2017 Summer Reading List Birth-preschool

View all Recommendations by Age > Recommendations for Baby-3 book lists; This list was last updated on 6/8/2017
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Reading can be one of the many fun activities children choose to fill their summer time. Research has shown it is also much more! Children who participate in public library summer reading programs make achievement leaps during the summer and score higher on fall reading achievement tests. The books on this list come highly recommended by kid readers from all over the country and may also be available in ebook, audio book, braille, and large print formats. This summer, take your child to participate in the summer programs happening at your library.

For more book recommendations, please check out New York Times® Best Sellers, Children's Book Recommendations or the complete list of Featured Book Lists and Award Winners

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1 - 25 of 25 results
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Tree: A Peek-Through Picture Book
This peek-through picture book featuring an owl and his friends is the perfect spring-time tale! 

New York Public Library's 100 Best Books for Kids 2016!

Through a hole in the book's cover, an owl invites you inside to meet a majestic tree and all its forest inhabitants during the changing seasons. With clever peekaboo holes throughout, each page reveals a new set of animals playing and living in the tree—baby bears frolicking in the spring, bees buzzing around apples in the summer, squirrels storing nuts in the fall, and finally the lone owl keeping warm during the winter chill—until another year begins. . . .
 
Children will love seeing a new set of animals appear and then disappear as each page is turned, and along the way they'll learn about the seasons and how a forest and its inhabitants change throughout the year.

"Ideal for sharing up close, where little ones can get a good look at the pictures, this gentle, easy-to-memorize story of the seasons is a great fit for bedtime."—Booklist 

"Adult readers will relish guiding their little ones into lessons about the seasons, colors, wildlife, and more. This unassuming story is an intergenerational delight."Kirkus Reviews

"A playful yet focused look at constancy and change within a specific natural setting."—Publishers Weekly
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The Whale in My Swimming Pool

One sunny day, a little boy heads outside for a swim, but his pool is already taken . . . There's a big whale in the water and it's not budging! The boy tries everything to get the whale to leave. Nothing seems to work. Not fetch. Not tag. Not even offering his allowance. What's a boy to do? Luckily, he comes up with the perfect solution: he decides to chill out on a spray of water over the whale's spout. This colorful whale of a tale from the talented Joyce Wan is sure to inspire giggles from little guppies!

The Wheels on the Tuk Tuk
From the mother-son duo behind the New York Times bestselling A Bucket of Blessings comes a zany picture book about a wild ride on a tuk tuk taxi in India!

This picture book brings an international twist to the beloved nursery rhyme, The Wheels on the Bus, by bringing you aboard a busy three-wheeled taxi in India! Anything can happen as the tuk tuk rolls through town—from an elephant encounter to a tasty treat to a grand fireworks display. And in the midst of all the action, one thing's for sure: passengers young and old love every minute of their exciting ride as the wheels of the tuk tuk go round and round!
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Twenty Yawns

A Huffington Post Best Children's Book of the Year

From Pulitzer Prize winner Jane Smiley and Caldecott Honor artist Lauren Castillo.

As her mom reads a bedtime story, Lucy drifts off. But later, she awakens in a dark, still room, and everything looks mysterious. How will she ever get back to sleep?

Pulitzer Prize winner Jane Smiley's first picture book, illustrated by Caldecott Honor artist Lauren Castillo, evokes the splashy fun of the beach and the quietude of a moonlit night, with twenty yawns sprinkled in for children to discover and count.

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When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons

december 29
and i woke to a morning
that was quiet and white
the first snow
(just like magic) came on tip toes
overnight

Flowers blooming in sheets of snow make way for happy frogs dancing in the rain. Summer swims move over for autumn sweaters until the snow comes back again. In Julie Fogliano's skilled hand and illustrated by Julie Morstad's charming pictures, the seasons come to life in this gorgeous and comprehensive book of poetry.

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Thank You and Good Night

Learning to be thankful in a beautiful story

Thank You and Goodnight is a beautifully illustrated book that shares the heart of gratitude. Jon Gordon takes a little boy and girl on a fun-filled journey from one perfect moonlight night to the next. During their adventurous day and night, the children explore the people, places and things that they are thankful for.

The two tots in Thank You and Goodnight learn that being thankful makes ice cream taste better, butterflies look more beautiful, and weekend days seem longer. "Thank you" is a phrase that will brighten any kid's day and help them get a good night's sleep.

Jon Gordon's bestselling books and talks have inspired readers and audiences around the world. He is the author of numerous books on leadership and teamwork and several children's books including The Energy Bus for Kids. Jon invites you to visit and connect with him on his website www.JonGordon.com and on Twitter @JonGordon11.

Donald Wallace, illustrator, animator and designer loves to work in all directions of the visual story: animation and movies, books, games, commercials, music videos, and theme park rides. This is his third collaboration with Jon Gordon. Donald's constant mission: spread light and keep the kid alive in all of us.

Visit Donald's website, www.wallyhood.com.

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Steam Train, Dream Train
The team behind the #1 New York Times bestseller Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site returns with another fabulous book for bedtime! The dream train pulls into the station, and one by one the train cars are loaded: polar bears pack the reefer car with ice cream, elephants fill the tanker cars with paints, tortoises stock the auto rack with race cars, bouncy kangaroos stuff the hopper car with balls. Sweet and silly dreams are guaranteed for any budding train enthusiasts!
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Sidewalk Flowers
In this wordless picture book, a little girl collects wildflowers while her distracted father pays her little attention. Each flower becomes a gift, and whether the gift is noticed or ignored, both giver and recipient are transformed by their encounter. "Written" by award-winning poet JonArno Lawson and brought to life by illustrator Sydney Smith, Sidewalk Flowers is an ode to the importance of small things, small people, and small gestures.
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Puddles!!!

RAIN! PUDDLES! MUD! Squish, squish, squish. Declan loves rain and splashing and mud! But the bunnies? Not so much! The perfect companion to the delightful Bunnies!!! Spare text, loads of fun, and heaps of emotion make Puddles!!! extraordinary for toddler read-alouds.

Fans of Mo Willems and Sandra Boynton will delight in Kevan Atteberry's springtime colors—both muddy and bright. Puddles!!! makes the perfect gift to give in Easter baskets, at baby showers, or just on ordinary rainy days.

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Puddle
One rainy day, a little boy is upset because he can't go out and play. His mom comes up with a way to keep him entertained--by drawing a picture of herself and him going outside, playing in the rain, and splashing in a giant puddle. They have so much fun drawing themselves that they decide to venture out and make the most of the rainy weather.
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Old MacDonald Had a Truck
Old MacDonald had a farm E-I-E-I-O. And on that farm he had a...TRUCK?! With a DIG DIG here and a SCOOP SCOOP there, this classic folk song just got revved up! Beloved machines—the excavator, dump truck, bulldozer, and more—will have the vehicle-obsessed of all ages reading and singing along.
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My Heart Fills with Happiness
The sun on your face. The smell of warm bannock baking in the oven. Holding the hand of someone you love. What fills your heart with happiness? This beautiful board book, with illustrations from celebrated artist Julie Flett, serves as a reminder for little ones and adults alike to reflect on and cherish the moments in life that bring us joy.
   International speaker and award-winning author Monique Gray Smith wrote My Heart Fills with Happiness to support the wellness of Indigenous children and families, and to encourage young children to reflect on what makes them happy.
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Looking for Bongo

Oh no! A boy's beloved stuffed toy, Bongo, is missing. No one can help him. When he asks his abuela where Bongo is, she answers, “Yo no sé. I don't know.” Mom and Dad haven't seen Bongo either. Gato just says “Meow,” and runs away. When Bongo finally turns up behind Dad's drum, the problem of Bongo's whereabouts is resolved . . . but it doesn't answer how Bongo got there! The boy decides to set a trap to catch the Bongo thief. Rich illustrations help tell the story of a mystery cleverly solved.  

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Let's Play!
PRESS HERE, MIX IT UP! and now LET'S PLAY! Collect all three interactive books from Hervé Tullet!
It's only a yellow dot...but what a dot it is! Readers won't be able to resist this jaunty, adventurous dot, nor its invitation to play along. Thus begins a spectacular ride of color, motion, shape, and imagination, filled with the artistry and delight that we know and love so well from Press Here and Mix It Up! But on this journey, prepare to leap headlong into a completely new dimension: emotion. Connecting not only to the mind but also to the heart, this dot expresses an extraordinary sense of humor, fear, joy, and more as it pushes, lurches, wiggles, and slides its way through—and even off!—the pages of this glorious companion to Press Here and Mix It Up!
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The Lending Zoo
From the beloved author of the Moonbear series, Frank Asch, comes a charming new picture book about a 'zoo-brary' that accidentally loses track of a tiger!

Miss Perkins is happy to be the librarian at The Lending Zoo, a 'zoo-brary' that lends out all types of animals—from massive elephants to majestic giraffes. Everything usually goes smoothly: water buffaloes, snakes, parrots, and more are checked out and returned without a problem. But one sunny day Pancake, the tiger, goes missing and Miss Perkins along with her new friend Molly must go on a citywide search to find him! Will they be able to track him down before he causes a commotion all over town?
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I Hear a Pickle: and Smell, See, Touch, & Taste It, Too!
* “Isadora's book about the five senses is aimed perfectly at another sense—kids' sense of humor.”—The Horn Book, starred review

Caldecott Honor winner Rachel Isadora's sweet and simple introduction to the five senses is perfect for the youngest children, who will recognize themselves in charming vignettes portraying a wide range of childhood activities. Hearing, smelling, seeing, touching, tasting--our five senses allow us to experience the world in so many ways! With our ears we hear the birds sing; with our nose we smell the stinky cheese; with our eyes we see the moon and stars (and sometimes glasses help us see even better!); with our skin we feel the rain (and learn not to touch the hot stove!); and with our tongue we can taste our favorite foods. Isadora's lively art reveals the power and delight of each sense.
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Egg

Egg is a graphic novel for preschoolers about four eggs, one big surprise, and an unlikely friendship, by Caldecott Medalist and New York Times-bestselling author Kevin Henkes. Egg is not only a perfect Easter gift, but also a classic read-alone and read-aloud that will appeal all year long.

This masterful and stylistically original picture book introduces young children to four eggs. One is blue, one is pink, one is yellow, and one is green. Three of the eggs hatch, revealing three baby birds who fly away. But the green egg does not hatch. Why not? When the three birds return to investigate, they're in for a big surprise! What will happen next? With a compelling mix of comic-like panels, wordless pages and spreads, and a short text featuring word repetition, surprise, and suspense, Egg is an ideal book for emergent readers, as well as for sharing in a group. Egg is sure to inspire creativity and storytelling in preschoolers, as they anticipate the page turns and determine their own endings! Kevin Henkes is the bestselling author of Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, Waiting, and Kitten's First Full Moon, among many other beloved titles.

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Cricket Song
A poignant and beautiful bedtime book, Cricket Song connects two children on different continents through the evocation of sound and smell. Readers will love identifying various creatures portrayed in the book and watching what they are doing as the two children begin to fall to sleep in their beds on seemingly opposite sides of the world. While differences between cultures may be obvious, ultimately, this lovely story of sleep is a tale about interconnection.
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Cockatoo, Too
Who can can-can? Find out in this hilarious book that features cockatoos, two more cockatoos, and tutued toucans too!

Cockatoo.

Cockatoo two?

Cockatoo, too?

Two cockatoos!

Two cockatoos, too?

Cockatoo tutus!


Two cockatoos meet two more cockatoos in tutus and two tutued toucans. And then two more! Can they all can-can? They can! The cockatoos and toucans join together for a dance and ask the reader: "Can you can-can too?"
Bethanie Deeney Murguia's fabulous book combines fantastically funny wordplay with lush, vibrant illustrations that will make readers want to can-can along!
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City Shapes
Hunt for shapes of all kinds on this journey through a bustling city, illustrated by four-time Caldecott Honoree Bryan Collier!

From shimmering skyscrapers to fluttering kites to twinkling stars high in the sky, everyday scenes become extraordinary as a young girl walks through her neighborhood noticing exciting new shapes at every turn. Far more than a simple concept book, City Shapes is an explosion of life. Diana Murray's richly crafted yet playful verse encourages readers to discover shapes in the most surprising places, and Bryan Collier's dynamic collages add even more layers to each scene in this ode to city living.
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Little Elephants / Elefantitos (Canticos)
The second book in the Canticos series of nursery rhymes and songs, is based on a traditional Mexican counting song and is one of the oldest and best methods of putting a child to sleep. Children can easily learn the verses which describe how a number of elephants come to be balancing on a spider web thanks to the repetitive pattern of the nursery rhyme. Each spread depicts a brightly colored numeral describing the number of elephants making Elefantitos/Little Elephants ideal for helping little ones learn colors and counting to five. With a unique reversible accordion and interactive design, the traditional Latin American counting song is presented with one side of the book in its native Spanish and a rhyming English language translation on the other. Children can read it straight through in traditional book format -- pulling the tabs and making the elephants heads sway to the rhythm of the verse -- or stand it up and surround themselves with the story.
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Beep! Beep! Go to Sleep!
A playful robot bedtime story, illustrated by Caldecott Honoree John Rocco!

Quiet at last. Not a peep. Three little robots are... BEEP! BEEP!

When his three rambunctious robots give every possible excuse not to go to sleep, what's a little boy to do? With a fun refrain that will have readers of all ages chanting along, here's a book that kids will be begging to read every night before bed.
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Beach Baby
A gentle, poetic lullaby for baby, filled with memories from a perfect day playing on the beach. Castles, sand dollars, seals peering out of the waves and the beat of the ocean become sweet reminders of all the magical things that await baby tomorrow. A lyrical celebration of natural beauty and a soft, reassuring reminder for little ones being tucked into bed that fun and adventure will return with a new day.
   Elly MacKay's paper-theater worlds are a delight to behold and infuse the story with a sense of magic and wonder. Beautiful verse from Laurie Elmquist sets a calm and serene tone. A breathtaking board book that will be treasured and make a wonderful gift.
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Baa, Baa, Black Sheep

A girl who can't seem to stop knitting and a sheep who just can't say no star in this captivating new rendition of the well-loved nursery song. As a host of characters from nursery rhymes receive wonderful handmade gifts, poor Black Sheep's coat grows thinner. But there is a special reward in store for a generous sheep in this story about the joy of giving. For extra fun follow a winding strand of yarn through the pages of the book. Sheet music is included.

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Around the World: A Follow-the-Trail Book
In this interactive novelty board book, little ones trace a die-cut trail to explore the world.

Use your finger to help different creatures find their special trail around the world! This interactive board book lets little ones explore world by tracing a tactile pathway. Each spread will feature a different animal looking for its way through a different landscape, from a thick, green forest to a dry, orange desert.
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