The Children’s Book Review | September 20, 2018
9 New Release Picture Books
We have selected 9 excellent picture books as the best of June 2018. You’ll discover an inspiring and adorable picture book about a pair of unlikely friends who face down a pack of bullies, a hilarious new story from award-winning author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins, a little-known true story of two determined pioneers who made the first dive into the deep ocean, an unforgettable love letter to New Orleans, a stirring picture book about reaching across barriers will be cherished for years to come, a true story about a woman who let nothing stop her, and more!
Written and Illustrated by Ed Vere
Publisher’s Synopsis: From the New York Times bestselling author/illustrator of Max the Brave comes an inspiring and adorable picture book about a pair of unlikely friends who face down a pack of bullies.
In this timely and charming story about the importance of being true to yourself, mindfulness, and standing by your friends, we meet Leonard, a lion, and his best friend Marianne, a . . . duck. Leonard and Marianne have a happy life together—talking, playing, writing poems, and making wishes—until one day a pack of bullies questions whether it’s right for a lion and a duck to be pals. Leonard soon learns there are many ways to be a lion, and many ways to be a friend, and that sometimes finding just the right words can change the world . . .
This sweet, funny, thoughtful, and much-needed story will open up readers’ eyes to the importance of being who they are and not backing down to hurtful criticism. It’s an empowering tale about connecting with others and choosing kindness over bullying, and shows children how angry and provocative words can be overcome by empathy and courage.
Ages 2-5 | Publisher: Doubleday Books for Young Readers | June 26, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-0525578055
Written and Illustrated by Ryan T. Higgins
Publisher’s Synopsis: It’s the first day of school for Penelope Rex, and she can’t wait to meet her classmates. But it’s hard to make human friends when they’re so darn delicious! That is, until Penelope gets a taste of her own medicine and finds she may not be at the top of the food chain after all. . . .
Ages 4-7 | Publisher: Disney-Hyperion | June 19, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1368003551
Written by Barb Rosenstock
Illustrated by Katherine Roy
Publisher’s Synopsis: The suspenseful, little-known true story of two determined pioneers who made the first dive into the deep ocean.
Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers | June 5, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-0316393829
Written by Bridget Heos
Illustrated by T.L. McBeth
Publisher’s Synopsis: A fun, playful, energetic story starring two stegosauruses and one stegothesaurus about family―and synonyms!―for the young word lover in your home, residence, or abode!
Stegothesaurus’s love of language has always put him at odds with his stegosaurus brothers. So when he makes a friend―an allothesaurus―who is just as verbose as he, he is happy, thrilled, and ecstatic! But Stegothesaurus soon learns that the allothesaurus has very different ideas about what constitutes a good meal, and he’ll discover there’s one thing that he loves more than words: his family.
Featuring clever but simple text from Bridget Heos and bold, exuberant art by T. L. McBeth, Stegothesaurus introduces young readers to a memorable, original, unforgettable dinosaur hero.
Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. | June 12, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1250134882
Written by Troy Andrews and Bill Taylor
Illustrated by Bryan Collier
Publisher’s Synopsis: In this companion to the Caldecott Honor and Coretta Scott King Award–winning Trombone Shorty, join a scrappy young musician named Shorty on a tour of his beloved New Orleans. After letting his band down by missing rehearsal, Shorty has some serious questions about what it means to be a leader. He hits the streets of New Orleans to find some answers and soak up inspiration. Along the way he’ll meet street musicians, a favorite restaurant owner, and the famous Mardi Gras Indians. Each has some NOLA-bred wisdom to share with Shorty about being an artist, a leader, and a friend. In The 5 O’Clock Band, Troy Andrews has crafted another unforgettable love letter to New Orleans illustrated by the incomparable Bryan Collier.
Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Harry N. Abrams | June 19, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1419728365
Written by Minh Lê
Illustrated by Dan Santat
Publisher’s Synopsis: When a young boy visits his grandfather, their lack of a common language leads to confusion, frustration, and silence. But as they sit down to draw together, something magical happens-with a shared love of art and storytelling, the two form a bond that goes beyond words.
With spare, direct text by Minh Lê and luminous illustrations by Caldecott Medalist Dan Santat, this stirring picturebook about reaching across barriers will be cherished for years to come.
Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Disney-Hyperion | June 5, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1484767603
Written by Helaine Becker
Illustrated by Dow Phumiruk
Publisher’s Synopsis: The bold story of Katherine Johnson, an African-American mathematician who worked for NASA during the space race and was depicted in the film Hidden Figures.
You’ve likely heard of the historic Apollo 13 moon landing. But do you know about the mathematical genius who made sure that Apollo 13 returned safely home?
As a child, Katherine Johnson loved to count. She counted the steps on the road, the number of dishes and spoons she washed in the kitchen sink, everything! Boundless, curious, and excited by calculations, young Katherine longed to know as much as she could about math, about the universe.
From Katherine’s early beginnings as a gifted student to her heroic accomplishments as a prominent mathematician at NASA, Counting on Katherine is the story of a groundbreaking American woman who not only calculated the course of moon landings but, in turn, saved lives and made enormous contributions to history.
Ages 5-9 | Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. | June 19, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1250137524
Written and Illustrated by Owen Davy
Publisher’s Synopsis: Owen Davey’s dynamic art and witty informational tidbits shine a light on the toughest bugs in the insect world: those brawny beetles!
Did you know that there are roughly 400,000 different species of beetles? These incredible creatures make up about 25% of all animals on our planet! Beetles are superbly adapted to life in various climates across the world, wherever trees and flowers are found. From the mighty Goliath beetle to the beautiful iridescent scarab beetle, this captivating and stunningly illustrated guide will teach you everything you need to know about these fascinating insects.
Ages 5-9 | Publisher: Flying Eye Books | June 5, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1911171980
Written by Cheryl Bardoe
Illustrated by Barbara McClintock
Publisher’s Synopsis: The true story of eighteenth-century mathematician Sophie Germain, who solved the unsolvable to achieve her dream.
Ages 6-9 | Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers | June 12, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-0316278201