BOOKS OF THE WEEK

New in Hardcover

Sisters Maple and Willow have been practically inseparable for their entire lives. When Maple goes off to school for the first time, however, the girls must be Maple and Willow Apart (Nancy Paulsen, $16.99). Maple comes home each day and regales Willow with tales of the fun she’s having with her new school friends. Willow, meanwhile, is largely left to play by herself at home, which is initially rather boring. But this boredom ultimately stimulates her creativity, leading her to make a new friend and strengthen the sisters’ bond when they are apart while simultaneously helping them treasure their time together even more. Author and illustrator Lori Nichols’ vibrant, digitally-colored pencil illustrations convey a child’s sense of adventure and wonder in this sweet testament to the power of imagination and the love that siblings have for each other. Ages 3-5. Marc Villa

By Lori Nichols, Lori Nichols (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780399167539
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - July 21st, 2015

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Blast from the Past

Unhei’s Korean name evokes bittersweet memories of her cherished grandmother and the name stamp she gave her upon Unhei’s departure from their native country.  Now she is unsure what her new American classmates will think of her name with its unusual pronunciation, and is hesitant to reveal it on her first day of school.  Sensing her reluctance and wanting Unhei to feel welcome, her classmates present her with a Name Jar (Dragonfly, $7.99) that they fill with suggestions for a new American name.  As she becomes more comfortable in her adopted country, neighborhood, and classroom, Unhei realizes that the name jar is a symbol of friendship and decides to take a chance that her new friends will understand who she really is. With her straightforward prose and endearing illustrations, Yangsook Choi portrays the need for acceptance children experience in new situations.  Ages 3-7. Renée Bosco

By Yangsook Choi, Yangsook Choi (Illustrator)
$7.99
ISBN: 9780440417996
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dragonfly Books - October 14th, 2003

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FEATURED CHILDRENS' BOOKS

$18.95
ISBN: 9781771380478
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Kids Can Press - April 2015

By Lori Nichols, Lori Nichols (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780399167539
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - July 21st, 2015

By Ellen Fischer, Laura Wood (Illustrator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9781938063619
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Mighty Media Kids - August 11th, 2015

$19.95
ISBN: 9781554983827
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Groundwood Books - October 13th, 2014

$17.00
ISBN: 9780316376570
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - July 7th, 2015

$16.99
ISBN: 9780763665142
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - June 9th, 2015

$16.99
ISBN: 9780385379175
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Schwartz & Wade Books - July 7th, 2015

By YeShil Kim, Ye Shil Kim, Miku Moriuchi (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9781492609988
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky - June 30th, 2015

By Neil Gaiman, Adam Rex (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062223975
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperCollins Publishers - June 24th, 2014

By Adam Auerbach, Adam Auerbach (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780805097030
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Henry Holt & Company - June 24th, 2014

By Mij Kelly, Mary McQuillan (Illustrator)
$14.99
ISBN: 9780764166556
Availability: Not in the store—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Barron's Educational Series - March 2014

By Valorie Fisher, Valorie Fisher (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780449815939
Availability: Not in the store—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Schwartz & Wade Books - July 8th, 2014

By Julie Saab, David Gothard (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062274571
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Greenwillow Books - April 22nd, 2014

By Sue Ganz-Schmitt, Shane Prigmore (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781452118932
Availability: Not in the store—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Chronicle Books (CA) - May 20th, 2014

Picture Books

Early Readers & Chapter Books

Elementary & Middle Grade Fiction 

Teen Fiction 

Graphic Novels 

Poetry 

The Arts 

Science 

Sports 

Biography & History 

Inspired by her favorite rhyme, Lola Plants a Garden (Charlesbridge, $15.95) with the help of her mother. After the seeds are all in the ground, Lola makes a string of bells and shells to adorn the garden, and even a quite contrary “Mary Mary” doll. When the flowers have pushed their way into the air and opened to the sun, Lola is finally able to share her creation with her friends. Author Anna McQuinn and illustrator Rosalind Beardshaw collaborate again for the latest in their series about enthusiastic Lola, just in time for the season of planting and growing. Ages 3-6. Allison Witten

By Anna McQuinn, Rosalind Beardshaw (Illustrator)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781580896948
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Charlesbridge Publishing - August 5th, 2014

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Families (Holiday House, $17.95) come in all shapes and sizes. A new book by Shelley Rotner and Sheila M. Kelly celebrates that fact and is a great launching point for talking about diversity. Cheerful and colorful photos adorn every page depicting families with one parent, families with two moms or two dads, families with adopted children, large families that all live together or families with members who live far apart but who like to visit. This joyful book demonstrates that the only thing that really matters when it comes to families is that they love each other. Ages 2-5. Kerri Poore

$17.95
ISBN: 9780823430536
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Holiday House - January 2015

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A simple story with a delightful ending, My Bike (Greenwillow, $16.99) takes young readers along on one man’s daily two-wheeled commute. Short, declarative sentences introduce Tom and walk children through the parts of his bike, from the fender to the bell. As Tom rides to work, typical sights like cars and trucks give way to monkeys, tigers, and acrobats. What is Tom’s true occupation? Find out in this sweet, colorful book, written and illustrated by Byron Barton. Ages 1-3. Amy Sands

By Byron Barton, Byron Barton (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780062336996
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Greenwillow Books - April 14th, 2015

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For the youngest future readers, Elizabeth McPike’s tender verse will soothe every Little Sleepyhead (Putnam, $16.99) at the end of a busy day. Patrice Barton’s expressive double-page spreads echo the engaging text and depict a cast of babies and family members absorbed in pint-sized activities. This gorgeous blend of words and pictures will prompt conversation—even a pantomime or two—and provide a gentle close to the day. Ages 6 months-2. Mary Alice Garber

$16.99
ISBN: 9780399162404
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers - April 14th, 2015

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Elmore thrives as an only child. His parents adore him, showering him with affection and attention. Until The New Small Person (Candlewick, $17.99) arrives, ruining everything. Everyone seems to like this new addition; but Elmore wants to send it back to wherever it came from. Author and illustrator Lauren Child lovingly portrays the often thorny experience of welcoming a new member to a family. The book, featuring Child’s signature, vibrant illustrations, keenly depicts the growth of feeling for a new sibling and keeps readers anxiously wondering whether Elmore will come to love this new small person until the final pages. Ages 4-7. Kasie Griffitts

By Lauren Child, Lauren Child (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780763678104
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - February 10th, 2015

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Lily, Daisy, and Violet are triplets, but they’d be the first ones to tell you that they’re not identical. Lily likes to read, Daisy is into baseball, and Violet is notorious for losing things—even her homework. When an opportunity for extra credit in science class comes along, Violet accepts the challenge and reports on the similarities and differences among her family members, including the new family dog, Trouble. Author Michelle Poploff and illustrator Victoria Jamieson prove Where Triplets Go, Trouble Follows (Holiday House, $16.95) in this silly, though heartwarming, tale about family, friends, and fun. Ages 7-9. Allison Witten

$16.95
ISBN: 9780823432899
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Holiday House - February 2015

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Always fresh and with a soupçon of adventure, Hilary McKay’s series about Lulu and her menagerie of rescued animals is a bright star among early chapter books. In the latest installment, Lulu brings home a neglected hamster just before a planned visit to celebrate her grandmother’s birthday. An escapade awaits Lulu and the Hamster in the Night (Albert Whitman, $13.99) in this comedy of secrets gone awry. Early readers will relate to the warm, winsome characters and believable antics that are hallmarks of the series. Ages 6-9. Mary Alice Garber

By Hilary McKay, Priscilla Lamont (Illustrator)
$13.99
ISBN: 9780807548240
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Albert Whitman & Company - March 2015

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Richard has worked tirelessly on his flat-ground Ollie, determined to impress at Gregory Johnson’s skateboard party. But he hasn’t worked tirelessly on learning how to spell “quotient,” or where the howler monkey lives, and his fourth-grade teacher insists he can do better. When Richard “forgets” to give her note to his parents, the truth and its consequences quickly catch up with him in the second installment of Karen English’s Carver Chronicles: Skateboard Party (Clarion, $14.99). As with the winning, well-meaning Gavin of Dog Days, young readers will empathize with Richard’s (usually) good intentions and laugh at the mischievous interactions among his three brothers. By emphasizing characters’ expressions, Laura Freeman’s accompanying illustrations light-heartedly capture the trials and tribulations of growing up in—and raising—a big family. Ages 6-9. Amy Dickinson

By Karen English, Laura Freeman (Illustrator)
$5.99
ISBN: 9780544582262
Availability: Coming Soon—Pre-Order Now
Published: Harcourt Brace and Company - December 1st, 2015

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In her first chapter book in ten years, Cynthia Rylant returns to the world of Gooseberry Park. The residents of this idyllic hamlet are facing a months-long drought, and things are starting to look dire. Luckily, a brilliant crow, a 104-year-old hermit crab, and a tenacious chocolate lab are just a few of the creatures who call the park home, and together they might be able to come up with a solution. Gooseberry Park and the Master Plan (Beach Lane, $16.99) is the sort of gentle and witty story of which Rylant has proved herself a master. Dotted with Arthur Howard’s bold and comical illustrations, this is the perfect book for readers just starting to tackle chapters. Ages 7-10. Eowyn Randall

By Cynthia Rylant, Arthur Howard (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781481404495
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Beach Lane Books - April 21st, 2015

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Princess Magnolia does everything that a princess should. She sleeps in a tower, wears glass slippers, and serves tea to her esteemed guests, but Princess Magnolia has a secret. While entertaining Duchess Wigtower, the Princess’s glitter stone monster alarm goes off and she must become The Princess in Black (Candlewick, $14.99). Since princesses don’t wear black, no one suspects Magnolia’s secret identity, thus allowing her to fight monsters with her signature “twinkle twinkle little SMASH” move. Beloved author Shannon Hale and husband Dean Hale prove that princesses as well as other little girls don’t fit in any box and illustrator LeUyen Pham brings Magnolia’s story to life. This is truly a read for the whole family.  Ages 5-8. ARW

By Shannon Hale, Dean Hale, LeUyen Pham (Illustrator)
$14.99
ISBN: 9780763665104
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - October 14th, 2014

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Tuesday McGillycuddy is determined to find her mother, author Serendipity Smith. Venturing into her mother’s empty office, Tuesday types the beginning of a story, and the power of her words carries her and Baxterr, the dog, to the land where stories are created. In the ensuing adventure, Tuesday must use her imagination as a writer to save the day. Angela Banks’s story—with perfectly placed illustrations by Stevie Lewis—sparkles, and is one of the more original novels of the season. Finding Serendipity (Holt, $16.99) is “luck and chance and fate all tumbled into one.” Ages 8-11. Mary Alice Garber

By Angelica Banks, Stevie Lewis (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781627791540
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Henry Holt & Company - February 3rd, 2015

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Julia is having a difficult year. She has been placed in an orphanage with a cantankerous head nun, her brother is in trouble with a notorious mobster, and a persistent philanthropist keeps meddling in her life. And now Julia finds herself becoming increasingly attached to one of the orphanage’s quirky boarders. Is her goal of uniting her siblings and living out west just an impossible dream? In The Year We Sailed the Sun (Atheneum, $17.99), author Theresa Nelson weaves these separate storylines of familial loyalty, a unique friendship, and a surprisingly action-packed adventure into an engrossing novel of turn-of-the-century St. Louis. Ages 9-12. Renee Bosco

$17.99
ISBN: 9780689858277
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum Books - March 24th, 2015

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Echo (Scholastic, $19.99) begins with what could be a fairy tale: a boy is lost in the woods and rescued by three sisters imprisoned there by a witch’s curse. In exchange, he promises to carry their spirits out of the woods in a mouth harp (harmonica) which he will pass on to others. The reader meets these others in three distinct stories over the rest of this book, which is part fairy tale, part historical fiction. Set during WWII, each story centers on a musically gifted child facing seemingly insurmountable challenges, but the enchanted harmonica seems to endow its owner with hope and courage. Award-winning author Pam Muñoz Ryan (Esperanza Rising) weaves all the tales together for a satisfying conclusion. Ages 10-14. Heidi Powell

$19.99
ISBN: 9780439874021
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scholastic Press - February 24th, 2015

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Where might one go to find egg dancers, adventurous turtles, and someone named Snibril, all in one place? To Terry Pratchett, of course, who here conjures up absurd and delightful stories just begging to be read aloud. Mark Beech’s accompanying pen-and-ink illustrations evoke the humor and derring-do of the book’s heroes and villains—or, more accurately, its passionate but deeply confused individuals just trying to get by. Collected for the first time in print, the short tales of Dragons at Crumbling Castle (Clarion, $16.99) are a delightful introduction for young readers to Pratchett’s topsy-turvy storytelling. Ages 9-12. Lee Huddleston

$16.99
ISBN: 9780544466593
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Clarion Books - February 3rd, 2015

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Sharp, perceptive, and gifted in other ways, Ally successfully hides her inability to read—often by misbehaving. After seven schools in seven years, Ally forms an alliance and friendship with two other misfits; and, finally, a substitute teacher sees beyond her calculated obstinance. With the wisdom of Einstein’s words, the teacher reminds Ally that a Fish in a Tree (Nancy Paulsen, $16.99) should not be judged on its ability to climb. Lynda Mullaly Hunt’s compassionate story of triumph over adversity portrays the many challenges of middle school with memorable characters that will live in your heart long after the last page. Ages 10-12. Mary Alice Garber

$16.99
ISBN: 9780399162596
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - February 5th, 2015

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Everybody knows soccer players don’t like knitting. Or at least that’s what Ben Fletcher has to tell himself when he lands in a knitting class and ends up falling in love with it. He’s aided in his quest to keep his enjoyment of the hobby hidden by the fact that the class is a punishment for a night that involved alcohol and a crossing guard. But when he gets himself entangled in a knitting competition things begin to unravel. By the end of T.S. Easton’s fun and witty coming-of-age novel, you might no longer believe that Boys Don’t Knit (Feiwel & Friends, $16.99). Ages 12-14. Sharat Buddhavarapu

$16.99
ISBN: 9781250053312
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Feiwel & Friends - March 24th, 2015

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Eli has never left Serenity, New Mexico. When every house has a pool and there’s no crime, why would you? When Eli and his friend, Randy, bike to the edge of town and a helicopter full of security descends on them, Eli starts to wonder if there’s something lurking underneath Serenity’s idyllic facade. The next day, Randy is gone. In his search for Randy, Eli uncovers more of Serenity’s secrets and learns nothing is as it seems—not even his own parents. It’s going to take Masterminds (Balzer & Bray, $16.99) to figure out what’s going on, but luckily Eli has friends on his side. Gordon Korman’s latest novel is a suspenseful page-turner. Ages 11-14. Eowyn Randall

$16.99
ISBN: 9780062299963
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Balzer & Bray/Harperteen - February 3rd, 2015

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Sometimes, nothing can be harder than The Honest Truth (Scholastic, $16.99), but then again, “there’s more than one kind of truth.” Dan Gemeinhart has crafted a touching and emotional novel wrapped inside one young man’s great adventure story. You’ll fall in love with Mark and his dog as they run away from home to climb Mt. Rainier. You’ll commiserate with his best friend Jessie as she struggles to decide what it means to be a good friend. Despite the sad fact that Mark has battled cancer for the last seven years, you’ll rejoice in his triumphs and find yourself cheering him on as he climbs through blizzards to reach his goal. Ages 12-14. Kerri Poore

$16.99
ISBN: 9780545665735
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Scholastic Press - January 27th, 2015

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Finn saw Roza being taken by a strange man, whisked into an SUV in the middle of a cornfield full of cornstalks that Finn can hear growing and whispering. He told his brother, Sean, he told the sheriff and everyone else in town, but no one believes him, because Bone Gap (Balzer & Bray, $17.99) is a town where people “slip through, or slip away.” Roza’s beauty has brought her nothing but unwanted male attention and trouble. She finally believes she has found peace with brothers Finn and Sean, but the strange man who’s been haunting her eventually arrives. Author Laura Ruby tells an atmospheric tale that defies definition, alternating points of view between the intertwined residents of Bone Gap. Readers will be enthralled. Ages 15-18. Kasie Griffitts

$17.99
ISBN: 9780062317605
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Balzer & Bray/Harperteen - March 3rd, 2015

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Inspired by real events, author Melanie Crowder tells the story of Clara Lemlich, the Russian Jewish immigrant who had the Audacity (Philomel, $17.99) to demand equal rights as a worker and a woman. Forbidden from reading and attending school, Clara disobeys her family’s wishes and educates herself while working tirelessly in deplorable conditions. Misunderstood and dismissed, she fights back and becomes an avid spokesperson and advocate for workers’ rights. Told in verse, this compelling novel is an important window into history, including comprehensive back matter, providing context for those who want to know more. Ages 13-16. Kasie Griffitts

$17.99
ISBN: 9780399168994
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Philomel Books - January 8th, 2015

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Victoria Jamieson, aka Winnie the Pow, is a real-life Roller Girl (Dial, $12.99), and she channels her love of the game into her first middle-grade graphic novel. Twelve-year-old Astrid and her best friend Nicole spend most of their time together. When Astrid’s mom introduces them to roller derby, Astrid’s sure they’ve found their new passion. But while Astrid commits herself to the sport, Nicole moves on to other interests. The comic realistically reflects pre-teen life and friendship, and Jamieson’s bright art jumps off the page, vividly capturing both Astrid’s every-day routine and the thrilling action on the roller rink. Ages 10-14. Kerri Poore

$12.99
ISBN: 9780803740167
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dial Books - March 10th, 2015

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Through Andrea de la Barre de Nanteuil’s loopy, whimsical text and Lovisa Burfitt’s appropriately minimal illustrations, we get to know The Story of Mademoiselle Oiseau (Little Gestalten, $24.95), the mysterious woman who lives on the sixth floor of an apartment on Rue du Temps Perdu, and the girl, Isabella, who lives a floor beneath her. With the persona of an inscrutable movie star, Mademoiselle Oiseau teaches shy, invisible Isabella to believe in herself. An important lesson set beautifully in a graphic novel. Ages 14-18. Sharat Buddhavarapu

$24.95
ISBN: 9783899557343
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little Gestalten - April 21st, 2015

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Every detective story can use some levity. Celebrated Indian author, Anushka Ravishankar provides plenty with the introduction of affable detective Captain Coconut, who is both Holmes and Clouseau. Captain Coconut and the Case of the Missing Bananas (Tara, $16.95) is a mystery of numbers with a sprinkling of non-sequiturs, songs reminiscent of Bollywood and a generous dose of irreverence. Illustrator Priya Sundram’s brightly colored collage art accents the droll investigation and completes the exceptional design of this unique graphic novel. Ages 7-10. Mary Alice Garber

$16.95
ISBN: 9789383145225
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tara Books - July 7th, 2015

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Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth (Candlewick, $12.99 paperback, $21.99 hardcover) is brought to life by author and illustrator Gareth Hinds. Hinds uses the Bard’s original text and renders the gruesome story of the Scottish king in extraordinarily vivid detail. From the appropriately dark color palate to the elaborate character design, Hinds—well-versed in graphically interpreting classics, such as Beowulf and The Odyssey—opens doors into the play, providing readers a chance to experience this work like never before. Ages 13 and up. Allison Witten

By Gareth Hinds, Gareth Hinds (Illustrator)
$12.99
ISBN: 9780763678029
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - February 10th, 2015

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We Dig Worms (Toon, $12.95), is a fun and clever introduction to all sorts of worms—even the gummy kind—but earth worms in particular. Drawn on recycled grocery bags, author and illustrator (and entomologist!) Kevin McCloskey’s exploration of these creatures reveals their importance to the soil, how many of them can fit in one small park, how they reproduce, and much more. Whether you think worms are gross, cool, or somewhere in between, you’re sure to find something edifying in this slight tome. Ages 4-7. Eowyn Randall

By Kevin McCloskey, Kevin McCloskey (Illustrator)
$12.95
ISBN: 9781935179801
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Toon Books - April 14th, 2015

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Twenty-eight poems by beloved children’s author and editor, Charlotte Zolotow, are collected in Changes: A Child’s First Poetry Collection (Sourcebooks, $16.99) on the 100th anniversary of her birth. These bright, sweet poems follow the seasons, accompanied by Thipanie Beeke’s colorful illustrations. While each poem appears quite simple in its message, many contain depths to be explored, such as the opening poem, ‘Change,’ which highlights the passage of time and what it implies for all of us. Ages 4-8. Kerri Poore

By Charlotte Zolotow, Tiphanie Beeke (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781492601685
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky - April 21st, 2015

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Travel Over the Hills and Far Away (Candlewick, $21.99) and discover the fascinating ways nursery rhymes have crisscrossed the globe. In this spirited collection of poetry and art, Elizabeth Hammill (critic and founder of Seven Stories, Britain’s Centre for Children’s Books) brings focus to the richness and diversity of intercultural rhymes, maintaining regional spellings and usage. Hammill carefully pairs each rhyme with one of the 77 featured artists whose particular style corresponds to the verse’s temperament or cultural relevance. This peerless treasury of verses and visual interpretations is a must for everyone’s library. Ages 1-8. Mary Alice Garber

By Elizabeth Hammill (Editor), Various (Illustrator)
$21.99
ISBN: 9780763677299
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - March 10th, 2015

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JooHee Yoon has created a magical poetry collection, making color-filled and witty woodblock prints for a fine selection of Beastly Verse (Enchanted Lion, $18.95). The menagerie includes an eel, crocodile, snail, yak, hyena, and pelicans. It’s a beautifully made book: large format, cloth spine, printed on thick paper. Yoon’s prints use only teal, pink, and yellow, but wittily combine them to form many layers of secondary colors. Some of the poems have a surprise foldouts, such as Blake’s “The Tiger,” Lawrence’s “Humming-Bird,” and, in Laura Richards’s “Eletelephony,” an entangled elephant. Each delightful page of Beastly Verse is wonderful to savor, to turn, and to read aloud. Ages 6-10. András Goldinger

By Joohee Yoon (Illustrator)
$18.95
ISBN: 9781592701667
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Enchanted Lion Books - April 7th, 2015

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Irish poet Brendan Kennelly wrote, “poetry is one of the most vital treasures that humanity possesses; it is a bridge between separated souls.” In The Death of the Hat: A Brief History of Poetry in 50 Objects (Candlewick, $17.99), Paul B. Janeczko excavates these treasures, curating a chronological selection of poems spanning from the Middle Ages to contemporary times. Some verses are rooted in their historical context, praising palaces, princely swords, and English railway trains. Others transcend the ages, celebrating ageless themes of natural beauty and human emotion. All make for great read-alouds, and are paired with vibrant and imaginative illustrations by Chris Raschka. Ages 7-12. Amy Sands

By Paul B. Janeczko, Chris Raschka (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780763669638
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - March 10th, 2015

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If you want to visit an amazing city, you should join Arlo, An Armadillo in Paris (Tundra Books, $17.99). Using his grandfather Augustin’s journal as a guide, Arlo sets off to explore the city’s art, history, and life, with an eye toward finding his grandfather’s favorite thing in Paris, the Iron Lady. Each place Arlo visits holds a clue about the Iron Lady. Cafe Gustave, where Arlo enjoys a croissant, is named after her architect. The Louvre displays posters from the 1889 World’s Fair where the Iron Lady was the “official greeter.” After spending a day traversing the city, learning about the Iron Lady, Arlo finds himself standing in front of her, gaping up in amazement. Author and illustrator Julie Kraulis notes that Paris is Arlo’s first adventure. Here’s hoping he has many more.  Ages 5-8. HWP

$17.99
ISBN: 9781770495265
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Tundra Books - October 14th, 2014

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 “People might say little Mahalia Jackson (Amistad, $17.99) was born with nothing, but she had something all right. A voice that was bigger than she was.” Over the rest of Nina Nolan’s gorgeous picture-book biography, readers learn exactly what Mahalia made of that voice. From singing in her church choir as a child in New Orleans, all the way to performing at the March on Washington, Mahalia spread hope with her gospel music wherever her journey took her. Illustrated with John Holyfield’s warm, vibrant oil paintings, this is a wonderful introduction to this important musical figure. Ages 5-8. Eowyn Randall

By Nina Nolan, John Holyfield (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780060879440
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Amistad Press - January 27th, 2015

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Drum Dream Girl (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $16.99) can’t stop dreaming about drums. “Only boys should play drums,” says her father, and forbids her from playing. Still, she daydreams about beating the bongo and finds rhythm in everyday life. Tapping on chairs and stepping in time to imaginary beats, she floats through her days. Award-winning author Margarita Engle tells a beautiful story of empowerment and ambition, based on the life of Millo Castro Zaldarriage, Cuba’s famous female drummer. Coupled with striking illustrations by Rafael Lopez, this book will have readers wanting to dance, drum, and follow their own dreams. Ages 4-8. Kasie Griffitts

By Margarita Engle, Rafael Lopez (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780544102293
Availability: Not in the store—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Harcourt Brace and Company - March 31st, 2015

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Growing up in the segregated south in the 1930’s, Benny Andrews learned to Draw What You See (Clarion, $16.99). Drawing workers in the fields and at his local Sunday church service, Andrews became determined to finish his education. Kathleen Benson’s new picture book biography, illustrated with paintings by Andrews himself, captures his incredible story. In both his art and his life, Andrews fought for what he believed in, and his work helped to make room for more overlooked artists of color. This gorgeous picture book is an excellent introduction to his life, and an example to all the young artists who might follow his example. Ages 4-8. Courtney Burtraw

By Kathleen Benson, Benny Andrews (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780544104877
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Clarion Books - January 6th, 2015

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You’ve got to have either a big head or an amazing talent to claim that you invented an entire musical genre. As author Jonah Winter makes clear, Jelly Roll Morton had both. In How Jelly Roll Morton Invented Jazz (Roaring Brook, $17.99) Winter builds up a story in swinging verse. Illustrator Keith Mallett follows along with a score of hot reds and cool blues that render the colors and moods of jazz with precision. In this picture book, author and illustrator give children a fun look into the history of one of America’s most important musical forms. Ages 6-10. Sharat Buddhavarapu

By Jonah Winter, Keith Mallett (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781596439634
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Roaring Brook Press - June 16th, 2015

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Pablo Picasso wasn’t a painter. He was a friend, poet, lover, sculptor, pet owner, and father. He was at least 100 Pablo Picassos (Duo Press, $14.99), and artist Violet Lemay helps young readers keep track of his many manifestations in her delightful biography. The book’s illustrations appear in the varied styles of Picasso, blending the personal story with examples of his work to create a highly engaging portrait of a ground-breaking visionary who, like a child, loved to play in color, medium, and form. The book even manages to communicate the shock and revolution of Picasso’s first cubist painting in language and images accessible to younger readers, a story at once complex, simple, and wholly charming. Ages 5-10. Amy Dickinson

By Violet Lemay, Violet Lemay (Illustrator), Duopress (Concept by)
$14.99
ISBN: 9781938093326
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Duo Press - May 12th, 2015

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From the gray skies that are the first signs of rain to the moment when the sun dries the last drops, vivid photo-illustrations paired with poetic, often playful, descriptions demonstrate how Raindrops Roll ( Beach Lane, $17.99), cling, magnify, and reflect. Award-winning author, April Sayre invites young readers and budding scientists to wonder and investigate the nature of rain. Well-researched backmatter and sources for further reading complete this impressive “splash of science.” Ages 3-8. Mary Alice Garber

$17.99
ISBN: 9781481420648
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Beach Lane Books - January 6th, 2015

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Author Elin Kelsey and artist Soyeon Kim have teamed up to create Wild Ideas (Owlkids, $18.95), a delightful picture book as well as a creative instruction book for dealing with life’s many challenges. The diorama style artwork lets the reader imagine they’re in the story. Cutouts of children riding whales and leaping with orangutans as they turn challenges into opportunities help the reader discover solutions to everyday problems in the natural world. Whimsical and impactful, Wild Ideas is a calming yet empowering picture book for readers young and old. Ages 4-9. Donna Wells

By Elin Kelsey, Soyeon Kim (Illustrator)
$18.95
ISBN: 9781771470629
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Owlkids - April 14th, 2015

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As winter melts away and plants begin to grow, a young child describes what happens Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt (Chronicle, $16.99). Child and grandmother carefully tend the garden, preparing the seeds and nurturing the plants, as under the ground worms and insects do their work. Like Kate Messner’s earlier book, Over and Under the Snow, this picture book is crammed with facts as well as the fiction narrative. Readers learn, guided by Christopher Silas Neal’s clear and beautiful illustrations, about the different aspects of tending and growing a garden, all the way through to fall, when the garden must be readied for winter and put to rest. Ages 4-8. Courtney Burtraw

$16.99
ISBN: 9781452119366
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chronicle Books - March 3rd, 2015

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What do the slides, flagpoles, and wheels in your life have in common? As David A. Adler explains, they’re all Simple Machines (Holiday House, $17.95). Adler relates these scientific concepts to objects and actions children see and do every day before expanding into more complex applications. The wedge is introduced via the use of teeth in chewing before Adler moves on to show the principle’s use in axes. Anna Raff’s illustrations, which emphasize the shape and movement of the different machines, tie Adler’s explanations into a wonderful package for the future tinkerer in your life. Ages 4-7. Sharat Buddhavarapu

By David A. Adler, Anna Raff (Illustrator)
$17.95
ISBN: 9780823433094
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Holiday House - January 2015

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Flowing poetry and wonderfully detailed illustrations blend beautifully in this unique collection focusing on the water cycle. Moving through the seasons, Miranda Paul’s verses convey that Water is Water (Roaring Brook, $17.99), even as it evaporates into steam, cloud, or fog. Jason Chin’s art captures falling rain and puddles that freeze into ice. With the coming of spring, water helps produce the miracle of growth. This often unnoticed process is given character in the collaboration between these two artists. Ages 6-10. Allison Witten

By Miranda Paul, Jason Chin (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781596439849
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Roaring Brook Press - May 26th, 2015

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The story of an often overlooked athlete, Lizzie Murphy, known as the Queen of the Diamond (Margaret Ferguson, $17.99), is related in this colorful volume. As a child Lizzie was relegated to the ignominious position of “girl batboy” on her brother’s all-boy team. Finally, because of his unfailing support, the team gave her a “try.” The rest is history. Author and illustrator Emily Arnold McCully has crafted Murphy’s inspiring story into a book that anyone, sports fan or not, can enjoy. Supplemental information and a photograph of Lizzie in uniform at the close help bring this illustrious character to life. Ages 5-8. Renee Bosco

$17.99
ISBN: 9780374300074
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Farrar Straus Giroux - February 17th, 2015

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During the 2014 World Cup, Tim Howard became an overnight soccer sensation, breaking the record for saves in a World Cup game, and gaining name recognition as a top goalkeeper. What is less common knowledge is Howard’s journey to get to those World Cup games. His memoir, The Keeper (Harper $16.99), tells that story, from his childhood in New Jersey, where he was a hyperactive young kid with Tourette’s syndrome, to the world soccer stage. For fans of Howard’s play, and readers who enjoy unconventional success stories, Howard’s memoir is an entertaining and inspiring read, as well as a peek behind the scenes of top-level World Cup play. Ages 9-13. Courtney Burtraw

$16.99
ISBN: 9780062387554
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperCollins - December 9th, 2014

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Making it to the Big Leagues is a dream for any baseball player. Sharing this thrill with one’s brother is nearly too good to be true. In the Dominican Republic, Growing Up Pedro (Candlewick, $16.99) meant living in the shadow of Pedro Martinez’s bigger, stronger brother, Ramon, who was drafted by the Dodgers. With sheer determination and tenacity, Pedro followed his brother into the major leagues and eventually became a star pitcher for the Boston Red Sox. Author and illustrator Matt Tavares adds to his hits in baseball literature with this picture book about a recent legendary southpaw, just elected to the hall of fame. Ages 8-12. Renee Bosco

By Matt Tavares, Matt Tavares (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780763668242
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - February 10th, 2015

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“You throw like a girl” has notoriously been considered derogatory. Pitcher Mo’ne Davis has turned this perceived insult into the ultimate compliment. Davis played basketball, baseball, and soccer for her neighborhood team in inner-city Philadelphia, where her coach taught his players to value education and respect their teammates and opponents. With author Hilary Beard, Davis chronicles her story—which culminates in the first shutout by a girl in the Little League World Series—in Mo’ne Davis: Remember My Name (HarperCollins, $16.99). Davis has handled the resulting attention with humility, and is a role model for all, regardless of gender or athletic prowess. Ages 8-12. Renee Bosco

$16.99
ISBN: 9780062397522
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: HarperCollins - March 17th, 2015

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Few baseball fans can resist Yankee pinstripes, especially when they cover a new picture book about Joltin’ Joe DiMaggio (Atheneum, $17.99). With casual, folksy prose and James E. Ransome’s detailed illustrations, author Jonah Winter portrays DiMaggio’s early years, living near the San Francisco waterfront. DiMaggio’s baseball prowess led to a meteoric rise to fame as the New York Yankee’s center-fielder. His quiet demeanor added to his mystique, and Joe handled his stardom with great dignity, even after setting a record of hitting safely in 56 consecutive games. This record still endures today, along with the respect for this American legend.  Ages 4-8. RBB

By Jonah Winter, James E. Ransome (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781416940807
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum Books for Young Readers - September 2nd, 2014

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On the eve of Juneteenth, when young Mazie grows tired of always being told no, her father gently embraces the moment to talk with her about history, family, and the holiday’s importance. He explains the significance of June 19, 1865, the date soldiers finally arrived in Galveston, TX, to announce the end of the Civil War and slavery. Floyd Cooper’s rich oil paintings and thoughtful, simple language convey an arc of history that moves from the declaration through 150 years of civil rights struggle, culminating in the inauguration of Barack Obama. Juneteenth for Mazie (Capstone, $15.95) is a nuanced and informative introduction, appropriate for very young readers and a potential entry point for deeper historical discussions with older elementary readers. Ages 4-9. Amy Dickinson

By Floyd Cooper, Floyd Cooper (Illustrator)
$15.95
ISBN: 9781623701703
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Capstone Young Readers - February 2015

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This picture book biography of Renaissance man Gordon Parks (Albert Whitman, $16.99)—most famous for being the first black director in Hollywood—explores his early artistic career. Parks spent time in DC working for the government, and instead of turning his camera to looming marble monuments, documented the lives of other African-Americans living in the city. By bringing their struggle to the pages of LIFE magazine, Parks was influential in changing the tide of race relations in America. Carole Boston Weatherford crafts an accessible narrative out of Parks’s inspiring life, accompanied by Jamey Christoph’s warm illustrations that reinterpret some of Parks’s most famous photographs, this is a worthy tribute to his legacy. Ages 5-8. Eowyn Randall

$16.99
ISBN: 9780807530177
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Albert Whitman & Company - February 2015

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Though Emmanuel was born with only one leg, his mother always encouraged him to fend for himself. He went to school, earned money for the family, even learned to ride a bike. He was determined to show everyone “that being disabled does not mean being unable.” Emmanuel’s Dream (Schwartz & Wade, $17.99) to ride his bicycle around Ghana, calling attention and giving hope to people with disabilities, was realized in 2001. He continues to work on behalf of people with disabilities in his beloved country. Author Laurie Ann Thompson penned this inspiring tribute, which is accompanied by the textured, folksy illustrations of Sean Qualls. Ages 5-8. Renee Bosco

By Laurie Thompson, Sean Qualls (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780449817445
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Schwartz & Wade Books - January 6th, 2015

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According to author Hester Bass and illustrator E.B. Lewis, the sleepy town of Huntsville, Alabama, held the Seeds of Freedom (Candlewick, $16.99) that flowered in the Civil Rights movement. Pitting their desire for equality against the militant hatred of Governor Wallace, the black residents of Huntsville peacefully moved the town toward integration. The courage of college students at lunch counter sit-ins, the voices of the men and women protesting on the steps of the courthouse, and the ingenuity of an Easter shopping boycott are all rendered in Bass’s declarative text and Lewis’s luscious watercolors. Ages 7-10. Sharat Buddhavarapu

By Hester Bass, E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9780763669195
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick Press (MA) - January 27th, 2015

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The true story of the bear who inspired Winnie-the-Pooh begins when an army veterinarian purchases a pet bear, Winnipeg, for twenty dollars. Winnipeg, shortened to Winnie (Holt, $17.99), is gentle and loving and adored by the soldiers who take care of her. But when the Great War calls the troops elsewhere, Winnie’s human companion must leave her behind in order to keep her safe. Author Sally M. Walker and illustrator Jonathan D. Voss depict Winnie’s arrival at the London Zoo and how a small boy named Christopher Robin befriended the curious bear, accompanied by his father, A.A. Milne. Ages 5-8. Allison Witten

By Sally M. Walker, John Voss (Illustrator), Jonathan D. Voss (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780805097153
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Henry Holt & Company - January 20th, 2015

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