littlest nerds will want to return to again and again.

Stay curious. There’s more to learn about everything!”

Up, Up, Up, Down! by Kimberly Gee

This action-packed toddler’s day with Dad is full of opposites–and now in board!

From his first demand to be picked up and then immediately put down, opposites pop up all day long for this energetic boy. Breakfast is no, no, no, yes! At the sandbox, it’s make, make, make, break! And jumping into the pool goes from can’t, can’t, can’t, to can!

Kimberly Gee’s expressive illustrations emphasize the loving connection between a boy and his father in this clever concept book about everyday highs and lows is now in sturdy board, ready to become a staple in toddlers’ hands and bookshelves’.”

Picture Books

El Cucuy is Scared, Too! by Donna Barba Higuera, Illustrated by Julian Perdomo

A boy and his monster confront their mutual fears in this unlikely friendship story that’s rooted in Mexican folklore

Ramón is a little boy who can’t sleep. He is nervous for his first day at a new school.
And El Cucuy is the monster who lives in Ramón’s cactus pot. He can’t sleep, either.
It turns out that El Cucuy is scared, too!
This gentle, perceptive story explores the worries that can accompany moving to a new place and beginning a new journey—and reveals how comfort, bravery, and strength can be found through even the most unexpected of friendships.”

Be sure to check out our full review here!

Listen by Gabi Snyder, Illustrated by Stephanie Graegin

In the tradition of Tomie dePaola’s Quiet and Scott Magoon’s Breathe comes this lyrical, meditative picture book about listening and mindfulness.

BEEP!
WOOF!
VROOM!

Isn’t the world a noisy place?
But what if you
stop, close your eyes,
and LISTEN?

Can you hear each sound?
Can you listen past the noise
and hear the quiet, too?

Beautifully illustrated and poignant, this lovely picture book follows a girl through her school day as she listens to sounds across the city: caws of crows, shouts across the playground, and finally, the quiet beating of her heart and whispered goodnights.”

What Do You Know? by Aracelis Girmay and Ariana Fields

“What Do You Know? is an introspective, poetic picture book about the acts of questioning and listening. Asked by Love itself, the questions wonder aloud, seeking the knowing of an array of very different, yet interconnected, entities and beings. Instead of pointing and naming, here the asker seeks to know the world by listening to it. Tell me, land, farmer, well, rock, fruit bat, courage––what do you know? Across these pages, children will wonder at what we can learn, when we open ourselves up to listening to the world.”

Bella’s Recipe for Success by Ana Siqueira, Illustrated by Geraldine Rodríguez

“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.

Bella wants to find out what she’s good at. But she quits everything she (barely) tries because she’s a disaster at it. Her somersaults are like clumsy jirafas rolling downhill, her piano playing like elephant feet. When she decides to learn how to bake with her wise old abuela, her first attempt at dulce de leche frosting looks like scaly cocodrilo skin. She must learn it’s okay to try again or she won’t be good at anything. Peppered with Spanish vocabulary and set in an intergenerational Latinx home, Bella’s Recipe for Success will show all kids the value of practicing to learn a new skill, and that it’s okay to make mistakes along the way.”

Don’t forget to check out the full review here!

Frankenslime by Joy Keller, Illustrated by Ashley Belote

A young slime scientist is surprised when her latest creation comes to life in Frankenslime, a funny and clever picture book twist on Frankenstein.

Victoria Franken is a slime scientist.

Her experiments lead to amazing slimes. Until, one dark and stormy night, her latest experiment goes awry and her newest creation COMES TO LIFE!

Joy Keller’s clever text and Ashley Belote’s humor-filled art combine to create a fun picture book twist on horror movies like Frankenstein and The Blob, that also explores the scientific method and the importance of recording observations and results. The author has also included a couple of Victoria’s best slime recipes, although you’ll notice the secret formula that brought her slime to life is missing.”

Let’s Go For a Walk by Ranger Hamza, Illustrated by Kate Kronreif

Walking in the country, by the sea, or in the town, so many wonderful things to see if you stop and look around! Go on your very own walk guided by Ranger Hamza with this book that can be used again and again.

Take this book with you on any walk, wherever you live, with suggestions from Ranger Hamza for things to look out for. Can you see a red thing? A tall thing? Can you find something smooth, and something rough? What can you smell, and what can you hear? As well as things to spot on the walk, each spread contains fascinating Hamza facts

  • Turn every walk, long or short, into an interactive, playful, learning adventure.
  • Can be used on any kind of walk, in any location, and any duration, over and over again.
  • Will help young hikers look at the world around them in a new way.
  • Can also be read at home, with readers spotting the details in the beautiful illustrations.

Perfect for families looking to make their regular outings more fun, whether in the city or the country: Let’s Go For a Walk!

My Voice Is a Trumpet by Jimmie Allen, Illustrated by Cathy Ann Johnson

From rising country star Jimmie Allen comes a lyrical celebration of the many types of voices that can effect change.

From voices tall as a tree, to voices small as a bee, all it takes is confidence and a belief in the goodness of others to change the world. Coming at a time when issues of social justice are at the forefront of our society, this is the perfect book to teach children that they’re not too young to express what they believe in and that all voices are valuable.”

Middle Grade

Maya and the Robot by Eve L. Ewing, Illustrated by Christine Almeda

From award-winning author Eve L. Ewing comes an illustrated middle grade novel about a forgotten homemade robot who comes to life just when aspiring fifth-grade scientist Maya needs a friend — and a science fair project.

Maya’s nervous about fifth grade. She tries to keep calm by reminding herself she knows what to expect. But then she learns that this year won’t be anything like the last. For the first time since kindergarten, her best friends Jada and MJ are placed in a different class without her, and introverted Maya has trouble making new friends.

She tries to put on a brave face since they are in fifth grade now, but Maya is nervous! Just when too much seems to be changing, she finds a robot named Ralph in the back of Mr. Mac’s convenience store closet. Once she uses her science skills to get him up and running, a whole new world of connection opens up as Ralph becomes a member of her family and Maya begins to step into her power. In this touching novel, Eve L. Ewing melds together a story about community, adapting to change, and the magic of ingenuity that reminds young readers that they can always turn to their own curiosity when feeling lost.”

Ten Thousand Tries by Amy Makechnie

A middle school soccer whiz’s determination to keep things from changing is tested when his father’s ALS symptoms worsen in this touching story about growing up and facing loss, perfect for fans of Shouting at the Rain.

Twelve-year-old Golden Maroni is determined to channel his hero, soccer superstar Lionel Messi, and become captain of his soccer team and master of his eighth grade universe…especially since his home universe is spiraling out of orbit. Off the field, Golden’s dad, once a pro soccer player himself, is now battling ALS, a disease that attacks his muscles, leaving him less and less physically able to control his body every day. And while Mom says there’s no cure, Golden is convinced that his dad can beat this, just like any opponent, they just have to try.

Golden knows that if you want to perfect a skill you have to put ten thousand tries in, so he’s convinced if he can put that much effort in, on and off the field, he can stop everything from changing. But when his dad continues to decline and his constant pushing starts to alienate his friends and team, Golden is forced to confront the idea that being master of your universe might not mean being in control of everything. What if it means letting go of the things you can’t control so you can do the most good for the things you can?”

Margie Kelly Breaks the Dress Code by Bridget Farr

A timely and thought-provoking novel about one girl’s fight against gender inequality at her middle school and the lessons about her own privilege she learns along the way.

Margie Kelly’s perfect skirt was dress coded on her very first day of middle school. Upset and embarrassed, Margie spends the whole day wearing oversized gym shorts. So much for starting sixth grade with confidence!

But when Margie realizes that the dress code is only applied to the female students and not the boys, Margie gets mad. Really mad.

The dress code is keeping girls stuck in detention all day and away from learning. The boys act like they own the school. And the teachers turn a blind eye to the hypocrisies taking place in the halls, classrooms, and clubs. Something has to change! And Margie knows just how to do it. She’ll plan a school-wide protest with her best friend, Daniela, and fellow classmates Jamiya and Gloria.

But as Margie moves forward with her plans, she comes to realize some hard truths about herself. Will Margie recognize her own privilege and make meaningful change for all students?”

Graphic Novels

ParaNorthern: And the Chaos Bunny A-hop-calypse by Stephanie Cooke, Illustrated by Mari Costa

A witch named Abby and her three friends—a wolf-girl, a ghost, and a pumpkinhead—band together to try and save their supernatural town from an invasion of rabid (but adorable!) chaos bunnies in this enchanting middle-grade graphic novel for fans of Making Friends, The Okay Witch, and Lumberjanes.

It’s fall break in the supernatural town of North Haven, and young witch Abby’s plans include pitching in at her mom’s magical coffee shop, practicing her potion making, and playing board games with her best friends—a pumpkinhead, a wolf-girl, and a ghost. But when Abby finds her younger sister being picked on by some speed demons, she lets out a burst of magic so strong, it opens a portal to a realm of chaos bunnies. And while these bunnies may look cute, they’re about to bring the a-hop-ocalypse  (and get Abby in a cauldronful of trouble) unless she figures out a way to reverse the powerful magic she unwittingly released. What’s a witch to do?

In this deliciously humorous, cozy, and bewitching graphic novel, sometimes the most of powerful magic comes from our connections to family and friends (but kicking bunny butt is great, too).”

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!

Which titles have you been looking forward to the most? Be sure to share in the comments below!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – June 22, 2021

It’s Tuesday, so we all know what that means. Time to talk about new releases again!

I’m so excited to share the new releases I am most looking forward to this week with you all. 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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Board Books

I Like To Share by Stephen Krensky, Illustrated by Sara Gillingham (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Celebrate the joys of learning to share in this exuberant board book from the Empowerment series!

I kept snacks to myself.
Now I give some away.
Once I hogged the whole swing.
Now I let others play.

With relevant and charming specifics, Stephen Krensky and Sara Gillingham address the joy we feel from giving back.

The Empowerment series addresses the small victories of growing up and starting to embrace the world on your own terms with encouraging text and retro-fresh illustrations. Celebrate the milestones of toddlerhood with the whole series.”

Let’s Say Hello by Giselle Ang, Illustrated by Erica Sirotich (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Teach babies to greet others in twelve different languages with this adorable multilingual board book!

Get ready, everyone! LET’S SAY…HELLO.

A perfect companion to Disney’s “It’s a Small World” and Shirley Ng-Benitez’s How Do You Say series, Let’s Say board books teach tiny tots warm and friendly words/phrases in several languages. Each book features:

twelve diverse languages: American Sign Language, Arabic, French, German, Haitian Creole, Hausa, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, Spanish
vibrant and colorful illustrations
easy-to-read pronunciations/demonstrations
kid-friendly illustrations of everyday babies from around the world
An ideal baby shower or first-day-of-school gift!”

ABC for Me: ABC Let’s Celebrate You & Me by Sugar Snap Studio (Bookshop | Amazon)

“ABC Let’s Celebrate You & Me presents 26 things—from A to Z—that make us special and that are worth celebrating!

From our bodies and our emotions to our interests and hobbies, there is so much to celebrate about ourselves! We all have different talents, ideas, and things to say, but we are more similar than we are different. ABC Let’s Celebrate You & Me presents a whole alphabet full of positive attributes kids can celebrate, including their bodies, skin, eyes, and hair, on the outside, as well as inner qualities, such as their interests, kindness, and personalities.

ABC Let’s Celebrate You & Me features colorful illustrations, as well as thoughtful text that gets kids thinking about who they are and how all people are unique, special, and worthy of love and happiness. Each letter of the alphabet is paired with either a physical or character attribute, and each page promotes self-love and kindness to others. This book shows that when we work together and respect each other, we can do great things!”

Picture Books

Making A Baby by Rachel Greener, Illustrated by Clare Owen (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This inclusive guide to how every family begins is an honest, cheerful tool for conversations between parents and their young ones.

To make a baby you need one egg, one sperm, and one womb. But every family starts in its own special way. This book answers the “Where did I come from?” question no matter who the reader is and how their life began. From all different kinds of conception through pregnancy to the birth itself, this candid and cozy guide is just right for the first conversations that parents will have with their children about how babies are made.”

Thank You, Dr. Salk!: The Scientist Who Beat Polio and Healed the World by Dean Robbins, Illustrated by Mike Dutton (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Dr. Jonas Salk finds the cure for polio in this inspiring, educational, and timely nonfiction picture book.

Jonas Salk wasn’t seen as a brave hero―not at first. As a child he was quiet and unassuming, but Jonas dreamed of tikkun olam, the Jewish phrase for “healing the world.” He saw the polio virus strike his city, and he knew that with determination and hard work, he could be the one to stop its spread. So he grew up to study medicine, ultimately creating the polio vaccine that saved untold numbers of lives―and healed the world!

With Dean Robbins’s inspiring text and Mike Dutton’s dynamic illustrations, Thank You, Dr. Salk! is a true and timely story of trials, triumph, and what it takes to achieve your dreams. An author’s note provides additional insight into Dr. Salk’s life and influences, and the history of vaccines.”

How To Wear A Sari by Darshana Khiani, Illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Sparkling with voice and charm, this picture book about a fashionable kid out to prove she’s not as small as everyone thinks is perfect for kids eager to grow up, and for those who love to play dress-up.

Being a little kid isn’t always fun and games. Sometimes, it’s downright annoying.

When a little girl tires of being treated like she’s TOO little, she sets out to prove to her family that she can do ANYTHING she puts her mind to . . .

. . . including putting on a colorful, twinkly, silky sari. Sure, they’re long and unwieldy—but that only means her family will be even more impressed when she puts it on all by herself.

Naturally, there are some hiccups along the way, but she discovers that she’s not the only one in her family who has set out with something to prove, with hilariously chaotic results. That’s what photo albums are for!”

Indelible Ann: The Larger-Than-Life Story of Governor Ann Richards by Meghan P. Browne, Illustrated by Carlynn Whitt (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A folksy, larger-than-life picture book biography about Ann Richards, the late governor of Texas who has inspired countless women in politics today.

Dorothy Ann Willis hailed from a small Texas town, but early on she found her voice and the guts to use it.

During her childhood in San Diego and her high school years back in Texas (when she dropped the “Dorothy”), Ann discovered a spark and passion for civic duty. It led her all the way to Washington, DC, where she, along with other girls from around the country, learned about the business of politics. Fast forward to Ann taking on the political boys’ club: she became county commissioner, then state treasurer, and finally governor of Texas. In this stunning picture book biography, full of vim, vigor, and folksy charm, two Texan creators take us through the life of the legendary “big mouth, big hair” governor of Texas, a woman who was inspired by Eleanor Roosevelt, and in turn became an inspiration to Hillary Clinton and countless others.”

It’s Raining Tacos! by Parry Gripp, Illustrated by Peter Emmerich (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Wildly fun and full of laugh-out-loud antics, this interactive sing-along is a zany romp sure to capture fans of Giraffes Can’t Dance and Dragons Love Tacos. Shell we dance?

Taco-bout irresistible! Jam out to the catchy, toe-tapping tune “Raining Tacos” from YouTube sensation Parry Gripp, featuring everyone’s favorite treat!

This spec-taco-ular, goofy song, with new, never-before-sung lyrics, is perfect for sharing, so grab a few friends—young or old—and get ready to crunch your way to a good time!

It’s raining tacos, from out of the sky.

Tacos, no need to ask why.

Just open your mouth and close your eyes.

It’s raining tacos!”

Darcy’s First Sleepover by Julie Fortenberry (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A gently reassuring picture book about the milestone of a first sleepover, for fans of The Invisible String by Patrice Karst and Wemberly Worries by Kevin Henkes.

Every night at home, Darcy brushes her teeth with strawberry toothpaste; she snuggles in bed with Little Cat; and she falls asleep to the sound of her dad washing the dishes. But tonight, Darcy is having her very first sleepover! Even though it’s at her cousin Kayla’s house, it still feels a little daunting. Kayla has peppermint toothpaste, a baby bear named Charlotte, and howling winds outside her window. Darcy misses her dad and her own cozy bedroom. Should she ask her aunt to take her home?

This rewarding tale celebrates the excitement of new experiences and the power of quiet growth. Backmatter also included shedding light on steps parents can take when helping kids prepare for their first sleepover!”

All We Need by Kathy Wolff, Illustrated by Margaux Meganck (Bookshop | Amazon)

“For fans of All the World and Love, a poetic story that celebrates the littlest things we all need to be happy — and the beauty of sharing with others when we have more to give.

Each bustling day in our busy world, we can take a moment to appreciate the little things. From the simplest essentials like air and water to the wonderful warmth of family, friends, and neighbors, there is so much in life to be thankful for.

Kathy Wolff’s melodic verse and Margaux Meganck’s lush and cozy city scenes follow three families through moments of daily discovery and joy, culminating in a celebration of community and giving.

When we have all we need, plus a little to spare, the only need left . . . is to share.”

Middle Grade

Ahmed Aziz’s Epic Year by Nina Hamza (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This hilarious and poignant tween debut about dealing with bullies, making friends, and the power of good books is a great next read for fans of Merci Suárez Changes Gears and John David Anderson.

Ahmed Aziz is having an epic year—epically bad.

After his dad gets sick, the family moves from Hawaii to Minnesota for his dad’s treatment. Even though his dad grew up there, Ahmed can’t imagine a worse place to live. He’s one of the only brown kids in his school. And as a proud slacker, Ahmed doesn’t want to deal with expectations from his new teachers.

Ahmed surprises himself by actually reading the assigned books for his English class: Holes, Bridge to Terabithia, and From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. Shockingly, he doesn’t hate them. Ahmed also starts learning about his uncle, who died before Ahmed was born. Getting bits and pieces of his family’s history might be the one upside of the move, as his dad’s health hangs in the balance and the school bully refuses to leave him alone. Will Ahmed ever warm to Minnesota?”

She Shoots, She Scores!: A Celebration of Women’s Soccer by Catriona Clarke, Illustrated by Sarah Long (Bookshop | Amazon)

“With a foreword by England captain Steph Houghton, She Shoots, She Scores! tells the incredible story of the BEST sport in the world, women’s soccer―from the men who tried to ban it to the superstars of today’s game, including Alex Morgan and Megan Rapinoe. Read on to find out about . . .

– The girl who had to play soccer in secret but grew up to become a goal-scoring legend
– The 13-year-old who shot to international fame but didn’t get a mention in the school assembly
– The greatest women’s soccer player ever, who scored in FIVE World Cups

Written by acclaimed YA novelist Catriona Clarke, the book is packed with facts and stats about the FIFA Women’s World Cup and the Olympics, plus pocket profiles of the world’s top players―from Marta to Wendie Renard―and record-breaking teams, including the U.S. Women’s National Team and Olympique Lyonnais. What’s more, discover the key skills you’ll need to become a great goalkeeper, a tough-tackling defender, or the world’s next superstar striker!”

Graphic Novels

Jukebox by Nidhi Chanani (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Grab some coins for the jukebox, and get ready for a colorful, time-traveling, musical tale about family and courage.
A mysterious jukebox, old vinyl records, and cryptic notes on music history, are Shaheen’s only clues to her father’s abrupt disappearance. She looks to her cousin, Tannaz, who seems just as perplexed, before they both turn to the jukebox which starts…glowing?

Suddenly, the girls are pulled from their era and transported to another time! Keyed to the music on the record, the jukebox sends them through decade after decade of music history, from political marches, to landmark concerts. But can they find Shaheen’s dad before the music stops? This time-bending magical mystery tour invites readers to take the ride of their lives for a coming-of-age adventure.”

Athena by Imogen and Isabel Greenberg (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A spunky, feminist take on the myth of Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom, war, and courage

From the moment she sprung from Zeus’s head, Athena was extraordinary. Even though some doubted her as a young goddess, Athena never backed down from a fight. Poseidon wants to be the patron god of a nearby city? Well, so does Athena! And she’s going to outwit him and found Athens. Perseus doesn’t know how to defeat Medusa? No problem! Athena can give him the knowledge (and shield) he needs to take off her head. Odysseus is lost at sea, seemingly doomed? Not anymore! Athena can get him home. Follow the goddess of wisdom through her adventures with gods and mortals, discover the perils of crossing her, and see how she eventually learned to better understand and aid the human race.”

Chunky by Yehudi Mercado (Bookshop | Amazon)

“In this full-color middle grade graphic memoir for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Jerry Craft, Yehudi Mercado draws inspiration from his childhood struggle with his weight while finding friendship with his imaginary mascot, Chunky, as he navigates growing up in a working class Mexican-Jewish family.

Hudi needs to lose weight, according to his doctors. Concerned about the serious medical issue Hudi had when he was younger, his parents push him to try out for sports. Hudi would rather do anything else, but then he meets Chunky, his imaginary friend and mascot. Together, they decide to give baseball a shot.

As the only Mexican and Jewish kid in his neighborhood, Hudi has found the cheerleader he never had. Baseball doesn’t go well (unless getting hit by the ball counts), but the two friends have a great time drawing and making jokes. While Hudi’s parents keep trying to find the right sport for Hudi, Chunky encourages him to pursue his true love—comedy.

But when Hudi’s dad loses his job, it gets harder for Hudi to chart his own course, even with Chunky’s guidance. Can Chunky help Hudi stay true to himself or will this friendship strike out?”

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!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – June 8, 2021

I can’t believe it’s already Tuesday again. This week flew by, but I am so excited to share this week’s new releases with you all.

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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Picture Books

Unbound: The Life and Art of Judith Scott by Joyce Scott, Brie Spangler, and Melissa Sweet (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A moving and powerful introduction to the life and art of renowned artist, Judith Scott, as told by her twin sister, Joyce Scott and illustrated by Caldecott Honor artist, Melissa Sweet.

Judith Scott was born with Down syndrome. She was deaf, and never learned to speak. She was also a talented artist. Judith was institutionalized until her sister Joyce reunited with her and enrolled her in an art class. Judith went on to become an artist of renown with her work displayed in museums and galleries around the world.

Poignantly told by Joyce Scott in collaboration with Brie Spangler and Melissa Sweet and beautifully illustrated by Caldecott Honor artist, Melissa Sweet, Unbound is inspiring and warm, showing us that we can soar beyond our perceived limitations and accomplish something extraordinary.”

Areli Is A Dreamer by Areli Morales, Illustrated by Luisa Uribe (Bookshop | Amazon)

“When Areli was just a baby, her mama and papa moved from Mexico to New York with her brother, Alex, to make a better life for the family–and when she was in kindergarten, they sent for her, too.

Everything in New York was different. Gone were the Saturdays at Abuela’s house, filled with cousins and sunshine. Instead, things were busy and fast and noisy. Areli’s limited English came out wrong, and schoolmates accused her of being illegal. But with time, America became her home. And she saw it as a land of opportunity, where millions of immigrants who came before her paved their own paths. She knew she would, too.

This is a moving story–one that resonates with millions of immigrants who make up the fabric of our country–about one girl living in two worlds, a girl whose DACA application was eventually approved and who is now living her American dream.

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is an immigration policy that has provided relief to thousands of undocumented children, referred to as “Dreamers,” who came to the United States as children and call this country home.”

Pangolina by Jane Goodall, Illustrated by Daishu Ma (Bookshop | Amazon)

“After a blissful babyhood being cared for by her loving mother, Pangolina ventures out alone into the forest to become an independent adult, helped along by wise, older animal companions, including a civet and a bat. But one day cruel hunters trap Pangolina, putting her into a cage along with her friends, and bring them to a market to be sold as wild game. Pangolina is especially vulnerable, since her scales are prized by humans who believe they have curative powers. To the rescue comes a small girl who knows that pangolins are friendly fellow creatures who have feelings too, and who convinces her mother to buy Pangolina and set her free. Jane Goodall’s many followers and all animal-loving children and adult picture book fans will be riveted by this suspenseful and heartwarming fictional story set in China and including an authoritative informational page about pangolins and suggestions for how to help fight animal trafficking.”

Pillow Places by Joseph Kuefler (Bookshop | Amazon)

“An imaginative picture book about the joys of pillows and play—from the acclaimed author-illustrator of The Digger and the Flower and Beyond the Pond.

Pillows are not just for sleeping. They are for dreaming . . . of forts, ships, and alien worlds among the stars.

Pillow Places is a tender exploration of the power of friendship and imagination, especially on those first sleepover nights away from home.

This is a sweet, playful story to read before bed and prior to nights away from home. The journey through fantastical landscapes and make-believe adventures reveals the power of imagination, artfully conveying the importance of friendship and playtime, away from screens.”

Chapter Books

Mindy Kim and The Trip To Korea by Lyla Lee, Illustrated by Dung Ho (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Fresh off the Boat meets Junie B. Jones in the adorable chapter book series following Mindy Kim, a young Asian American girl—in this fifth novel, Mindy goes to South Korea!

Mindy is super excited to go to South Korea to visit her grandparents! She has never taken such a big trip before, and she can’t wait to see her family again. Plus, Dad’s girlfriend, Julie, is also going to meet the family for the first time.

Mindy and Julie decide to make a traditional Korean meal for the family as a thank-you for hosting. But after a few mishaps, Mindy fears they are cooking up a big disaster in the kitchen! Can Mindy and Julie make sure their meal passes the most important taste test of them all?”

McTavish Takes The Cake by Meg Rosoff (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Pa Peachey has gotten it in his head that he is going to be the baker in the family, and the Peacheys and their dog, McTavish, are more than a little surprised. Stunned, in fact. Ever since Ma Peachey declared herself free of the cooking responsibilities, Betty, Ava, and Ollie have taken turns making inventive and delicious meals. But Pa thinks he can do better, even though his cakes are as flat as manhole covers and his cookies turn to charcoal. When the town announces a baking competition with a big prize, Pa is convinced he will enter an absolute masterpiece. Now the Peacheys have to decide: should they be honest with Pa and tell him his confections are contemptible, or should they support his high-flying dreams? Or could McTavish have a last-minute option at the ready?”

Middle Grade

Almost Flying by Jake Maia Arlow (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Would-be amusement park aficionado Dalia only has two items on her summer bucket list: (1) finally ride a roller coaster and (2) figure out how to make a new best friend. But when her dad suddenly announces that he’s engaged, Dalia’s schemes come to a screeching halt. With Dalia’s future stepsister Alexa heading back to college soon, the grown-ups want the girls to spend the last weeks of summer bonding–meaning Alexa has to cancel the amusement park road trip she’s been planning for months. Luckily Dalia comes up with a new plan: If she joins Alexa on her trip and brings Rani, the new girl from her swim team, along maybe she can have the perfect summer after all. But what starts out as a week of funnel cakes and Lazy River rides goes off the rails when Dalia discovers that Alexa’s girlfriend is joining the trip. And keeping Alexa’s secret makes Dalia realize one of her own: She might have more-than-friend feelings for Rani.”

Rez Dogs by Joseph Bruchac (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Malian loves spending time with her grandparents at their home on a Wabanaki reservation. She’s there for a visit when, suddenly, all travel shuts down. There’s a new virus making people sick, and Malian will have to stay with her grandparents for the duration.

Everyone is worried about the pandemic, but Malian knows how to keep her family and community safe: She protects her grandparents, and they protect her. She doesn’t go outside to play with friends, she helps her grandparents use video chat, and she listens to and learns from their stories. And when Malsum, one of the dogs living on the rez, shows up at their door, Malian’s family knows that he’ll protect them too.

Told in verse inspired by oral storytelling, this novel about the COVID-19 pandemic highlights the ways Malian’s community has cared for one another through plagues of the past, and how they keep caring for one another today.”

Both Can Be True by Jules Machias (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Ash is no stranger to feeling like an outcast. For someone who cycles through genders, it’s a daily struggle to feel in control of how people perceive you. Some days Ash is undoubtedly girl, but other times, 100 percent guy. Daniel lacks control too—of his emotions. He’s been told he’s overly sensitive more times than he can count. He can’t help the way he is, and he sure wishes someone would accept him for it.

So when Daniel’s big heart leads him to rescue a dog that’s about to be euthanized, he’s relieved to find Ash willing to help. The two bond over their four-legged secret. When they start catching feelings for each other, however, things go from cute to complicated. Daniel thinks Ash is all girl . . . what happens when he finds out there’s more to Ash’s story?

With so much on the line—truth, identity, acceptance, and the life of an adorable pup named Chewbarka—will Ash and Daniel forever feel at war with themselves because they don’t fit into the world’s binaries? Or will their friendship help them embrace the beauty of living in between?”

Graphic Novels

The Adventures of Team Pom: Squid Happens (Book 1) by Isabel Roxas (Bookshop | Amazon)

“When oddballs Agnes, Roberta and Ruby discover a shared passion for synchronized swimming, the trio become Team Pom. But between snack time, their favorite TV show, and raising pigeons, it can be hard to find time to practice.

This crew of self-proclaimed weirdos are tired of their loser status in the pool. But on their way to gain the respect and free snacks they deserve, they stumble upon a lonely giant squid. Will he be the secret weapon they need for synchronized swimming stardom? Will they be able to outwit the sinister strangers in bowler hats, or will they end up with ink on their faces?

The first in this series and a debut comic book from award-winning Filipino illustrator Isabel Roxas, Squid Happens is a hilarious read that explores friendship, teamwork and what it means to be yourself.”

You can also read my full review of The Adventures of Team Pom: Squid Happens.

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!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – June 1, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everybody! It’s new release day again! As always, I rounded up the titles I am most excited about to share with y’all today, and there are a LOT to talk about this week.

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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Board Books

You Are My Sparkly Mermaid by Joyce Wan (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A magical ode to believing in yourself and shining bright — with a dazzling mermaid twist — from bestselling creator Joyce Wan.
Wild and free in the big blue sea.Day and night, baby shine bright!Get ready to make some waves with this magical mermaid board book, complete with a sparkly glitter cover! Dive under the sea to meet a delightful array of mermaids and other underwater friends, from jellyfish to dolphins, with an encouraging message of love, joy, and confidence along the way. Snuggle up with your own little mermaid and remind them: “Baby, shine bright!”A wondrous celebration of the sparkly magic in every child from today’s preeminent board and picture book creator!”

Soccer Baby by Laura Gehl, Illustrated by Reggie Brown (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Baby goes to her first soccer game in this adorable board book that’s a must-have for soccer fans of all ages!

Baby loves soccer, the black and white ball
The field and the goal posts—she loves it all!

Baby is at her first soccer game! From watching the players run downfield, to cheering for a goal, baby loves it all. So when the game is over and the day is done, baby can’t wait to have more fun—by learning how to play soccer, too!”

Little Archeologist by Smithsonian, Illustrated by Dan Taylor (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Teach your baby all about archaeologists with this new board book published in partnership with Smithsonian.

Fossils. Shovels. Sieves. Brushes. These are all the important tools archaeologists use. In this new board book series published in conjunction with the Smithsonian Institute, young babies and toddlers will learn what an archaeologist does while enjoying playful art by Dan Taylor.”

Picture Books

Bodies Are Cool by Tyler Feder (Bookshop | Amazon)

This cheerful love-your-body picture book for preschoolers is an exuberant read-aloud with bright and friendly illustrations to pore over.
 
From the acclaimed creator of Dancing at the Pity Party and Roaring Softly, this picture book is a pure celebration of all the different human bodies that exist in the world. Highlighting the various skin tones, body shapes, and hair types is just the beginning in this truly inclusive book. With its joyful illustrations and encouraging refrain, it will instill body acceptance and confidence in the youngest of readers. “My body, your body, every different kind of body! All of them are good bodies! BODIES ARE COOL!””

The Rice in The Pot Goes Round and Round by Wendy Wan-Long Shang, Illustrated by Lorian Tu (Bookshop | Amazon)

Sing along to this delicious twist on “The Wheels on the Bus” and celebrate the food, laughter, and love of a multigenerational family meal!

* “Artfully brings an authentic expression of family love…an utterly charming [twist] to a familiar tune.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review

The rice in the pot goes round and round,

Round and round, round and round,

The rice in the pot goes round and round

At the table where my family gathers round…

At the table where this family gathers, they share food, laughter, and, most of all, love. Readers of all ages are sure to delight in this joyful, expressive sing-along, slurping noodles, squishing tofu, and tapping chopsticks as they sing along to this familiar tune.

Rhythmic text from The Great Wall of Lucy Wu author and Asian/Pacific American Library Association Award winner Wendy Wan-Long Shang, and vibrant, playful illustrations from artist Lorian Tu bring this heartwarming, mouth-watering story to life. Informative back matter includes a food glossary and etiquette guidelines that are sure to delight and engage young readers.”

Shirley Chisholm Dared: The Story of the First Black Woman in Congress by Alicia D. Williams, Illustrated by April Harrison (Bookshop | Amazon)

Discover the inspiring story of the first black woman elected to Congress and to run for president in this picture book biography from a Newbery Honor-winning author and a Coretta Scott King-John Steptoe New Talent Award-winning illustrator.

Meet Shirley, a little girl who asks way too many questions! After spending her early years on her grandparents’ farm in Barbados, she returns home to Brooklyn and immediately makes herself known. Shirley kicks butt in school; she breaks her mother’s curfew; she plays jazz piano instead of classical. And as a young adult, she fights against the injustice she sees around her, against women and black people. Soon she is running for state assembly…and winning in a landslide. Three years later, she is on the campaign trail again, as the first black woman to run for Congress. Her slogan? “Fighting Shirley Chisholm–Unbought and Unbossed!” Does she win? You bet she does.”

Paletero Man by Lucky Diaz, Illustrated by Micah Player (Bookshop | Amazon)

A vibrant picture book celebrating the strength of community and the tastes of summer from Latin Grammy-winning musician Lucky Diaz and celebrated artist Micah Player.

Ring! Ring! Ring! Can you hear his call? Paletas for one! Paletas for all!

What’s the best way to cool off on a hot summer day? Run quick and find Paletero José!

Follow along with our narrator as he passes through his busy neighborhood in search of the Paletero Man. But when he finally catches up with him, our narrator’s pockets are empty. Oh no! What happened to his dinero? It will take the help of the entire community to get the tasty treat now.

Full of musicality, generosity, kindness, and ice pops, this book is sure to satisfy fans of Thank You, Omu! and Carmela Full of Wishes.

Includes Spanish words and phrases throughout, an author’s note from Lucky Diaz, and a link to a live version of the Lucky Band’s popular song that inspired the book.”

Sharice’s Big Voice: A Native Kid Becomes a Congresswoman by Sharice Davids and Nancy K. Mays, Illustrated by Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley (Bookshop | Amazon)

This picture book autobiography tells the triumphant story of Sharice Davids, one of the first Native American women elected to Congress, and the first LGBTQ congressperson to represent Kansas.

When Sharice Davids was young, she never thought she’d be in Congress. And she never thought she’d be one of the first Native American women in Congress. During her campaign, she heard from a lot of doubters. They said she couldn’t win because of how she looked, who she loved, and where she came from. But here’s the thing: Everyone’s path looks different and everyone’s path has obstacles. And this is the remarkable story of Sharice Davids’ path to Congress.

Beautifully illustrated by Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley, an Ojibwe Woodland artist, this powerful autobiographical picture book teaches readers to use their big voice and that everyone deserves to be seen—and heard!

The back matter includes information about the Ho-Chunk written by former Ho-Chunk President Jon Greendeer, an artist note, and an inspiring letter to children from Sharice Davids.”

Dumplings for Lili by Melissa Iwai (Bookshop | Amazon)

A heartfelt picture book celebration of food, community, and family―and little dumpling treasures from around the world.

Lili loves to cook baos, and Nai Nai has taught her all the secrets to making them, from kneading the dough lovingly and firmly to being thankful for the strong and healthy ingredients in the filling. But when Nai Nai realizes that they are out of cabbage (Secret #8: line the basket with cabbage leaves!), she sends Lili up to Babcia’s apartment on the sixth floor to get some. Babcia is happy to share her cabbage, but she needs some potatoes for her pierogi. . . .

What follows is a race up and down the stairs as Lili helps all the grandmothers in her building borrow ingredients for different dumplings: Jamaican beef patties, Italian ravioli, Lebanese fatayer, and more. Energized by Melissa Iwai’s engaging artwork and kinetic storytelling, Dumplings for Lili is a joyful story of sharing food, friendship, and love in all their forms.”

Llama Glamarama by Simon James Green, Illustrated by Garry Parsons (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Meet a dazzlin’ dancin’ llama who learns to march to the beat of his own drum by strutting his stuff with Pride (and a funky feather boa)!Larry the llama loves to move and groove! But will his friends all disapprove?Larry lives a slow and quiet life at the barn with all the other llamas, just the way they like it. But at night when everyone has gone to bed, Larry loves to dress up in bright costumes and DANCE! He has to hide this from the others, for fear that they won’t approve of his raucous ways. One day, he stumbles upon the Llama Glamarama, a carnival full of music, laughter, and yes-dancing!Will this vibrant celebration give Larry the pride he needs to bring his dance back home? A bright and colorful rhyming story with a powerful message about celebrating differences, Llama Glamarama is the perfect Pride picture book for everyone!”

Pheobe Dupree is Coming To Tea by Linda Ashman, Illustrated by Alea Marley (Bookshop | Amazon)

Abby is anxious to host the perfect tea party for a friend she idolizes, but life serves up a sweet taste of the fun to be had when perfection is off the table.

Have you met Phoebe—Miss Phoebe Dupree?
Phoebe’s as perfect as perfect can be.

To Abby, her friend Phoebe can do no wrong. Phoebe is speedy. Phoebe is smart. She’s equally brilliant at science and art. So when the budding hostess invites Phoebe over for a tea party, everything from the sugary treats on the menu to Abby’s dog, Louie, must be, well . . . perfect. But when life—and possibly Louie—send a clear message to let loose, the girls indulge in a perfectly imperfect playdate. Linda Ashman’s vivacious rhyme and Alea Marley’s inviting illustrations serve up a classic tale of enduring friendship at a tea party that will leave readers wanting to pull up a chair.”

My America by Karen Katz (Bookshop | Amazon)

From author and illustrator Karen Katz, My America is a picture book celebration of immigration to the United States told through the experiences of children who have come from around the world.

Children come to live in America from many different countries, and for many different reasons . . .

In this beautiful celebration of immigration, children from around the world tell their stories, sharing their love of where they’re from and where they live now―homes old and new. As they describe the foods they eat, the languages they’ve learned, the sports they play, and more, the differences and similarities that link us all are revealed.”

The Little Blue Bridge by Brenda Maier, illustrated by Sonia Sanchez (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Ruby’s mind is always full of ideas.

One day, she spies some blueberries across the creek and invites her brothers to pick some. Unfortunately, the bridge is blocked by scary Santiago. “I’m the boss, and you can’t cross… unless you give me a snack,” he demands.

One by one, the brothers scamper across, promising Santiago that the next sibling has a better snack. When at last it’s Ruby’s turn, she refuses to be bullied and creates her own way to cross the creek.

This modern spin on a classic tale weaves folklore, feminism, STEM, and a Latinx cast into a delightful read-aloud that celebrates creativity and building bridges of friendship and community.”

The Cot In The Living Room by Hilda Eunice Burgos, Illustrated by Gaby D’Alessandro (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A young Dominican American girl in New York City moves from jealousy to empathy as her parents babysit children whose families work overnight shifts in this honest and warm picture book debut.

Night after night, a young girl watches her mami set up a cot in the living room for guests in their Washington Heights apartment, like Raquel (who’s boring) and Edgardo (who gets crumbs everywhere). She resents that they get the entire living room with a view of the George Washington Bridge, while all she gets is a tiny bedroom with a view of her sister (who snores). Until one night when no one comes, and it’s finally her chance! But as it turns out, sleeping on the cot in the living room isn’t all she thought it would be.

With charming text by Hilda Eunice Burgos and whimsical illustrations by Gaby D’Alessandro, The Cot in the Living Room is a celebration of the ways a Dominican American community takes care of one another while showing young readers that sometimes the best way to be a better neighbor is by imagining how it feels to spend a night sleeping on someone else’s pillow.”

Let’s Go For A Walk with Ranger Hamza, Illustrated by Kate Kronreif (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Walking in the country, by the sea, or in the town, so many wonderful things to see if you stop and look around! Go on your very own walk guided by Ranger Hamza with this book that can be used again and again.

Take this book with you on any walk, wherever you live, with suggestions from Ranger Hamza for things to look out for. Can you see a red thing? A tall thing? Can you find something smooth, and something rough? What can you smell, and what can you hear? As well as things to spot on the walk, each spread contains fascinating Hamza facts.
Turn every walk, long or short, into an interactive, playful, learning adventure.
Can be used on any kind of walk, in any location, and any duration, over and over again.
Will help young hikers look at the world around them in a new way.
Can also be read at home, with readers spotting the details in the beautiful illustrations.
Perfect for families looking to make their regular outings more fun, whether in the city or the country: Let’s Go For a Walk!”

RuPaul (Little People, Big Dreams #61) by Maria Isabel Sanchez Vegara, Illustrated by Wednesday Holmes (Bookshop | Amazon)

“In this book from the critically acclaimed, multimillion-copy best-selling Little People, BIG DREAMS series, discover the life of RuPaul, the shape-shifter, performer, supermodel, and host of RuPaul’s Drag Race.

Even before little Ru was born, a fortune teller told his mom that he would one day be famous… It was only a matter of time before he figured out how. Playing dress-up was his favorite game, and that’s where he felt most comfortable. Ru went on to study performing arts and then moved to New York to mix things up in a punk band. Later, drag was a way to express himself as an artist. He found success for himself, then wanted to help others find theirs. He inspires us to do what feels right and love ourselves. This witty and wise book features stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, including a biographical timeline with historical photos and a detailed profile of the inspiring performer’s life.”

Chapter Books

She Persisted: Sonia Sotomayor by Meg Medina, Illustrated by Gillian Flint (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Inspired by the #1 New York Times bestseller She Persisted by Chelsea Clinton and Alexandra Boiger comes a chapter book series about women who stood up, spoke up and rose up against the odds!

In this chapter book biography by Meg Medina, the award-winning author of Merci Suarez Changes Gears and Mango, Abuela, and Me, readers learn about the amazing life of Sonia Sotomayor–and how she persisted.

Sonia Sotomayor is the first Latina Supreme Court Justice in the history of the United States, but her road there wasn’t easy. She overcame many challenges along the way, including a diagnosis of diabetes at age seven. But she didn’t let that stop her from achieving her dream and inspiring children all over the world to work hard and believe in themselves.”

Magical Rescue Vets: Jade the Gem Dragon by Melody Lockhart, Illustrated by Morgan Huff (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Most people think that dragons and unicorns don’t exist outside of story books – but Kat and Rosie know better! The best friends have been helping out at Calico Comfrey’s Veterinary Surgery ever since they stumbled across its secret door one summer holiday. Join them as they rescue and care for the incredible, enchanted creatures of Starfall Forest. Along the way, they might learn some valuable lessons about bravery, friendship, and loyalty!

When Kat needs something to distract her from her new baby sister, it’s the perfect time to go exploring in the forest. She and Rosie find a baby gem dragon coughing and spluttering in the Crystal Caves. What has made her whole colony so sick, and could it have something to do with the gnomes’ new mining machines? It’s time to start an anti-pollution campaign – with just a little help from Dr. Hart!

The second in the brand-new Magical Rescue Vets series, Jade the Gem Dragon features beautiful illustrations by Morgan Huff and is ideal for readers aged 7+.”

Wednesday Wilson Gets Down to Business by Bree Galbraith, Illustrated by Morgan Goble (Bookshop | Amazon)

“In the first entertaining installment in a new early chapter book series, one unfortunate kale incident isn’t enough to stop the unbeatable Wednesday Wilson from pursuing her entrepreneurial dreams — or is it?The most important thing to know about Wednesday Wilson is that she’s an entrepreneur. She hasn’t started any businesses yet, but she’s pretty sure today is the day. She and her best friend, Charlie (Wednesday’s future Vice President of Operations), with some help from her little brother, Mister, have made a list of potential businesses. But before they get to move forward on one, there’s an unfortunate incident in class with the Emmas (whose last initials happen to spell M.E.A.N.) involving a bearded dragon named Morten and a piece of kale . . . it’s a long story. It figures that Wednesday’s archnemeses would be the ones to mess up her plans! But maybe all is not lost. Maybe this is just the opportunity Wednesday and her friends needed to come up with a brilliant business idea that will save the day and make them millionaires. Or . . . not?With its fresh voice, diverse cast of lovable and relatable characters and delightfully determined heroine, Bree Galbraith’s illustrated early chapter book series hits the spot for beginning readers (and their grown-ups!). Endearing black-and-white drawings by Morgan Goble add nuance and clarity and help guide the story forward for early readers. Definitions of vocabulary words, all related to business, appear as footnotes throughout the text.”

Middle Grade

The Wayside School 4-Book Box Set: Sideways Stories from Wayside School, Wayside School Is Falling Down, Wayside School Gets a Little Stranger, Wayside School Beneath the Cloud of Doom by Louis Sachar (Bookshop | Amazon)

“All four books in the beloved Wayside School series by bestselling and Newbery Medal–winning author Louis Sachar are now available in this collectible set!

This paperback box set features all four books, each with new cover and interior art and full of hilarious stories, zany art, and a quadruple serving of absurdity.

More than fifteen million readers have laughed at the stories of Sideways Stories from Wayside School, Wayside School Gets a Little Stranger, Wayside School Is Falling Down, and the newly released Wayside School Beneath the Cloud of Doom.

So what are you waiting for? Come visit Wayside School!”

Force of Fire by Sayantani DasGupta (Bookshop | Amazon)

“From New York Times bestselling author Sayantani DasGupta comes the story of a demon who must embrace her bad to serve the greater good.
Pinki hails from a long line of rakkhosh resisters, demons who have spent years building interspecies relationships, working together to achieve their goal of overthrowing the snakey oppressors and taking back their rights. But she has more important things to worry about, like maintaining her status as fiercest rakkhosh in her class and looking after her little cousins. There is also the teeny tiny detail of not yet being able to control her fire breathing and accidentally burning up school property.Then Sesha, the charming son of the Serpentine Governor, calls on Pinki for help in defeating the resistance, promising to give her what she most desires in return — the ability to control her fire. First she’ll have to protect the Moon Maiden, pretend to be a human (ick), and survive a family reunion. But it’s all worth it for the control of her powers . . . right?”

Marcus Makes a Movie by Kevin Hart and Geoff Rodkey, Illustrated by David Cooper (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Stand-up comedian and Hollywood box-office hit Kevin Hart keeps the laughs coming in an illustrated middle-grade novel about a boy who has big dreams of making a blockbuster superhero film. Perfect for readers of James Patterson’s Middle School series and Lincoln Peirce’s Big Nate series.

Marcus is NOT happy to be stuck in after-school film class…until he realizes he can turn the story of the cartoon superhero he’s been drawing for years into an actual MOVIE! There’s just one problem: he has no idea what he’s doing. So he’ll need help, from his friends, his teachers, Sierra, the strong-willed classmate with creative dreams of her own, even Tyrell, the local bully who’d be a perfect movie villain if he weren’t too terrifying to talk to.

Making this movie won’t be easy. But as Marcus discovers, nothing great ever is—and if you want your dream to come true, you’ve got to put in the hustle to make it happen.

Comedy superstar Kevin Hart teams up with award-winning author Geoff Rodkey and lauded illustrator David Cooper for a hilarious, illustrated, and inspiring story about bringing your creative goals to life and never giving up, even when nothing’s going your way.”

The Talk: Conversations about Race, Love & Truth by Wade Hudson and Cheryl Willis Hudson (Bookshop | Amazon)

Thirty diverse, award-winning authors and illustrators invite you into their homes to witness the conversations they have with their children about race in America today in this powerful call-to-action that invites all families to be anti-racists and advocates for change.

As long as racist ideas persist, families will continue to have the difficult and necessary conversations with their young ones on the subject. In this inspiring collection, literary all-stars such as Renée Watson (Piecing Me Together), Grace Lin (Where the Mountain Meets the Moon), Meg Medina (Merci Suárez Changes Gears), Adam Gidwitz (The Inquisitor’s Tale), and many more engage young people in frank conversations about race, identity, and self-esteem. Featuring text and images filled with love, acceptance, truth, peace, and an assurance that there can be hope for a better tomorrow, The Talk is a stirring anthology and must-have resource published in partnership with Just Us Books, a Black-owned children’s publishing company that’s been in operation for over thirty years. Just Us Books continues its mission grounded in the same belief that helped launch the company: Good books make a difference.
 
So, let’s talk.”

Sisters of The Neversea by Cynthia Leitich Smith (Bookshop | Amazon)

“In this beautifully reimagined story by NSK Neustadt Laureate and New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith (Muscogee Creek), Native American Lily and English Wendy embark on a high-flying journey of magic, adventure, and courage to a fairy-tale island known as Neverland…

Lily and Wendy have been best friends since they became stepsisters. But with their feuding parents planning to spend the summer apart, what will become of their family—and their friendship?

Little do they know that a mysterious boy has been watching them from the oak tree outside their window. A boy who intends to take them away from home for good, to an island of wild animals, Merfolk, Fairies, and kidnapped children, to a sea of merfolk, pirates, and a giant crocodile.

A boy who calls himself Peter Pan.”

Graphic Novels

The Tea Dragon Tapestry (The Tea Dragon Society) by K. O’Neill (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Join Greta and Minette once more for the heartwarming conclusion of the award-winning Tea Dragon series!

Over a year since being entrusted with Ginseng’s care, Greta still can’t chase away the cloud of mourning that hangs over the timid Tea Dragon. As she struggles to create something spectacular enough to impress a master blacksmith in search of an apprentice, she questions the true meaning of crafting, and the true meaning of caring for someone in grief. Meanwhile, Minette receives a surprise package from the monastery where she was once training to be a prophetess. Thrown into confusion about her path in life, the shy and reserved Minette finds that the more she opens her heart to others, the more clearly she can see what was always inside.

Told with the same care and charm as the previous installments of the Tea Dragon series, The Tea Dragon Tapestry welcomes old friends and new into a heartfelt story of purpose, love, and growth.”

Miles Morales: Shock Waves by Justin A. Reynolds, Illustrated by Pablo Leon (Bookshop | Amazon)

“An original middle-grade graphic novel from Graphix starring Brooklyn’s Spider-Man, Miles Morales, by bestselling author Justin A. Reynolds and Eisner nominee Pablo Leon!
Miles Morales is a normal kid who happens to juggle school at Brooklyn Visions Academy while swinging through the streets of Brooklyn as Spider-Man. After a disastrous earthquake strikes his mother’s birthplace of Puerto Rico, Miles springs into action to help set up a fundraiser for the devastated island. But when a new student’s father goes missing, Miles begins to make connections between the disappearance and a giant corporation sponsoring Miles’ fundraiser. Who is behind the disappearance, and how does that relate to Spider-Man?A true middle grade graphic novel starring one of Marvel’s most popular characters, bestselling author Justin A. Reynolds (Opposite of Always) and Eisner award-nominated artist Pablo Leon (Refugees) create a riveting story that will connect with new and well-versed comics readers alike.”

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!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – May 18, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everybody! Tuesdays are my favorite, because it’s new release day!

I’m so excited to share the new releases I am most looking forward to this week with you all. 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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Board Books

A is for Astronaut: An Out-of-This-World Alphabet Adventure by Dr. Jennifer Levasseur, Illustrated by Vanessa Port (Bookshop | Amazon)

Blast off into space and learn the ABCs with the Smithsonian!

2021 NAPPA (National Parenting Product Awards) Winner
Inside this board book, little space explorers will learn out-of-this-world words for each letter of the alphabet paired with colorful illustrations on each page. From astronaut to zero gravity, this simple introduction to outer space and the ABCs is sure to delight babies and their parents! Author Jennifer Levasseur serves as the as the responsible curator for the National Air and Space Museum’s astronaut cameras and chronographs, as well as the Space Shuttle and International Space Station programs.”

Pink Is For Boys by Robb Pearlman, Illustrated by Eda Kaban (Bookshop | Amazon)

“An empowering and educational board book that proves colors are for everyone, regardless of gender.

Pink is for boys . . . and girls . . . and everyone! This timely and beautiful board book rethinks and reframes the stereotypical blue/pink gender binary and empowers kids-and their grown-ups-to express themselves in every color of the rainbow. Featuring a diverse group of relatable characters, Pink Is for Boys invites and encourages children to enjoy what they love to do, whether it’s racing cars and playing baseball, or loving unicorns and dressing up. Vibrant illustrations help children learn and identify the myriad colors that surround them every day, from the orange of a popsicle, to the green of a grassy field, all the way up to the wonder of a multicolored rainbow.

Parents and kids will delight in Robb Pearlman’s sweet, simple script, as well as its powerful message: life is not color-coded.”

Picture Books

When Lola Visits by Michelle Sterling, Illustrated by Aaron Asis (Bookshop | Amazon)

“In an evocative picture book brimming with the scents, tastes, and traditions that define a young girl’s summer with her grandmother, debut author Michelle Sterling and illustrator Aaron Asis come together to celebrate the gentle bonds of familial love that span oceans and generations.

For one young girl, summer is the season of no school, of days spent at the pool, and of picking golden limes off the trees. But summer doesn’t start until her lola—her grandmother from the Philippines—comes for her annual visit.

Summer is special. For her lola fills the house with the aroma of mango jam, funny stories of baking mishaps, and her quiet sweet singing in Tagalog. And in turn, her granddaughter brings Lola to the beach, to view fireworks at the park, and to catch fish at their lake.

When Lola visits, the whole family gathers to cook and eat and share in their happiness of another season spent together. Yet as summer transitions to fall, her lola must return home—but not without a surprise for her granddaughter to preserve their special summer a bit longer.”

And I Paint It by Beth Kephart, Illustrated by Amy June Bates (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A poetic picture-book biography about artist N.C. Wyeth’s daughter, Henriette, a talented painter in her own right

And I think of the girl I am and the girl I’ll be:
A painter, like Pa.
An actress (maybe).
A fairy with wings.
A father and daughter sneak away from their big, busy family to paint in the wild landscape. Together, they paint a lily, bright and white as a star; the green growing into the cap of a strawberry; the blue in the sky running pink. Henriette’s father is N.C. Wyeth, the famous artist, who encourages her to paint what she sees, to awaken into her dreams, and she does, in this poetic picture book inspired by a famous American family of artists.”

Ruby’s Reunion Day Dinner by Angela Dalton, Illustrated by Jestenia Southerland (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This joyful picture book taps into the rich African American tradition of family reunions, with delicious food at the heart of the celebration. Perfect for fans of the Caldecott Honor Book Going Down Home with Daddy by Kelly Starling Lyons.

Once a year, each of Ruby’s relatives prepares a special dish to share at their family reunion. Daddy calls it their “signature dish”—and Ruby wants one of her own. She wanders through the bustling kitchen looking for inspiration. As she watches Pop-Pop’s chicken sizzling in the skillet, Uncle G slicing onions, and Auntie Billie cooking corn on the hot grill, she wonders if she’s just too young to have a signature dish. That’s when she finds it— the perfect solution!

Angela Dalton’s warm text is perfectly paired with Jestenia Southerland’s beautiful art in this sweet picture book, filled with the tenderness and warmth of this multigenerational extended family and the food they share.”

All Of Us by Kathryn Erskine, Illustrated by Alexandra Boiger (Bookshop | Amazon)

A beautiful book about community and love by National Book Award winner Kathryn Erskine and #1 New York Times bestselling illustrator Alexandra Boiger.

ME can be WE. YOU can come, too. In a lyrical text that travels the globe, National Book Award winner Kathryn Erskine shows young readers how the whole world is a community made up of people who are more similar than we are different. With stunning, cinematic art by Alexandra Boiger, the illustrator of the She Persisted series, this is the perfect read-aloud at bedtime or for story time. Perfect for fans of All Are Welcome and Be Kind.”

The Incredible Ship of Captain Skip by Alicia Acosta, Illustrated by Cecilia Moreno (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Join Skip and her crew on their amazing journey across the sea. As you read the story, you’ll make your own paper ship with easy-to-follow instructions! Through her adventure, Skip’s ship will be damaged. At the same time, you’ll be tearing off pieces of your paper ship discovering a funny surprise in the end… the treasure of Captain Skip!”

Chapter Books

Ballerina Birthday (Ballet Bunnies #3) by Swapna Reddy, Illustrated by Binny Talib (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This new full-color chapter book series features the most darling dancers you will ever meet! For fans of the Magic Bunny, Isadora Moon, and Rainbow Magic series.

It’s Millie’s birthday and the Ballet Bunnies can’t wait to celebrate with her! The teeny dancer bunnies sneak into her bag and steal away to Millie’s house. When it’s time for Millie’s party, the bunnies secretly dash beneath tables and chairs to get a glimpse at all the festivities!

Spin and twirl with more Ballet Bunnies books! Ballet Bunnies #1: The New Class and Ballet Bunnies #2: Let’s Dance!”

Make New Friends, But Keep the Old (Twig and Turtle #4) by Jennifer Richard Jacobson (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Friendship woes and a visit from Grandma push Twig to find her voice in the fourth book in the Twig and Turtle chapter book series, perfect for fans of Ivy and Bean and Judy Moody.

Speaking up can be super hard.

Just when Twig thinks she’s finally found a new best friend, Angela’s former BFF, Effie, comes back to town. And to Twig, Effie is anything but friendly. With Effie hogging the spotlight and Angela’s time, Twig has never felt so alone. And while Twig’s little sister, Turtle, can be a lot of fun to hang out with, she doesn’t replace a best friend.

Then Grandma comes to visit, bringing with too much clutter and too many strong opinions for the tiny house, and it all becomes too much. Will Twig be able to find her voice without hurting anyone’s feelings?

The fourth book in the Twig and Turtle chapter book series, Make New Friends, But Keep the Old weaves themese of friendshipand finding your voice in a sweet package that fans of Ivy and Bean and Judy Moody will find hard to resist.”

Middle Grade

That Thing About Bollywood by Supriya Kelkar (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Bollywood takes over in this contemporary, magical middle grade novel about an Indian American girl whose world turns upside down when she involuntarily starts bursting into glamorous song-and-dance routines during everyday life.

You know how in Bollywood when people are in love, they sing and dance from the mountaintops? Eleven-year-old Sonali wonders if they do the same when they’re breaking up. The truth is, Sonali’s parents don’t get along, and it looks like they might be separating.

Sonali’s little brother, Ronak, is not taking the news well, constantly crying. Sonali would never do that. It’s embarrassing to let out so many feelings, to show the world how not okay you are. But then something strange happens, something magical, maybe. When Sonali gets upset during a field trip, she can’t bury her feelings like usual—instead, she suddenly bursts into a Bollywood song-and-dance routine about why she’s upset!

The next morning, much to her dismay, Sonali’s reality has shifted. Things seem brighter, almost too bright. Her parents have had Bollywood makeovers. Her friends are also breaking out into song and dance. And somehow, everyone is acting as if this is totally normal.

Sonali knows something has gone wrong, and she suspects it has something to do with her own mismanaged emotions. Can she figure it out before it’s too late?”

An Occasionally Happy Family by Cliff Burke (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Gordon Korman meets The Great Outdoors in this funny and moving debut about a boy who goes on a disastrous family vacation (sweltering heat! bear chases!) that ends with a terrible surprise: his dad’s new girlfriend.

There are zero reasons for Theo Ripley to look forward to his family vacation. Not only are he, sister Laura, and nature-obsessed Dad going to Big Bend, the least popular National Park, but once there, the family will be camping. And Theo is an indoor animal. It doesn’t help that this will be the first vacation they’re taking since Mom passed away.

Once there, the family contends with 110 degree days, wild bears, and an annoying amateur ornithologist and his awful teenage vlogger son. Then, Theo’s dad hits him with a whopper of a surprise: the whole trip is just a trick to introduce his secret new girlfriend.

Theo tries to squash down the pain in his chest. But when it becomes clear that this is an auditioning-to-be-his-stepmom girlfriend, Theo must find a way to face his grief and talk to his dad before his family is forever changed.”

Not All Heroes by Josephine Cameron (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Even though her family moved across the country for a “fresh start” after her little brother’s death, eleven-year-old Zinnia Helinski still feels like she’s stuck waiting for her new life to begin. Then she spots her new neighbor, Kris, climbing down the fire escape of their apartment building. He’s wearing a black eye mask! And Spandex leggings. . . . And a blue body suit?

Soon Zinnia finds herself in a secret club for kids who want to be heroes. The Reality Shifters don’t have superpowers, but they do have the power to make positive change in their neighborhoods. And a change is just what Zinnia is looking for!

At first, she feels invincible. Zinnia finally has friends and is on the kind of real-life adventures her little brother, Wally, would have loved. But when her teammates lose sight of their goals, Zinnia must find the balance between bravery and recklessness, and learn to be a hero without her cape.”

It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, Sex, Gender, and Sexual Health by Robie H. Harris, Illustrated Michael Emberley (Bookshop | Amazon)

Fully and fearlessly updated, this vital new edition of the acclaimed book on sex, sexuality, bodies, and puberty deserves a spot in every family’s library.

With more than 1.5 million copies in print, It’s Perfectly Normal has been a trusted resource on sexuality for more than twenty-five years. Rigorously vetted by experts, this is the most ambitiously updated editionyet, featuring to-the-minute information and language accompanied by new and refreshed art.

Updates include:

* A shift to gender-neutral vocabulary throughout

* An expansion on LGBTQIA topics, gender identity, sex, and sexuality—making this a sexual health book for all readers

* Coverage of recent advances in methods of sexual safety and contraception with corresponding illustrations

* A revised section on abortion, including developments in the shifting politics and legislation as well as an accurate, honest overview

* A sensitive and detailed expansion on the topics of sexual abuse, the importance of consent, and destigmatizing HIV/AIDS

* A modern understanding of social media and the internet that tackles rapidly changing technology to highlight its benefits and pitfalls and ways to stay safe online

Inclusive and accessible, this newest edition of It’s Perfectly Normal provides young people with the knowledge and vocabulary they need to understand their bodies, relationships, and identities in order to make responsible decisions and stay healthy.”

Graphic Novels

The Princess Who Saved Herself by Greg Pak, Illustrated by Takeshi Miyazawa (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Welcome to The Princess Who Saved Herself, a children’s book written by comics writer Greg Pak, based on the beloved song by internet superstar musician Jonathan Coulton, and illustrated by artist Takeshi Miyazawa.

The Princess Who Saved Herself reinvents the princess myth for a new generation, telling the story of an awesome kid who lives with her pet snake and plays rock ‘n’ roll all day to the huge annoyance of the classical guitarist witch who lives down the road. Hijinks, conflicts, and a fun reconciliation ensues!

Based on the beloved song by internet superstar musician Jonathan Coulton, the new New York Times best-selling team of writer Greg Pak and artist Takeshi Miyazawa reunite for an unforgettable adventure full of determination, bravery, and compassion for everyone!”

Just Pretend by Tori Sharp (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Fans of Real Friends and Be Prepared will love this energetic, affecting graphic memoir, in which a young girl uses her active imagination to navigate middle school as well as the fallout from her parents’ divorce.

Tori has never lived in just one world.

Since her parents’ divorce, she’s lived in both her mom’s house and her dad’s new apartment. And in both places, no matter how hard she tries, her family still treats her like a little kid. Then there’s school, where friendships old and new are starting to feel more and more out of her hands.

Thankfully, she has books-and writing. And now the stories she makes up in her head just might save her when everything else around her—friendships, school, family—is falling apart.

Author Tori Sharp takes us with her on a journey through the many commonplace but complex issues of fractured families, as well as the beautiful fantasy narrative that helps her cope, gorgeously illustrated and full of magic, fairies, witches and lost and found friendships.”

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!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – April 27, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everybody! While my week has been anything but calm, it seems quiet on the new release front this week — especially for the spring. But we will focus on quality over quantity today.

As always, all titles included 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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Picture Books

Prince & Knight: Tale of the Shadow King by Daniel Haack, Illustrated by Stevie Lewis (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Our brave and dashing heroes, the prince and the knight, are happily married and their kingdom is prospering, but soon, a fog of darkness that blocks the sun spreads across their land. They get word that the cause of this is a dark and mysterious Shadow King, and they rush off to find and stop him, but encounter many obstacles along the way. Will they be able to restore the light to their kingdom?”

Somewhere in the City by J. B. Frank, Illustrated by Yu Leng (Bookshop | Amazon)

“The sights and sounds of the city come alive in a magical way as Lucy waits eagerly for her father to return from work. Watching out the window, Lucy’s view of dogs, bakers, and buses is juxtaposed with her father’s journey through crowds, trains, and finally home to tuck her in. Detailed illustrations contrast a child’s fantastical view of the world with reality, all leading up to a cozy finish that will make this a perfect bedtime book for city children everywhere.”

The Little Things: A Story About Acts of Kindness by Christian Trimmer, Illustrated by Kaylani Juanita (Bookshop | Amazon)

“One girl’s simple act of kindness causes ripples in her community in this witty, heartwarming story about paying it forward

The day after a mighty storm, a little girl finds a sea star that has washed up on shore, and she returns it to the ocean. Seeing her small act of kindness, an old man heads to an animal shelter with his grandson to pick a dog in need of a home. His grandson feels inspired to help an elderly woman clean up her yard, which inspires a teenager to pack an extra lunch for someone in need, and on and on until each small gesture builds toward a magnificent conclusion.
Full of humor, heart, and proof of the generosity that we all have inside of us, Christian Trimmer and Kaylani Juanita’s story is a welcome reminder: It’s the little things that make a big difference.”

You can also read my full review of The Little Things for more detail.

Grandpa Across the Ocean by Hyewon Yum (Bookshop | Amazon)

Though separated by language, age, and an ocean, a child and grandparent find common ground in this warm, witty picture book

Grandpa lives on the other side of the ocean.
He takes naps all the time. He eats different foods. He speaks an unfamiliar language. His house is the most boring place on Earth!
Or is it? A little time together just might reveal that Grandpa is also a great singer, an energetic sandcastle builder, and a troublemaker . . . just like his grandson!
With her signature warmth and humor, award-winning author-illustrator Hyewon Yum shares the challenges and joys of having a relative who lives far away—proving that even from across the ocean, the grandparent-grandchild relationship is a very special one.”

You can also read my full review of Grandpa Across the Ocean for more detail.

Something Happened in Our Park: Standing Together After Gun Violence by Ann Hazard, Marianne Celano, and Marietta Collins, Illustrated by Keith Henry Brown (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This important follow-up to the bestselling, groundbreaking, and inspiring Something Happened in Our Town, is a much-needed story to help communities in the aftermath of gun violence. When Miles’s cousin Keisha is injured in a shooting, he realizes people can work together to reduce the likelihood of violence in their community. With help from friends and family, Miles learns to use his imagination and creativity to help him cope with his fears. This book can help provide parents with helpful messages of reassurance and empowerment. Includes an extensive Note to Parents and Caregivers with guidelines for discussing community gun violence with children, and sample dialogues.”

Chapter Books

Ways to Grow Love by Renee Watson, Illustrated by Nina Mata (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Newbery Honor and Coretta Scott King Author Award winner Renée Watson continues her charming young middle grade series starring Ryan Hart, a girl who is pure spirit and sunshine.

Ryan Hart loves her family and friends. She’s looking forward to summer vacation, spending time with loved ones, and her first trip to sleepaway camp! But when an unexpected camper shows up, Ryan finds it’s hard to share your best friend and harder to be a friend to someone who isn’t a good friend to you. She’s also waiting for her new sister to be born — and hoping the baby doesn’t ruin everything. The Hart family is experiencing a lot of changes, and Ryan needs to grow her patience in many ways, find ways to share the love, meet new challenges, and grow into the leader her mom and dad named her to be. This summer and the start of fifth grade just might give Ryan the chance to show how she grows and glows!”

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!

Which titles have you been looking forward to the most? Be sure to share in the comments below!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – April 13, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everyone! I’m so excited to share the new releases I am most looking forward to this week with you all.

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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Board Books

Count On Me 1, 2, 3 by J.B. Frank, Illustrated by Ela Smietanka (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Though many things in the world are uncertain, there are some people we can always count on—so let’s count them! In this colorful board book filled with adorable, diverse characters, children count the everyday heroes around them from 10 crossing guards and 9 firefighters down to 2 parents, and of course, 1 you!”

Baby Loves Political Science: Congress by Ruth Spiro, Illustrated by Greg Paprocki (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A new addition to the beloved and bestselling Baby Loves Political Science series! This cute and clever introduction to political science and the US government is accurate and simple enough for baby.

Baby learns that just as there are rules in daycare, there are rules in our society. And who makes the rules–or laws? Congress! A fun and easy introduction to the three branches of the US government and the legislative branch in particular. Representatives and senators may pass laws, but anyone in our democracy can have ideas for new ones!”

Baby Loves Political Science: The Presidency by Ruth Spiro, Illustrated by Greg Paprocki (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A new addition to the beloved and bestselling Baby Loves Political Science series! This cute and clever introduction to political science and the US government is accurate and simple enough for baby.

A fun and easy introduction for baby to the three branches of the US government and the executive branch in particular. The president signs laws into effect, but it takes an entire cabinet and group of people to carry out the laws!”

Picture Books

Amira’s Picture Day by Reem Faruqi, Illustrated by Fahmida Azim (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Ramadan has come to an end, and Amira can’t wait to stay home from school to celebrate Eid. There’s just one hiccup: it’s also school picture day. How can Amira be in two places at once?

Just the thought of Eid makes Amira warm and tingly inside. From wearing new clothes to handing out goody bags at the mosque, Amira can’t wait for the festivities to begin. But when a flier on the fridge catches her eye, Amira’s stomach goes cold. Not only is it Eid, it’s also school picture day. If she’s not in her class picture, how will her classmates remember her? Won’t her teacher wonder where she is?

Though the day’s celebrations at the mosque are everything Amira was dreaming of, her absence at picture day weighs on her. A last-minute idea on the car ride home might just provide the solution to everything in this delightful story from acclaimed author Reem Faruqi, illustrated with vibrant color by Fahmida Azim.”

Hear My Voice/Escucha mi voz: The Testimonies of Children Detained at the Southern Border of the United States by Warren Binford (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Every day, children in migration are detained at the US-Mexico border. They are scared, alone, and their lives are in limbo. Hear My Voice/Escucha mi voz shares the stories of 61 these children, from Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, Ecuador, and Mexico, ranging in age from five to seventeen—in their own words from actual sworn testimonies. Befitting the spirit of the project, the book is in English on one side; then flip it over, and there’s a complete Spanish version.

Illustrated by 17 Latinx artists, including Caldecott Medalist and multiple Pura Belpré Illustrator Award-winning Yuyi Morales and Pura Belpré Illustrator Award-winning Raὺl the Third. Includes information, questions, and action points. Buying this book benefits Project Amplify, an organization that supports children in migration.”

Born Ready: The True Story of A Boy Named Penelope by Jodie Patterson, Illustrated by Charnelle Pinkney Barlow (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Jodie Patterson, activist and Chair of the Human Rights Campaign Foundation Board, shares her transgender son’s experience in this important picture book about identity and acceptance.

Penelope knows that he’s a boy. (And a ninja.) The problem is getting everyone else to realize it.

In this exuberant companion to Jodie Patterson’s adult memoir, The Bold World, Patterson shares her son Penelope’s frustrations and triumphs on his journey to share himself with the world. Penelope’s experiences show children that it always makes you stronger when you are true to yourself and who you really are.”

Hello Rain by Kyo Maclear, Illustrated by Chris Turnham (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A picture book celebrating all the reasons to love the rain! Flowers bloom in the garden. Umbrellas bloom on the streets. There are puddles for jumping and, later, a cozy home for hot chocolate and books.

• The ultimate rainy day read!
• Full of bright, eye-catching illustrations
• From international acclaimed writer Kyo Maclear and printmaker Chris Turnham

The air is full of waiting. The sky is full of breeze. The trees gust and billow. All before it rains.
Rumble, rumble. Distant thunder. Rain is coming, rain is coming.

No matter what kind of weather you prefer, Hello, Rain! is a great reminder of the natural beauty all around us.”

Saving American Beach: The Biography of African American Environmentalist MaVynee Betsch by Heidi Tyline King, Illustrated by Ekua Holmes (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This heartfelt picture book biography illustrated by the Caldecott Honoree Ekua Holmes, tells the story of MaVynee Betsch, an African American opera singer turned environmentalist and the legacy she preserved.

MaVynee loved going to the beach. But in the days of Jim Crow, she couldn’t just go to any beach–most of the beaches in Jacksonville were for whites only. Knowing something must be done, her grandfather bought a beach that African American families could enjoy without being reminded they were second class citizens; he called it American Beach. Artists like Zora Neale Hurston and Ray Charles vacationed on its sunny shores. It’s here that MaVynee was first inspired to sing, propelling her to later become a widely acclaimed opera singer who routinely performed on an international stage. But her first love would always be American Beach.

After the Civil Rights Act desegregated public places, there was no longer a need for a place like American Beach and it slowly fell into disrepair. MaVynee remembered the importance of American Beach to her family and so many others, so determined to preserve this integral piece of American history, she began her second act as an activist and conservationist, ultimately saving the place that had always felt most like home.”

If I Had An Octopus by Gabby Dawnay, Illustrated by Alex Barrow (Bookshop | Amazon)

“From the duo behind the bestselling If I Had series, a humorous and entertaining tale celebrating octopuses.

Have you ever thought about what the best aquatic pet would be? It’s an octopus, of course! When a little girl fantasizes about having a crazy smart octopus pet, she pictures jumping rope with its tentacles, practicing different ball games simultaneously, and playing hide-and-seek with her camouflaging friend (just look out for the ink!).

With vibrant illustrations and playful rhymes, If I Had an Octopus is a laugh-out-loud story celebrating friendship between a child and her octopus. From the duo behind If I Had a DinosaurIf I Had a Sleepy Sloth, and If I Had a Unicorn, Gabby Dawnay and Alex Barrow’s latest is a charming and imaginative tale about our favorite eight-armed creature.”

Your Future Is Bright by Corey Finkle, Illustrated by Shelley Couvillion (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Celebrate the boundless possibilities of the future with this uplifting picture book about the potential in every child, perfect for fans of Oh, the Places You’ll Go! and The Wonderful Things You Will Be.

Today is a triumph! It’s awesome! You’re great!
The things you’ve accomplished are truly first rate.
Your efforts have made you stand out from the crowd,
So, puff out your chest―you deserve to feel proud.

Follow a group of children as they dream about what the future might hold. As they spin their passions into opportunities, they learn that adventure awaits any and all who put their hearts and minds into something.

Told in Corey Finkle’s touching rhyming verse and paired with gorgeous watercolor illustrations by Shelley Couvillion, Your Future Is Bright is an inspiring ode to self-confidence, kindness, and dedication, and makes for the perfect gift for any occasion, including graduations, baby showers, birthdays, and more.”

Monsters Like Us by Amy Huntington (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Monsters may look and act scary, but deep down they’re not so different from you and me. They talk and giggle, they read and clean their rooms, and they have ENORMOUS chompers for…eating ice cream!

This humorous book will have kids giggling and turning the pages as they discover that monsters aren’t so scary after all–and discover their own inner monster!”

Chapter Books

Aven Green Sleuthing Machine by Dusti Bowling (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Third-grader Aven Green has been solving mysteries for a whole month—cracking such cases as The Mystery of the Cranky Mom. But can this perceptive detective solve two cases at the same time? First her teacher’s lunch bag disappears. Then Aven’s great-grandma’s dog goes missing. Fortunately, since Aven was born without arms, all the “arm” cells went to her super-powered brain instead. (That’s her theory.) This hilarious chapter book showcases a new side to Dusti Bowling’s unforgettable protagonist.”

Middle Grade

Pippa Park Raises Her Game by Erin Yun (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Readers will cheer on Pippa Park in this wonderful middle school book about friendships, bullying, crushes, and family. In this relatable story, Pippa reinvents herself and discovers who she really is on and off the basketball court.

Life is full of great expectations for Korean American Pippa Park. It seems like everyone, from her family to the other kids at school, has a plan for how her life should look.

When Pippa gets a mysterious basketball scholarship to Lakeview Private, she jumps at the chance to reinvent herself. At school, Pippa juggles old and new friends, a crush, and the pressure to get As and score points while keeping her past and family’s laundromat a secret from her elite new classmates.

But when Pippa begins to receive a string of hateful, anonymous messages via social media, her carefully built persona is threatened. As things spiral out of control, Pippa wonders if she can keep her old and new lives separate, or if she should even try.”

Cece Rios and The Desert of Souls by Kaela Rivera (Bookshop | Amazon)

“When a powerful desert spirit kidnaps her sister, Cece Rios must learn forbidden magic to get her back, in this own voices middle grade fantasy perfect for fans of The Storm Runner and Aru Shah and the End of Time

Living in the remote town of Tierra del Sol is dangerous, especially in the criatura months, when powerful spirits roam the desert and threaten humankind. But Cecelia Rios has always believed there was more to the criaturas, much to her family’s disapproval. After all, only brujas—humans who capture and control criaturas—consort with the spirits, and brujeria is a terrible crime.”

The Chance to Fly by Ali Stroker and Stacy Davidowitz (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A heartfelt middle-grade novel about a theater-loving girl who uses a wheelchair for mobility and her quest to defy expectations—and gravity—from Tony award–winning actress Ali Stroker and Stacy Davidowitz

Thirteen-year-old Nat Beacon loves a lot of things: her dog Warbucks, her best friend Chloe, and competing on her wheelchair racing team, the Zoomers, to name a few. But there’s one thing she’s absolutely OBSESSED with: MUSICALS! From Hamilton to Les Mis, there’s not a cast album she hasn’t memorized and belted along to. She’s never actually been in a musical though, or even seen an actor who uses a wheelchair for mobility on stage. Would someone like Nat ever get cast?
But when Nat’s family moves from California to New Jersey, Nat stumbles upon auditions for a kids’ production of Wicked, one of her favorite musicals ever! And she gets into the ensemble! The other cast members are super cool and inclusive (well, most of them)— especially Malik, the male lead and cutest boy Nat’s ever seen. But when things go awry a week before opening night, will Nat be able to cast her fears and insecurities aside and “Defy Gravity” in every sense of the song title?”

The Prettiest by Brigit Young (Bookshop Amazon)

The Prettiest is an incisive, empowering novel by Brigit Young about standing up for yourself and those around you.

“All middle school girls AND boys (especially boys!) should read this book.” ―Alan Gratz, New York Times–bestselling author of Refugee

THE PRETTIEST: It’s the last thing Eve Hoffmann expected to be, the only thing Sophie Kane wants to be, and something Nessa Flores-Brady knows she’ll never be . . . until a list appears online, ranking the top fifty prettiest girls in the eighth grade.

Eve, ranked number one, can’t ignore how everyone is suddenly talking about her looks―and her body.
Sophie, always popular and put together, feels lower than ever when she’s bullied for being number two.
Nessa isn’t on the list at all, but she doesn’t care. Or does she?

Eve, Nessa, and Sophie are determined to get justice―or at least revenge. But as these unlikely vigilantes become fiercely loyal friends, they discover that the real triumph isn’t the takedown. It’s the power that comes from lifting one another up.”

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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New Release Round Up – April 6, 2021

It’s Tuesday, so we all know what that means. Time to talk about new releases again!

I’m so excited to share the new releases I am most looking forward to this week with you all. 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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Board Books

Families Can by Dan Saks, Illustrated by Brooke Smart (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This charmingly heartfelt board book is for families: families who cook together and families who sing together, families with lots of members and families with a special few, families who live together and families who live separately–for all families. Celebrate the differences that make each family unique and the similarities and love that connect us all together.”

Picture Books

We Move Together by Kelly Fritsch and Anne McGuire, Illustrated by Eduardo Trejos (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A bold and colorful exploration of all the ways that people navigate through the spaces around them and a celebration of the relationships we build along the way. We Move Together follows a mixed-ability group of kids as they creatively negotiate everyday barriers and find joy and connection in disability culture and community. A perfect tool for families, schools, and libraries to facilitate conversations about disability, accessibility, social justice and community building. Includes a kid-friendly glossary. “

Percy’s Museum by Sara O’Leary, Illustrated by Carmen Mok (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A young boy moves from the city to a new home in the country. He misses his friends, but at least it’s summertime — flowers are blooming, baby birds are hatching, and caterpillars are transforming into butterflies. Enraptured by the natural world, Percy climbs trees, tastes wild strawberries and tries to catch fish in the river with his bare hands.

Percy also likes to draw pictures of what he has seen that day. He collects interesting leaves and rocks, and insects in jars. Percy discovers that being alone doesn’t have to be lonely, but explorers often share their findings. So, he creates a way to share his collection with others …

Percy’s Museum is a sweet story about embracing change, the excitement of discovery and the wonder of nature and new friends.”

You can also read my full review of Percy’s Museum for more detail.

I Have The Right To Save My Planet by Alain Serres, Illustrated by Aurélia Fronty, Translated by Shelley Tanaka (Bookshop | Amazon)

“From the author and illustrator duo who created the award-winning I Have the Right to Be a Child comes this beautifully illustrated picture book about a child’s right to advocate for the environment they live in.

All children have the right to learn about the world, to celebrate the water, air and sunshine, and to be curious about the animals and plants that live on our planet. All children also have the right to learn about endangered species, to be concerned about plastic in the ocean, and to understand what a changing climate means for our Earth.

Told from the perspective of a child, this colorful and vibrant book explores what it means to be a child who dreams of a beautiful future for their planet.”

Anita And The Dragons by Hannah Carmona, Illustrated by Anna Cunha (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Anita watches the dragons high above her as she hops from one cement roof to another in her village in the Dominican Republic. But being the valiant princesa she is, she never lets them scare her. Will she be brave enough to enter the belly of the beast and take flight to new adventures?”

Grandad’s Camper by Harry Woodgate (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Gramps and Grandad were adventurers. They would surf, climb mountains, and tour the country in their amazing camper. Gramps just made everything extra special. But after Gramps died, granddad hasn’t felt like traveling anymore. So, their amazing granddaughter comes up with a clever plan to fix up the old camper and get Grandad excited to explore again.

This beautiful picture book honors love and reminds us not only to remember those we have lost, but to celebrate them.”

Chapter Books

She Persisted: Virginia Apgar by Dr. Sayantani DasGupta, Illustrated by Gillian Flint (Bookshop | Amazon)

“There weren’t many women who tried to become doctors when Virginia Apgar went to medical school–but she didn’t let that stop her. After a professor discouraged from becoming a surgeon, she became an anesthesiologist instead and created the famous Apgar test to check the health of newborn babies. It’s a test that’s still used in hospitals across the world today!

In this chapter book biography by bestselling author and physician Sayantani DasGupta, readers learn about the amazing life of Virginia Apgar–and how she persisted. Complete with an introduction from Chelsea Clinton!”

Ivy and Bean Get To Work by Annie Barrow, Illustrated by Sophie Blackall (Bookshop | Amazon)

“It’s Career Day at Emerson Elementary School, and all the students have to choose what they want to be when they grow up. No problem. Best friends Ivy and Bean already have that all figured out. At least, they thought so, until they met Herman the Treasure Hunter. Now everyone in the second grade is looking for treasure—and finding it. Everyone except Ivy and Bean, that is. They need to get out their shovels and turn up some treasure on the double!”

Middle Grade

Merci Suarez Can’t Dance by Meg Medina (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Seventh grade is going to be a real trial for Merci Suárez. For science she’s got no-nonsense Mr. Ellis, who expects her to be a smart as her brother, Roli. She’s been assigned to co-manage the tiny school store with Wilson Bellevue, a boy she barely knows, but whom she might actually like. And she’s tangling again with classmate Edna Santos, who is bossier and more obnoxious than ever now that she is in charge of the annual Heart Ball.

One thing is for sure, though: Merci Suárez can’t dance—not at the Heart Ball or anywhere else. Dancing makes her almost as queasy as love does, especially now that Tía Inés, her merengue-teaching aunt, has a new man in her life. Unfortunately, Merci can’t seem to avoid love or dance for very long. She used to talk about everything with her grandfather, Lolo, but with his Alzheimer’s getting worse each day, whom can she trust to help her make sense of all the new things happening in her life? The Suárez family is back in a touching, funny story about growing up and discovering love’s many forms, including how we learn to love and believe in ourselves.”

Squad Goals by Erika J. Kendrick (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Magic Olive Poindexter has big shoes to fill. Her mother was a professional cheerleader, her father is a retired NBA legend, her big sister is the new face of the oh-so-glamorous Laker Girls, and her grandmother was the first black cheerleader ever on Valentine Middle School’s HoneyBee cheer squad. Magic wants nothing more than to follow in their footsteps. But first, she has to survive Planet Pom Poms, the summer cheer camp where she’ll audition for a spot on the HoneyBee squad. But with zero athletic ability and a group of mean girls who have her number, Tragic Magic is a long way from becoming the toe-touching cheerleader heroine she dreams of being.

Things start to look up when her best friend Cappie joins her at camp—until Cappie gets bitten by the popularity bug, that is. To make matters worse, Magic’s crushing hard on football star Dallas Chase. Luckily, Magic’s not alone: with the help of a new crew of fabulous fellow misfits and her Grammy Mae’s vintage pom poms by her side, Tragic Magic might just survive—and even thrive—at cheer camp.”

Fearless by Mandy Gonzalez (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Twelve-year-old Monica Garcia has arrived in NYC with her grandmother and a few suitcases to live her dream on Broadway. She’s been chosen as understudy to the star of Our Time, the famed Ethel Merman Theater’s last chance to produce a hit before it shutters its doors for good. Along with her fellow castmates—a.k.a. “the squad”—Monica has a big and very personal reason to want this show to succeed.

But rumors of a long-running curse plague the theater. And when strange and terrible things start to threaten their hopes for a successful opening night, Monica and the rest of the squad must figure out how to reverse the curse before their big Broadway debuts.

With the help of her new friends, her family, and a little magic, can Monica help save the show—and save their dreams? From Broadway and television star Mandy Gonzalez comes a story about what it means to dream, be yourself, and be fearless.”

Graphic Novels

The Anti-Book by Raphael Simon (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Mickey is angry all the time: at his divorced parents, at his sister, and at his two new stepmoms, both named Charlie. And so he can’t resist the ad inside his pack of gum: “Do you ever wish everyone would go away? Buy The Anti-Book! Satisfaction guaranteed.” He orders the book, but when it arrives, it’s blank–except for one line of instruction: To erase it, write it. He fills the pages with all the things and people he dislikes . . .

Next thing he knows, he’s wandering an anti-world, one in which everything and everyone familiar is gone. Or are they? His sister soon reappears–but she’s only four inches tall. A tiny talking house with wings looks strangely familiar, as does the mysterious half-invisible boy who seems to think that he and Mickey are best buds. The boy persuades Mickey to go find the Bubble Gum King–the king, who resides at the top of a mountain, is the only one who might be able help Mickey fix the mess he’s made.

Full of humor and surprise, and slyly meaningful, this is a Wizard of Oz for today’s generation–a fantastical quest for comfort and belonging that will resonate with many, many readers.”

That’s all I have for today. Hopefully, you found one or two to add to your young reader’s shelves!

Did I miss any releases you’re excited for? Don’t forget to share in the comments below!

You Might Also Like:

New Release Round Up – March 30, 2021

Happy Tuesday, everybody! It’s time to talk about new releases again!

I’m so excited to share the new releases I am most looking forward to this week with you all. 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.

Please Note: This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links allow me to receive a small commission from purchases made, with no additional cost to you. This commission is used to maintain this site and continue bringing content to you.

Board Books

Who Was Jackie Robinson by Lisbeth Kaiser, Illustrated by Stanley Chow (Bookshop | Amazon)

“The #1 New York Times Bestselling Who Was? series expands into the board book space, bringing age-appropriate biographies of influential figures to readers ages 2-4.

The chronology and themes of Jackie Robinson’s meaningful life are presented in a masterfully succinct text, with just a few sentences per page. The fresh, stylized illustrations are sure to captivate young readers and adults alike. With a read-aloud biographical summary in the back, this age-appropriate introduction honors and shares the life and work of one of the most influential professional baseball players of our time.”

Who Is Jane Goodall? by Lisbeth Kaiser, Illustrated by Stanley Chow (Bookshop | Amazon)

“The #1 New York Times Bestselling Who Was? series expands into the board book space, bringing age-appropriate biographies of influential figures to readers ages 2-4.

The chronology and themes of Jane Goodall’s meaningful life are presented in a masterfully succinct text, with just a few sentences per page. The fresh, stylized illustrations are sure to captivate young readers and adults alike. With a read-aloud biographical summary in the back, this age-appropriate introduction honors and shares the life and work of one of the most influential scientists of our time.”

Picture Books

Zonia’s Rain Forest by Juana Martinez-Neal (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Zonia’s home is the Amazon rain forest, where it is always green and full of life. Every morning, the rain forest calls to Zonia, and every morning, she answers. She visits the sloth family, greets the giant anteater, and runs with the speedy jaguar. But one morning, the rain forest calls to her in a troubled voice. How will Zonia answer?
Acclaimed author-illustrator Juana Martinez-Neal explores the wonders of the rain forest with Zonia, an Asháninka girl, in her joyful outdoor adventures. The engaging text emphasizes Zonia’s empowering bond with her home, while the illustrations—created on paper made from banana bark—burst with luxuriant greens and delicate details. Illuminating back matter includes a translation of the story in Asháninka, information on the Asháninka community, and resources on the Amazon rain forest and its wildlife.”

You can also read my full review of Zonia’s Rain Forest for more information.

Be A Tree by Maria Gianferrari, Illustrated by Felicita Sala (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A lyrical, gorgeously illustrated look at the majesty of trees—and what humans can learn from them.

Stand tall.
Stretch your branches to the sun.
Be a tree!
We are all like trees: our spines, trunks; our skin, bark; our hearts giving us strength and support, like heartwood. We are fueled by air and sun.
And, like humans, trees are social. They “talk” to spread information; they share food and resources. They shelter and take care of one another. They are stronger together.

In this gorgeous and poetic celebration of one of nature’s greatest creations, acclaimed author Maria Gianferrari and illustrator Felicita Sala both compare us to the beauty and majesty of trees—and gently share the ways in which trees can inspire us to be better people.”

The Water Lady: How Darlene Arviso Helps A Thirsty Navajo Nation by Alice B McGinty, Illustrated by Shonto Begay (Bookshop | Amazon)

“This inspiring picture book tells the true story of a woman who brings desperately needed water to families on the Navajo reservation every day.

Underneath the New Mexico sky, a Navajo boy named Cody finds that his family’s barrels of water are empty. He checks the chicken coop– nothing. He walks down the road to the horses’ watering hole. Dry. Meanwhile, a few miles away, Darlene Arviso drives a school bus and picks up students for school. After dropping them off, she heads to another job: she drives her big yellow tanker truck to the water tower, fills it with three thousand gallons of water, and returns to the reservation, bringing water to Cody’s family, and many, many others. Here is the incredible and inspiring true story of a Native American woman who continuously gives back to her community and celebrates her people.”

Watercress by Andrea Wang, Illustrated by Jason Chin (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Driving through Ohio in an old Pontiac, a young girl’s parents stop suddenly when they spot watercress growing wild in a ditch by the side of the road. Grabbing an old paper bag and some rusty scissors, the whole family wades into the muck to collect as much of the muddy, snail covered watercress as they can.

At first, she’s embarrassed. Why can’t her family get food from the grocery store? But when her mother shares a story of her family’s time in China, the girl learns to appreciate the fresh food they foraged. Together, they make a new memory of watercress.

Andrea Wang tells a moving autobiographical story of a child of immigrants discovering and connecting with her heritage, illustrated by award winning author and artist Jason Chin, working in an entirely new style, inspired by Chinese painting techniques. An author’s note in the back shares Andrea’s childhood experience with her parents.”

Mindful Moves by Nicole Cardoza, Illustrated by Marta Antelo (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Mindfulness is proven to boost children’s physical, mental, and socio-emotional development, but establishing the practice requires making it a part of daily life. With delightful illustrations and kid-friendly language, Mindful Moves introduces kids to simple mindfulness activities that are fun, easy to remember, and available for kids to turn to any time the need arises, no matter where they are. Check Your Inner Weather encourages children to tune into how they feel in the moment and accept their feelings without judgement. Pose like a Superhero helps fill kids with inner strength and confidence, while Breathe like a Walrus helps them channel frustration or anger through breath and facial relaxation. Each of the meditation, mindfulness, yoga, and movement activities is designed to help kids stay calm, be present, and feel focused and happy. Whether it’s before a busy day at school, in the backseat of the car, during a test, or heading off to bed, this is a guide kids can refer to again and again!”

Game, Set, Sisters! by Jay Leslie, Illustrated by Ebony Glenn (Bookshop | Amazon)

“A stirring picture book biography of Venus and Serena Williams that celebrates their achievements…and their sisterhood.

This is the story of two sisters…
who took the tennis world by storm,
who achieved everything possible in the sport…and then some,
and who stood by one another through thick and thin.

Featuring illustrations by Ebony Glenn, Jay Leslie’s Game, Set, Sisters! The Story of Venus and Serena Williams tells the inspirational story of two of the most beloved athletes in history. It takes us from their beginnings on a crumbling Compton tennis court to their shining achievements on the most prestigious stages and shows us that despite being served the most challenging hardships in life―illness, family, loss, racism―Venus and Serena always continued to swing back stronger.”

Fatima’s Great Outdoors by Ambreen Tariq, Illustrated by Stevie Lewis (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Fatima Khazi is excited for the weekend. Her family is headed to a local state park for their first camping trip! The school week might not have gone as planned, but outdoors, Fatima can achieve anything. She sets up a tent with her father, builds a fire with her mother, and survives an eight-legged mutant spider (a daddy longlegs with an impressive shadow) with her sister. At the end of an adventurous day, the family snuggles inside one big tent, serenaded by the sounds of the forest. The thought of leaving the magic of the outdoors tugs at Fatima’s heart, but her sister reminds her that they can keep the memory alive through stories–and they can always daydream about what their next camping trip will look like.

Ambreen Tariq’s picture book debut, with cheerful illustrations by Stevie Lewis, is a rollicking family adventure, a love letter to the outdoors, and a reminder that public land belongs to all of us.”

Don’t miss my full review of Fatima’s Great Outdoors for more detail.

Chapter Books

Ellie Tames The Tiger (The Critter Club #22) by Callie Barkley, Illustrated by Tracy Bishop (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Ellie is paired up with a classmate, Paul, on a special dance number for the school play. But right from the start, Paul gives her the cold shoulder! Will Ellie and Paul be able to patch things up in time to take the stage together?

Meanwhile, Marion, Ellie, Liz, and Amy rescue an adorable kitten named Tiger…but he can’t stop causing mischief in the Critter Club barn! Can the girls team up to help Tiger—and find him a new home?

With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, The Critter Club chapter books are perfect for beginning readers.”

Ada Lace Adventures Collection (The Complete Set) by Emily Calandrelli, Illustrated by Renee Kurilla (Bookshop | Amazon)

“From Emily Calandrelli—host of Emmy-nominated Xploration Outer Space, correspondent on Bill Nye Saves the World, and graduate of MIT—comes the first four novels in a fun illustrated chapter book series about an eight-year-old girl with a knack for science, math, and solving mysteries with technology—now available in a collectible boxed set!

Third grader and inventor extraordinaire Ada Lace uses her love of science and technology to solve problems and mysteries in her new neighborhood.

This collection includes:
Ada Lace, on the Case
Ada Lace Sees Red
Ada Lace Take Me to Your Leader
Ada Lace and the Impossible Mission”

Middle Grade

Horse Girl by Carrie Seim (Bookshop | Amazon)

“Wills is a seventh grader who’s head-over-hoof for horses, and beyond excited when she gets the chance to start training at the prestigious Oakwood Riding Academy. But Amara–the Queen of the #HorseGirls–and her posse aren’t going to let the certifiably dork-tagious Wills trot her way into their club so easily. Between learning the reins of horse riding, dealing with her Air Force pilot mom being stationed thousands of miles from home, and keeping it together in front of (gasp!) Horse Boys, Wills learns that becoming a part of the #HorseGirl world isn’t easy. But with her rescue horse, Clyde, at her side, it sure will be fun.

Complete with comedic, original hoof notes to acquaint the less equestrian among us, Horse Girl delivers everything a young readers wants: mean girls, boy problems, and embarrassingly goofy dad jokes. And it does so on the back of a pony,”

Fans In The Stands (The Kicks #12) by Alex Morgan (Bookshop | Amazon)

“From FIFA World Cup Champion, Olympic gold medalist, and bestselling author Alex Morgan comes the twelfth and final book in an empowering and fun-filled middle grade series about soccer and friendship.

There’s only two games separating the Kicks from the regional championship title. And with the Kentville Kangaroos boys’ team also on their way to the championship, Devin can’t contain her excitement for her friends!

That is until Steve, Devin’s crush, admits that he doesn’t think girl soccer players are as good as the boys.

Devin’s certain that the only want to prove him wrong is to work hard and player harder, like she’s always done. Instead, the Kicks and the Kangaroos place a bet: Whoever can get the most fans in the stands at their games is clearly the better team.

But when their plans to bring in spectators puts both of their championship games in jeopardy, Devin has to make a choice. Is beating the boys worth risking the title the Kicks have played so hard for?”

That’s all I have for today. Hopefully you found one or two to add to your young reader’s shelves!

Did I miss any releases you’re excited for? Don’t forget to share in the comments below!

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