Happy October everyone! Welcome to the next installment in our series of blog posts featuring children’s books we’re currently loving! “Book Chat with the Youth Services Team” features one book recommendation from each of our Youth Services team members. We cover a variety of books from fiction to non-fiction, picture books to chapter books, graphic novels and more! We hope that this month’s reading recommendations get you excited about some awesome new books we’ve added to our collection as well as some oldies but goodies. Enjoy!
April recommends: Sharing by Yusuke Yonezu (ages 2 – 4)
What a colorful and sturdy book for the very young ones. Yunezu created a book about nothing but sharing to help little ones begin to understand the concept. Every page contains an example of sharing and the illustrations are cute and vibrant. I would definitely recommend this book to parents of newborns and toddlers.
Ashley recommends: My Baby Loves Halloween by Jabari Asim (ages 0 – 4)
This colorful and fun book is about a baby discovering all of the best parts of the Halloween season. From fall weather and hayrides to jack-o-lanterns and trick or treating, My Baby Loves Halloween covers it all with great illustrations and easy to follow rhyming text. This is a perfect, non-spooky way to introduce young kids to the fun of Halloween.
Beth recommends: Scaredy Squirrel Prepares for Halloween by Mélanie Watt (ages 4 – 8)
If you have ever read a Scaredy Squirrel book you know he is afraid of everything! He knows he has to leave his tree for food and other stuff he feels is necessary. Of course, he always runs into the things he is scared of but somehow learns how to maneuver through to get back to his tree as safely as possible. Well this Halloween, Scaredy has put together a safety guide to help you get through everything from costumes to candy, decorations to trick or treating, and more. This is a must read for ages 4 and up. Your child, and you too, will laugh out loud at all of his thoughts and guides.
Heather recommends: Bear’s Scare by Jacob Grant (ages 3 – 6)
We all have a friend who is scrupulous and exacting when it comes to home cleanliness; Bear is that friend. He and his stuffed friend Ursa clean their home thoroughly each and every day, making sure that nothing is out of place. As you can imagine, Bear and Ursa’s tidy world is rocked when spiderwebs begin appearing out of nowhere! What will they do? How will they find this alarming arachnid? Muted colors, simple and adorable illustrations, and a cheerful ending will please even the most arachnophobic readers.
Joan recommends: The Little Old Lady Who was not Afraid of Anything by Linda Williams (ages 2 – 6)
Once upon a time, there was a little old lady who was not afraid of anything. But one night, while walking in the woods, the little old lady has quite a scare!
Young readers will appreciate the little old lady’s bravery and the story’s clever ending. This story’s structure also invites interaction. Get ready for plenty of clapping, stomping, shaking, and wiggling! With “just the right amount” of scary for younger kids and a timeless, classic feel, The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything is a great Halloween read-aloud.
Louis recommends: Goosebumps: Slappy’s Tales of Horror by R. L. Stine (ages 10-12)
Perfect for the Middle Grader who is looking for an old-fashioned fright this Halloween, Slappy’s Tales of Horror is a graphic novel anthology that adapts four classic Goosebumps stories. Each story is well presented and simple to read, and definitely packed with all the fun and cheesy scares that make Stine’s iconic series so memorable and popular. While each story has a different art style, each one fits the tone of their story well and presents an engaging, and rather spooky, series of stories. Enjoy!
Mirissa recommends: Stella’s Stellar Hair by Yesenia Moises (ages 4 – 8)
Stella is getting ready for the Big Star Little Gala, but she’s feeling self-conscious about her hair. Off she goes on an intergalactic adventure, visiting her aunties on each of the planets in the solar system to try out a different style. The book not only gives the reader a chance to learn a little bit about each planet—like the fact that Jupiter is often stormy and that Neptune is covered in frozen water—but is also a great story about sisterhood. All of Stella’s aunties are there to support her in being who she is even as she tries different personas on for size, and the language choices that all the characters use is incredibly empowering. The colorful and glimmering illustrations are just a bonus.
Nico recommends: The Witch Boy by Molly Ostertag (ages 10 – 12)
Witch Boy by Molly Knox Ostertag is a quick fun read that’s just a little spooky for the season. The main character Aster really wants to learn magic even though boys in this book learn shapeshifting instead. As things go wrong in his family he’s certain he can help, but with the magic he secretly learned. He finds a friend who believes in him and encourages him to be himself. Throughout he gains confidence and overall learns that gender stereotypes and toxic masculinity aren’t healthy ways to live.
Summer recommends: Too Bright to See by Kyle Lukoff (ages 10 – 12)
The summer before middle school, Bug’s beloved uncle passes away. Their looming old house had always felt inhabited by spirits, but now the ghosts seem more insistent. Along with the mysteries of possible poltergeists, Bug’s closest friend seems to be drifting apart, as she discovers the fun of fashion, makeup, and “girly things” – which Bug has never felt comfortable with. This is a heartening middle grade novel about finding oneself while the world is changing in new and scary ways.
Well young readers, that’s a wrap. Check back again next month for some more fabulous reading recommendations. Until then, happy reading!