2014 summer reading ( K-G2 )

View all Recommendations by Age > Recommendations for Age 4-8 book lists; This list was last updated on 6/5/2014
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1 - 25 of 25 results
release date: Apr 05, 2011
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The Watcher
Acclaimed picture book biographer Jeanette Winter has found her perfect subject: Jane Goodall, the great observer of chimpanzees. Follow Jane from her childhood in London watching a robin on her windowsill, to her years in the African forests of Gombe, Tanzania, invited by brilliant scientist Louis Leakey to observe chimps, to her worldwide crusade to save these primates who are now in danger of extinction, and their habitat. Young animal lovers and Winter's many fans will welcome this fascinating and moving portrait of an extraordinary person and the animals to whom she has dedicated her life.

The Watcher was named a Best Book of the Year by the Boston Globe, Kirkus Reviews, Booklist, and the Bank Street College of Education.
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Unicorn Thinks He's Pretty Great
Ever since Unicorn moved into the neighborhood, Goat has been feeling out of sorts. Goat thought his bike was cool-until he saw that Unicorn could fly to school! Goat made marshmallow squares that almost came out right, but Unicorn made it rain cupcakes! Unicorn is such a show-off, how can Goat compete? When Goat and Unicorn share a piece of pizza, Goat learns that being a unicorn might not be all it's cracked up to be. And when Unicorn shows his admiration for Goat, it looks like the beginning of a beautiful friendship.
release date: Sep 27, 2012
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The Three Ninja Pigs
Practice makes perfect in this kick-butt fractured fairy tale.

Why does this wolf think he can come to town and blow all the houses down? These three little pigs just aren't going to take it from that bully anymore! The first starts aikido lessons---he'll make mincemeat out of that wolf! His brother learns a little jujitsu--he'll chop that guy to pieces!

But when the wolf actually appears, it turs out these two pigs aren't quite ready after all. Good thing their sister has been training every day to master some serious karate moves that save the day. KIYA!

Corey Rosen Schwartz serves up a fun combination of smart-aleck dialogue and tongue-in-cheek rhymes that'll have kids howling, and rising star Dan Santat's spunky illustrations are sure to pack a punch!
release date: Jan 01, 2014
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This Moose Belongs to Me
From the illustrator of the #1 smash hit The Day the Crayons Quit comes the age-old tale of a boy and his moose . . .

Wilfred is a boy with rules. He lives a very orderly life. It's fortunate, then, that he has a pet who abides by rules, such as not making noise while Wilfred educates him on his record collection. There is, however, one rule that Wilfred's pet has difficulty following: Going whichever way Wilfred wants to go. Perhaps this is because Wilfred's pet doesn't quite realize that he belongs to anyone.

A moose can be obstinate in such ways.

Fortunately, the two manage to work out a compromise. Let's just say it involves apples.

Oliver Jeffers, the bestselling creator of Stuck and The Incredible Book Eating Boy, delivers another deceptively simple book sure to make kids giggle.
release date: Jan 01, 2010
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Shark vs. Train
Shark VS. Train!
WHO WILL WIN?!

If you think Superman vs. Batman would be an exciting matchup, wait until you see Shark vs. Train. In this hilarious and wacky picture book, Shark and Train egg each other on for one competition after another, including burping, bowling, Ping Pong, piano playing, pie eating, and many more! Who do YOU think will win, Shark or Train?

[star] "This is a genius concept." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review

[star] "Lichtenheld's snarling shark and grimacing train are definitely ready for a fight, and his scenarios gleefully play up the absurdity. The combatants' expressions are priceless when they lose. A glum train in smoky dejection, or a bewildered, crestfallen shark? It's hard to choose; both are winners." -- Kirkus, starred review
release date: Jan 01, 2009
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Scaredy Squirrel
Scaredy Squirrel never leaves his nut tree. It's way too dangerous out there. He could encounter tarantulas, green Martians or killer bees. But in his tree, every day is the same and if danger comes along, he's well-prepared. Scaredy Squirrel's emergency kit includes antibacterial soap, Band-Aids and a parachute.

Day after day he watches and waits, and waits and watches, until one day ... his worst nightmare comes true! Scaredy suddenly finds himself out of his tree, where germs, poison ivy and sharks lurk.

But as Scaredy Squirrel leaps into the unknown, he discovers something really uplifting ...
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Rain!

One rainy day in the city, an eager little boy exclaims, “Rain!” Across town a grumpy man grumbles, “Rain.” In this endearing picture book, a rainy-day cityscape comes to life in vibrant, cut-paper-style artwork. The boy in his green frog hat splashes in puddles—“Hoppy, hoppy, hoppy!”—while the old man curses the “dang puddles.” Can the boy's natural exuberance (and perhaps a cookie) cheer up the grouchy gentleman and turn the day around?

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Pirates Love Underpants
Grab your peg leg and your parrot—and don't forget the underpants! This wacky picture book pairs pirates and underwear in an uproarious adventure.

These pirates SO love underpants,
They're on a special quest
To find the fabled Pants of Gold,
For the Captain's treasure chest.

This laugh-out-loud Underpants adventure is full of pirates, sharks, and treasure. You'll be yo-ho-ho-ing with hilarity until the pirates conclude their zany expedition!
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Part-time Princess
At night, a normal little girl imagines she is a princess, but not just a princess who wears pretty gowns and goes to balls. She also gets to fight dragons and tame trolls. But one morning she wakes up and begins to think maybe her royal adventures aren't so imaginary after all... From the best-selling author of The Quiet Book, this jacketed picture book is perfect for every little girl who dreams of being a princess.
release date: Jun 23, 2009
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Panda Kindergarten

Follow a day in the life of the panda cubs at China Conservation and Research Center for the Giant Panda at the Wolong Nature Preserve, the largest research facility for giant pandas in China. Cubs are raised together in a protected setting—dubbed panda kindergarten—where they grow strong and learn skills that will help prepare them to be released into the wild when they are older. With spare text by veteran nonfiction writer Joanne Ryder and irresistible full-color photographs by Katherine Feng, whose work has appeared in National Geographic, Panda Kindergarten will delight young readers as they learn more about these amazing creatures.

Supports the Common Core State Standards

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Ol' Mama Squirrel
Caldecott Honor winner David Ezra Stein's lively tale is a fantastic read-aloud, and feisty Mama Squirrel will have fierce mamas everywhere applauding!

Ol' Mama Squirrel has raised lots of babies, and she knows just how to protect them. Whenever trouble comes nosing around, she springs into action with a determined “Chook, chook, chook!” and scares trouble away. Her bravery is put to the test, however, when a really big threat wanders into town and onto her tree. But no matter what, Mama's not about to back down!
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Old Mikamba Had a Farm
This fabulous version of the classic nursery song “Old MacDonald” introduces children to a menagerie of African animals and their sounds. It is beautifully illustrated by Caldecott Honor winner Rachel Isadora, with her signature collage-style artwork.
 
Old Mikamba had a farm, E-I-E-I-O. And on this farm he had . . . a giraffe, a baboon, and an elephant! Meet Old Mikamba, who watches over a wide variety of animals on his game farm in the plains of Africa. Children will discover a whole new set of fun animal sounds as they are invited to sing along and roar with the lions, bellow with the rhino, whinny with the zebras, honk with the wildebeests, and more!
 
A wonderful introduction to African wildlife that is great fun to read aloud, this truly irresistible rendition of a beloved song includes a list of animal fun facts and gives children a huge variety of animal sounds to imitate as they pore over the detailed animals, landscapes and patterns in the stunning illustrations.
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Niño Wrestles the World

Señoras y Señores, put your hands together for the fantastic, spectacular, one of a kind . . . Niño!

Fwap! Slish! Bloop! Krunch! He takes down his competition in a single move!

No opponent is too big a challenge for the cunning skills of Niño―popsicle eater, toy lover, somersault expert, and world champion lucha libre competitor!

A Neal Porter Book

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Mr Tiger Goes Wild
Are you bored with being so proper?

Do you want to have more fun?

Mr. Tiger knows exactly how you feel. So he decides to go wild.

But does he go too far?

From Caldecott Honor artist Peter Brown comes a story that shows there's a time and place for everything...even going wild.
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Ling & Ting
Ling and Ting are twins. They have the same brown eyes. They have the same pink cheeks. They have the same happy smiles.

Ling and Ting are two adorable identical twins, and they stick together, whether they are making dumplings, getting their hair cut, or practicing magic tricks. But looks are deceiving--people can be very different, even if they look exactly the same.
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Journey
A 2014 Caldecott Honor Book

Follow a girl on an elaborate flight of fancy in a wondrously illustrated, wordless picture book about self-determination — and unexpected friendship.


A lonely girl draws a magic door on her bedroom wall and through it escapes into a world where wonder, adventure, and danger abound. Red marker in hand, she creates a boat, a balloon, and a flying carpet that carry her on a spectacular journey toward an uncertain destiny. When she is captured by a sinister emperor, only an act of tremendous courage and kindness can set her free. Can it also lead her home and to her heart's desire? With supple line, luminous color, and nimble flights of fancy, author-illustrator Aaron Becker launches an ordinary child on an extraordinary journey toward her greatest and most exciting adventure of all.
release date: Sep 27, 2011
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I Want My Hat Back
A New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book of 2011!

A picture-book delight by a rising talent tells a cumulative tale with a mischievous twist.


The bear's hat is gone, and he wants it back. Patiently and politely, he asks the animals he comes across, one by one, whether they have seen it. Each animal says no, some more elaborately than others. But just as the bear begins to despond, a deer comes by and asks a simple question that sparks the bear's memory and renews his search with a vengeance. Told completely in dialogue, this delicious take on the classic repetitive tale plays out in sly illustrations laced with visual humor-- and winks at the reader with a wry irreverence that will have kids of all ages thrilled to be in on the joke.
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How Big Were Dinosaurs?

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to take a Velociraptor for a walk, or try to brush a Tyrannosaur's teeth? We think of dinosaurs as colossal giants, but how big were they REALLY?
With kid-friendly text and seriously silly illustrations, this fact-filled book puts dinosaurs next to modern animals so that you can see exactly how they size up. And a huge fold-out chart compares the dinos to each other, from the tiniest Microraptor to Argentinosaurus, the largest animal to ever walk the land.
An NPR Best Book of 2013

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Eye to Eye

In his latest eye-popping work of picture book nonfiction, the Caldecott Honor–winning author-illustrator Steve Jenkins explains how for most animals, eyes are the most important source of information about the world in a biological sense. The simplest eyes—clusters of light-sensitive cells—appeared more than one billion years ago, and provided a big survival advantage to the first creatures that had them. Since then, animals have evolved an amazing variety of eyes, along with often surprising ways to use them.

release date: Aug 21, 2012
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Creepy Carrots!
In this Caldecott Honor–winning picture book, The Twilight Zone comes to the carrot patch as a rabbit fears his favorite treats are out to get him.

Jasper Rabbit loves carrots—especially Crackenhopper Field carrots.
He eats them on the way to school.
He eats them going to Little League.
He eats them walking home.
Until the day the carrots start following him...or are they?
     Celebrated artist Peter Brown's stylish illustrations pair perfectly with Aaron Reynold's text in this hilarious picture book that shows it's all fun and games…until you get too greedy.
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Count the Monkeys
Kids will giggle as they count all the animals that have frightened the monkeys off the pages. Full of fun reader interactions and keeps readers guessing until the very last page! Matching Mac Barnett's brilliant wit are Kevin Cornell's luminous illustrations, which will have young readers begging to count the monkeys all over again.
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Clara Lee and the Apple Pie Dream
Meet Clara Lee.

Likes: her best friends, her grandpa, her little sister (when she's not being annoying, which is almost always), candy necklaces, her fancy Korean dress, and the Apple Blossom Festival.

Dislikes: her little sister (when she's being annoying, which is almost always), her mom's yucky fish soup, and bad dreams (even though Grandpa says they mean good luck).

Clara Lee's luck keeps changing. Will she have good luck again in time to win the Little Miss Apple Pie pageant?
release date: Mar 04, 2010
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Big Red Lollipop
Rubina has been invited to her first birthday party, and her mother, Ami, insists that she bring her little sister along. Rubina is mortified, but she can?t convince Ami that you just don?t bring your younger sister to your friend?s party. So both girls go, and not only does Sana demand to win every game, but after the party she steals Rubina?s prized party favor, a red lollipop. What?s a fed-up big sister to do?

Rukhsana Khan?s clever story and Sophie Blackall?s irresistible illustrations make for a powerful combination in this fresh and surprising picture book.

release date: May 21, 2013
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A Big Guy Took My Ball! (Elephant and Piggie)
Gerald is careful. Piggie is not.
Piggie cannot help smiling. Gerald can.
Gerald worries so that Piggie does not have to.

Gerald and Piggie are best friends.

In A Big Guy Took My Ball! Piggie is devastated when a big guy takes her ball! Gerald is big, too...but is he big enough to help his best friend?
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Bad Kitty

From the creator of The New York Times bestseller Boing! comes the riotous story of a cat gone berserk -- four times over an in alphabetical order each time. Kitty is not happy hen she's told that her favorite foods are all gone and all that's left are Asparagus, Beets, Cauliflower, Dill...and 22 other equally unappealing vegetables. So she: Ate my homework, Bit grandma, Clawed the curtains, Damaged the dishes, and so on, through Z. Only when tastier things arrive (An Assortment of Anchovies, Buffalo Burritos, Chicken Cheesecake...) does she Apologize to Grandma.

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