September’s Best New Picture Books

School is back in session—snack time, recess, and naptime are all in vogue once again. Bedtime has rolled back a couple hours too, so you need to bring your A Game to storytime—are you ready? If it’s taking you a moment to switch out of summer vacation mode, we are here to help—with a diverse list of picture books that will hit our shelves this month. We’ve included some of epic characters here, as well as plenty of new stories that celebrate some of our favorite things—like community, imagination, words, and embracing your uniqueness. Start digging in tonight!

It Takes a Village, by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Marla Frazee
Clinton’s classic bestseller lends itself easily to picture book format, and young readers will instantly connect to the ideas presented in Frazee’s sunny illustrations. Watch a community grow from the ground up at your next storytime!

Princesses Wear Pants, by Savannah Guthrie and Allison Oppenheim
Princess Penelope Pineapple wears a lot of hats as junior ruler of the Pineapple Kingdom, and most of her work requires something sturdier than a frilly dress. Indeed, every morning, she bypasses the sequins and lace, and makes a beeline for yoga pants or a flight suit – depending on what the day requires. This encouraging tale celebrates fashion and challenges gender stereotypes—the perfect recipe for an empowering storytime!

Imagine, by John Lennon and Jean Jullien
John Lennon’s classic lyrics come to life in this moving picture book, providing a timely tale of peace, tolerance, and love. A courageous pigeon delivers Lennon’s message, and Jullien’s airy illustrations will help your imagination take flight. Every book purchase supports Amnesty International, so this is a book you can feel good about adding to your shelves.

Big Words for Little Geniuses, by Susan Patterson, James Patterson, and Hsinping Pan
If you’ve been grasping for a sophisticated alphabet book to present to your brilliant little ones, then you’ve alighted on the precise title for your next storytime. From gobbledy-gook to juxtaposition, there’s a tremendously fancy word for every taste here. Start SAT prep—and enjoy some cuddle time too—with your preschoolers tonight!

Star Wars BB-8 on the Run, by Drew Daywalt and Matt Myers
BB-8 is lost without his master, Poe Dameron, and the desert planet of Jakku is desolate—and expansive. But a mission is a mission, and BB-8 is determined to find a way to get his super-secret map back to the Resistance; it’s the only way the galaxy can escape the clutches of the evil First Order! Shortly after his lonely journey begins, he starts to see friendly faces in the crowd—maybe this mission won’t be so scary after all!

This Little Trailblazer: A Girl Power Primer, by Joan Holub and Daniel Roode
Your littlest readers will love this sturdy, colorful board book full of bold, brave women who dared mightily—and changed history. From the judge’s bench to the front seat of the city bus, trailblazing women have made their mark—start reading their stories tonight!

Pig the Elf, by Aaron Blabey
Pig the Pug anticipates Christmas almost as much as your little readers probably do—and he manages to stay up all night on Christmas Eve waiting for the big guy to appear. Instead of just leaving presents, however, Santa has other plans for Pig—a trip in the sleigh…as an elf! This is one wild ride you won’t want to miss!

The Velveteen Rabbit, by Margery Williams and Sarah Massini
Massini’s wondrous oil paintings meet Williams’ tender, timeless prose in this breathtaking new edition of one of our favorite tales. Perfect as a gift, or to share with your own little readers again and again, this is a must-have addition for everyone’s storytime shelves.

Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi The Power of the Force, by LucasFilm Press and Brian Rood
This illustrated Star Wars storybook is one for the ages—literally! It spans the entire Star Wars saga, providing an opportunity for readers of all ages to get to know the most captivating characters—like Luke Skywalker, Rey, Darth Vader and Darth Maul. Prepare yourself for many readings—may the Force be with you!

The Little Reindeer, by Nicola Killen
When faint jingling wakes a little girl from her slumber, she immediately comes face-to-face with a lost reindeer. Theirs is a fast friendship, and a magical journey begins. Sure to delight readers of all ages, this is an enchanting tale, brought to life in sketches, die-cuts, and sudden splashes of color.

What new picture books are brightening up your storytime?

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