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Multicultural: Books For Kids

Looking for a list of the best kids books about multicultural?

Children’s literature has many notable options when it comes to multicultural. To help you find the right books for you and your young reader, we’ve compiled a list of the best kids books about multicultural.

Our list includes board books, picture books, and chapter books. Board books are best for babies and toddlers from ages newborn to 2 or 3. Picture books are generally great options for toddlers and for preschool and kindergarten age children. Picture books are especially enjoyable for adults to read aloud with young kids. The chapter books on our list are generally best for elementary through early middle school age tween kids. You can filter to sort by the best book type for your kid, and you can also use our table of contents to jump to particular topics you think your kid will enjoy.

When it comes to children’s stories about multicultural, there are a variety of titles. This list covers everything, from classics like Case Closed #1: Mystery in the Mansion to popular sellers like A Pocket for Corduroy to some of our favorite hidden gems like New Kid.

We hope this list of kids books about multicultural can be a helpful resource for parents, teachers, and others searching for a new book! As you explore the list, please comment below to let us know what books you would add.

Top 10 Books About Multicultural

This Is How We Do It book
#1
This Is How We Do It
Written & illustrated by Matt Lamothe
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Follow one day in the real lives of seven kids from around the world—Italy, Japan, Iran, India, Peru, Uganda, and Russia!

In Japan, Kei plays Freeze Tag, while in Uganda, Daphine likes to jump rope. While the way they play may differ, the shared rhythm of their days—and this one world we all share—unites them.

This genuine exchange provides a window into traditions that may be different from our own as well as mirrors reflecting our common experiences. Inspired by his own travels, Matt Lamonthe transports readers across the globe and back with this luminous and thoughtful picture book.

Perfect for kids learning about new cultures and customs Educates children on the importance of similarities and differences Gives kids a unique look into the lives of others across the globe If you enjoyed Carson Ellis’ Home, you’re sure to enjoy the window into the world provided by This is How We Do It.

This children’s picture book is ideal for parents or teachers looking for the following: World Book for Kids Travel Book for Kids Beginning Reading Books Cultures for Kids Books Families Around the World Books

This Little Artist book
#2
This Little Artist
Written by Joan Holub & illustrated by Daniel Roode
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Painting, shaping, making art. With creative joy, hands, and heart. Little artists have great big imaginations. In this follow up to This Little President, This Little Explorer, This Little Trailblazer, and This Little Scientist now even the youngest readers can learn all about great and empowering artists in history! Highlighting ten memorable artists who paved the way, parents and little ones alike will love this creativity primer full of fun, age-appropriate facts and bold illustrations.

Big Words for Fearless Girls: 1,000 Big Words for Girls with Big Dreams book
#3
Big Words for Fearless Girls: 1,000 Big Words for Girls with Big Dreams
Written by Stephanie Miles & illustrated by David Miles
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Big Words for Fearless Girls is a first-of-its-kind primer bursting with powerful first words girls will need to pursue their big dreams. The vibrant, oversized board book comes packed with 1,000 brightly illustrated words, all interwoven with 100 female heroes and inspiring messages. Readers will learn colors with Frida Kahlo, animals with Jane Goodall, things that go with Amelia Earhart, fruits and vegetables with Julia Child, and more—but the words don’t stop there. Girls will also find hundreds of powerful words on activism, government, science, engineering, and more to get them ready to blaze ahead and better the world!

Absolutely Almost book
#4
Absolutely Almost
Written by Lisa Graff
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Ten-year-old Albie has never been the smartest, tallest, most athletic, greatest artist, or most musical in his class, as his parents keep reminding him, but new nanny Calista helps him uncover his strengths and take pride in himself. Simultaneous eBook.

Home book
#5
Home
Written & illustrated by Carson Ellis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A picture book debut by the illustrator of The Composer Is Dead offers a whimsical tribute to the myriad possibilities of home, depicting homes in different real-world environments as well as fantastical settings.

Color Our World book
#6
Color Our World
Written by Disney Book Group & illustrated by Disney Storybook Art Team
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

From lavender fields in France, to the blue waters of the Philippines, colors are all around. This adorable board book features sturdy pull-out pages that extend the image with extra, colorful content. Plus with all-new artwork, the vibrant images are an eye-catching delight for young readers.

Greta and the Giants: inspired by Greta Thunberg's stand to save the world book
#7
Greta and the Giants: inspired by Greta Thunberg's stand to save the world
Written by Zoe Tucker & illustrated by Zoe Persico
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

This inspiring picture book retells the story of Nobel Peace Prize nominee Greta Thunberg—the Swedish teenager who has led a global movement to raise awareness about the world’s climate crisis—using allegory to make this important topic accessible to young children. Greta is a little girl who lives in a beautiful forest threatened by Giants. When the Giants first came to the forest, they chopped down trees to make houses. Then they chopped down more trees and made even bigger homes. The houses grew into towns and the towns grew into cities, until now there is hardly any forest left. Greta knows she has to help the animals who live in the forest, but how? Luckily, Greta has an idea… A section at the back explains that, in reality, the fight against the “giants” isn’t over and explains how you can help Greta in her fight. This book has been printed sustainably in the US on 100% recycled paper. By buying a copy of this book, you are making a donation of 3% of the cover price to 350.org.

Augustus and His Smile book
#8
Augustus and His Smile
Written & illustrated by Catherine Rayner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Augustus the tiger was sad. He had lost his smile. So he did a HUGE tigery stretch, and set off to find it. Stunning illustrations celebrate the beauty of the world and the simple happiness it brings to us. An imaginative book for children who love to explore the world around them.

New Kid book
#9
New Kid
Written & illustrated by Jerry Craft
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Gene Luen Yang, New Kid is a timely, honest graphic novel about starting over at a new school where diversity is low and the struggle to fit in is real, from award-winning author-illustrator Jerry Craft.

Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.

As he makes the daily trip from his Washington Heights apartment to the upscale Riverdale Academy Day School, Jordan soon finds himself torn between two worlds—and not really fitting into either one. Can Jordan learn to navigate his new school culture while keeping his neighborhood friends and staying true to himself?

How Do You Say I Love You? book
#10
How Do You Say I Love You?
Written by Hannah Eliot & illustrated by Shirley Ng-Benitez
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

Learn how to say “I love you” in ten different languages with this heartwarming board book. “I love you” may sound different around the world, but the meaning is the same. From China, to France, to Russia, to Brazil, and beyond, this charming board book features “I love you” in ten different languages. Tapping into the emotions that parents feel for their children, the rhyming text is accompanied by sweet artwork that depicts different cultures around the world.

Table of Contents
Scroll to books about Multicultural and...

Books About Multicultural and Lifestyles

This Is How We Do It
Written & illustrated by Matt Lamothe
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Follow one day in the real lives of seven kids from around the world—Italy, Japan, Iran, India, Peru, Uganda, and Russia!

In Japan, Kei plays Freeze Tag, while in Uganda, Daphine likes to jump rope. While the way they play may differ, the shared rhythm of their days—and this one world we all share—unites them.

This genuine exchange provides a window into traditions that may be different from our own as well as mirrors reflecting our common experiences. Inspired by his own travels, Matt Lamonthe transports readers across the globe and back with this luminous and thoughtful picture book.

Perfect for kids learning about new cultures and customs Educates children on the importance of similarities and differences Gives kids a unique look into the lives of others across the globe If you enjoyed Carson Ellis’ Home, you’re sure to enjoy the window into the world provided by This is How We Do It.

This children’s picture book is ideal for parents or teachers looking for the following: World Book for Kids Travel Book for Kids Beginning Reading Books Cultures for Kids Books Families Around the World Books

Home
Written & illustrated by Carson Ellis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A picture book debut by the illustrator of The Composer Is Dead offers a whimsical tribute to the myriad possibilities of home, depicting homes in different real-world environments as well as fantastical settings.

Going Up!
Written by Sherry J Lee & illustrated by Charlene Chua
picture book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Today is Olive’s birthday party, and Sophie and her dad have baked cookies. Sophie’s dad holds the platter so Sophie can push the elevator button for the tenth floor. But on the way up, the elevator stops to let the Santucci brothers get on. Then on the next floor, Vicky, Babs and their dog, Norman, get in. And as the elevator ascends, it keeps stopping, and more neighbors squeeze in to the crowded space: the Habibs, the Flores family, Mr. Kwan, Vi Tweedle with her Chihuahua, Minx. Everyone is going to the party!

Playfully combining the excitement and anticipation of a party with children’s universal love of riding in elevators, Sherry J. Lee’s picture book story is ultimately about community and a sense of belonging. With characters from many cultural backgrounds, it showcases the everyday diversity that many urban children experience. Charlene Chua’s illustrations provide loads of funny details and visual narratives that aren’t in the text, making for a multilayered reading experience. The book’s tall, narrow trim size adds to the effect of the rising elevator.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Thank You, Garden - From the author of the Caldecott Honor–winning picture book All the World comes an exuberant, lyrical celebration of the plants—and people—that grow and thrive in a busy community garden. A community garden unites children and neighbors in this celebration of all the things that grow there, from flowers and fruits to friendships. In the spirit of her Caldecott Honor­–winning picture book All the World, this ode to friendship, community, and working together for a better world will have young readers gathering their friends young and old to plant something together.

  2. The City Girls - Bustling sidewalks, busy streets, museums, parks, and tasty treats—the City Girls are ready to explore in this adorable picture book! From Aki, the author-illustrator of The Weather Girls and The Nature Girls, comes a new picture book starring an adorable troupe of girls exploring the city and taking in all the diversity of life it has to offer! It’s morning time in the city./ We watch the sun rise, slow and pretty. Follow these busy girls as they wander through the city, taking in the sights. Charming rhyming verse and adorable art make this picture book irresistible—and perfect for sharing!

  3. The Vanderbeekers to the Rescue - A New York Times best-selling series! Harlem’s favorite family returns in the third installment in the Vanderbeerkers series, wherein the Vanderbeeker kids find themselves racing to save their mother’s baking business from city closure. Illustrated with delightful black and white illustrations. For the Vanderbeeker kids of Harlem’s 141st Street, spring break couldn’t be off to a better start. Isa’s back from band camp, Oliver’s building his first-ever treehouse in the backyard of the brownstone, and Laney, Jess, and Hyacinth are excited to help their mother when she gets the once-in-a-lifetime chance to star in a cooking magazine. But the Vanderbeekers’ plans go off the rails when an unexpected visit from city officials puts their mother’s bakery in jeopardy. Now they’ll have to band together to save the day before they’re out of business. Perfect for fans of The Penderwicks _and _Front Desk.

  4. Errol's Garden - Errol loves gardening, but he doesn’t have a proper garden. Although his home is full of beautiful plants, he longs for an outdoor space where he can grow things. A chance discovery leads to a solution, but Errol can’t do everything on his own. Luckily, help is near at hand. A heart-warming and inclusive tale about how one small boy’s dream of a garden unites a diverse community in a positive and enriching experience for everyone.

Want to see books about lifestyles?

Books About Multicultural and Love

How Do You Say I Love You?
Written by Hannah Eliot & illustrated by Shirley Ng-Benitez
board book
Recommend Ages: 1-4

Learn how to say “I love you” in ten different languages with this heartwarming board book. “I love you” may sound different around the world, but the meaning is the same. From China, to France, to Russia, to Brazil, and beyond, this charming board book features “I love you” in ten different languages. Tapping into the emotions that parents feel for their children, the rhyming text is accompanied by sweet artwork that depicts different cultures around the world.

I Yoga You
Written & illustrated by Genevieve Santos
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

Parents and children learn how to say “I love you” through yoga as they move through their day together in a perfectly mindful way.

I love you in the morning when we salute the sun. Wiggle and stretch out of bed, our day has now begun.

From morning to night, I Yoga You celebrates the love a parent shares with their child while also teaching simple yoga poses. Sun salutations give way to mountain poses, tree poses, and more as families move through their mindful day together.

This padded board book teaches little ones a new way to say “I love you”—reveling in those quiet daily moments that shine with energy, delight, and surprises.

Like the Moon Loves the Sky
Written by Hena Khan & illustrated by Saffa Khan
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

A lyrical and heartwarming celebration of a mother’s love for her children by the award-winning author of Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns.

In this moving picture book, author Hena Khan shares her wishes for her children: “Inshallah you find wonder in birds as they fly. Inshallah you are loved, like the moon loves the sky.” With vibrant illustrations and prose inspired by the Quran, this charming picture book is a heartfelt and universal celebration of a parent’s unconditional love.

• A reassuring bedtime read-aloud for mothers and their children. • A perfect book for sharing Muslim family traditions and for families teaching diversity and religious acceptance. • Hena Khan’s books have been widely acclaimed, winning awards and honors from the ALA, Parent’s Choice, and many others.

For families who have read and loved Under My Hijab, Yo Soy Muslim, and Mommy’s Khimar.

A sweet and lovely bedtime book to help let children know they are loved and precious.

Honorable Mentions
  1. How Do I Love Thee? - A gorgeous reinvention of Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s famous “Sonnet 43” from the bestselling author of the BabyLit board books and the acclaimed illustrator of Over and Under the Snow. How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. Whether in soft sunlight or rain-drizzled night or winter’s frost-etched breath, three children share the love and joy of friendship while exploring the wonders of nature. Bestselling author Jennifer Adams has reimagined Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s beloved “Sonnet 43,” best known by its opening lines, creating a lyrical, evocative ode to the love of family and friends. Christopher Silas Neal brings the poetry to life with his beautiful, imaginative, and whimsical illustrations.

  2. Grandma's Girl - Nothing truly compares to the special bond between grandma and granddaughter. With heartwarming rhymes and beautiful illustrations of diverse grandmothers and granddaughters, Grandma’s Girl is the perfect way to bring generations together. It’s a touching story about all the things a young girl learns and becomes, and how Grandma understands, because she’s been there before. Of all the most marvelous things in this world
    There are few that can truly compare
    To the heartwarming, special, unbreakable bond
    That a grandma and granddaughter share.

  3. Love - #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “[A] poetic reckoning of the importance of love in a child’s life . . . eloquent and moving.”—People “Everything that can be called love — from shared joy to comfort in the darkness — is gathered in the pages of this reassuring, refreshingly honest picture book.”—The New York Times Book Review, Editors’ Choice / Staff Picks From the Book Review “Lyrical and sensitive, ‘Love’ is the sort of book likely to leave readers of all ages a little tremulous, and brimming with feeling.”—The Wall Street Journal From Newbery Medal-winning author Matt de la Peña and bestselling illustrator Loren Long comes a story about the strongest bond there is and the diverse and powerful ways it connects us all. “In the beginning there is light and two wide-eyed figures standing near the foot of your bed and the sound of their voices is love. … A cab driver plays love softly on his radio while you bounce in back with the bumps of the city and everything smells new, and it smells like life.” In this heartfelt celebration of love, Newbery Medal-winning author Matt de la Peña and bestselling illustrator Loren Long depict the many ways we experience this universal bond, which carries us from the day we are born throughout the years of our childhood and beyond. With a lyrical text that’s soothing and inspiring, this tender tale is a needed comfort and a new classic that will resonate with readers of every age.

  4. I Will Love You - Author of the bestselling Biscuit series, Alyssa Satin Capucilli, tells a magical tale of parental love that every parent will want to share with their little one! In the very first moment, when you came to be, I looked at you, and you looked at me. I whispered these words as I held you near, for all time, for all space, for the world to hear I will love you.” Capucilli’s text is lyrical, touching, and makes for a great read-aloud, while illustrator Lisa Anchin brings this story to life through magical, detailed landscapes and precious mother/daughter moments. Every parent wants to reassure they will always be loved. Like Nancy Tillman’s On the Night You Were Born, this book is sure to become a tried-and-true bedtime story.

Want to see books about love?

Books About Multicultural and Values And Virtues

Greta and the Giants: inspired by Greta Thunberg's stand to save the world
Written by Zoe Tucker & illustrated by Zoe Persico
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

This inspiring picture book retells the story of Nobel Peace Prize nominee Greta Thunberg—the Swedish teenager who has led a global movement to raise awareness about the world’s climate crisis—using allegory to make this important topic accessible to young children. Greta is a little girl who lives in a beautiful forest threatened by Giants. When the Giants first came to the forest, they chopped down trees to make houses. Then they chopped down more trees and made even bigger homes. The houses grew into towns and the towns grew into cities, until now there is hardly any forest left. Greta knows she has to help the animals who live in the forest, but how? Luckily, Greta has an idea… A section at the back explains that, in reality, the fight against the “giants” isn’t over and explains how you can help Greta in her fight. This book has been printed sustainably in the US on 100% recycled paper. By buying a copy of this book, you are making a donation of 3% of the cover price to 350.org.

Heal the Earth
Written by Bart Davis and Julian Lennon & illustrated by Smiljana Coh
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Take a journey to help the Earth in the second book of the New York Times bestselling trilogy by Julian Lennon! Jump aboard the White Feather Flier, a magical plane that can go wherever you want. This time, Lennon’s interactive book immerses children in a fun and unique journey where they can: Bring medicine to people in need! Dive below the ocean to bleached coral reefs! Visit the city to cultivate green spaces! Help the rain forest return and give its animals a home! Explore the planet, meet new people, and help make the world a better place! The Flier’s mission is to transport readers around the world, to engage them in helping to save the environment, and to teach one and all to love our planet. Just press a button printed on the page, and point the plane up in the air to fly, or down to land it! An inspiring, lyrical story, rooted in Lennon’s life and work, Heal the Earth is filled with beautiful illustrations that bring the faraway world closer to young children. The book includes words to a new, special poem written by Julian Lennon, specifically for Heal the Earth. A portion of the proceeds from book sales will go to support the environmental and humanitarian efforts of the White Feather Foundation, the global environmental and humanitarian organization that Lennon founded to promote education, health, conservation, and the protection of indigenous culture.

Indestructibles: Let's Be Kind
Written by & illustrated by Ekaterina Trukhan and Amy Pixton
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-2

Now selling a million copies a year, INDESTRUCTIBLES is the runaway little series that could! Printed on a special nontoxic, 100% washable, paperlike, recyclable material that is rip proof, chew proof, and drool proof, they are books designed for the way babies read—with their mouths!

Let’s Be Kind encourages kindness by introducing words and phrases like please, thank you, and I’m sorry in a warm, familial setting.

INDESTRUCTIBLES’ text is simple and engaging, and the bold, bright illustrations hold baby’s attention. Priced at just $5.95, these books are such a great value, parents will want to collect them all.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Henry and Bea - Henry and Bea are inseparable, but one day Henry suddenly stops talking to his best friend. Bea knows there’s something Henry’s not telling her, but what could it be? Henry and Bea have always been inseparable…until one day Henry suddenly stops talking to Bea. He won’t chat with her in class, and he won’t sit with her at lunch. Bea can tell something’s going on, and she’s determined to find out what it is. Then their teacher announces that the class is taking a field trip to a farm, and Bea hopes that this might be her chance to reconnect with Henry. When Henry finds an old cat collar at the farm and starts to cry, he finally reveals his secret to Bea: his cat Buddy died last week. And even though it’s hard for them both, Bea knows that she’ll be there for Henry, as his best friend, no matter what. From award-winning author/illustrator Jessixa Bagley comes a realistic and ultimately uplifting portrayal of the challenges of childhood friendship.

  2. It Takes a Village - “It Takes a Village offers a universal, unifying message. It captures perfectly Clinton’s vision of a multicultural America working toward a constructive goal. So hopeful and forward-looking.” —The Washington Post “Inspired by her 2006 book of the same name, Clinton’s unadorned text celebrates how civic spirit emerges…Most of the storytelling is found in Frazee’s delicately textured images, which exude energy, hope, and emotional authenticity.” —Publishers Weekly “This work is a welcome reminder that all people ‘are born believers. And citizens, too.’” —Shelf Awareness “What does it take to change the world?” Former Secretary of State and Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton’s first book for young readers, inspired by the themes of her classic New York Times bestselling book It Takes a Village, and illustrated by two-time Caldecott Honor recipient Marla Frazee, asks readers what can they do to make the world a better place? It Takes a Village tells the heartwarming and universal story of a diverse community coming together to make a difference. All kinds of people working together, playing together, and living together in harmony makes a better village and many villages coming together can make a better world. Together we can build a better life for one another. Together we can change our world. The book will resonate with children and families and through the generations as it encourages readers to look for a way they can make a difference. It is a book that you will surely want to read again and again, a book you will want to share and a book that will inspire.

  3. I Will Be Fierce - Today, I will be fierce! It’s a brand new day, and a young girl decides to take on the world like a brave explorer heading off on an epic fairytale quest. From home to school and back again, our hero conquers the Mountain of Knowledge (the library), forges new bridges (friendships), and leads the victorious charge home on her steed (the school bus). Written by Bea Birdsong and illustrated by Nidhi Chanani, I Will Be Fierce is a powerful picture book about courage, confidence, kindness, and finding the extraordinary in everyday moments.

  4. Emily's Idea - How a simple creative act spreads a message of love and acceptance around the world? Emily’s idea started small. Many beautiful ideas do. She folded, doodled, and snipped. But also, like many ideas, Emily’s small idea grew. When a little girl decides to create a paper chain of dolls, her idea catches on. Then it spreads far and wide as children around the world begin to create and share their own. This is the story of how that girl makes it happen.

Books About Multicultural and Animals

Sam the Man & The Chicken Plan
Written by Frances O’Roark Dowell & illustrated by Amy June Bates
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Sam the Man wants to earn some money and he’s got a cluck-worthy plan in this endearing chapter book that’s the first in a new series from Frances O’Roark Dowell.

Sam the Man needs a job. Even his sister gets twenty bucks a pop for mowing people’s lawns! But seven-year-olds aren’t allowed to mow lawns, so Sam decides to ask his next door neighbor if she needs help doing other chores. It turns out she’ll pay him a whole dollar each time he can convince her dad, Mr. Stockfish, to join him for a walk. But it turns out that getting Mr. Stockfish to leave the living room isn’t easy. AND a dollar a pop isn’t going to cut it.

So when Mrs. Kerner, another neighbor, asks if Sam would like to watch her chickens, Sam jumps on the task. You can count on him, yes indeed. Watching chickens is more fun than he expects, and comes with an added bonus: it turns out that visiting the chickens is the one thing that can coax Mr. Stockfish out of the house! But what does a seven-year-old do with all the money he’s earning? It’s too little for a bike, and too much for candy. But wait! It’s just enough for a chicken of his own—the kind that lays BLUE eggs! Soon he has a whole waiting list of kids who want to buy a blue egg. And what does Sam plan on doing with his new fortune? Buy Mr. Stockfish his own chicken, of course!

Yoko
Written & illustrated by Rosemary Wells
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Mmm, Yoko’s mom has packed her favorite for lunch today—sushi! But her classmates don’t think it looks quite so yummy. “Ick!” says one of the Franks. “It’s seaweed!” They’re not even impressed by her red bean ice cream dessert. Of course, Mrs. Jenkins has a plan that might solve Yoko’s problem. But will it work with the other children in class? Now in paperback for the first time, this tender story from Rosemary Wells demonstrates the author’s uncanny understanding of the pleasures and pains of an ordinary school day.

Business Pig
Written & illustrated by Andrea Zuill
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Right from the start, everyone at the barnyard knew Jasper was different: “What we have here is a gen-u-WINE Business Pig!” No playing in the mud for him; Jasper preferred bookkeeping and charts. Most of all, he longs for a forever home. But no matter how many resumes Jasper hands out, no one adopts him. Can this business pig find that special person who means business, too?

Honorable Mentions
  1. Friends - A girl from a faraway place begins her first day at school. She doesn’t speak the language and she looks different. She just doesn’t fit in. But one day, she makes an unexpected friend—a squirrel! Then a rabbit joins them. Soon the girl’s fuzzy woodland friends are followed by human ones and school becomes more fun! When a surprising new student joins the class, the girl and her new friends know just how to make him feel at home.

  2. Only a Tree Knows How to Be a Tree - All living creatures have a special place in the world in this extraordinary exploration of the concept of self for very young readers. Only I know how to be me.
    Only you know how to be you.
    Trees have leaves that turn sunshine into food. Amazing! Birds build nests, sing songs, hatch eggs, and fly. Dogs are our friends and can move their ears to tell us how they feel, while fish live in water, flashing like jewels. As for people, every person on Earth is different, each with their own thoughts and feelings. With a simple narrative and joyful, welcoming illustrations celebrating a world full of remarkable creatures, Mary Murphy reminds little ones that we are all unique, and that we are the only ones who know how to be us.

  3. Dance with the Animals - This delightful mix and match title features animal characters from around the world. Wolf, Lemur, Panda, and friends have gathered together for a night of twirling, twisting, clapping, clicking and tapping. Ella Baileys beautiful illustrations can be mixed and matched to create cute characters in fun outfits, while the text suggests mix and match actions that young readers can do to join in with the animals fun. The split page board format is attractive and robust, perfect for little hands to play with over and over again. Children aged two and up can enjoy the charming illustrations independently, and used with a parent or guardian, the fun join in actions add a further interactive dimension, promoting coordination and cognitive development.

  4. Eric Carle's Animals Animals - From leaping, flying fish to dancing butterflies, and camels that “trollop along,” Eric Carle’s brilliant and colorful collage designs bring to life animal poems from such diverse sources as Shakespeare, Lewis Carroll, Rudyard Kipling, Emily Dickinson, and Jack Prelutsky, as well as Bible verses, Japanese haiku, American Indian poems and more. This celebration of the wonder and variety of earth’s animals is “joyous…a book to be shared” (Booklist, starred review).

Want to see books about animals?

Books About Multicultural and America

Grace Goes to Washington
Written by Kelly DiPucchio & illustrated by LeUyen Pham
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

“Who’s in charge here?” When Grace learns about the three branches of the United States government, she and the rest of the student council put the lesson into practice as they debate how to spend the money from a school fund-raiser. Should they buy new sports equipment? Books for the library? Instruments for the music room? The arguments continue as they travel to Washington, DC, for a field trip. Exploring government buildings and national monuments, Grace feels closer than ever to her dream of becoming president someday. But she and her classmates have a lot to learn about what it means to serve the needs of the people, especially when the people want such different things! In this follow-up to New York Times best seller Grace for President, Kelly DiPucchio not only introduces how our government makes decisions, but also shares what it takes to be a true public servant.

Blue Sky White Stars
Written by Sarvinder Naberhaus & illustrated by Kadir Nelson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

An inspiring and patriotic tribute to the beauty of the American flag, a symbol of America’s history, landscape, and people, illustrated by New York Times bestselling and Caldecott-honor winning artist Kadir Nelson

Wonderfully spare, deceptively simple verses pair with richly evocative paintings to celebrate the iconic imagery of our nation, beginning with the American flag. Each spread, sumptuously illustrated by award-winning artist Kadir Nelson, depicts a stirring tableau, from the view of the Statue of Library at Ellis Island to civil rights marchers shoulder to shoulder, to a spacecraft at Cape Canaveral blasting off. This book is an ode to America then and now, from sea to shining sea.

The Next President: The Unexpected Beginnings and Unwritten Future of America’s Presidents
Written by Adam Rex and Kate Messner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-10

An inspiring and informative book for kids about the past and future of America’s presidents.

Who will be the NEXT president? Could it be you? When George Washington became the first president of the United States, there were nine future presidents already alive in America, doing things like practicing law or studying medicine.

When JFK became the thirty-fifth president, there were 10 future presidents already alive in America, doing things like hosting TV shows and learning the saxophone.

And right now—today!—there are at least 10 future presidents alive in America. They could be playing basketball, like Barack Obama, or helping in the garden, like Dwight D. Eisenhower. They could be solving math problems or reading books. They could be making art—or already making change.

• A breezy, kid-friendly survey of American history and American presidents
• Great for teachers, librarians, and other educators
• Kate Messner’s nonfiction picture books have been lauded by critics and received a variety of awards.

For young readers and students who loved The New Big Book of Presidents, Lincoln and Kennedy: A Pair to Compare, and Kid Presidents: True Tales of Childhood from America’s Presidents.

A helpful addition to curriculums of 5th- to 8th-grade students studying U.S. History and civics and the federal government.

• For readers ages 8–12
• U.S. history for kids
• Students, librarians, teachers
• 5th–8th-grade kids

From award-winning author Kate Messner and New York Times bestselling artist Adam Rex comes a timely and compelling compendium about the U.S. presidents—before they were presidents.

Kate Messner is an award-winning author whose many books for kids have been selected as Best Books by the New York Times, Junior Library Guild, IndieBound, and Bank Street College of Education. She lives on Lake Champlain with her family.

Adam Rex is the author and illustrator of many beloved picture books and novels, including Nothing Rhymes with Orange and the New York Times bestseller Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich. He has worked with the likes of Jon Scieszka, Mac Barnett, Jeff Kinney, and Neil Gaiman. He lives in Tucson, Arizona.

Honorable Mentions
  1. The Length of a String - Imani is adopted, and she’s ready to search for her birth parents. But when she discovers the diary her Jewish great-grandmother wrote chronicling her escape from Holocaust-era Europe, Imani begins to see family in a new way. Imani knows exactly what she wants as her big bat mitzvah gift: to find her birth parents. She loves her family and her Jewish community in Baltimore, but she has always wondered where she came from, especially since she’s black and almost everyone she knows is white. Then her mom’s grandmother–Imani’s great-grandma Anna–passes away, and Imani discovers an old journal among her books. It’s Anna’s diary from 1941, the year she was twelve and fled Nazi-occupied Luxembourg alone, sent by her parents to seek refuge in Brooklyn, New York. Anna’s diary records her journey to America and her new life with an adoptive family of her own. And as Imani reads the diary, she begins to see her family, and her place in it, in a whole new way.

  2. Grace for President - “Where are the girls?” When Grace’s teacher reveals that the United States has never had a female president, Grace decides to be the first. And she immediately starts off her political career as a candidate the school’s mock election! Author Kelly DiPucchio not only gives readers a fun introduction to the American electoral system, but also teaches them the value of hard work, courage, and independent thought—and offers an inspiring example of how to choose our leaders.

  3. The Stone Heart - Kaidu and Rat have only just recovered from the assassination attempt on the General of All Blades when more chaos breaks loose in the Nameless City: deep conflicts within the Dao nation are making it impossible to find a political solution for the disputed territory of the City itself. To complicate things further, Kaidu is fairly certain he’s stumbled on a formula for the lost weapon of the mysterious founders of the City. . . . But sharing it with the Dao military would be a complete betrayal of his friendship with Rat. Can Kai find the right solution before the Dao find themselves at war?

Want to see books about America?

Books About Multicultural and Science And Nature

Catch the Sky: Playful Poems on the Air We Share
Written by Robert Heidbreder & illustrated by Emily Dove
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-8

In the vein of Jack Prelutsky and Dennis Lee comes a celebration of the sky with thirty zippy poems that will lift your spirits and let your imagination soar.

Award-winning children’s poet Robert Heidbreder captures the magic and beauty of all the things kids around the world observe when looking up, from birds and balloons to snow and shooting stars. These pocket-sized poems are perfect for sharing the natural world, and the bright, joyful images by Emily Dove depict the delight of children from all cultures, cheering and connecting with the sky we all share.

My Busy Body
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Lift the flaps to learn how the human body works!

Which muscle is the biggest? What happens when you sneeze? Which bone is the smallest? Find out the answers to these questions and more in First Facts and Flaps: My Busy Body. This book is full of flaps to lift, a wheel to turn, and a giant foldout that cover the digestive system, organs, senses, and more. With colorful illustrations and simple text, this book is the perfect introduction to the human body.

The Hike
Written & illustrated by Alison Farrell
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

With lyrical language that captures the majesty of the natural world coupled with fun narrative featured throughout, this spirited picture book tells the victorious story of three girls’ friendship—and their tribulations and triumphs in the great outdoors. Here is the best and worst of any hike: from picnics to puffing and panting, deer-sighting to detours. Featuring a glossary, a sketchbook by one of the characters, abundant labels throughout, and scientific backmatter, this book is a must-have for budding scientists, best friends, and all adventurers. And it proves, as if proof were needed, what epic things can happen right in your own backyard.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Let's Go Outside! - Now selling a million copies a year, INDESTRUCTIBLESis the runaway little series that could! Printed on a special nontoxic, 100% washable, paperlike, recyclable material that is rip proof, chew proof, and drool proof, they are books designed for the way babies read—with their mouths! Let’s Go Outside! celebrates the wonders of nature—the blue sky and tall, tall trees, the splish of a fish and the buzz of a busy buzzy bee. INDESTRUCTIBLES’ text is simple and engaging, and the bold, bright illustrations hold baby’s attention. Priced at just $5.95, these books are such a great value, parents will want to collect them all.

  2. If Pluto Was a Pea - Join two curious kids as they explore their backyard, and contemplate their place within our vast universe in this adorable picture book that’s full of comparisons to help kids understand cosmic size. If Pluto was a pea… the Sun would be like a tent, Mercury would be a marble, and Earth would be a golf ball. Pluto is the smallest planet in our solar system, but how small is small? As it turns out, it only takes the contents of a lunchbox and a backyard to find out.

  3. The Mess That We Made - The Mess That We Made explores the environmental impact of trash and plastic on the ocean and marine life, and it inspires kids to do their part to combat pollution. Simple, rhythmic wording builds to a crescendo (“This is the mess that we made. These are the fish that swim in the mess that we made.”) and the vibrant digital artwork captures the disaster that is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Children can imagine themselves as one of the four multi-ethnic occupants of the little boat surrounded by swirling plastic in the middle of the ocean, witnessing the cycle of destruction and the harm it causes to plants, animals, and humans. The first half of the book portrays the growing magnitude of the issue, and the second half rallies children and adults to make the necessary changes to save our oceans, before it is too late. Facts about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, ocean pollution, and how kids can help are included in the back matter.

  4. Touch the Earth - A New York Times bestseller that TODAY calls “beautiful” and “stunning!” This interactive book immerses children in a fun and unique journey. Jump aboard the White Feather Flier, a magical plane that can go wherever you want! Just press a button printed on the page, and point the plane up in the air to fly, or down to land it! Fly to the top of a mountain! Send clean water to thirsty people! Dive deep into the ocean (the Flier turns into a submarine!) to pick up pollution and bring back the fish! Explore the planet, meet new people, and help make the world a better place! The Flier’s mission is to transport readers around the world, to engage them in helping to save the environment, and to teach one and all to love our planet. An inspiring, lyrical story, rooted in Lennon’s life and work, Touch the Earth is filled with beautiful illustrations that bring the faraway world closer to young children. The book includes words to a special poem written by Julian Lennon, specifically for Touch the Earth . This is the first book in a planned trilogy. A portion of the proceeds from book sales will go to support the environmental and humanitarian efforts of the White Feather Foundation, the global environmental and humanitarian organization that Lennon founded to promote education, health, conservation, and the protection of indigenous culture.

Books About Multicultural and Prejudice And Racism

Wishtree
Written by Katherine Applegate & illustrated by Charles Santoso
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 10-14

The New York Times-bestselling story of kindness, friendship, and hope.

Trees can’t tell jokes, but they can certainly tell stories. . . .

Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood “wishtree”—people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red’s branches. Along with a crow named Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red’s hollows, this wishtree watches over the neighborhood.

You might say Red has seen it all.

Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red’s experience as a wishtree is more important than ever.

Funny, deep, warm, and nuanced, this is Katherine Applegate at her very best—writing from the heart, and from a completely unexpected point of view.

This book has Common Core connections.

Mister Lincoln's Way
Written & illustrated by Patricia Polacco
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

When Mr. Lincoln, “the coolest principal in the whole world,” discovers that Eugene, the school bully, knows a lot about birds, he uses this interest to help Eugene overcome his intolerance.

Ride to Remember: A Civil Rights Story
Written by Amy Nathan and Sharon Langley & illustrated by Floyd Cooper
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

The true story of how a ride on a carousel made a powerful Civil Rights statement
 
_A Ride to Remember_ tells how a community came together—both black and white—to make a change. When Sharon Langley was born in the early 1960s, many amusement parks were segregated, and African-American families were not allowed entry. This book reveals how in the summer of 1963, due to demonstrations and public protests, the Gwynn Oak Amusement Park in Maryland became desegregated and opened to all for the first time. Co-author Sharon Langley was the first African-American child to ride the carousel. This was on the same day of Martin Luther King Jr.’s March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Langley’s ride to remember demonstrated the possibilities of King’s dream. This book includes photos of Sharon on the carousel, authors’ notes, a timeline, and a bibliography.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Sweet Neighbors Come in All Colors - An ensemble of friendly fruit characters sing about their diversity of colors, shapes, and sizes. This title gives children the opportunity to explore early-learning concepts and offers families the chance to discuss ideas like unity and diversity. Includes sheet music and online link to the song’s recording.

  2. All are welcome - A warm, welcoming picture book that celebrates diversity and gives encouragement and support to all kids. Follow a group of children through a day in their school, where everyone is welcomed with open arms. A school where kids in patkas, hijabs, and yarmulkes play side-by-side with friends in baseball caps. A school where students grow and learn from each other’s traditions and the whole community gathers to celebrate the Lunar New Year. All Are Welcome lets young children know that no matter what, they have a place, they have a space, they are welcome in their school.

  3. The Other Side - Clover’s mom says it isn’t safe to cross the fence that segregates their African-American side of town from the white side where Anna lives. But the two girls strike up a friendship, and get around the grown-ups’ rules by sitting on top of the fence together. With the addition of a brand-new author’s note, this special edition celebrates the tenth anniversary of this classic book. As always, Woodson moves readers with her lyrical narrative, and E. B. Lewis’s amazing talent shines in his gorgeous watercolor illustrations.

  4. Dreamland Burning - A compelling dual-narrated novel that asks, how far have we really come with race relations in the last 100 years? Now in paperback. When seventeen-year-old Rowan Chase finds a skeleton on her family’s property, she has no idea that investigating the brutal, century-old murder will lead to a summer of painful discoveries about the past… and the present. Nearly 100 years earlier, a misguided violent encounter propels seventeen-year-old Will Tillman into a racial firestorm. In a country rife with violence against African Americans and a hometown segregated by Jim Crow, Will must make hard choices and face his inner demons in order to do what’s right the night Tulsa burns. Through intricately interwoven alternating perspectives, this “unflinching, superbly written story” (Kirkus) brings the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921 to blazing life, raising important questions about the complex state of U.S. race relations.

Books About Multicultural and Family Life

Absolutely Almost
Written by Lisa Graff
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Ten-year-old Albie has never been the smartest, tallest, most athletic, greatest artist, or most musical in his class, as his parents keep reminding him, but new nanny Calista helps him uncover his strengths and take pride in himself. Simultaneous eBook.

Ohana Means Family
Written by Ilima Loomis & illustrated by Kenard Pak
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

**Join the family, or ohana, as they farm taro for poi to prepare for a traditional luau celebration with a poetic text in the style of The House That Jack Built**.**

“This is the land that’s never been sold, where work the hands, so wise and old, that reach through the water, clear and cold, into the mud to pick the taro to make the poi for our ohana’s luau.”

Acclaimed illustrator and animator Kenard Pak’s light-filled, dramatic illustrations pair exquisitely with Ilima Loomis’ text to celebrate Hawaiian land and culture.

The backmatter includes a glossary of Hawaiian terms used, as well as an author’s note.

Choosing Sides
Written by Alex Morgan
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

From FIFA World Cup Champion, Olympic gold medalist, and bestselling author Alex Morgan comes the ninth book in an empowering and fun-filled middle grade series that inspired the Amazon original series, The Kicks! After an easy win against the Roses, Devin is reminded of how the Kicks were playing when she first joined and how far they have come since then. Devin runs into Sasha, a summer league teammate of hers, who confides that the Roses’ coach doesn’t seem to care that they’re losing and asks Devin for help. She invites the Roses to a weekend soccer clinic that the Kicks are going to. But when the eighth graders find out that Devin is helping another team in their league, they are not pleased and accuse Devin of helping the competition—especially when the Roses begin to win. Meanwhile, Zoe and Emma haven’t been seeing eye-to-eye, and their friendship seems to be in trouble, putting Devin and Jessi in the middle of their fights. When they begin to disrupt the Kicks’ practices, Devon knows she has to do something. Can Devin prove to her team and her friends that she’s not playing favorites or choosing sides?

Honorable Mentions
  1. I Love Kisses - I love kisses. I’ll bet that you do too! Wake up sleepyhead kisses Raspberry jam and bread kisses… There are lots of kinds of kisses in the world, and they all say something different. Award-winning author Sheryl McFarlane’s new book celebrates the best part about kisses; while each one is unique, they all say “I love you!”

  2. Grandpa Cacao - This beautifully illustrated story connects past and present as a girl bakes a chocolate cake with her father and learns about her grandfather harvesting cacao beans in West Africa. Chocolate is the perfect treat, everywhere! As a little girl and her father bake her birthday cake together, Daddy tells the story of her Grandpa Cacao, a farmer from the Ivory Coast in West Africa. In a land where elephants roam and the air is hot and damp, Grandpa Cacao worked in his village to harvest cacao, the most important ingredient in chocolate. “Chocolate is a gift to you from Grandpa Cacao,” Daddy says. “We can only enjoy chocolate treats thanks to farmers like him.” Once the cake is baked, it’s ready to eat, but this isn’t her only birthday present. There’s a special surprise waiting at the front door . . .

  3. Cody and the Heart of a Champion - In Cody’s life, some people keep her on her toes—just like Mother Nature, who is warm one day and snowy the next. Or like Cody’s brother, Wyatt, who has started wearing collared shirts because his girlfriend likes them. Meanwhile, Pearl has begun playing soccer and it’s all she can talk about. Spencer is busy creating a mysterious museum underneath GG’s house and he’s never around to play. And Spencer’s mom doesn’t look any different. . . . Could she really have a baby growing inside her? Maybe the baby is like Cody’s beloved ants, waiting patiently inside the earth for spring to arrive. It seems like everything around Cody is changing—from seasons to friendships—but if she can just navigate it all with her trademark enthusiasm and charm, maybe the most important things will stay the same.

  4. Just Right Family - Meili, who is six years old and adopted from China, learns that her parents are going to adopt a baby from Haiti. She’s not happy. Why do they need a new baby? Their family is just right as it is. As Meili learns more about her new sibling and the importance of being a big sister, will she realize that a new addition can be just right for their family too?

Books About Multicultural and Performing Arts

Olive Becomes Famous (and Hopes She Can Become Un-Famous)
Written by Megan Atwood & illustrated by Gareth Llewhellin and Kim Barnes
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

Olive is going to be in a commercial! The only problem is that Olive can’t land the gymnastics stunt for it, and she is afraid to tell the truth. Meanwhile, her cross-country pen pal, Molly, has started taken acting classes and is super jealous of Olive, but doesn’t want to tell her. Molly goes on a mission to get on a commercial, too, with her new friend from class. Follow the secrets and threatened friendship through reading the jealous emails and alternating first-person points of view to discover Olive’s plan to make everything right.

The Major Eights 4: Starstruck
Written by Melody Reed & illustrated by Emilie Pepin
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

In book four of the Major Eights series, Becca shoots, but will she score a meet and greet with her favorite basketball player? When Becca finds out about her school’s free throw competition, she is ready to put her basketball skills to the test! And if she wins, she’ll get to meet her favorite basketball player! But after a series of bad practices, her nerves start to get the best of her. Can the Major Eights help Becca regain her confidence and meet her hero?

Making Their Voices Heard: The Inspiring Friendship of Ella Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe
Written by Vivian Kirkfield & illustrated by Alleanna Harris
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Ella Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe. On the outside, you couldn’t find two girls who looked more different. But on the inside, they were alike—full of hopes and dreams and plans of what might be.

Ella Fitzgerald’s velvety tones and shube-doobie-doos captivated audiences. Jazz greats like Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington couldn’t wait to share the stage with her, but still, Ella could not book a performance at one of the biggest clubs in town—one she knew would give her career its biggest break yet.

Marilyn Monroe dazzled on the silver screen with her baby blue eyes and breathy boo-boo-be-doos. But when she asked for better scripts, a choice in who she worked with, and a higher salary, studio bosses refused.

Two women whose voices weren’t being heard. Two women chasing after their dreams and each helping the other to achieve them. This is the inspiring, true story of two incredibly talented women who came together to help each other shine like the stars that they are.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Drum City - A young boy begins banging on pots and pans in his front yard, enticing other children to join him, and before long the entire city is feeling the beat.

  2. Here and There -

  3. The Major Eights 2: Scarlet's Big Break - In book 2 of the Major Eights series, Scarlet goes solo and risks alienating her bandmates. After their Battle of the Bands competition, the girls are famous! Everyone knows who they are now—even strangers recognize them! But the attention starts to go to Scarlet’s head, and she decides to sign up for the school’s talent show as a solo artist. But what about the Major Eights? Should she really leave the band and her friends behind? With each book told from a different girl’s perspective, this series is all about girl power, diversity, and marching to the beat of your own drum!

  4. The Major Eights 5: The New Bandmate - In book 5 of the Major Eights series, Jasmine breaks her arm just when the Major Eights have a big show coming up. Can they find a way to save the show? Just before a big show, Jasmine breaks her arm. The Major Eights don’t want to let down their audience, so they ask Leslie to sub. But Jasmine is worried the band will like Leslie better. Is this the end of the Major Eights as they know it?

Books About Multicultural and Sports And Recreation

Most Valuable Players
Written by Phil Bildner & illustrated by Tim Probert
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

With their fifth grade graduation only weeks away, Rip, Red, and the rest of their classmates must decide if boycotting a test is worth forfeiting their graduation gala and the opportunity to play with Hoops Machine, a Harlem Globetrotters-like team.

New Kid
Written & illustrated by Jerry Craft
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Gene Luen Yang, New Kid is a timely, honest graphic novel about starting over at a new school where diversity is low and the struggle to fit in is real, from award-winning author-illustrator Jerry Craft.

Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.

As he makes the daily trip from his Washington Heights apartment to the upscale Riverdale Academy Day School, Jordan soon finds himself torn between two worlds—and not really fitting into either one. Can Jordan learn to navigate his new school culture while keeping his neighborhood friends and staying true to himself?

Come and Play with Us!
Written by Annie Kubler & illustrated by Caroline Formby
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Pages with flaps take the reader to different countries and show how children play there.

Honorable Mentions
  1. At the Boardwalk - From sunrise to sunset, the attractions of a beach boardwalk include popcorn, taffy, arcade games, and a dazzling amusement park.

  2. David Jumps in - This lyrical tale, written in simple free verse, tells how a game with roots in ancient China —- called elastic skip in this story —- helps a boy find his footing on his first day at a new school. It is David’s first day at his brand-new school. He doesn’t know anyone. At recess, he stands alone and watches the other children enjoying their activities on the playground, from practicing soccer moves and climbing monkey bars to playing hopscotch and daydreaming in the grass. Bundled deep inside David’s pocket is a string of rubber bands, knotted and ready for a game of elastic skip. But will anyone want to try that game? he wonders. Will anyone want to play with him? With simple, lyrical free verse, Alan Woo echoes the singsong of schoolyard games to draw readers into the deeper levels of this lovely and poignant picture book story. Exploring the themes of friendship, diversity, belonging and inclusion, the book also celebrates David’s self-acceptance and comfort with his own unique identity. With roots in ancient China, David’s jump-rope game —- called elastic skip in the story, but known by many different names —- is a symbol for multicultural connections, linking David and his new schoolmates through the sharing of his background. Katty Maurey’s colorful screen print-style illustrations evoke the seemingly endless space, energy, brightness and noise of recess. And through changing perspective, readers see David’s evolution from a small figure lost in the crowd to a larger, central one at the story’s close. This book would make an excellent choice for social studies discussions on community or cultures. It also could launch discussions on courage or individuality.

  3. How to Code a Sandcastle - All summer, Pearl has been trying to build the perfect sandcastle, but out-of-control Frisbees and mischievous puppies keep getting in the way! Pearl and her robot friend Pascal have one last chance, and this time, they’re going to use code to get the job done. Using fundamental computer coding concepts like sequences and loops, Pearl and Pascal are able to break down their sandcastle problem into small, manageable steps. If they can create working code, this could turn out to be the best beach day ever! With renowned computer science nonprofit Girls Who Code, Josh Funk and Sara Palacios use humor, relatable situations, and bright artwork to introduce kids to the fun of coding.

  4. Prince Not-So Charming: The Dork Knight - The third chapter book in the Prince Not-So Charming series features Prince Carlos figuring out how to be charming even when locked in mortal combat. Prince Carlos Charles Charming has a secret: He’d much rather tell jokes than be a prince. But when you’re the heir to Faraway Kingdom, you don’t always get what you want. Which is why Carlos has to learn how to joust. Carlos is surprisingly great at jousting, from spearing haystacks to smashing watermelons. But when a tournament rolls around, suddenly Carlos realizes he has to actually point his lance at other people—and they’ll point theirs back! Perfect for middle school readers and filled with adorable illustrations, Prince Not-So Charming: The Dork Knight shows it’s hard to live up to the fairy tale—and that the best way to win a contest can be embracing your own dorkiness. An Imprint Book

Books About Multicultural and Being Different

There's Only One You
Written by Deborah Hembrook and Kathryn Heling & illustrated by Rosie Butcher
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

“In all the world over, this much is true: You’re somebody special. There’s only one YOU.” Celebrate your individuality with this picture book that honors all the wonderful things that make you . . . you. This feel-good book reassures kids that, whoever and whatever they are, it’s awesome being YOU! Expertly written to include all kinds of children and families, it embraces the beauty in a range of physical types, personalities, and abilities. Kids will love discovering and recognizing themselves in these pages—and they’ll feel proud to see their special qualities acknowledged. Adorable illustrations by Rosie Butcher show a diverse community that many will find similar to their own.

Some People Do
Written by Frank Lowe & illustrated by Josh Hara
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

As a parent, discussing diversity with your child can be difficult, especially if you have your own questions. Some People Do boils this topic down to provide the simplest of answers. By the time your child finishes reading this book, they will have been introduced to all facets of people, without any one being more revered than the other.

Little Humans
Written & illustrated by Brandon Stanton
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Street photographer and storyteller extraordinaire Brandon Stanton is the creator of the wildly popular blog “Humans of New York.” He is also the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Humans of New York. To create Little Humans, a 40-page photographic picture book for young children, he’s combined an original narrative with some of his favorite children’s photos from the blog, in addition to all-new exclusive portraits. The result is a hip, heartwarming ode to little humans everywhere.

Honorable Mentions
  1. One of These Is Not Like the Others - One of these is not like that other—and that’s great! This gently subversive picture book points out— and celebrates!-- the differences between subjects. Barney Saltzberg’s hilarious and delightfully direct text and simple illustrations introduce children to the concept and splendor of inclusiveness, through recognizing who or what’s different on each spread and celebrating the unity as it is. For example, the reader sees three cows and an elephant accompanied by the text “One of these is not like the other,” turn the page… and all four animals take part in an exuberant conga line and say “that’s just fine with us”!
    In a series of similar examples children are encouraged to notice both the similarities and differences between characters and celebrate both.
    Barney Saltzberg’s picture book is a pointed and timely tribute to the power of inclusivity and as well as a riotous read-aloud.

  2. A Normal Pig - Pip is a normal pig who does normal stuff: cooking, painting, and dreaming of what she’ll be when she grows up. But one day a new pig comes to school and starts pointing out all the ways in which Pip is different. Suddenly she doesn’t like any of the same things she used to . . . the things that made her Pip. This charming picture book celebrates all our differences while questioning the idea that there is only one way to be “normal.”

Books About Multicultural and Places And Regions

Bilal Cooks Daal
Written by Aisha Saeed & illustrated by Anoosha Syed
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Six-year-old Bilal introduces his friends to his favorite dish—daal!—in this charming picture book that showcases the value of patience, teamwork, community, and sharing. Six-year-old Bilal is excited to help his dad make his favorite food of all-time: daal! The slow-cooked lentil dish from South Asia requires lots of ingredients and a whole lot of waiting. Bilal wants to introduce his friends to daal. They’ve never tried it! As the day goes on, the daal continues to simmer, and more kids join Bilal and his family, waiting to try the tasty dish. And as time passes, Bilal begins to wonder: Will his friends like it as much as he does? This debut picture book by Aisha Saeed, with charming illustrations by Anoosha Syed, uses food as a means of bringing a community together to share in each other’s family traditions.

A Different Pond
Written by Bao Phi & illustrated by Thi Bui
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A 2018 Caldecott Honor Book that Kirkus Reviews calls “a must-read for our times,” A Different Pond is an unforgettable story about a simple event - a long-ago fishing trip. Graphic novelist Thi Bui and acclaimed poet Bao Phi deliver a powerful, honest glimpse into a relationship between father and son - and between cultures, old and new. As a young boy, Bao and his father awoke early, hours before his father’s long workday began, to fish on the shores of a small pond in Minneapolis. Unlike many other anglers, Bao and his father fished for food, not recreation. A successful catch meant a fed family. Between hope-filled casts, Bao’s father told him about a different pond in their homeland of Vietnam. Thi Bui’s striking, evocative art paired with Phi’s expertly crafted prose has earned this powerful picture books six starred reviews and numerous awards.

Two Drops of Brown in a Cloud of White
Written by Saumiya Balasubramaniam & illustrated by Eva Campbell
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

A little girl and her mother walk home from school on a snowy winter day.

“So much snow,” says Ma. “So monochromatic.”

“Mono crow what?” her daughter replies.

Ma misses the sun, warmth and colors of their faraway homeland, but her daughter sees magic in everything — the clouds in the winter sky, the “firework” display when she throws an armful of snow into the air, making snow angels, tasting snowflakes. And in the end, her joy is contagious. Home is where family is, after all.

This gently layered, beautifully illustrated story that unfolds as a conversation between a mother and daughter will resonate with readers young and old.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Cilla Lee-Jenkins: The Epic Story - The beloved Cilla Lee-Jenkins returns for a third book in this middle-grade series about family, heritage, and overcoming great obstacles through love. Pricilla “Cilla” Lee-Jenkins has already written a “Bestseller” and a “Classic”—now it’s time for her to write an Epic Story. Epics are all about brave heroes overcoming Struggles to save the world, and this year, Cilla is facing her toughest struggles yet: · Cilla is in fifth grade and, unlike her classmates, not at all ready to start middle school. · She has two younger sisters to look after now and they don’t exactly get along. · Her beloved grandfather YeYe has had a stroke and forgotten his English, and it’s up to Cilla to help him find his words again. With humor, heart, and her mighty pen, Cilla Lee-Jenkins will use her powers to vanquish every foe (the mean girls in her class), help every citizen (especially Ye Ye), and save the world.

  2. Katie Woo's Neighborhood - Katie Woo loves her community. But it’s not just the parks, stores, and services that make the neighborhood great—it’s the all of the people who build the community and make it work. With every new neighbor Katie meets, she’s inspired to find new ways to be an awesome neighbor herself!

  3. Federico and the Wolf - Clever Federico outsmarts el lobo in this fresh and funny Mexican-American take on Little Red Riding Hood. With his red hoodie on and his bicycle basket full of food, Federico is ready to visit Abuelo. But on the way, he meets a hungry wolf. And now his grandfather bears a striking resemblance to el lobo. Fortunately, Federico is quick and clever—and just happens to be carrying a spicy surprise! Federico drives the wolf away, and he and Abuelo celebrate with a special salsa. Recipe included.

  4. The Many Colors of Harpreet Singh - Harpreet Singh has a different color for every mood and occasion, from happy sunny yellow to courageous red. He especially takes care with his patka—his turban—making sure it always matches his outfit. But when Harpreet’s mom finds a new job in a snowy city and they have to move, everything just feels gray. Can he find a way to make life bright again?

Books About Multicultural and Immigration And Emigration

The Day Saida Arrived
Written by Susana Gómez Redondo & illustrated by Sonja Wimmer
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Two girls forge a forever-friendship by learning each other’s language. The Day Saida Arrived demonstrates the power of language to build bonds beyond borders.

What happens when a new friend arrives who doesn’t speak your language? A young girl searches for the words to help her friend feel welcome and happy in her new home, and along the way learns about differences and similarities in countries and words. The two forge a strong bond while they each learn the other’s language, exploring the world around them.

A joyous, lyrical text—including English translations and pronunciations and the complete Arabic alphabet—offers an accessible, fresh approach to talking about immigration. Paired with lushly vivid illustrations, The Day Saida Arrived demonstrates the power of language to build bonds beyond borders. Printed on FSC-certified paper with vegetable-based inks.

The Day You Begin
Written by Jacqueline Woodson & illustrated by Rafael López
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Jacqueline Woodson is the 2018-2019 National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature

A #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

National Book Award winner Jacqueline Woodson and two-time Pura Belpré Illustrator Award winner Rafael López have teamed up to create a poignant, yet heartening book about finding courage to connect, even when you feel scared and alone.

There will be times when you walk into a room and no one there is quite like you.

There are many reasons to feel different. Maybe it’s how you look or talk, or where you’re from; maybe it’s what you eat, or something just as random. It’s not easy to take those first steps into a place where nobody really knows you yet, but somehow you do it.

Jacqueline Woodson’s lyrical text and Rafael López’s dazzling art reminds us that we all feel like outsiders sometimes-and how brave it is that we go forth anyway. And that sometimes, when we reach out and begin to share our stories, others will be happy to meet us halfway.

(This book is also available in Spanish, as El Día En Que Descubres Quién Eres!)

Crocodile's Crossing: A Search for Home
Written by Yoeri Slegers
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Crocodile is tired, scared, and hopeful as he searches for his new home.

Everything will be better where Im going! he thinks. But where is that?

Crocodiles Crossing: A Search for Home introduces children to the complex topic of immigration. Featuring bright artwork packed with playful details, this thoughtful tale sensitively portrays the challenges faced by refugees and other newcomers. A downloadable discussion guide is available at www.flyawaybooks.com/resources.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Nowhere Boy - A timely, poignant tale of family, sacrifice and the friendship between a young Syrian refugee and an American boy living in Brussels.

  2. Pie in the Sky - A poignant, laugh-out-loud illustrated middle-grade novel about an eleven-year-old boy’s immigration experience, his annoying little brother, and their cake-baking hijinks! Sometimes life isn’t a piece of cake . . . When Jingwen moves to a new country, he feels like he’s landed on Mars. School is torture, making friends is impossible since he doesn’t speak English, and he’s often stuck looking after his (extremely irritating) little brother, Yanghao. To distract himself from the loneliness, Jingwen daydreams about making all the cakes on the menu of Pie in the Sky, the bakery his father had planned to open before he unexpectedly passed away. The only problem is his mother has laid down one major rule: the brothers are not to use the oven while she’s at work. As Jingwen and Yanghao bake elaborate cakes, they’ll have to cook up elaborate excuses to keep the cake making a secret from Mama. In her hilarious, emotional middle-grade debut, Remy Lai delivers a scrumptious combination of vibrant graphic art and pitch-perfect writing that will appeal to fans of Real Friends.

  3. Orange for the Sunsets - From debut author Tina Athaide comes a soaring tale of empathy, hope, and resilience, as two best friends living under Ugandan President Amin’s divisive rule must examine where—and who—they call home. Perfect for fans of Half from the East and Inside Out and Back Again. Asha and her best friend, Yesofu, never cared about the differences between them: Indian. African. Girl. Boy. Short. Tall. But when Idi Amin announces that Indians have ninety days to leave the country, suddenly those differences are the only things that people in Entebbe can see—not the shared after-school samosas or Asha cheering for Yesofu at every cricket game. Determined for her life to stay the same, Asha clings to her world tighter than ever before. But Yesofu is torn, pulled between his friends, his family, and a promise of a better future. Now as neighbors leave and soldiers line the streets, the two friends find that nothing seems sure—not even their friendship. Tensions between Indians and Africans intensify and the deadline to leave is fast approaching. Could the bravest thing of all be to let each other go?

  4. This Is Me - From the #1 New York Times bestselling creative team of Jamie Lee Curtis and Laura Cornell comes a timely picture book about immigration. Raising important identity issues like “Where did we come from?” and “Who are we?” This Is Me is as delightful as it is important, sure to stimulate dinner table conversation. In This Is Me a teacher tells her class about her great-grandmother’s dislocating journey from home to a new country with nothing but a small suitcase to bring along. And she asks: What would you pack? What are the things you love best? What says “This is me!” With its lively, rhyming language and endearing illustrations, it’s a book to read again and again, imagining the lives of the different characters, finding new details in the art, thinking about what it would be like to move someplace completely different. It’s an interactive book, too: Tucked into the back cover is a sturdy pop-up suitcase. And as a younger reader fills the suitcase, he or she learns a lot about what really matters: Now YOU take this case/ and imagine it’s true,/ that you’re leaving and needing/ to choose what says YOU.

Books About Multicultural and Cooking And Food

How to Feed Your Parents
Written by Ryan Miller & illustrated by Hatem Aly
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

Who’s feeding whom? Matilda Macaroni loves to try new foods! Unfortunately, her parents don’t. They only like pizza delivered, burgers from a bag, and noodles from a box. What’s a girl with adventurous tastes to do? The engaging heroine of this fun, twisted picture book manages to turn the tables on her finicky parents and teach them that dinner can be more than chicken nuggets. There’s also a recipe for quiche that young cooks can try!

Let's Eat!: Mealtime Around the World
Written by Lynne Marie & illustrated by Parwinder Singh
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-9

Author and travel agent Lynne Marie invites readers to try something new and learn about other cultures around the world.

Dig in to this fun and informational book that explores foods from 13 countries around the world. Meet characters from countries including Sweden, Peru, Pakistan, Nigeria, and more as they enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Be inspired to try something new and learn about other cultures. Let’s eat!

Food Trucks!
Written & illustrated by Jeffrey Burton
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-4

This truck-shaped, lift-the-flap board book combines food with things that go for a novelty that has more than gears under the hood. Go on a culinary adventure with this exciting new lift-the-flap book that serves as an amuse-bouche introduction to different types of food from around the world. From the standard burger and taco truck to Japanese, Italian, Indian, and Chinese (with a health food and ice cream, too), this parking lot is filled with good eats for readers to find under every flap. With inviting truck characters on each page, little ones will love flipping through the visual menus hidden in each spread as they learn more about food…and about trucks—two things that go, go, go great together to make a well-balanced book.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Little Taco Truck - Little Taco Truck loves serving workers on Union Street, but when Ms. Falafal takes his spot, then more and bigger food trucks arrive, he fears no one will want his tacos anymore.

  2. Ms. Hall Is a Goofball! - With more than 12 million books sold, the My Weird School series really gets kids reading! In this twelfth book in the My Weirdest School series, there’s a new lunch lady at Ella Mentry! Ms. Hall is obsessed with healthy food, and she makes it her mission to get A.J. and the gang to eat more veggies. But they won’t take this sitting down. Can Ms. Hall lure them over to the veggie side? Or will their resistance be a piece of cake? Perfect for reluctant readers and all kids hungry for funny school stories, Dan Gutman’s hugely popular My Weird School chapter book series has something for everyone. Don’t miss the hilarious adventures of A.J. and the gang!

  3. Campfire Cookies - The girls from Flowerpot Cabin are back at camp in Martha Freeman’s second novel in the Secret Cookie Club series, which was called “a younger version of Ann Brashares’s The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants” by School Library Journal. Recipe for Summer Drama 1 girl counselor, broken-hearted 1 boy counselor, super-cute 4 determined campers Mix all ingredients together for eight weeks at Moonlight Ranch summer camp. For best results, add cookies. The Secret Cookie Club members Grace, Emma, Olivia, and Lucy are excited to be back at Moonlight Ranch summer camp with their beloved counselor, Hannah. But when a mysterious letter arrives, Hannah is plunged into despair. Secret Cookie Club to the rescue! After puzzling out the contents of the letter, they make a plan to fix Hannah’s life—a plan that requires a magic spell, a daring mission to the boys camp, and a big batch of campfire cookies. What could possibly go wrong? With a dash of romance, a pinch of mystery, and a heaping tablespoon of fun, this camp adventure is as satisfying as a warm chocolate chip cookie.

Books About Multicultural and Health And Daily Living

Bath! Bath! Bath!
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Bath time is fun! fun! fun! in this playful board book! Today we had such fun! fun! fun! But now the day is done! done! done! After a fun-filled day, it’s time to go home and take a bath! From washing tiny toes and your little nose to making rubber ducky go quack! quack! quack!, bath time is fun! fun! fun! The rhyming text makes this the perfect read-along story to get little ones excited for bath time.

Diabetes Doesn't Stop Maddie!
Written by Sarah Glenn Marsh & illustrated by Maria Luisa Di Gravio
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Maddie was just diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. She’s nervous about managing her disease and telling others. But as she goes back to school, plays soccer, and spends time with her friends, she becomes more comfortable and confident talking about her health. A sensitive story that’s a great introduction to understanding diabetes for anyone who has the disease or knows someone who does.

The Water Princess
Written by Georgie Badiel and Susan Verde & illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

Based on supermodel Georgie Badiel’s childhood, a young girl dreams of bringing clean drinking water to her African village

With its wide sky and warm earth, Princess Gie Gie’s kingdom is a beautiful land. But clean drinking water is scarce in her small African village. And try as she might, Gie Gie cannot bring the water closer; she cannot make it run clearer. Every morning, she rises before the sun to make the long journey to the well. Instead of a crown, she wears a heavy pot on her head to collect the water. After the voyage home, after boiling the water to drink and clean with, Gie Gie thinks of the trip that tomorrow will bring. And she dreams. She dreams of a day when her village will have cool, crystal-clear water of its own.

Inspired by the childhood of African–born model Georgie Badiel, acclaimed author Susan Verde and award-winning author/illustrator Peter H. Reynolds have come together to tell this moving story. As a child in Burkina Faso, Georgie and the other girls in her village had to walk for miles each day to collect water. This vibrant, engaging picture book sheds light on this struggle that continues all over the world today, instilling hope for a future when all children will have access to clean drinking water.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Pedro's Big Break - When Pedro breaks his arm racing his bike he has to cope with the frustration of wearing a cast for a whole month—but with the help of his friends he discovers that there are still fun things to do.

  2. Through My Window - This special edition commemorates the 30th anniversary of this classic multicultural picture book. Jo is ill and has to stay in bed for the day, but her mum promises to bring her home a surprise to make her feel better. All day long Jo looks out of the window waiting for her mum to return, and in the meantime sees all her friends from the neighbourhood, including the postman, the window cleaner and Mrs Ali from next door. But when will Mum be back with her surprise for Jo?

Books About Multicultural and Magic

Ta-Da!
Written by Kathy Ellen Davis & illustrated by Kaylani Juanita
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

What makes a good story? One little girl thinks it’s a princess with magical powers that can—ta-da!—overcome any obstacle. Her friend thinks it’s—dun dun duh!—a combination of dragons, pirates, and fire that cause total chaos. But as their stories intertwine, these two young storytellers soon learn that a good story needs both conflict—dun dun duh!—and resolution—ta-da! An irresistible celebration of imaginary play, storytelling, and the joys of collaboration, this gorgeous picture book features two strong voices throughout, making it the perfect read-aloud.

Thieves of Weirdwood
Written by William Shivering & illustrated by Anna Earley
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Artemis Fowl meets The Spiderwick Chronicles in this brand-new middle-grade fantasy series brimming with action, humor, and monsters beyond imagining.

Twelve-year-olds Arthur and Wally are determined to steal their way up the ranks of the notorious Black Feathers gang. With loan sharks chasing after Arthur’s father and Wally’s brother’s hospital bill due, they’re in need of serious cash.

When Arthur spots some wealthy strangers exiting a derelict mansion, he smells an opportunity for a big score. Little do the boys realize, they’ve stumbled upon Weirdwood Manor, the headquarters of a magical order who protect the Balance between the Real and Imaginary worlds. When Kingsport is besieged by nightmarish Imaginary monsters, it’s up to these young thieves to save their city.

Prince Not-So Charming: Toad You So!
Written by Roy L Hinuss
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

The fifth chapter book in the Prince Not-So Charming series features Prince Carlos being turned into a toad. Prince Carlos Charles Charming is finally figuring out how to be both a prince and a court jester. But then a mixed-up wizard transforms Carlos into a toad who eats bugs and croaks instead of speaks. Unfortunately, the wizard doesn’t have a spell for reversing it. Even more unfortunately, “Toad Surprise” is on the menu for today’s lunch at Fancy Castle! Can Carlos escape the kitchen and leap back into his normal life—warts and all? Perfect for middle school readers and filled with adorable illustrations, Prince Not-So Charming: Toad You So shows it’s hard to live up to the fairy tale—but the first step is letting your true self show through.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Wish Upon a Sleepover - Five misfits. One magical wish. Bestselling author Suzanne Selfors brings heart and humor to this middle grade novel about a group of misfits who find true friendship where they least expect it. Leilani dreams of being friends with the most popular girls in her class―the Haileys―who are always throwing awesome themed sleepovers. She devises a master plan: throw her own sleepover of the century and invite them! When Tutu, her grandmother, accidentally mails Leilani’s invitations to the DO NOT INVITE list, the best sleepover in the history of the world becomes the worst. Instead of the Haileys, the only guests are the three kids Leilani definitely did not want to show up: the neighbor who never speaks, the girl who draws mean pictures of her, and her farting older cousin. At least her best friend August will be there. Leilani and her guests decide to make Tutu’s recipe for Sleepover Soup, which requires each of them to collect one ingredient that has significant meaning in their lives. They embark on a scavenger hunt that reveals unexpected surprises. What Leilani finds is not what she wanted, but it might just be even better. An Imprint Book “Big-hearted, fast-paced, and funny.” ―Kim Baker, author of Pickle “Equal parts heartbreaking, hopeful and hilarious. It’s impossible not to cheer for these unlikely heroes” ―Sara Nickerson, author of The Secrets of Blueberries, Brothers, Moose & Me “Anyone who’s ever felt different from the crowd will relish this story of kids who find the magic of being their own unique selves―together.” ―Sundee T. Frazier, author of the Coretta Scott King Award-winner Brendan Buckley’s Universe and Everything In It and the Cleo Edison Oliver series “Huzzah for Suzanne Selfors! By turns humorous and poignant, this terrific book was impossible to put down.” ―Suzanne Williams, coauthor of the Goddess

  2. The Secret Mountain - Everyone in Tale Town knows that trolls mean trouble, and now Mayor Fitch and his guards have captured a terrifying troll spy—who turns out to be a very un-terrifying troll child! Knowing that the mayor is planning more than capturing spies, Jack, Red and Anansi set out to rescue the troll child and return him to his home in the secret mountain. But as the friends continue their journey they discover that everything they know about Tale Town is about to change…

  3. The Genie's Curse - Meet Jack and his talking chicken Betsy, Red, Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, and a host of other Little Legends as they have fantastic new adventures! Get to know your favorite fairytale characters like never before in this magical new book series. For Rapunzel, being a princess has been nothing but fun. But everything goes wrong when she breaks a magical urn and blames it on her new friend, Ella. It turns out that the urn was home to a very cross (and now very homeless) genie, who casts a spell making everyone blame Rapunzel for everything that goes wrong in Tale Town! With the help of her friends and a mysterious green monkey called Alphege, can Rapunzel lift the curse and make things right?

  4. Heidi Heckelbeck Has a New Best Friend - Heidi has a new best friend in the twenty-second Heidi Heckelbeck adventure! A new family moves in next door and Heidi is excited to meet them. They have a daughter Heidi’s age! Her name is Bryce Beltran, and she’s Heidi’s super nice, super talkative new neighbor. After spending the day together, Heidi promises to introduce her to Lucy and Bruce. But on the first day of school, things don’t go as planned. Bryce is convinced that her so-called best friends aren’t very good ones and tries to get in between them. Can Heidi help everyone get along before she loses them all? With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Heidi Heckelbeck chapter books are perfect for beginning readers.

Want to see books about magic?

Books About Multicultural and Detectives

The Great Shelby Holmes and the Haunted Hound
Written by Elizabeth Eulberg
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

Acclaimed author Elizabeth Eulberg continues her hilarious middle-grade twist on Sherlock Holmes as detective duo Shelby and Watson face their spookiest case yet—a haunting! Now infamous in their Harlem neighborhood for solving the most difficult mysteries, super sleuths Shelby Holmes and John Watson stumble into their creepiest case yet. Residents of a local apartment building are hearing scary noises at night, like screams, scratching, and an unearthly dog’s howl. It can’t be a ghost . . . Can it? Well, Shelby Holmes doesn’t believe in ghosts, and she plans to prove they don’t exist! But Watson can’t help but wonder if there are more supernatural forces at work—especially after he and Shelby hear rumors that the building’s previous owner, Hugo Baskerville, and his loyal hound haunt the premises. If Shelby and Watson want to find out who (or what!) is behind the spookiness, they’ll have to prove they’re not afraid of ghosts—by surviving an overnight Halloween stakeout! Elizabeth Eulberg’s charming middle-grade take on Sherlock Holmes continues in this retelling of The Hound of the Baskervilles that reunites readers with the charming detective pairing of Shelby and Watson. Don’t miss the rest of the Great Shelby Holmes series: The Great Shelby Holmes The Great Shelby Holmes Meets Her Match The Great Shelby Holmes and the Coldest Case The Great Shelby Holmes and the Haunted Hound

Lou Lou and Pea and the Bicentennial Bonanza
Written by Jill Diamond & illustrated by Lesley Vamos
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

BFFs Lou Lou Bombay and Peacock Pearl are busy preparing for the Bicentennial Bonanza, their city’s two-hundredth birthday bash! And this year, the party will take place in their beloved neighborhood of El Corazón. With a baking contest, talent show, and a new gazebo planned, the community can’t wait to celebrate the founders (and historical BFFs), Diego Soto and Giles Wonderwood. But when Vice-Mayor Andy Argyle claims the festivities belong to Verde Valley, using a mysterious diary as evidence, Lou Lou and Pea smell trouble. Will the friends be able to uncover the secrets of their city’s founding, and bring the Bonanza back to El Corazón?

Dog-Gone Danger
Written & illustrated by Linda Joy Singleton
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 9-12

When Kelsey and her friends find an abandoned pug puppy, it looks like another case for the Curious Cat Spy Club. But shortly thereafter, Kelsey’s mother goes missing—possibly in the line of duty as an Animal Control officer—and it’s up to the CCSC to discover what happened. As they search for Kelsey’s mom, they start to wonder if her disappearance is somehow linked to the puppy they found. The fifth book in the Curious Cat Spy Club series is filled with twists and turns and, of course, tons of animal adventures!

Honorable Mentions
  1. Power Play - Abby and the rest of her friends go international as they embark on their first “official” Center mission in this second book in the Mrs. Smith’s Spy School for Girls series

  2. The Magic Looking Glass - Meet Jack and his talking chicken Betsy, Red, Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, and a host of other Little Legendsas they have fantastic new adventures!Get to know your favorite fairytale characters like never before in this magical new book series. A cutting has been stolen from the magical Story Tree, and it’s up to twins Hansel and Gretel to get it back. With the help of their new friend Wolfie, they find a secret fortress in the forest and a Magic Looking Glass that promises to help them. But things are not always what they seem! Can Wolfie and the twins save the day, or will the Magic Look Glass have the last laugh?

  3. Lou Lou and Pea and the Mural Mystery - Two best friends with a flair for adventure use their gardening and art skills to catch a criminal during Día de los Muertos, in the first book of the Lou Lou and Pea series! Lou Lou Bombay and Peacock Pearl have been best friends since first grade. Every Friday afternoon, they get together in Lou Lou’s backyard garden for their PSPP (Post-School Pre-Parents) tea party. They chat about school, discuss Pea’s latest fashions, and plot the weekend’s activities. But all plans go out the window when a series of small crimes crop up around El Corazón, their quaint and quirky neighborhood, right before the Día de Los Muertos procession. First, Pea’s cousin’s quinceañera dress is tragically ruined. Then Lou Lou’s beloved camellia bush, Pinky, suffers a serious blow. And that’s just the beginning! When clues start to appear in El Corazón’s outdoor murals, the best friends join forces, using Lou Lou’s floral expertise and Pea’s artistic genius to solve the mysteries. Accented by Lesley Vamos’s spirited black-and-white illustrations, Jill Diamond’s debut is a delightful introduction to two very creative best friends and their unforgettable adventures! Backmatter includes a recipe, crafting activity, and glossary of Spanish terms. “Lou Lou and Pea are likable heroines and the cast of multicultural characters and Latino-themed festivities broaden the accessibility. . . . This is a pleasant, breezy friendship tale for middle grade readers who also enjoy a light mystery.” —School Library Journal

  4. Sam the Man & the Secret Detective Club Plan - Sam Graham is a mystery man. But when there are no mysteries to solve, Sam comes up with a plan to find one in this hilarious fourth chapter book in the Sam the Man series from Frances O’Roark Dowell. Sam Graham loves solving mysteries. After successfully solving the mystery of Annabelle’s lost sock, Sam decides to make mystery-solving his main hobby (after tending the chickens, of course). He recruits his best friend Gavin and a couple of their classmates for a detective club, and together they’re ready for any mystery that comes their way. There’s a problem though…there are no cases to solve! So, Sam comes up with a plan: They’ll take the most interesting things in the lost and found and try to find out who lost what. But who could a locked box, a very long stuffed snake, and a red jacket belong to? And how will Sam and his friends find them? And…why does that jacket smell so bad?!?

Want to see books about detectives?

Books About Multicultural and Latinos

Proud to Be Latino
Written by Ashley Marie Mireles & illustrated by Edith Valle and Ashley Marie Mireles
board book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

Did you know that there are over 5000 types of potatoes sold in South America? Or that in Honduras, a song about conch soup reached the Billboard Top 100 Charts? Latino culture spans Southern and Central America as well as the Caribbean, but often when we think of Latino foods, we think tacos, burritos, and other common Mexican dishes. Proud to Be Latino: Food/Comida teaches children how different Latino countries use similar ingredients to create unique regional dishes. The dishes and their descriptions are given in both English and Spanish, and parents will enjoy the sidebars with additional fun facts about Latino food and culture. This bilingual board book takes the reader beyond a basic language primer and dives deep into the heart of Latino culture . . . which is the food, of course!

When My Dad Went to the Jungle
Written by Gusti & illustrated by Anne Decis
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-9

A young boy shares exciting facts and stories about the peoples, plants, and animals who inhabit the Amazon rainforest.

In this original, uplifting book from one of Argentina’s most acclaimed children’s writers, a young boy records his dad’s stories of the Amazonian jungle in his journal. As he does, he can’t help but compare his own life. When you visit the rainforest, you should ask the Sápara peoples for permission and be respectful, just like when you visit your neighbor in the city. Smoked fish is delicious in the rainforest—but hard to make in your bedroom. The rainforest is like a great big house for plants, animals, and spirits, but it’s disappearing, little by little. Filling his journal with imaginative drawings and words, the boy decides what he would do if he visited the rainforest: Invite the spirits for donuts and hot cocoa!

Inspired by the author’s volunteer efforts to assist the Sápara peoples in protecting an endangered bird, _When My Dad Went to the Jungle _portrays a young boy exploring big ideas about the natural world. As he journals, the young boy realizes that, even though life for the Sápara peoples is very different from his own, a little bit of the rainforest lives inside of all of us. If we let it grow, then we will always respect the lands we walk, gather, and play on.

Green Is a Chile Pepper
Written by Roseanne Greenfield Thong & illustrated by John Parra
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

Green is a chile pepper, spicy and hot. Green is cilantro inside our pot.

In this lively picture book, children discover a world of colors all around them: red is spices and swirling skirts, yellow is masa, tortillas, and sweet corn cake. Many of the featured objects are Latino in origin, and all are universal in appeal. With rich, boisterous illustrations, a fun-to-read rhyming text, and an informative glossary, this playful concept book will reinforce the colors found in every child’s day!

Honorable Mentions
  1. Yo Soy Muslim - From a crescent moon to a square garden to an octagonal fountain, this breathtaking picture book celebrates the shapes—and traditions—of the Muslim world. Sure to inspire questions and observations about world religions and cultures, Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets is equally at home in a classroom reading circle and on a parent’s lap being read to a child.

  2. Juana and Lucas - Big Problemas - When her mami meets someone new, Juana worries that everything will change in a humorous, heartwarming follow-up to the Pura Belpré Award-winning Juana & Lucas. Juana’s life is just about perfect. She lives in the beautiful city of Bogotá with her two most favorite people in the world: her mami and her dog, Lucas. Lately, though, things have become a little less perfect. Mami has a new hairdo and a new amigo named Luis with whom she has been spending a LOT of time. He is kind and teaches Juana about things like photography and jazz music, but sometimes Juana can’t help wishing things would go back to the way they were before. When Mami announces that she and Luis are getting married and that they will all be moving to a new casa, Juana is quite distraught. Lucky for her, though, some things will never change — like how much Mami loves her. Based on author-illustrator Juana Medina’s own childhood in Colombia, this joyful series is sure to resonate with readers of all ages.

Want to see books about Latinos?

Books About Multicultural and Babies

Look!: Babies Head to Toe
Written by Robie H. Harris & illustrated by Anoosha Syed
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

An adorable book introducing the youngest readers to the names of their body parts, from head to toe! Look! Babies Head to Toe is an exuberant introduction to the parts of the body and the senses. Filled with fun, repetitive sounds and a melodic voice, this book will captivate babies and toddlers. It’s the perfect follow-up to Harris’s first board book, Who?: A Celebration of Babies.

Ten Little Toes, Two Small Feet
Written by Kristy Dempsey & illustrated by Jane Massey
board book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

Count each little toe one by one in this sweet board book! Ten little toes on two small feet. These ten toes are ten times sweet! Join a group of multicultural toddlers for an exciting day as their ten little toes wriggle and wiggle, splatter and pitter-patter, and wibble-wobble! Now available as a board book for the youngest of readers!

Global Baby Bedtimes
Written & illustrated by Maya Ajmera
board book
Recommend Ages: 0-3

In pictures and simple text, babies in different countries and cultures go through the same rituals at bedtime.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Global Babies - Presents photographs of babies from all over the world in their native costume and describes how all babies are special. On board pages.

  2. Loretta's Gift - Meet a little girl named Loretta who tries to find the perfect gift for her new baby cousin in this sweet picture book by bestselling author Pat Zietlow Miller! Loretta and her parents are so excited that Aunt Esme and Uncle Jax are having a baby! When Gabe arrives, Loretta thinks he is the best baby on the block! Everyone showers him with gifts, but Loretta doesn’t know what to give. Can she think of the perfect gift for her baby cousin?

Want to see books about babies?

Books About Multicultural and Making Friends

The Startup Squad
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-11

Girls mean business in a brand-new middle grade series about friendship and entrepreneurship! All the great leaders had to start somewhere. And Theresa (“Resa” for short) is starting with the lemonade stand competition her teacher assigned to the class—but making it a success is going to be a lot harder than Resa thinks. The prize: line-skipping tickets to Adventure Central. The competition: Val, Resa’s middle school nemesis. And the biggest obstacle to success: Resa’s own teammates. Harriet is the class clown, Amelia is the new girl who thinks she knows best, and Didi is Resa’s steadfast friend—who doesn’t know the first thing about making or selling lemonade. The four of them quickly realize that the recipe for success is tough to perfect—but listening to each other is the first step. And making new friends might be the most important one… The back of each book features tips from the Startup Squad and an inspirational profile of a girl entrepreneur!

The Great Troll Rescue
Written & illustrated by Tom Percival
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Meet Jack and his talking chicken Betsy, Red, Rapunzel, Hansel and Gretel, and a host of other Little Legendsas they have fantastic new adventures!Get to know your favorite fairytale characters like never before in this magical new book series.

What starts as an adventure ends in disaster when Jack and all his friends are captured by a wicked witch with a devious plan.

It’s up to Red, the woodcutter’s daughter, to save the day. Along the way Red befriends the wicked witch’s servants, Ella and her Fairy Godbrother Cole. Can they rescue Red’s friends and all the other magical creatures the witch has kidnapped — including a fearsome troll?

The Big Stink
Written by Fran Manushkin & illustrated by Tammy Lyon
picture book
Recommend Ages: 5-7

Something smells terrible in Miss Winkle’s classroom, and no one knows what it is! When the class bully picks on the new boy, saying he’s the smelly one, Pedro steps in and stands up for his new friend. But the class still needs to know where that stench is coming from! Like all Pedro books, the story is supported with a glossary and reader response questions, making this a fun and functional choice for libraries.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Mabel: A Mermaid Fable - A lovely and laugh-out-loud picture book from the award-winning author of Rude Cakes and Most Marshmallows. A silly read-aloud tale for kids about being yourself! Mabel isn’t like the other mermaids. Lucky isn’t like the other octopuses. But when they find each other, they discover that true friendship isn’t about how you look, and that sometimes what we are searching for is right under our noses. The inimitable Rowboat Watkins is back with another humorous tale about being true to yourself. • A delightful, inspiring read-aloud book for toddlers that celebrates gender diversity and difference • Stylish, accessible art brings this story of being true to yourself to hilarious life. • Rowboat Watkins is a 2010 Sendak Fellow and Ezra Jack Keats honoree. Young readers of Julian Is a Mermaid, Mary Wears What She Wants, and Exclamation Mark will find much to love in this tale that celebrates individuality and acceptance.

  2. For Black Girls Like Me - I am a girl but most days I feel like a question mark. Makeda June Kirkland is eleven-years-old, adopted, and black. Her parents and big sister are white, and even though she loves her family very much, Makeda often feels left out. When Makeda’s family moves from Maryland to New Mexico, she leaves behind her best friend, Lena- the only other adopted black girl she knows- for a new life. In New Mexico, everything is different. At home, Makeda’s sister is too cool to hang out with her anymore and at school, she can’t seem to find one true friend. Through it all, Makeda can’t help wondering: What would it feel like to grow up with a family that looks like me? Through singing, dreaming, and writing secret messages back and forth with Lena, Makeda might just carve a small place for herself in the world.

  3. Magnolia Mudd and the Super Jumptastic Launcher Deluxe - Magnolia Mudd’s Uncle Jamie is the very BEST grown-up. He always invents cool things with her . . . until the day he and Miss Emily announce their engagement. That’s bad enough—but even worse, Miss Emily wants Magnolia to be a FLOWER GIRL! No way is Magnolia tossing petals. But maybe Uncle Jamie’s new bride-to-be is more fun that Magnolia imagined . . .

Books About Multicultural and Best Friends

Paper Planes
Written by Jim Helmore & illustrated by Richard Jones
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A compassionate and lyrical story of staying in touch after a friend has moved away.

Mia and Ben are the very best of friends. They live side by side at the edge of a great, wide lake. Together they sail, swing, and sing. But what they love doing most of all is making paper planes. They dream of one day being able to make a plane that can fly all the way across the lake! But Ben has terrible news: he and his family are moving far away. How are Mia and Ben going to stay best friends if they’re going to be so far apart? And will flying paper planes ever be the same again without Ben?

From the author and illustrator team who gave readers The Snow Lion, gorgeous illustrations accompany a gentle story about long-distance friendship that is filled with magic and imagination.

Tie-Dye Disaster
Written by Martha Maker & illustrated by Xindi Yan
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 5-9

In this third book of the Craftily Ever After chapter book series, Maddie, Emily, Bella, and Sam accidentally tie-dye a shirt Maddie’s mother made for the mayor! Emily Adams, Maddie Wilson, Bella Diaz, and Sam Sharma are eight-year-olds with one special thing in common: they love to create. They each have unique talents, too! Emily is great at constructing and building; Maddie has an eye for fashion, fabrics, and sewing; Bella is a gadget whiz; and Sam is a gifted artist. Together, these four crafty friends dream up new projects to design, build, and create and through their experiences, they’ll learn how to handle various obstacles at school and in their everyday eight-year-old lives. Maddie gets her knack for fashion and sewing from her mom, a seamstress. And she’s made a lot for an eight-year-old—from theater costumes, to brand-new pairs of pants, to pillows for the Craft Clubhouse. But she’s never tie-dyed before! Maddie, Emily, Bella, and Sam have lots of fun turning clothing bright, groovy colors. But then something not so bright and groovy happens. The kids accidentally tie-dye a shirt Maddie’s mother made for the mayor of the town! They try all sorts of things to fix their mistake, but nothing works. What is the foursome going to do about their tie-dye disaster? With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Craftily Ever After chapter books are perfect for emerging readers.

Boy Bites Bug
Written & illustrated by Rebecca Petruck
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 8-12

To defuse a situation between his best friend and a new student, Nolan eats a live stink bug, gaining popularity and a class project idea but, perhaps, losing a friend.

Honorable Mentions
  1. Why Can't I Be You - “This book is for anyone who has ever felt ‘less than’ or on the outside. That is to say, this is a book for everyone.” —Elana K. Arnold, author of A Boy Called Bat Claire Ladd knows that this summer is going to be special. She and her two best friends, Ronan and Brianna, are turning twelve. She is leaving camp behind and gets to do what she wants all day. She feels everything starting to change. But things don’t always change for the better. With Brianna’s cousin Eden visiting for the summer, Claire feels like a third wheel. Even though she is only a year older, Eden seems so much more sophisticated and glamorous . . . and when she is around, she takes up everyone’s attention, including Brianna’s. But that doesn’t explain why things have felt awkward with Brianna ever since she moved to a fancy new house, or why Ronan, who lives in the trailer next to Claire’s, has started acting moody anytime anyone mentions his dad. Claire has always been happy with her life just as it is, but as the summer wears on and the issues with her friends start to grow, she can’t help but wonder: Would everything be better if she could just be someone else?

  2. Making the Band - Maddie, Bella, Emily, and Sam create rock star–worthy instruments with found objects in this second book in the brand-new Craftily Ever After chapter book series! Emily Adams, Maddie Wilson, Bella Diaz, and Sam Sharma are eight-year-olds with one special thing in common: they love to create. They each have unique talents, too! Emily is great at constructing and building; Maddie has an eye for fashion, fabrics, and sewing; Bella is a gadget whiz; and Sam is a gifted artist. Together, these four crafty friends dream up new projects to design, build, and create and through their experiences, they’ll learn how to handle various obstacles at school and in their everyday eight-year-old lives. In the second Craftily Ever After book, there’s a talent show at school and for the first time, Maddie, Bella, Emily, and Sam can’t think of anything to do. That is, until an old tin can and some plastic tubing give them a musical idea! With easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, the Craftily Ever After chapter books are perfect for emerging readers.

  3. Just Jaime - Another spot-on story of middle school drama and friendship from Terri Libenson, national bestselling author of Invisible Emmie and Positively Izzy. Friends. Frenemies. Middle school… The last day of seventh grade has Jaime and Maya wondering who their real friends are. Jaime knows something is off with her friend group. They’ve started to exclude her and make fun of the way she dresses and the things she likes. At least she can count on her BFF, Maya, to have her back . . . right? Maya feels more and more annoyed with Jaime, who seems babyish compared to the other girls in their popular group. It’s like she has nothing in common with Jai anymore. Are their days as BFFs numbered . . . ? Perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier and Jennifer L. Holm.

Books About Multicultural and Fairy Tale And Folklore Adaptations

Prince Not-So Charming: Happily Ever Laughter
Written by Roy L Hinuss
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

In the fourth chapter book in the Prince Not-So Charming series, Prince Charming faces his greatest challenge yet: a fancy party. Prince Carlos Charles Charming isn’t the princeliest of princes. But he might be the funniest. Unfortunately, being hilarious won’t help much at a birthday party thrown by an evil queen with no sense of humor. And if Carlos, his pet dragon, and his friend Pinky don’t bring the right presents and fail to dance perfectly, the evil queen might declare war. Can Carlos and his friends keep the party from turning into a disaster? Who are we kidding? The real question is: After starting a food fight, can they save their kingdom? Perfect for middle school readers and filled with adorable illustrations, Prince Not-So Charming: Happily Ever Laughter is for every kid who worries about how to survive their next party. An Imprint Book

Prince Not-So Charming: Wild Wild Quest
Written by Roy L Hinuss
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 5-8

The sixth chapter book in the Prince Not-So Charming series features Prince Carlos going on a quest—and disaster is never far away. Prince Carlos Charles Charming tells a lot more jokes than your standard prince is probably supposed to. But he’s been working hard to live up to his princely expectations. That’s good, because the ultimate prince, Gilbert the Gallant, has gone missing! Carlos, his friend Pinky, and his pet dragon Smudge are assigned to go find Gilbert and complete his quest. But how can Carlos do what the oh-so-perfect Gilbert couldn’t? Especially when Smudge sets their boat on fire before they’ve gone very far? And every princely voyage involves a sea monster! Perfect for middle school readers and filled with adorable illustrations, Prince Not-So Charming: Wild Wild Quest shows how even princes struggle sometimes—but the only way to get through it is one step at a time. An Imprint Book

The Story Tree
Written & illustrated by Tom Percival
chapter book
Recommend Ages: 7-10

Tale Town is on lockdown as Mayor Fitch prepares for a troll attack, gambling the town’s safety in his quest to steal the troll’s magical power. Jack, Red, and the children of Tale Town are in a race against time to stop Fitch’s evil plan. But none of their ideas seems to work, and their only help is from a grumpy wolf and a sick dragon. All seems lost until a leaf from the Story Tree changes everything…

Honorable Mentions
  1. Prince Not-So Charming: Her Royal Slyness - Prince Carlos is on a terrifying mission: to rescue a princess trapped in a tower. Carlos soon discovers that rescuing a damsel in distress requires a damsel who’s actually “in” distress. This princess doesn’t need to be rescued—and she definitely doesn’t need a prince charming.

  2. Prince Not-So Charming: Once Upon a Prank - The first title in a hilarious new chapter book series. Prince Carlos Charles Charming would much rather grow up to be a court jester. When a dragon is spotted in the Somewhat Enchanted woods, Carlos must figure out how to be a true Prince Charming and fast!

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