HomeBooks by AgeAges 0-3Best New Picture Books | June 2018

Best New Picture Books | June 2018

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!


How to Be a LionHow to Be a Lion

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.

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Ages 2-5 | Publisher: Doubleday Books for Young Readers | June 26, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-0525578055


We Dont Eat Our ClassmatesWe Don’t Eat Our Classmates

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. . . .

Readers will gobble up this hilarious new story from award-winning author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins.

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Ages 4-7 | Publisher: Disney-Hyperion | June 19, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1368003551


Otis and Will Discover the DeepOtis and Will Discover the Deep: The Record-Setting Dive of the Bathysphere

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.

On June 6, 1930, engineer Otis Barton and explorer Will Beebe dove into the ocean inside a hollow metal ball of their own invention called the Bathysphere.
They knew dozens of things might go wrong. A tiny leak could shoot pressurized water straight through the men like bullets! A single spark could cause their oxygen tanks to explode! No one had ever dived lower than a few hundred feet…and come back. But Otis and Will were determined to become the first people to see what the deep ocean looks like.
This suspenseful story from acclaimed author Barb Rosenstock with mesmerizing watercolors by award-winning artist Katherine Roy will put you right in the middle of the spine-tingling, record-setting journey down, down into the deep.

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Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers | June 5, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-0316393829


StegothesaurusStegothesaurus

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.

Order a Copy Now: Indiebound | Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. | June 12, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1250134882


The 5 OClock BandThe 5 O’Clock Band

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.

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Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Harry N. Abrams | June 19, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1419728365


Drawn-Together-High-ResolutionDrawn Together

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.

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Ages 4-8 | Publisher: Disney-Hyperion | June 5, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1484767603


Counting on Katherine- How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13

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.

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Ages 5-9 | Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. | June 19, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1250137524


Bonkers About BeetlesBonkers About Beetles

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.

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Ages 5-9 | Publisher: Flying Eye Books | June 5, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-1911171980


Nothing Stopped SophieNothing Stopped Sophie: The Story of Unshakable Mathematician Sophie Germain

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.

When her parents took away her candles to keep their young daughter from studying math…nothing stopped Sophie. When a professor discovered that the homework sent to him under a male pen name came from a woman…nothing stopped Sophie. And when she tackled a math problem that male scholars said would be impossible to solve…still, nothing stopped Sophie.
For six years Sophie Germain used her love of math and her undeniable determination to test equations that would predict patterns of vibrations. She eventually became the first woman to win a grand prize from France’s prestigious Academy of Sciences for her formula, which laid the groundwork for much of modern architecture (and can be seen in the book’s illustrations).
Award-winning author Cheryl Bardoe’s inspiring and poetic text is brought to life by acclaimed artist Barbara McClintock’s intricate pen-and-ink, watercolor, and collage illustrations in this true story about a woman who let nothing stop her.

Order a Copy Now: Indiebound | Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Ages 6-9 | Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers | June 12, 2018 | ISBN-13: 978-0316278201


*Header image illustration from ‘How to Be a Lion,’ written and Illustrated by Ed Vere (Doubleday Books for Young Readers, 2018)

For more of the best new picture books for kids, follow along with our articles tagged with New Books for Kids, Picture Books, Books for Ages 0-3, Books for Ages 4-8, and .

Bianca Schulze is the founder of The Children’s Book Review. She is a reader, reviewer, mother and children’s book lover. She also has a decade’s worth of experience working with children in the great outdoors. Combined with her love of books and experience as a children’s specialist bookseller, the goal is to share her passion for children’s literature to grow readers. Born and raised in Sydney, Australia, she now lives with her husband and three children near Boulder, Colorado.

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