2023 Children's Books · Children's Book Recommendations

Father Picture Book Recommendations

Father picture book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Picture Books

A boy and his dad lying down in the back of a pickup truck looking up to the stars

A Bed of StarsΒ 

byΒ Jessica LoveΒ (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Candlewick. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-1536212396.

Brief summary: A boy with trouble falling asleep goes camping with his father. They pack up the pickup truck, Darlin’, and head for the desert. His father tells him about the plants and animal tracks. They build a fire and watch the sun set while sitting on the hood of the pickup until the stars come out. They get in the sleeping bag in the truck bed, enjoying the stars above them.

His father is able to teach his son how to connect with the universe and not feel so small. They drive home, where Mom has a surprise waiting for their boy.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Picture book cover of Finding Papa with a little girl on her mother's back as they wade through a river. Mai is thinkin of the crocodiles her father told her about living in the river.

Finding Papa 

by Angela Pham Krans (Author), Thi Bui (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž HarperCollins, 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0063060968.

Brief summary:Β Mai and her papa like to play crocodile chomp with their hands. Papa leaves Vietnam to go to America to make a better life for his wife and daughter. Mai does not understand where her father has gone and waits for him to return each day to play. Mama packs and bag and takes her little one on a long journey through the rice paddies, across a river, and onto a boat across the ocean to a refugee camp in Singapore until they are released when Mama travels in the city to find her husband.

This story is based on the author and her mother, who journeyed in 1983 from Vietnam to America. Both author and illustrator share their families’ journey of immigration.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

A young Chris Paul sitting on the shoulder of his granddad, Papa Chilly

Basketball DreamsΒ 

byΒ Chris PaulΒ (Author),Β Courtney LovettΒ (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Roaring Brook Press. 2023. Prek-2. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-1250810038.

Brief summary: Chris wants to become a basketball player and looks up to his granddad, Papa Chilly, for guidance as the man’s dreams have come true. He gets up early to practice. He learns how to be a good team player and to help others. Papa Chilly attends Chris’s games and cheers him on.

The back page has Chris Paul’s recollection of his grandfather and a photo of them.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

A father and son holding fishing poles while walking down a path with trees around them

Daddy & Me, Side by SideΒ 

byΒ Pierce FreelonΒ (Author),Β Nadia FisherΒ (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. 2023. Prek-2. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-0316055864.

Brief summary:Β A father and son go camping together. As they hike and fish, the father shares how he did the same with his father, who recently died. It almost feels like Pop-Pop is there with them as they create new and share old memories of being together.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

A proud little girl wearing a baseball hat and jean jacket standing in front of a large and red semi  truck

Trucker KidΒ 

byΒ Carol Gordon EksterΒ (Author),Β Russ CoxΒ (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Capstone Editions. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-1684466214.

Brief summary: Athena misses her father when he is trucking and has to leave the family for days. She loves ANYTHING to do with eighteen-wheelers and is proud to be a Trucker Kid. She shares her joy and enthusiasm with the kids at school. Her classmates understand her passion once her father visits the school via his semi to share everything about his job.

The back pages have sections Keep on Trucking and Author’s Note.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Baba sitting on the persian rug with his six daughters

Baba’s Gift: A Persian Father’s Love of FamilyΒ 

byΒ Ariana Shaheen AminiΒ (Author),Β Christina Maheen AminiΒ (Author),Β Elaheh TaherianΒ (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Little Bigfoot. 2023. Grades 2-4. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-1632173232.

Brief summary: Baba shares stories with his six daughters while they sit and play on the Persian carpet of his boyhood in Iran and his stories of immigrating to America.

This is based on the true story of Dr. Fariborz Amini. Authors’ Notes in the back have a photo of the lovely family.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Kate is sitting on her father's shoulders with her backpack on

Hurry, Kate, or You’ll Be Late!

byΒ Janice N. HarringtonΒ (Author),Β Tiffany RoseΒ (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Margaret Ferguson Books. 2023. PreK-1. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-0823445103.

Brief summary: Kate was late to preschool this morning, but why? Was it because of her breakfast? Because she and her dad stopped to wave at friends?

Young readers will follow Kate and her father’s journey to go to preschool and ask to figure out and predict why Kate was late.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

 A girl and her Pop bearing into a box

Pop’s Perfect PresentΒ 

byΒ Corey FinkleΒ (Author),Β Lenny WenΒ (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Henry Holt and Co. (BYR). 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-1250819444.

Brief summary: A young girl tries to think of the best gift to give her father because he is such a wonderful Pop. As they spend the day together, each attempt of creating the present is a failure. Will she be able to give her father the perfect present?

Humorous rhyming with a fun rhythm.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

A boy on the shoulders of his father; both are eating a doughnut

No Fair!Β 

byΒ Jacob GrantΒ (Author, Illustrator).Publisher ‏ : β€ŽΒ Viking Books for Young Readers. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€ŽΒ 978-0593117699.

Brief summary: Pablo and his father get on their bikes while their dog, Waffles, runs aside them. It’s Market Day, and Pablo wants a donut, but it is allowed once all the shopping is finished. As Pablo tries to help, he finds that everything he picks out is too big. He protests, “Not fair!” Will he realize with the help of his dad that not all things are fair?

This book could be a shared read-aloud with the father’s voice in black ink and the son’s in red.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

A father and his song djing together

My Dad Is a DJ 

by Kathryn Erskine (Author), Keith Henry Brown (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0374307424.

Brief summary: Trevor’s parents separate, and his father moves out. They once shared time listening to music late in the night after his father returned from being DJ. They would shoot baskets after school. He would even hear his father dedicate songs to him over the radio.

Lately, though, they have yet to connect since he moved out. His food preferences are different. He has a new friend his father has yet to meet. The end-of-the-year dance is coming up that his father has DJed. Will combining the latest hip-hop that Trevor likes and the soul his father favors work out? Will DJing together bring them closer?

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Different family members of various ethinic backgrounds in a selfie pose

Dad and Daddy’s Big Big Family 

by Seamus Kirst (Author), Karen Bunting (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Magination Press. 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1433840388.

Brief summary:Β Harper packs a suitcase and drives to a huge family reunion in a park with her fathers, where she meets family members for the first time, like her cousins, second cousins, and first cousins once removed. She also meets family she already knows. Harper learns that she has some things the same and different from everyone, but they are all connected by their love for one another.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

A father making a pink dress for his daughter who is hugging him from behind

Daddy Dressed Me 

by Michael Gardner (Author), Ava Gardner (Author), Nadia Fisher (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Aladdin. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1665921954.

Brief summary: Ava’s father is good at making things but especially sewing her dresses for special occasions. She will recite a poem onstage during Move Up Day and is worried she will forget the words.

Her father tells the nervous girl that he will help her memorize the lines and would like to sew a unique dress to boost her confidence. Will both of their hard work pay off on the big day?

Based on a true story which can be found in the back–The Story Behind the Story. Loved to see the photos of the real father and daughter duo.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Maribel touching the koi pond making circular ripples

Maribel’s Year 

by Michelle Sterling (Author), Sarah Gonzales (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Katherine Tegen Books. 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0063114357.

Brief summary: Maribel must wait an entire year before her father, who is in the Philippines, can rejoin his daughter and wife in America. Each month the young girl tells about the memories of her father and the emotional thoughts she has that he is with them again.

Illustrations change with each month and capture the feelings and thoughts of Maribel.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Man with a robin sitting in its nest on top of his head

My Dad Is a Tree 

by Jon Agee (Author). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Rocky Pond Books. 2023. Prek-2. Hardcover picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593531372.

Brief summary: A young girl asks her father to stand with his arms outstretched and become a tree.

This whimsical story continues throughout the day, with more creatures visiting the father and making themselves comfortable as though he were a real tree.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Father Bear holding his song

Papa’s Home 

by David Soman (Author). Publisher ‏ : β€ŽLittle, Brown Books for Young Readers. 2023. PreK-2. Hardback picture book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0316427838.

Brief summary: Papa is going away for a little while, and Aunt Jessie will come to take care of the little bear. Father and son spend the day doing activities together. At the same time, the child asks questions about what it will be like when the father is away. The father quietly answers his child’s many questions with reassurance that everything will be okay.

Lovely illustrations that capture the emotional expressions of the father and child.

The text in this book allows for a reader’s theater opportunity with the child’s voice in green ink; Papa’s in purple ink.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Board Books

Toddler being held by her father

Daddy’s Hugs and Snuggles 

by Linda Ashman (Author), Jane Massey (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Cartwheel Books. 2023. Baby-3. Board book with thick cardstock(not cardboard). ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1338854046.

Brief summary: A child tells in rhyme what their father does with them in that part of the day while another child continues until young readers have learned the morning, noon, and evening routines.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of Daddy and Me with children and fathers

Daddy and Me 

by Gary Urda (Author), Rosie Butcher (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž little bee books. 2023. Baby-3. Board book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1499813517.

Brief summary: Each child shares what activity they share with their father.

Diverse with different families, backgrounds, and what the child calls their father. Papa, Dada, Pops, Baba, and so forth.

The illustrations are full pages with happy and bright colors matching the happiness of each child and father relationship.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Puzzles

Jigsaw Puzzles for Book Lovers

Literary jigsaw puzzle recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

The last time I put together jigsaw puzzles was when I was a little girl. My husband and I did one together during the beginning of the pandemic and found them to be entertaining. We are creating a literary jigsaw puzzle wall in my office by gluing the puzzle pieces onto a backing. I like to do them while watching(well, listening to) a British or American mystery on the TV. I’m hooked because, like my TBR book stack, I have a “to-be-connected” jigsaw puzzle collection.

Cat Jigsaw Puzzles

Beachcombers with cats and kittens sunning and reading on a beach

Beachcombers–300 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Collection of children's cat books

This is an adorable 1,000 piece puzzle with a collection of various cat books.

For more details, click here.

Storytime Cats sitting on books

Storytime Cats–500 jigsaw puzzle pieces. I have this one but have not put it together yet.

For more details, click here.

I opened mine for you to see inside:

Frederick the Literate of a tabby cat sleeping on a bookshelf

If you are a cat and book lover, Frederick the Literate with 750 jigsaw puzzle pieces could be for you. I put together this one and have it hanging on my wall.

For more details, click here.

Dog Jigsaw Puzzles

Collection of dog book covers

Dog stories–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Dogs on a desk with a manual typewriter and vase of flowers

The Writer’s Dogs–750 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Children’s Books and Young Adult Jigsaw Puzzles

Collection of picture book covers

Storytime (Picture Books)–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces. I have this one on a wall in our house.

For more details, click here.

I have this one on my wall:

Collection of children's books' covers

One thousand piece jigsaw puzzle of children’s books.

For more details, click here.

Young adult book covers

Young Adult Books--1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Classic Novels Jigsaw Puzzles

covers of classic books

This 1,000 piece puzzle is a collection of 50 Best Classic Books with titles like The Catcher in The Rye, Catch-22, and Of Mice and Men.

For more details, click here.

covers of Jane Austen book covers

Jane Austen lovers look no more. 1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces with an assortment of book covers over the years.

For more details, click here.

collection of American novels

American novels–1,000 Jigsaw Puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

collection of British novels

British Classics–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces.

For more details, click here.

Mystery and Horror Jigsaw Puzzles

Collection of murder mystery book covers

Murder Mystery Books–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Collection of mystery book covers

Mystery Books–1,000 jigsaw puzzle books

For more details, click here.

Collection of Stephen King book covers

Stephen King Books–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Collection of Edgar Allan Poe book covers

Edgar Allan Poe’s Literary 1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Collection of horror book covers

Horror Books–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Cookbook Jigsaw Puzzles

Collection of vintage cookbook covers

This is a cute one if you love to cook. Vintage Cookbooks–500 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Collection of Betty Crocker cookbook covers

Betty Crocker Cookbooks–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Bookstore Jigsaw Puzzles

instide a bookstore

Bizarre Bookshop 2–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces. I own this own but have not put it together.

For more details, click here.

I opened mine for you to see inside:

Inside a book palace with a second floor of bookshelves and an orage cat sitting on a table

The Book Palace–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

outside of a bookstore with a black cat sitting outside

Black Cat Books–500 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Very detailed bookstore with many floors and different book sections

In the Bookstore–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Old fashion bookstore with an old register. boy with a dog on a leash; older titles displayer

Old Book Store–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Miscellaneous

Abstract world of humans and books

Book World–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Collection of older books

Vintage Book Covers–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

Person reading with a cup of coffee inside a cozy room

Cozy Retreat–500 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

First lines of literature all over the box

First Lines of Literature–1,000 jigsaw puzzle pieces

For more details, click here.

2023 Children's Books · Children's Book Recommendations

Narrative Nonfiction Picture Books-Spring 2023

Narrative nonfiction picture book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book Cover of Finding Family: The Duckling Raised by Loons with a fuzzy little duckling riding the back of a loon in the water

Finding Family: The Duckling Raised by Loons 

by Laura Purdie Salas (Author), Alexandria Neonakis (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Millbrook Press β„’ . 2023. Grades PreK-2. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1728442990.

Brief summary: A mother and father loon raise a mallard duckling. The duckling learns the ways of the loons, like eating minnows and taking food from them.

This story in verse is based on a true story in 2019 in a Wisconsin Lake as part of the Loon Project, where researchers observed a loon pair taking care of a duckling. What makes this unique is that loons usually drive away mallard ducks.

The back pages include sections such as Is This Story True?, The Intruder, and Very Different Birds(with a Venn Diagram).

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Rise to the Sky cover of the narrative nonfiction book that tells about tall trees with tall trees with deer eating grass underneath

Rise to the Sky: How the World’s Tallest Trees Grow Up 

by Rebecca E. Hirsch (Author), Mia Posada (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Millbrook Press β„’. 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1728440873.

Brief summary: Young readers will learn about a tree’s life cycle from a tiny sprout to a tall tree.

Back sections include How Does a Tall Tree Grow?, Where Do the Tallest Trees Live?, and two activities.

The illustrations are cut-paper collages with watercolor but have photographs of the tallest trees in the back of the book.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Special Delivery cover with sky blue background with various means of transportation all done in cartoon style

Special Delivery: A Book’s Journey Around the World 

by Polly Faber (Author), Klas FahlΓ©n (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick Press. 2023. K-3. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick Press.

Brief summary: A book is made and journeys in various forms of transportation across the city, sea, and through the country until it reaches Pip’s Bookshop, where it is bought and sent to a grandson.

The back has Special Delivery Numbers of interesting statistics about the book’s journey.

Full, detailed illustrations with bright colors. I stopped and looked at each page to get more details of the transportation story from them.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Cover of Yoshi with a little green turtle swimming in the ocean with other fish and plants

Yoshi, Sea Turtle Genius: A True Story About an Amazing Swimmer 

by Lynne Cox (Author), Richard Jones (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Anne Schwartz Books. 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593425688.

Brief summary: A Loggerhead hatchling finds her way across the Australian beach when the moon is full. She swims for the first time in the Indian Ocean, encountering many marine and land animals and fish on her journey.

The turtle is tangled in a net until a fisherman rescues her and helps her return to good health. Unable to keep the turtle, the fisherman gives her to an aquarium, where she is released into the sea with a tracking device. People can watch where she swims in the ocean. Will she make it back to her home?

This is a true story with more information in the Author’s Note.

I kept reading to find out more about Yoshi and if she was going to be okay or not.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of Poop for Breakfast with various animals around a kitchen table with pile of poop on a plate

Poop for Breakfast: Why Some Animals Eat It 

by Sara Levine (Author), Florence Weiser (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Millbrook Press β„’. 2023. Grades 1-4. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1728457963.

Brief summary: Young readers will learn about why some animals eat feces. One can read a simple narrative or include a more correlating detailed description as the story continues teaching readers everything they need to know, including the correct terminology of why animals eat poop.

Well, I learned a lot from reading this book and recommend it to children and adults who desire to learn more about this topic, which was done in a very tasteful manner (excuse the pun).

The back sections include The Scoop on Poop, Be a Book Detective, By Any Other Name, and Further Reading.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Jumper: A Day in the Life of a Backyard Jumping Spider 

by Jessica Lanan (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Roaring Brook Press . 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1250810366.

Brief summary:  As soon as I open the book, I meet the main character as big as bean, Jumper, a jumping spider. Jumper is hungry and goes hunting for food in the family’s backyard. She jumps without worry as her silk is a safety line. Vibrations help the spider know if a predator or prey is nearby. Will Jumper ever find dinner, or will she become dinner?

Excellent back sections with more details about his spider, with close-ups illustrated by hand. A few other spiders are discussed, along with the life cycle of a jumping spider. There is a Glossary, Author’s Note, Finding and Identifying Spiders, and Resources sections.

This book begins and ends on the paste-down end pages. There is a fold-out demonstrating how a spider sees with eight eyes.

This book asks readers questions to pause and reflect upon the spider’s life. Dialogic reading.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

The Forest Keeper– The True Story of Jadav Payeng 

by Rina Singh (Author), Ishita Jain (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž NorthSouth Books. 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0735845053.

Brief summary: Jadav Payeng, a tribal boy living in India, went to the elders in 1979 when the Brahmaputra River took large parts of the islands’ land mass away when it flooded. He wanted them to help him plant trees on an island called Majuli to help prevent the island from disappearing.

The forest department gave him bamboo seedlings and told him to plant the forest himself. So, he did. Has the past thirty years of his hard work helped the area and animals?

The front and end pages give more details about this passionate individual whose hard work and dedication completely changed Mujuli Island and the Molai Forest(named after him). It can take just one person to make a significant impact in a positive way.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Nobody Likes Frogs: A Book of Toadally Fun Facts 

by Barbara Davis-Pyles (Author), Liz Wong (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Little Bigfoot. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1632173355.

Brief summary: A turtle narrates how much it does not like frogs while learning all about them as the story progresses. Does the turtle have a change of heart? Will the reader?

The back sections are Frog Facts and Be Somebody Who Likes Frogs by Helping Them!. The pasted-down end pages are full of different types of frogs.

This is a general book about frogs. I learned that frogs can live as long as twenty years.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

2023 Children's Books · Children's Book Recommendations

More Biography Picture Book Recommendations

More biography picture book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Biography picture book cover of Charles Drew with a doctor in a white lab coat and stethoscope around his neck

Charles Drew: The Innovator of the Blood Bank (Bright Minds) 

by Aaron Talley (Author), Subi Bosa (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Children’s Press. 2023. Grades 4-6. Paperback or Hardcover Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1338865356.

Brief summary: Charles Drew created a technique that separates the different parts of blood called centrifuging, which helped the blood stay fresh longer in storage. He is known for improving the blood banks and just in time for World War II when bloodmobiles and the American Red Cross enabled people to give and receive blood wherever they lived.

The back pages have sections such as a glossary, legacy, questions, index, and further reading.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Biography picture book cover of the cover of Eleanor Roosevelt: Her Path to Kindness with a young girl with long blond hair wearing a pink dress sitting on a rock with a book in one hand and violets in the other

Eleanor Roosevelt: Her Path to Kindness

by Helaine Becker (Author), Aura Lewis (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Christy Ottaviano Books. 2023. Grades 1-3. Hardcover Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0316316415.

Brief summary: Eleanor Roosevelt’s parents and brother died within two years of each other. She lived with her Grandmother. At age fifteen, she was sent to a girls’ boarding school in England, where a teacher helped her realize her potential. Eleanor became a leader of the girls and helped everyone. She left her senior year to return to the USA, where she was expected to debut and find a husband but had other plans.

The Author’s note in the back gives more details about Eleanor Roosevelt’s life. Several of her famous quotes are cited.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Cover of You Gotta Meet Mr. Pierce with a man sitting on a chair carving a wooden elephant with shelves of paint

You Gotta Meet Mr. Pierce!: The Storied Life of Folk Artist Elijah Pierce

by Chiquita Mullins Lee (Author), Carmella Van Vleet (Author), Jennifer Mack-Watkins (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Kokila. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593406502.

Brief summary:  Columbus, Ohio, artist Elijah Pierce shares with a young artist how he was inspired to carve wood. Elijah cuts the boy’s hair and continues how he got ideas for his many art pieces hanging all around the barbershop. The boy leaves with a fresh cut and thoughts of creating with his new box of colored pencils his mother gave him earlier.

The back pages contain Elijah Pierce’s honors, Authors’ Notes, Artist’s Note, and information about Elijah Pierce’s Art used in the book.

I remember going to the Columbus Museum of Art and seeing his art and getting to know who the artist was based on his subject matter in the art.

This book contains quotes from Elijah, but the boy in the story is fictional.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Biography picture book cover of Never Give Up with Dr. Kati Kariko wearing a white lab coat. Microscope and beakers are on a table.

Never Give Up: Dr. Kati KarikΓ³ and the Race for the Future of Vaccines 

by Debbie Dadey (Author), Juliana Oakley (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Millbrook Press β„’ . 2023. Grades 2-5. Hardcover Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1728456331.

Brief summary: Hungarian-American scientist Dr. Kati Kariko has always wanted to be a scientist. She studied mRNA(messenger ribonucleic acid) in a biology research center, wondering if she could make new mRNA that would send the message to make suitable proteins for people to heal.

She moved to America and failed to get mRNA to work with cells, so she worked at various universities. She met Drew Weissman, another scientist interested in mRNA. After eight years, they wrote a paper about mRNA. She was offered several jobs but chose to work at BioNTech in Germany. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, scientists at BioNTech and Pfizer worked together to design a vaccine using an mRNA vaccine to fight the virus.

The back pages include Timeline, Steps To Making a Vaccine, Author’s Note, Glossary, Source Notes, and Further Study sections.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of Ice Cream Man with Augustus Jackson offering a scoop of ice-cream with a nice smile

Ice Cream Man: How Augustus Jackson Made a Sweet Treat Better 

by Glenda Armand (Author), Kim Freeman (Author), Keith Mallett (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Crown Books for Young Readers . 2023. PreK-3. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593563229.

Brief summary: Augustus Jackson left his home in Philadelphia at twelve to go to Washington, DC, to follow his dream as a cook. He became an expert at making ice cream. He was hired at the White House and stayed for five years.

He returned home and opened his own ice cream parlor. He created a faster way to freeze ice cream, as refrigerators/freezers still needed to be invented. He could come up with making ice cream in half the time and ship his own ice cream by train without it melting.

Nicknamed the “Father of Ice Cream”

The back pages include Make Your Own Ice-Cream, Afterword, and Sources sections.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of The Firs Woman Cherokee Chief with Wilma Pearl Mankiller talking behind a podium that has a microphone

The First Woman Cherokee Chief: Wilma Pearl Mankiller (Step into Reading) 

by Patricia Morris Buckley (Author), Aphelandra Messer (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Random House Books for Young Readers . 2023. Grades 1-2. Paperback or Hardcover Reader Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593568507.

Brief summary: Wilma Pearl Mankiller lived in Oklahoma on Cherokee lands until a drought caused her father to move to the city for work. Pearl(the name she preferred) hated the city and stayed at her grandmother’s farm for a year. She moved back to the city and connected with other Native people at the American Indian Center.

In 1969, there was a protest at Alcatraz about the Native lands stolen by the government. Pearl supported and helped Native people many times and later became the first female chief of the Cherokee Nation.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of Carol Burnett wearing a blue evening dress with dangling earrings. She is tugging on her left ear.

Carol Burnett: A Little Golden Book Biography 

by Andrea Posner-Sanchez (Author), Kelly Kennedy (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Golden Books. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593481912.

Brief summary: Carol Burnett was born in Texas and was raised by her grandmother, Nanny. When she was seven, they moved to Hollywood, California, where Nanny would take Carol to see several movies weekly. Carol would reenact them on their apartment’s rooftop and later study theater arts in college. After seeing her perform, a stranger gave her $1,000, urging her to go to New York. She had to promise to pay him back in five years and to never reveal his identity. Carol became famous on the Garry Moore Show and then had her own tv show that aired for eleven seasons.

Carol’s famous left ear tug on TV was her way of saying hello to her grandmother, something she did even after the woman’s passing.

If you are unfamiliar with Little Golden Books, they are smaller than a “regular” picture book–Dimensions ‏ : β€Ž 6.63 x 0.19 x 8 inches.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

If you enjoy A Little Golden Book Biographies like I do , click here for more titles; priced affordably.

Biography picture books of Temple Grandin as a child sitting on grass with dogs and cows in the background

I am Temple Grandin (Ordinary People Change the World)

by Brad Meltzer (Author), Christopher Eliopoulos (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Rocky Pond Books. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Biography Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593405970.

Brief summary: Temple Grandin was born with autism and did not act or respond like other babies and toddlers did to things and situations. Her mother found a speech therapist to help Temple speak her first words at age four. Through her sensitivity and empathy towards cattle, she was able to help better design the cattle chute for them to feel calmer and how to build round pens because she noticed they could go around a curve easier. She also discovered how to make cows feel calmer by going down into the water for a bath to get rid of insects on them by changing the steel ramp to a textured concrete one.

Temple was able to go to college and even receive a doctorate degree. She teaches and does research at Colorado State University. The book explains how she thinks and feels in the first-person narrative.

I highly recommend this book for parents, teachers, and librarians to share with those with autism to be inspired by Temple’s life’s accomplishments.

Smaller than an average picture book–Dimensions ‏ : β€Ž 7.94 x 0.33 x 7.88 inches

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Bookmarks

Bookmarks–Eleven Unique Bookmarks

Bookmarks are recommended are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Bookmark is a metal feather with a butterfly charm and dried flower inside a little bulb

Metal Feather Bookmark with Pendant

The feathers and butterflies are available in two colors–silver or golden feather. The pendants have several different flowers inside. Handmade.

For more details, click here.

I am unboxing my purchase:

Magnetic bookmarks of various ocean theme colors

Magnetic Bookmarks

These are magnetic bookmarks that clip together from one side of the page to the next. There are three different designs. The photo is multi ocean. One can pick 15 or 30 bookmarks.

I had a cat that kept pulling my bookmarks out of books but did not with magnetic ones.

For more details, click here.

Flower bookmarks with a good variety of flowers and plants

Flower Bookmarks

There are 30. Printed only on one side. Made of cardstock. Not laminated.

I bought these for my mom who is a garden lover.

For more details, click here.

Funny black cat bookmarks stretched out to look like they are holding onto the top of the page

Black Cat Bookmarks

These are in a set of ten. Plastic. Not too thick or too thin.

I plan to enclose mine in this year’s Halloween cards.

For more details, click here.

Outus 4 Pieces Wood Bookmarks are vintage style with pretty designs on four different bookmarks with a bead tassle.

Outus 4 Pieces Wood Bookmarks

These wood bookmarks come in several different styles. The one seen here is called vintage style. Each bookmark has a different color and design. There is a bead or tassel with each one. Thin enough to use between the pages of a book.

Available here.

I am unboxing my purchase:

Four acrylics with dried flowers with a tassel.

Dried Flower Resin Bookmarks

There are four. Dried flowers inside resin. Tassel. Handmade. A bit thicker than a regular bookmark.

They work for me to use in the magazines and larger books. Very pretty when the sun shines them.

For more details, click here.

Embroidered corner bookmark

Hand Embroidered Corner Bookmark

This is made of felt with a thick cardstock as the backing; not as thick as cardboard. Pick the letter you want and the season. The one in the photo is spring. Embroidered.

For more details, click here.

I am unboxing my purchase:

wooden bookmark with aztect design

Wooden Bookmark–Made in the USA

This is wooden bookmark with four design choices. Personalization is available. Handmade. This is the Aztec design.

For more details, click here.

yellow elastic bookmark with pointer on a book

Elastic Bookmark-Made in Italy

An elastic with a pointer to help keep your place. Different colors available. Be aware that some of the colors are differently priced.

I had some students use these to help them focus on the line while they were reading. I did not get returned library books that were damaged from this type of bookmark although I think it worked better with hardbacks; depending on the sturdiness of the book’s binding and how stretchy the elastic could get from use.

Available here.

funny green plastic bookworm wrapped around the pages of the corner of a book's page

Wally the Bookworm

The worm is made of plastic. Comes in various colors. About four inches.

I did receive one of these from a student as a gift. Very cute.

Available here.

two elastic bookmarks with a tree of life pendant

Tree of Life Elastic Bookmarks

These come in a pair. There are several choices with crystals beaded as the leaves of the tree.

I would recommend using these to keep your place in a diary, planner, affirmation/prayer a day book, or another book with a hardback cover.

Available here.

2023 Children's Books · Children's Book Recommendations

Mother-Themed Children’s Books

Mother-Theme children’s book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Mother-Themed children’s books can be shared throughout the year, not only on Mother’s Day or as a baby shower gift for an expecting mother. Young readers like to cuddle and read with their moms all year long.

Board Books

Cover of ABCs of Love for Mom with mother and baby animals

ABCs of Love for Mom (Books of Kindness)

by Patricia Hegarty (Author), Summer Macon (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Rodale Kids. 2023, Baby-3. Board Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593651926.

Brief summary: A rhyming alphabet book board book teaching the ABCs as well as the correlating social and emotional words that Moms share and do with their children.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

This book is one of the “Books of Kindness” series. Learn more here.

Cover for Mommy's Kisses and Cuddles with a mother holding her child

Mommy’s Kisses and Cuddles 

by Linda Ashman (Author), Jane Massey (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Cartwheel Books. 2023. 3-5 years old. Hardcover. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1338359770.

Brief summary: A calming rhyming book with moms and their children sharing the different parts of the day.

Please note: This books is a cross between a board book and a picture book with heavier cardstock paper but not cardboard. The size is 7.32 x 0.39 x 8.03 inches.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

You may be interested in “Daddy’s Hugs and Snuggles” from this author. Learn more here.

Cover for Amazing Moms with a mother rabbit holding her baby rabbis

Amazing Moms 

by Alison Brown (Author). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Silver Dolphin Books. 2023. Baby-2. Board Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1667203928.

Brief summary: Cute animal moms interact with love and support to their babies, all with rhythm and rhyme.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover for She is Mama. A mother is holding her child with a rainbow behind them in a garden of flowers

She Is Mama 

by Mackenzie Porter (Author), Heather Brockman Lee (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Little Simon. 2023. Baby-2. Board Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1665926980.

Brief summary: Mothers care for their children in various activities and are always there. This book is in rhyme.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Picture Books

Cover of If You Were the Moon, My Love with a purple moon in a quarter crescent

If You Were the Moon, My Love

By Alina Loux (author & illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Ken-Ken Books. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover. ISBN: 979-8-9865279-4-9.

Brief summary: This gentle rhyming and rhythmic lullaby of unconditional love for a parent to a child will give your little one sweet dreams.

Each stanza is a single illustration that extends across both pages with calm, eye-pleasing colors. At the same time, the four-line stanzas have an ABCB rhyming pattern that is soothing to the ears.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover for Sari-Sari- Summers with lola and her granddaughter, Nora in front of the store

Sari-Sari Summers 

by Lynnor Bontigao (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536226140.

Brief summary: Nora is old enough this summer to help her lola, her grandmother, in the sari-sari store in the Philippines. The granddaughter cleans all of the shelves that hold various items in the little store.

A heat wave comes, and all the customers stay home from the hot sun. Lola has an idea to bring back business.

Traditional text as well as speech bubbles. Recipe on the back page. Several two-page spreads.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Cover for Milko with a boy hugging a bunch of pink with monarch butterflies around him

Milko 

by Samuel Narh & Freda Narh (Author), Alisa Knatko (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Chasing A Spider Publishing . 2023. Grades 1-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1734789720.

Brief summary: Milko misses his mother, who has gone to Ethiopia for a year instead of being home with them in Bolivia. His sister, Abena, cries too, but Papa cannot console them. No one does it like Mama.

Milko counts down the days. Will she ever return?

I recommend this to school counselors/librarians/teachers, and parents who are away for jobs/military deployment/social work.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover for One Day of the bacck of a mother holding a baby over her shoulder whose face we see

One Day 

by Joanna Ho (Author), Faith Pray (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž HarperCollins. 2023. Baby-2nd Grade. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0063056923.

Brief summary: A mother cradles her infant son and dreams and shares all the wonderful ways her boy will be as he grows up.

Beautiful two-paged spread illustrations.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of Because I'm Your Mom with a Monster mom with two horns holding her baby monster up in the air

Because I’m Your Mom 

by Ahmet Zappa (Author), Dan Santat (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0316338219.

Brief summary: A monster mom tells her child all the fun and silly things they can share together, no matter how outrageous they may seem.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

If you enjoy this book, you may be interested in reading Because I’m Your Dad.

Cover of Miss Irwin with a pastel image similar to Impressionism style of a woman and a little boy who is holding up a brown bag to her

Miss Irwin 

by Allen Say (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Scholastic Press. 2023. Grades PreK-3. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1338300406.

Brief summary: Andy notices his grandmother’s front door is open and stops by to let her know. He discovers his mother is watering the roses. Andy goes inside the kitchen to keep his Grandma company. He notices a white box and takes it to her, wondering what is inside.

His grandmother believes she is his kindergarten teacher, Miss Irwin. Andy plays along, remembering that his mother told him his grandmother was struggling with her memory. He learns about a boy named Willie and what is inside the box.

Allen Say certainly captured Alzheimer’s with a compassionate story all can understand. The illustrations of the images are not seen clearly and symbolize blurred memories.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of Mommy Time of a mother holding a baby boy and the older sister outside in flowers

Mommy Time 

by Monique James-Duncan (Author), Ebony Glenn (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536212266.

Brief summary: A stay-at-home mom spends time with her boy as the father and sister are away. The daughter is collected from school, and now the two children share mommy time.

The book is about a day in the mom’s life and the time she spends with her children.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

2023 Children's Books · Children's Book Recommendations

Earth Day and Earth Picture Books

Earth Day and Earth picture book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Earth and Earth Day covers

Earth Day Picture Books

Cover of the picture book The Day the River Caught Fire with three children looking at the river on fire

The Day the River Caught Fire: How the Cuyahoga River Exploded and Ignited the Earth Day Movement

by Barry Wittenstein (Author), Jessie Hartland (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books . 2023. Grades 2-5. Hardcover Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1534480834.

Brief summary:  In the summer of 1969, the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland caught fire from the sparks of a train railcar falling into the water. It was not the first time the river caught on fire.

Young readers will learn about how the river became so polluted and what happened to change the pollution from continuously building.

Back pages include sections: Author’s Note, Environmental Time Line, Clean Water Act, To Learn More, and a Bibliography.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

The picture book cover of Black Beach with Sam holding a picket sign saying "Save our planet." Marine animal life are with her while the oil rig is spilling oil onto the water

Black Beach: A Community, an Oil Spill, and the Origin of Earth Day 

by Shaunna & John Stith (Author), Maribel Lechuga (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž little bee books . 2023. Grades K-4. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1499813043.

 Brief summary: Sam is in class in Santa Barbara when she sees her teacher look outside the window after the principal whispers to her and wonders why. Her parents explain to her about Union Oil causing an oil spill near where they live. The family walks to their favorite beach to find that the beach and ocean are black with oil. The town tries to clean the oil from the beach and help the animals covered with it.

A national day was created from this disaster and organized to celebrate and protest the environment which still exists today called Earth Day, April 22, 1970.

There are several sections in the back of the book: Author’s Note, Selected Bibliography, Timeline, Earth Day Today, Earth Day Every Day, and How to Become an Environmental Activist.

Teachers and homeschooling parents could share this book as a supplement in addition with Earth Day activities.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Earth and World Picture Books

Picture book cover of Stillwater and Koo Save the World with a grown panda and a Panda cub walking on the globe of the earth while carrying red umbrellas

Stillwater and Koo Save the World (A Stillwater and Friends Book) 

by Jon J Muth (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Scholastic Press . 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1338812312.

Brief summary: Koo wakes up and wants to save the world, and his uncle suggests cleaning his room first. Throughout the day, the uncle and nephew do small and thoughtful acts. Koo shares his feelings of wanting to save the world and learns how to make a difference in their world through acts of kindness.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Cover of the picture book titled No World Too Big with three children holding up a globe of the earth

No World Too Big: Young People Fighting Global Climate Change

by Lindsay H. Metcalf (Author), Jeanette Bradley (Author, Illustrator), Keila V. Dawson (Author). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Charlesbridge. 2023. 2-5 grade. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1623543136.

Brief summary: Twelve poems written by children worldwide promoting global activisms. A paragraph explains what each child is doing and how the reader can help. 

Back pages include sections: From Me…, To We…, Glossary, Poetry Forms, and About the Poets.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Picture book cover of Cool Green with a grandfather carrying his granddaughter on his shoulder while walking in a forest

Cool Green: Amazing, Remarkable Trees 

by Lulu Delacre (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. PreK -2. Hardcover Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536220407.

Brief summary: A landscaper teaches his granddaughter why he loves trees. Each tree is described in a poem.

Back pages include sections: A Note From the Author-Illustrator, Why Trees?, Cool Facts About the Trees in This Book, For Further Exploration, and A Bibliography.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Cover of the picture book title The Tree and the River with a lone tree on the banks of a river

The Tree and the River 

by Aaron Becker (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. PreK-5. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536223293.

Brief summary: This wordless picture book begins with a tree growing on the banks of a river. It observes humans throughout the many decades changing with the seasons and years that have gone by.

Aaron Becker brilliantly captures the Mother Nature vs. humankind aspect through these detailed and thought-provoking illustrations.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Picture book cover of Flipflopi with a boy and his father building a boat with the community in the background collect plastic out of the ocean.

Flipflopi: How a Boat Made from Flip-Flops Is Helping to Save the Ocean 

by Linda Ravin Lodding (Author), Dipesh Pabari (Author), Michael Machira Mwangi (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Beaming Books. 2023. K-3. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1506486406.

Brief summary: Juma walks with his grandfather to go fishing on the beach and is met with all sorts of plastic trash and thousands of flip-flops. The community comes together and gathers all of the endless plastic waste and melts it to make a dhow boat.

This is based a on a true story which is explained in the back pages along with sections: Ocean Pollution, How Dan You Help?, and Glossary.

What a “make lemonade out of lemons” story!

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Cover of Climate Warriors showing various photos of the different scientist with a green background.

Climate Warriors: Fourteen Scientists and Fourteen Ways We Can Save Our Planet

by Laura Gehl (Author). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Millbrook Press. 2023. Grades 3-8. Hardcover Nonfiction. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1728460406.

Brief summary: There is an introduction to define climate change before each of the fourteen scientists’ chapter. There are a variety of different scientists who explains ways they are working and studying to help the Earth. Each section concludes with recommendations from the scientist and what we can do.

The book ends with ideas of how we all can be a climate warrior.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

The picture book cover of The World and Everything In It with bits and piece of the illustrations inside all around the title such as a dog, cloud, kitten, and so on

The World and Everything in It

by Kevin Henkes (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Greenwillow Books. 2023. PreK-1. Hardcover Picture Book.ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0063245648.

Brief summary: This book shares what is around us in the world: big, small, and between. The soft and calming illustrations are done with brown ink and watercolor paint, demonstrating the size differences.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

The picture book cover of You Are My Pride with a large sailboat on the blue ocean

You Are My Pride: A Love Letter from Your Motherland 

by Carole Boston Weatherford (Author), E. B. Lewis (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Astra Young Readers. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1635923872.

Brief summary: This touching poem, illustrated with large two-page illustrations done in watercolors, is a lovely letter from Mother Nature telling her human children how much she has loved them since the beginning of their creation on Earth.

Back pages briefly explain the Developments in Early Human Evolution.

Educators–this would be a great supplement to use with the different viewpoints unit of study.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

2023 Children's Books · Children's Book Recommendations

New Poetry Picture Books

Poetry picture book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Cover of a poetry picture book titled How to Write a Poem done with a girl riding a unicycle over a bunch of wheels

How to Write a Poem

by Kwame Alexander (Author), Deanna Nikaido (Author), Melissa Sweet (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Quill Tree Books. 2023. Grades 3-5. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0063060906.

Brief summary: Young readers (and future poetry writers) are encouraged to feel and use their imagination as they observe the world around them. They are inspired to write it down as poetry.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

If you enjoy this book, you may also like How to Read a Book.

Cover of a poetry picture book titled Push-Pull Morning with a child hugging a dog

Push-Pull Morning: Dog-Powered Poems About Matter and Energy 

by Lisa Westberg Peters (Author), Serge Bloch (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Wordsong. 2023. Grades 2-4. Hardcover Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1635925272.

Brief summary: A fun introduction to physics in free verse poetry about a child and dog experiencing everyday life.


Each poem’s physics correlation is explained at the back of the book. This book could be shared in science units when each physics aspect is introduced to give students an idea of seeing it in the world around them.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Poetry picture book cover of Where I Live with a child playing in a park in a city with stores and apartment buildings in the background.

Where I Live: Poems About My Home, My Street, and My Town 

by Paul B. Janeczko (Author), Hyewon Yum (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. 1-3. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536200942.

Brief summary: This is a collection of twenty-four poems divided into three sections: home, street, and town. The variety of poets and authors is diverse, with examples of several different types of poemsβ€”an excellent poetry addition to any library.

The illustrator captures the mood and characteristics of each poem.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

Poetry picture book cover of The Dream Train with a girl holding  a megaphone riding on a train with the background of bright colors all swirled together

The Dream Train: Poems for Bedtime 

by Sean Taylor (Author), Anuska Allepuz (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536228342.

Brief summary: Thirty poems are divided into three sections: Night Arrives, Shut-Your-Eyes Time, and Dream Wheels Turning. The poems are a variety of different forms and with a variety of settings and characters. 

The illustrations are colorful and completely fill all of the pages. Very well done.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Poetry picture book cover of Trees with a child sitting on a branch of a tree looking into a lake

Trees: Haiku from Roots to Leaves 

by Sally M. Walker (Author), Angela Mckay (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. Grades 2-5. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536215502.

Brief summary: This is a collection of haikus about a tree’s life cycle and the changes of every season. There are many two-paged illustrations.

The back pages have information about a tree’s life, including wild and urban forests. There is also an author’s note and a glossary.

For more details, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Author quotes · Children's Book Recommendations

Four New Picture Books–Origins

Origins picture book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Sunrise

New Picture Books

The picture book cover of We Go Way Back with two molecules with eyes are beginning to separate into two

We Go Way Back: A Book About Life on Earth and How it All Began

by Idan Ben-Barak (Author), Philip Bunting (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Roaring Brook Press. 2023. Grades 1-4. Narrative Nonfiction Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1250850799.

Brief summary: Young readers examine the definition of “life” and where it all begins. The book explores a complex question by breaking it down into a slow progression of how the earth was created and how molecules formed.

Large and colorful illustrations also help clarify the concepts.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

The picture book cover of Remember with red and pink Mother Nature images around the beautiful face of the girl with long braided black hair

Remember 

by Joy Harjo (Author), Michaela Goade (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Random House Studio. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0593484845.

Brief summary: The poem encourages a young girl to remember one’s heritage, parents, and Mother Nature through reflection of how all is connected.

The eye appealing two-page glossy illustrations are in the voice of the Indigenous culture.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

The picture book cover of We Are Human Animals with a child and wolf looking into each other's eyes

We Are Human Animals 

by Rosie Haine (Author and Illustrator). Eerdmans Books for Young Readers. 2023. K-3. Narrative Nonfiction Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0802856012.

Brief summary: The family and people are Upper Paleolithic hunter-gathers who lived about 25,000 years ago when humans rose with the sun and slept when it set. They made tools from Nature around them, ate what they picked or caught, and everything they owned was handmade. Some animals were their friends, while others were eaten (or run from). The stars were their GPS. They were closer to Nature. We are still human animals but are very different today in many ways.

Author’s Note briefly explains how the first humans lived on Earth.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

How the Sea Came to Be: (And All the Creatures In It) 

by Jennifer Berne (Author), Amanda Hall (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Eerdmans Books for Young Readers. 2023. K-4. Narrative Nonfiction Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-0802854780.

Brief summary: This narrative nonfiction picture book is divided into Part One: The Birth of the Sea, Part Two: The Birth of Life, Part Three: All That the Sea Came to Be…From Then to Now, and a section of informative back pages including a foldout of ocean creatures over time.

The text is in a stanza of four lines with lines 2 & 4 rhyming. The illustrations are large and colorful and had me stopping to soak up the way the creatures were evolving.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

2023 Children's Books · Children's Book Recommendations

New Picture Books About Library Books

Library book picture book recommendations are by Angela Ferraris, The Retired School Librarian.

(This content contains Amazon affiliate links. When you buy through these links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you).

Cover of picture book, This is a Story, of a girl book hugging a book.

This Is a Story 

by John Schu (Author), Lauren Castillo (Illustrator). Publisher: β€Ž Candlewick. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1536204520.

Brief summary: The title page begins this story with a girl receiving a library card from her father.

One word on a page of a book from a shelf waits in a library. A little girl walks to the library with her father and younger sibling. She goes into the children’s section carrying a seahorse kite, where a librarian helps her narrow her search from many of the books to the perfect one–a sea horse library book. She begins to read. Other readers in the area are reading books we all know and love that are connected to our hearts and imagination.

The little girl has found her special library book and now helps her younger brother find his. She uses her library card to check out.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 4/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

If you enjoy this book, you may like John Schu’s This is a School.

Cover of picture book, This Book is my Best Friend with two children in a library both pulling in opposite directions of a book

This Book Is My Best Friend 

by Robin Robinson (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. 2023. PreK-2. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1665906814.

Brief summary: Two best friends, Sunny and Aarush, want to check out the same library book, Factory Friends, but there is only one copy. They each try to persuade the other why the book is their best friend and needs it more. Having failed at trying to book talk each other into other books to check out instead, they realize how to share the library book.

I recommend this book to school librarians who have students fighting over a book, as I have done many times in my school libraries. (They did not always share, so I had a big die on my desk. The one who rolled the highest number could read it first).

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3.5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—1/2

Cover of Palace of Books with author and illustrator, Patricia Polacco as a girl looking at the Willard Library

Palace of Books 

by Patricia Polacco (Author, Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books. 2023. PreK-5. Hardcover Picture Book. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1534451315.

Brief summary: As a girl, Patricia Polacco’s family moves from Union City to Battle Creek, Michigan. It is hard for her to adjust from living in a rural area with birds, trees, and wheat fields to a place in the city. She is thrilled that a bird has a nest in a tree outside her bedroom.

One day she walks home from school, taking a different route, and discovers a stately building with giant pillars along the front with many steps leading up to a porch.

She discovers it is the Willard Library and full of books for people to borrow. She gets up enough courage to go inside, where she meets the librarian, Mrs. Creavy, who helps her find bird books and even shares the notable books of John James Audubon, full of watercolors of birds.

Soon, Patricia paints birds and shares them with her class. Mrs. Creavy has given the class tickets to visit the Bird Sanctuary. This sparks an Audubon bird club at Fremont Elementary School for the next sixty years.

I will always recommend a book by Patricia Polacco, as she is one of the best storytellers and illustrators in the USA. I was honored to have her as a guest author for our elementary school. I will always cherish having lunch with this legendary author and illustrator that day in our little elementary library.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 5/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—

The Library Fish Learns to Read (The Library Fish Books) 

by Alyssa Satin Capucilli  (Author), Gladys Jose  (Illustrator). Publisher ‏ : β€Ž Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books. PreK-2. 2023. Hardcover. ISBN-13 ‏ : β€Ž 978-1534477070.

Brief summary: Library Fish lives in a bowl on Mr. Hughes’s, the librarian, desk where she watches the students check books in and out of the public library. One day, she is listening to Mr. Hughes tell a story about a dog learning how to read and is inspired that she too would like to learn to read. After the librarian said good night, Library Fish gets out of her bowl (with special accommodations), and begins to teacher her self the ABCs. Each night she practices until she can read books.

For more details or to buy, click here.

Rating: 3/5 πŸ“—πŸ“—πŸ“—