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The Best Creative Nonfiction Kids Books

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Ada Lovelace
Written by Isabel Sanchez Vegara & illustrated by Zafouko Yamamoto
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

New, in the My First Little People, Big Dreams series: Introduce your littlest one to the world’s first computer programmer, Ada Lovelace. Told in simple sentences, this young reader edition of the best-selling series is perfect to read out loud to little dreamers. This empowering series celebrates the important life stories of wonderful women of the world – and is now in available in a board format for little hands! These books make the lives of these role models accessible for the youngest children, providing a powerful message to inspire the next generation of outstanding people who will change the world!

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Snow Leopard: Ghost of the Mountains
Written by Justin Anderson & illustrated by Patrick Benson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Look! A line of paw prints in the snow. Follow the tracks to see the rare and utterly majestic snow leopard and visit her secret world.

The people who live among the high peaks of the Himalayas tell stories of a mysterious animal called the gray ghost. To see one, you’d have to be very lucky indeed. Join a zoologist in the Himalayan mountains as he searches for the elusive creature. With her pale gold and silver-gray coat painted with black rosettes, she blends so well into the boulders, it’s no wonder she’s thought of as a ghost of the mountains. But the fortunate few who spot her are rewarded with a sight they will never forget. Written by an expert with firsthand experience, beautifully illustrated, and interwoven with fascinating facts, this vicarious look at a breathtaking animal includes an end note suggesting resources to explore.

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Friends and Anemones: Ocean Poems for Children
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-12

“FRIENDS AND ANEMONES: Ocean Poems for Children” is a fun and informative collection of original poems and art by New England authors and illustrators. Hands join fins in an adventure through kelp forests to meet sea otters and whales. Attend an underwater birthday party! Voyage through tempests to bottom-of-the-ocean volcanos and mysterious creatures in the deep, deep darkness.

This book is a valuable ecological and poetry resource for parents as well as librarians and teachers.

Edited by Kristen Wixted and Heather Kelly along with designer Robert Thibeault, the book includes poetry and artwork by 70 different New Engalnd-based authors and illustrators, including Peter Reynolds, Lynda Mullaly Hunt, Jane Yolen, Heidi E.Y. Stemple, Josh Funk, Jodie Apeseche, Sally Hinkley, Pam Vaughan, Casey Robinson, Priscilla Alpaugh, Kip Wilson, Matt Forrest Esenwine, and many others.

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You Are Home
Written & illustrated by Evan Turk
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Award-winning author and illustrator Evan Turk showcases the beauty and importance of the National Parks in this gorgeous picture book that takes readers on an amazing tour across the United States. Beneath the soaring doorways of stone, and peaks that pierce the ceiling of clouds, from every river, star, and stone comes the eternal refrain: you are home. In simple, soaring language and breathtaking art, acclaimed author-illustrator Evan Turk has created a stirring ode to nature and nation. From the rugged coast of Maine to the fiery volcanoes of Hawaii, You Are Home reminds us that every animal, plant, and person helps make this land a brilliant, beautiful sanctuary of life.

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Fungus Is Among Us!
Written by & illustrated by Erica Salcedo
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

You can run, but you can't hide.

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  • Ella Fitzgerald: My First Ella Fitzgerald - This board book version of Ella Fitzgerald—an international bestseller in the beloved Little People, BIG DREAMS series—introduces the youngest dreamers to the First Lady of Song, from her early singing days on the streets of Harlem to her success as a jazz legend. Ella Fitzgerald grew up near Harlem, in New York, where she was surrounded by music and dance. After winning first prize in a talent competition at the Apollo Theater, she went on to tour the world with her pioneering voice. Babies and toddlers will love to snuggle as you read to them the engaging story of this fascinating icon, and will also enjoy exploring the stylish and quirky illustrations of this sturdy board book on their own. Little People, BIG DREAMS is a best-selling series of books and educational games that explore the lives of outstanding people, from designers and artists to scientists and activists. All of them achieved incredible things, yet each began life as a child with a dream. This empowering series offers inspiring messages to children of all ages, in a range of formats. The board books are told in simple sentences, perfect for reading aloud to babies and toddlers. The hardcover versions present expanded stories for beginning readers. Boxed gift sets allow you to collect a selection of the books by theme. Paper dolls, learning cards, matching games, and other fun learning tools provide even more ways to make the lives of these role models accessible to children. Inspire the next generation of outstanding people who will change the world with Little People, BIG DREAMS!

  • Little Acorn - Have you ever wondered what happens when a little acorn becomes a big oak tree? This beautifully illustrated story will delight children and parents alike, and also offers a perfect introduction to the life cycle of trees.

  • She Spoke - When the world tells you to stay quiet, do you listen, or do you speak up? In She Spoke: 14 Women Who Raised Their Voices and Changed the World, with the touch of a button readers can hear Maya Angelou, Mary McLeod Bethune, Shirley Chisholm, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Tammy Duckworth, Leymah Gbowee, Jane Goodall, Temple Grandin, Suzan Shown Harjo, Dolores Huerta, Joanne Liu, Abby Wambach, and Malala Yousafzai. Through succinct profiles, stunning portraits by illustrator Kathrin Honesta, and the original voices of these women, She Spoke will inspire readers of all ages to share their own truths and change the world.

  • Like a Lizard - The attributes of 28 different lizards are revealed in this STEM nonfiction picture book, while the story provides a subtle message encouraging children to be true to their own nature. The actions of 28 lizard species–the flying dragon that swoops through the air, the shingleback that sticks out its blue tongue to scare predators, the basilisk that can race across the surface of water–invite readers to act like a lizard themselves. The text by noted author April Pulley Sayre asks: “Can you run like a lizard? Sun like a lizard? Bob your head like a lizard?” Featuring brilliantly colorful, textured artwork by illustrator Stephanie Laberis, the book also includes extensive back matter with further information about the featured lizard species–their size, geographical range, why they perform the various actions introduced in the text–as well as details about lizards in general.

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A Year with Mama Earth
Written by Rebecca Grabill & illustrated by Rebecca Green
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

In September, Mama Earth sighs out the first autumn frost, which crunches under children's feet. Mama Earth looks after nature's plants and animals throughout the year--singing lullabies to fat bears in the fall, dressing evergreens in icicles in winter, and waking up the crocuses in spring. And in the summer, Mama Earth sends warm sunbeams to her beloved children, so they can play outside and enjoy the amazing world around them.

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Bumpy Books: Patterns
Written & illustrated by Emily Bolam
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

A delightful introduction to patterns! Whether it’s stripes or polka dots, children will learn about unique patterns in Bumpy Books: Patterns. Each spread is full of glossy, embossed patterns to trace in this tactile learning experience. Little ones will love each brightly colored pattern and are encouraged to spot the patterns around them!

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