The Children’s Book Review | March 1, 2015
Hot New Releases & Popular Kids Stories
Wow! This is a great month for picture books—amazing picture book authors and sensational illustrators star in this month’s new release kids books. Plus, The Penderwicks in Spring is here! Did you hear that? The Penderwicks in Spring is here! As well as the next installment of the Seraphina series from Rachel Hartman. What a month! Enjoy perusing our picks for six kids and teen books that we feel represent some of the best new kids stories …
Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt
By Kate Messner; Illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal
Publisher’s synopsis: In this exuberant and lyrical follow-up to the award-winning Over and Under the Snow, discover the wonders that lie hidden between stalks, under the shade of leaves . . . and down in the dirt. Explore the hidden world and many lives of a garden through the course of a year! Up in the garden, the world is full of green—leaves and sprouts, growing vegetables, ripening fruit. But down in the dirt exists a busy world—earthworms dig, snakes hunt, skunks burrow—populated by all the animals that make a garden their home.
Ages 5-8 | Publisher: Chronicle Books | Mar. 3, 2015 | ISBN-13: 978-1452119366
You Nest Here With Me
By Jane Yolen; Illustrated by Melissa Sweet
Publisher’s synopsis: With rhyming text, this soothing bedtime book is an ode to baby birds everywhere and sleepy children home safe in their own beds. As a mother describes to her child how many species of birds nest, from pigeons on concrete ledges to owls in oak tree boles to swallows above barn doors. The soothing refrain of you nest here with me” eases her little one and readers alike to slumber. Combining their poetic writing and their love of birding, mother and daughter Jane Yolen and Heidi Stemple have written what is sure to become a bedtime classic.
Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Boyds Mills Press | Mar. 3, 2014 | ISBN-13: 978-1590789230
By Maripat Perkins; Illustrated by Molly Idle
Publisher’s synopsis: Rodeo Red and her hound dog Rusty are happier than two buttons on a new shirt… until Side Swiping Slim shows up. Red is sure that anyone who hollers that much will be hauled to the edge of town and told to skedaddle, but her parents seem smitten. When that scallywag sets his eye on Rusty, Rodeo Red had better figure out a way to save her best friend in all the world. Can she make a bargain with a varmint?
Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Peachtree Publishers | Feb. 3, 2015 | ISBN-13: 978-1561458165
I Wish You More
By Amy Krouse Rosenthal; Illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
Publisher’s synopsis: Some books are about a single wish. Some books are about three wishes. The infallible team of Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Tom Lichtenheld have combined their extraordinary talents to create this exuberant book of endless good wishes. Wishes for curiosity and wonder, for friendship and strength, laughter and peace. Whether celebrating life’s joyous milestones, sharing words of encouragement, or observing the wonder of everyday moments, this sweet and uplifting book is perfect for wishers of every age.
Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Chronicle Books | Mar. 31, 2015 | ISBN-13: 978-1452126999
The Penderwicks in Spring
By Jeanne Birdsall
Publisher’s Synopsis: With over one million copies sold, this series of modern classics about the charming Penderwick family, from National Book Award winner and New York Times bestseller Jeanne Birdsall, is perfect for fans of Noel Streatfeild and Edward Eager.
Springtime is finally arriving on Gardam Street, and there are surprises in store for each member of the family.
Some surprises are just wonderful, like neighbor Nick Geiger coming home from war. And some are ridiculous, like Batty’s new dog-walking business. Batty is saving up her dog-walking money for an extra-special surprise for her family, which she plans to present on her upcoming birthday. But when some unwelcome surprises make themselves known, the best-laid plans fall apart.
Filled with all the heart, hilarity, and charm that has come to define this beloved clan, The Penderwicks in Spring is about fun and family and friends (and dogs), and what happens when you bring what’s hidden into the bright light of the spring sun.
Ages 8-12 | Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers | Mar. 24, 2015 | ISBN-13: 978-0375870774
Shadow Scale (Seraphina)
Publisher’s synopsis: Seraphina took the literary world by storm with 8 starred reviews and numerous “Best of” lists. At last, her eagerly awaited sequel has arrived—and with it comes an epic battle between humans and dragons.
The kingdom of Goredd: a world where humans and dragons share life with an uneasy balance, and those few who are both human and dragon must hide the truth. Seraphina is one of these, part girl, part dragon, who is reluctantly drawn into the politics of her world. When war breaks out between the dragons and humans, she must travel the lands to find those like herself—for she has an inexplicable connection to all of them, and together they will be able to fight the dragons in powerful, magical ways.
As Seraphina gathers this motley crew, she is pursued by humans who want to stop her. But the most terrifying is another half dragon, who can creep into people’s minds and take them over. Until now, Seraphina has kept her mind safe from intruders, but that also means she’s held back her own gift. It is time to make a choice: Cling to the safety of her old life, or embrace a powerful new destiny?
Ages 12 and up | Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers | Mar. 10, 2015 | ISBN-13: 978-0375866579
For more of the best new kids stories and popular books for kids, follow along with our tag for Popular Kids Stories.