Home & Leisure

Back-to-School Picture Books to Ease Anxiety

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Though simply reading helps prepare children for the return to learning, books that specifically address going back to school can markedly reduce youngsters' fears and concerns. These new picture books aim to do just that.

"Ready or Not, Woolbur Goes to School!" by Leslie Helakoski; illustrated by Lee Harper; HarperCollins; 28 pages; $17.99. ...Read more

Bravery Rules the Day

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Books about bravery and standing up for what you believe in are more important now than ever before. These thoughtful books celebrate girls, one in space and another fighting for educational justice; a bevy of kids of all kinds being brave; and a war horse with two Purple Hearts.

"Free as a Bird: The Story of Malala" by Lina Maslo; Balzer + ...Read more

Gift Books That Will Get Kids Excited to Read and Be Creative

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Before school starts, gifting a special book that screams "WOW!" is a smart way to get children excited to read again. These new coffee table-worthy tomes are too cool.

"Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief" by Rick Riordan; illustrated by John Rocco; Disney Hyperion; 226 pages; $39.99.

"The Lightning Thief," the first book ...Read more

Reads With a Sprinkle of Sand and Underwater Magic

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Here are some of the best new summer reads for middle-grade and teen readers:

"The Turning" by Emily Whitman; HarperCollins; 380 pages; $16.99.

Aran is a selkie who lives on the open sea with his clan. He has never quite fully belonged, though, as he was born without a selkie skin and is stuck in human form. So he can't move powerfully ...Read more

School's Still out. Parents: Get the Books out

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Have your kids slayed their reading lists yet? With video games consuming much of children's free time, here's a reminder about the importance of summer reading with a crop of outdoor-themed reads.

"And Then Comes Summer" by Tom Brenner; illustrated by Jaime Kim; Candlewick Press; 32 pages; $16.99.

From decorating bikes for the Fourth of ...Read more

New Music Releases and Early Readers

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Though kids love Taylor Swift, Demi Lovato and Justin Beiber, some lyrics may be a little edgy or mature for them. The children's music world has upped their game and released some incredibly cool, fun CDs that are entertaining for both children and adults. Prices vary depending on download or CD option.

"Blue Skies, Sunny Days" by Frances ...Read more

Get to Know Your Oceans

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

As more and more people become aware of oceans' important animals and habitats, more people take action to be kind to them. These new books for children reassure them sharks aren't evil; dolphins are born tail first; and a certain cute pink octopus can turn into a pancake.

"Hello, My Name Is ... How Adorabilis Got His Name" by Marisa Polansky...Read more

Messages of Peace, Hope and Positivity

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Children absorb stress. They know about political uneasiness, weather tragedies and racial issues. One of the best ways to combat their stress is by reading empowering, positive, thoughtful books to them. Here are a few:

"Salam Alaikum: A Message of Peace" by Harris J; illustrated by Ward Jenkins; Simon & Schuster; 32 pages; $17.99.

Young ...Read more

Lift-Flap Books Add Surprise to Reading Time

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Young children love the unexpected treat of discovering what's behind flaps in interactive books. These new reads offer hide-and-seek fun.

"Mon Petit Busy Day" by Annette Tamarkin; Little Simon/Simon & Schuster; 10 pages; $14.99.

This oversized board book stars a friendly rounded frog inviting tots to trace lines with their fingers and slide...Read more

Words Aren't Always Needed

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Some picture books don't need many words. Here are some wordless or nearly wordless books that prove a good story and art can take readers on journeys just as involved as those full of letters.

"A Stone for Sascha" by Aaron Becker; Candlewick Press; 48 pages; $17.99.

Aaron Becker wondered what could be learned from a chiseled rock that's ...Read more

Early-Summer Beachworthy Reads

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Start your kids off with books early this summer. These new novels for middle-grade kids ages 8 to 12 are exciting, refreshing and lighthearted, perfect for beach or poolside reading.

"City of Islands" by Kali Wallace; Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins; 33 pages; $16.99.

Twelve-year-old Mara is a fish girl, an orphaned swimmer who dives in...Read more

Love for Underappreciated Creatures

Parents / Kids' Home Library /

Beauty comes in all sizes, shapes, numbers of legs and fur colors. The animals touted in these new picture books can seem unloved at times but are actually full of tremendous qualities and character.

"Tony" by Ed Galing; illustrated by Erin E. Stead; A Neal Porter Book/Roaring Brook Press; 30 pages; $16.99.

This little gem of a book is ...Read more

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