If “It’s not dark yet! Another book puh-leeeease!” is the common bedtime refrain in your house, then it might be time to step up your storytime game during these long summer nights. Fortunately, there’s a pool of new bedtime stories to dive into this month—from Pinkalicious to Pete the Cat—so, once the Flav-o-Ice has been thoroughly brushed and rinsed away, and the curls freshly detangled, cozy up with your favorite little one and enjoy one of the 10 books below:
Pinkalicious and the Crazy Hair Day, by Victoria Kann
It’s Crazy Hair Day at school, and until she gets on the school bus in the morning, Pinkalicious is ready with a zany hairstyle all her own. Unfortunately, Rose has the same wild braids! Join the two friends in this celebration of individuality and teamwork as they brainstorm a creative solution to stop the other kids from calling them copycats.
Mighty Dads, by Jean Holub and James Dean
In celebration of Dad this month, dig into a whimsical tale of heroic dads forged not of skin and bones, but of steel and rubber. Bulldozer Strong, Dump Truck Sturdy, and Backhoe Steady teach their little ones right from wrong, and never forget to say, “I’m proud of you! Tomorrow let’s build something new!”
Naughty Kitty, by Adam Stower
In this outrageously funny follow-up to Silly Doggy, Stower returns with a new story of Lily, who has recently received a pet kitty to love and care for. At first, kitty is sweet and well-behaved, but soon food mysteriously starts disappearing, and rugs are destroyed. Is kitty responsible, or is some other creature lurking about?
The Pout Pout Fish Goes to School, by Deborah Diesen and Dan Hanna
Pout Pout Fish is off to school for the first time. Excited, but more than a little nervous, he rattles off his worries as he endures a series of mishaps and unforeseen challenges: “Trouble one: I’m not smart! Trouble Two: I’ll never get it! Trouble Three: I don’t belong, so Four: I should forget it!” Comfort, confidence, and the fun of learning are just around the bend, however, once Pout Pout Fish finds his classroom and his new teacher, Miss Hewitt.
The Numberlys, by William Joyce and Christina Ellis
“Once upon a time there was no alphabet. Only numbers.” Five friends live in such a time, and while the world is orderly and, well, numberly, they orchestrate a tremendous change. Specifically, the friends create letters, and joyfully introduce the world to all the wonders that result, including jellybeans, the color yellow, and pizza.
Pardon Me, by Daniel Miyares
It’s time for bed in the swamp, and a tired little bird is having trouble finding peace and quiet with so many animals landing on his perch demanding his attention. “Pardon me,” is what the heron, frog, turtle, and fox beg, and the little bird shoos them off, growing grouchier with each encounter. Unfortunately, he fails to realize that, instead of simply pestering him, they might just be trying to tell him something about the rock he’s chosen to sleep upon.
Three Bears in a Boat, by David Soman
Join Dash, Charlie, and Theo for an adventure on the high seas in this fantastic tale of friendship and forgiveness. The three mischievous bears have broken Mama Bear’s favorite blue shell, and guided by a fierce determination to find a replacement, they travel to islands far away, and through a storm that has them snuggling together for warmth. Will they find what they’re looking for, and how will Mama Bear react?
A Piece of Cake, by LeUyen Pham
Mouse has made a cake for Little Bird’s birthday, and on the way to deliver it, he meets several friends who offer reasonable trades for modest slivers of the tasty confection. As a result, by the time Mouse arrives at Little Bird’s house, the cake is all gone! However, clever Little Bird is not without a plan to get some birthday cake one way or another. It’s a tasty tale of generosity and ingenuity, and you’ll enjoy every morsel.
Hello, Moon!, by Francesca Simon
Perfect for bedtime—and the magical time of childhood when the questions never stop—this captivating picture book tells the story of a little boy who has a thousand questions for the radiant moon in the nighttime sky. But long before he reaches the end of his list, his eyes are drooping, and I’m guessing your little one’s will be, too.
Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, by James Dean
Pete the Cat, the grooviest cat around, is back in this funky adaptation of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” Sing along, marvel at the illustrations, and try not reading this one again—I dare you!
What’s the last great book you read with your kids?