If you’re looking for a bit of inspiration, follow Tina, a curious cow with a thirst for discovery, as she ventures beyond the farm and into the woods. If you think, like Tina’s three sisters, that her ideas are impossible, ridiculous nonsense, you won’t for long. Gemma Merino’s whimsical illustrations couple with her imaginative story to capture Tina’s individuality and self-assurance from the very first page, where we meet Tina gazing through her telescope at the moon and the Milky Way, to the very last, where she’s piloting a rocket ship into space. The Cow Who Climbed a Tree (Albert Whitman, $16.99): is that possible? Absolutely! Ages 4-7.
A cry for help interrupts what begins as a peaceful summer day and sends the Lighthouse Family into action to rescue The Otter (Beach Lane, $15.99) they find trapped in a sailor’s net. Quick thinking and teamwork are the keys to success, but not before an anxious moment as daylight fades and the sea darkens. Cynthia Rylant highlights everyone’s individual talents without losing the focus on teamwork, including messages of friendship and gratitude. Preston McDaniels’s illustrations set the stage at the beginning of each chapter in this delightful adventure story for younger readers, the sixth book in the Lighthouse Family series. Ages 5-9.
Did you know that baby swans sometimes catch a ride on the backs of their moms or dads? That ruby ladybugs can eat more than 50 aphids in just one day? Ever played a game of conkers? When’s the best time to pick a pear or plum? Spend a year with Nature’s Day (Wide Eyed, $24.99), revisiting eight locations through all four seasons, and discover the world through the wildlife that surrounds you. Author Kay Maguire and illustrator Danielle Kroll have created a storybook, nature journal, and wildlife encyclopedia all wrapped into one, providing something for everyone and enticing readers to spend just a little more time outdoors. Ages 5-10.