The Growing Readers Podcast

The Children’s Book Review, is a resource devoted to children’s literature and literacy. In the Growing Readers Podcast, we produce author and illustrator interviews focused on the best books for kids of all ages to help you grow readers.

“Not every book is for every child, but for every child there is a book.”

For the latest episodes from The Growing Readers Podcast, Follow Now on your favorite podcast platform.

Upcoming Guests Include

Ask these Book Creators a Question and You Could Be on The Growing Readers Podcast: Leave a Message or Write-In

I Want to Be a Vase by Julio Torres: Book CoverFormer SNL writer and comedic rising star Julio Torres takes readers on a journey through the lives and intimate dramas of some of the unsung shapes of our time in this picture book inspired by his HBO special My Favorite Shapes.

Shapes. You’ve heard of them. You might have even interacted with a few. But do you really know them? From plucky Plunger, who wishes to defy his shape and become a beautiful vase, to other household objects with dreams of a life beyond their predestined roles, I Want to Be a Vase takes readers on an essential and visually stunning journey through the lives and intimate dramas of often-overlooked household appliances.

I am a Baby by Bob Shea: Book CoverFrom the creator of the mega-popular Dinosaur vs.series comes a hilariously deadpan look at new parenthood—from a baby’s point of view.

I am not sleepy.
I am not sleepy because I am a baby.
Mommy is sleepy.
Mommy is sleepy because I am a baby.

With humor and sympathy, Bob Shea looks at the chaos of life with a baby as amiably narrated by the new arrival. Repeating the mantra (and blithe explanation) “because I am a baby,” the tiny narrator leads us through scenes of exhaustion, grumpiness, squishy diapers, spilled milk, cowering kittens, and chubby overfed pups (oopsie!). Playing against the simple, matter-of-fact text are freewheeling illustrations of mess and mayhem, in which the grown-ups’ exaggerated body language is sure to send older children into fits of giggles. With its endearing, unabashedly self-pleased star, I Am a Baby will find a place at showers, in nurseries, on parents’ shelves, and in the hands of appreciative big siblings, as it celebrates the changes a little one brings, at once challenging and full of love.

The Crabtree Monsters: Book CoverMoving from Los Angeles to tiny Crabtree, Michigan, is the last thing thirteen-year-old Kat Dylan wants to do. Crabtree’s seen better days and isn’t what you call welcoming. Worse, the move means living with her gruff Grandpa Nick, the town’s police chief, and having to look after her little brother, Alec.

And that’s before Kat and Alec find themselves in the middle of a bank holdup by the Monster Gang—four robbers in monster masks. Before the heist is over, the kids lose their cash and Alec comes within a hair of losing his life. When it is all over, Grandpa Nick goes to jail, accused of being one of the robbers himself.

Suddenly, this boring little town isn’t so boring anymore. Kat’s determined to find out who the men are behind the masks, and she’s going to need help. But exposing the robbers could have big consequences. The deeper Kat goes, the more she learns life is about making choices, including some that are a matter of life and death.

Ask a question of one of the upcoming book creators. You can ask them about their books, their process, or their inspirations. Or just leave a complement! Your message could end up on a future episode of this podcast!

The Growing Readers Podcast

In this episode, I talk with Diana Farid about her coming-of-age novel written in verse, Wave, set in 1980s Southern California about a Persian American girl.

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