Have you noticed? There are epic picture books in our midst this month! And since we’re sure you love magical journeys, monsters in polka-dot undies, recess action heroes, and creepy stuffed koalas as much as we do, you’ll definitely need to check out our picks below. It’s some of the best literature around for little ones right now—go ahead and give these books some evening airtime this week!
Ballet Cat: The Totally Secret Secret, by Bob Shea
Ballet Cat and Sparkles the Pony are the best of friends. When they get together, twirling and leaping are typically on the agenda. But today, Sparkles isn’t feeling twirly or leapy. In fact, Sparkles has a secret that might undermine Ballet Cat’s afternoon plans for flagrantly flouncy fun. In the end, compromise and friendship are the true heroes in this warm, imaginative story.
Wherever You Go, by Pat Zietlow Miller and Eliza Wheeler
Celebrate the wanderlust of childhood with this gentle prelude to sweet dreams. Melodic rhymes and whimsical illustrations will transport you and your little one to a magical world waiting just outside your window. The road to get there is windy, and it will always lead you back home.
Hardcover $16.19 | $17.99
Monsters Love Underpants, by Claire Freedman and Ben Cort
Through clever rhymes and zany illustrations, we learn that monsters don’t just tolerate underpants—they love them! When it comes to undies, patterns and fits of all kinds appeal to the hairy green behemoths. In fact, they’re not afraid to show up to a monster party with no clothes at all, since it gives them the chance to show off their flashy undergarments. This read-aloud is both silly and sweet.
Touch the Brightest Star, by Christie Matheson
Your littlest reader will instantly fall in love with this interactive, celestial companion to Matheson’s acclaimed Tap the Magic Tree. Night after night, you and your toddler will relish the opportunity to make the sky—as depicted through Matheson’s watercolor and collage illustrations—come to life. Wave goodbye to the sun, whisper hello to the stars, and let the soothing story lull you both into a deep, peaceful sleep.
Action Movie Kid, by Daniel Hashimoto, Mandy Richardville, and Valerio Fabbretti
Buoyed by his wild success fighting evil on YouTube, Action Movie Kid is now available in bedtime story format! He’s bold, he’s daring, and he’s the hero of the schoolyard, always ready to defend the weak and confront the bad seeds of the swing set. And if his kryptonite is exposed, so to speak, he’s not afraid to ask Mom and Dad for help. Join Action Movie Kid on his adventures tonight.
In the Waves, by Lennon and Maisy Stella, and Steve Bjorkman
The Stella Sisters—of ABC’s Nashville fame—have collaborated to bring us a beachy tune for bedtime. Whimsical mixed-media illustrations and sunny lyrics make this a perfect summertime bedtime read.
Bulldozer’s Big Day, by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohmann
It’s Bulldozer’s birthday, but, unfortunately, everyone is too busy scooping, lifting, and dumping to notice! Toddlers will empathize with the plight of the forgotten construction vehicle. Bulldozer might have something waiting for him at the end of his long day, but we wouldn’t want to ruin the surprise.
Where Are My Books?, by Debbie Ridpath Ohi
Bibliophiles young and old will delight in this touching tale. Spencer loves to read—he reads a new book every night, in fact. But when his favorite book goes missing—and a tulip shows up in its place—he begins a perplexing scavenger hunt that reveals a community of readers living right under his nose.
Bunny Roo, I Love You, by Melissa Marr and Teagan White
Captivating and playful, this tender story captures the essence of new motherhood. From high up in the trees, to cozy burrows under the ground, Marr and White’s animal mamas are protective and loving, and we observe them, moment by sweet moment, gently welcoming their baby creatures to the world.
I Don’t Like Koala, by Sean Ferrell and Charles Santoso
Adam was a normal, fairly well-adjusted kid until the day Koala came into his life. On top of his limp body and impertinent stare, Koala exudes the sort of negative energy that prevents him from mixing with the other toys in Adam’s room. Adam tries everything to rid himself of this unsettling toy, but nothing—not even a sit-down with his parents—helps. Darkly funny, this is perfect for a read-aloud, and will certainly be a go-to bedtime selection.
Ally-Saurus & the First Day of School, by Richard Torrey
Ally, the spunky heroine of this sweet story, isn’t gaga for tiaras, twirling, or tea parties. She’s crazy for dinosaurs! Unfortunately, no one else at her new school stomps and chomps like a T-Rex. Spend a day with Ally as she finds a place where she can be herself, and still fit in with all of her unique classmates