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Picture Classic Books

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Pocket Full of Colors: The Magical World of Mary Blair, Disney Artist Extraordinaire
Written by Amy Guglielmo and Jacqueline Tourville & illustrated by Brigette Barrager
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Amy Guglielmo, Jacqueline Tourville, and Brigette Barrager team up to tell the joyful and unique story of the trailblazing Disney artist Mary Blair.

Mary Blair lived her life in color: vivid, wild color.

From her imaginative childhood to her career as an illustrator, designer, and animator for Walt Disney Studios, Mary wouldn’t play by the rules. At a time when studios wanted to hire men and think in black and white, Mary painted twinkling emerald skies, peach giraffes with tangerine spots, and magenta horses that could fly.

She painted her world.

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Casey Back at Bat
Written by Dan Gutman & illustrated by Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

The mighty Casey is getting what any failed sports hero most desires: a second chance. He’s got to prove himself after his last, disastrous game. All eyes are on Casey as he steps up to the plate. Will he finally bring joy to Mudville? It’s a hilarious sequel to Ernest Lawrence Thayer’s famous poem Casey at the Bat: A Ballad of the Republic.

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Magic School Bus Gets Baked in a Cake: A Book about Kitchen Chemistry
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8
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Abe's Honest Words
Written by Doreen Rappaport & illustrated by Kadir Nelson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 6-8

From the time he was a young boy roaming the forests of the unsettled Midwest, Abraham Lincoln knew in his heart that slavery was deeply wrong. A voracious reader, Lincoln spent every spare moment of his days filling his mind with knowledge, from history to literature to mathematics, preparing himself to one day lead the country he loved toward greater equality and prosperity. Despite the obstacles he faced as a self-educated man from the back woods, Lincoln persevered in his political career, and his compassion and honesty gradually earned him the trust of many Americans. As president, he guided the nation through a long and bitter civil war and penned the document that would lead to the end of slavery in the United States. The passion for humanity that defined Lincoln’s life shines through in this momentous follow-up to Martin’s Big Words and John’s Secret Dreams. Told in Doreen Rappaport’s accessible, absorbing prose, and brought to life in powerful illustrations by Kadir Nelson, Abe’s Honest Words is an epic portrait of a truly great American president.

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Dr. Seuss's Horse Museum
Written by Dr. Seuss & illustrated by Andrew Joyner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 7-12

This #1 New York Times bestseller is the perfect gift for the young artist in your life! A never-before-published Dr. Seuss non-fiction book about creating and looking at art!

Based on an unrhymed manuscript and sketches discovered in 2013, this book is like a visit to a museum—with a horse as your guide!

Explore how different artists have seen horses, and maybe even find a new way of looking at them yourself. Discover full-color photographic art reproductions of pieces by Picasso, George Stubbs, Rosa Bonheur, Alexander Calder, Jacob Lawrence, Deborah Butterfield, Franz Marc, Jackson Pollock, and many others—all of which feature a horse! Young readers will find themselves delightfully transported by the engaging equines as they learn about the creative process and how to see art in new ways.

Taking inspiration from Dr. Seuss’s original sketches, acclaimed illustrator Andrew Joyner has created a look that is both subtly Seussian and wholly his own. His whimsical illustrations are combined throughout with “real-life” art. Cameo appearances by classic Dr. Seuss characters (among them the Cat in the Hat, the Grinch, and Horton the Elephant) make Dr. Seuss’s Horse Museum a playful picture book that is totally unique. Ideal for home or classroom use, it encourages critical thinking and makes a great gift for Seuss fans, artists, and horse lovers of all ages.

Publisher’s Notes discuss the discovery of the manuscript and sketches, Dr. Seuss’s interest in understanding modern art, the process of creating the book, and information about each of the artists and art reproductions in the book.

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  • Boats on the Bay - Illustrations and easy to read text portray a variety of vessels, from houseboats to dredgers, through the course of a busy day on the bay.

  • The Boy Who Spoke to the Earth - When a young boy in search of joy asks the Earth where he can find happiness, the Earth responds and agrees to show him the way. The boy rushes excitedly through the landscapes that make the Earth most proud–the ocean, the cliffs, the forest, the desert, the mountains, and the top of the world. But the boy soon realizes happiness is much harder to find than he expected.

  • Where the Wild Things Are - Where the Wild Things Are is fifty years old! Maurice Sendak’s Caldecott Medal-winning picture book has become one of the most highly acclaimed and best-loved children’s books of all time. A must for every child’s bookshelf. Introduce a new generation to Max’s imaginative journey with this special anniversary edition. Let the wild rumpus continue as this classic comes to life like never before with new reproductions of Maurice Sendak’s artwork. Astonishing state-of-the-art technology faithfully captures the color and detail of the original illustrations. Sendak himself enthusiastically endorsed this impressive new interpretation of his art before his death in 2012. This iconic story has inspired a movie, an opera, and the imagination of generations.

  • Adrian Simcox Does NOT Have a Horse - A classic in the making, this heartwarming story about empathy and imagination is one that families will treasure for years to come. Adrian Simcox tells anyone who will listen that he has a horse–the best and most beautiful horse anywhere. But Chloe does NOT believe him. Adrian Simcox lives in a tiny house. Where would he keep a horse? He has holes in his shoes. How would he pay for a horse? The more Adrian talks about his horse, the angrier Chloe gets. But when she calls him out at school and even complains about him to her mom, Chloe doesn’t get the vindication she craves. She gets something far more important. Written with tenderness and poignancy and gorgeously illustrated, this book will show readers that kindness is always rewarding, understanding is sweeter than judgment, and friendship is the best gift one can give.

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She Persisted Around the World
Written by Chelsea Clinton & illustrated by Alexandra Boiger
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

“Introduces readers to a group of thirteen incredible women who have shaped history all across the globe”–Front jacket flap.

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Baby's First Bank Heist
Written by Jim Whalley & illustrated by Stephen Collins
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Move over, Bonnie and Clyde, because there’s a new criminal mastermind in town . . . Baby Frank! Baby Frank is dangerously cute, and he’s about to pull off the most daring baby bank heist ever. Why? His parents say that he can’t have a pet—“pets are for older kids,” “be happy with your teddy,” and “they cost too much to keep,” they say. What’s a baby to do . . . ? Rob a bank, of course! You have been warned . . . With eye-catching illustrations from Guardian cartoonist Stephen Collins, this laugh-out-loud rhyming text is Boss Baby meets Mission Impossible.

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Next to You: A Book of Adorableness
Written by Lori Haskins Houran & illustrated by Sydney Hanson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 2-5

When it comes to new babies, friends, or other loved ones, we should remind them of just how darling they are. But are they cuter than a piglet in a sweater? A basket of baby chicks? An elephant calf taking a bath? Of course! Sweet, funny, irreverent, but above all, cute, this keepsake-size book is perfect for both gift-giving and cuddly story times.

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The Proudest Blue
Written by Ibtihaj Muhammad & illustrated by Hatem Aly and S. K. Ali
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

A powerful, vibrantly illustrated story about the first day of school–and two sisters on one’s first day of hijab–by Olympic medalist and social justice activist Ibtihaj Muhammad. With her new backpack and light-up shoes, Faizah knows the first day of school is going to be special. It’s the start of a brand new year and, best of all, it’s her older sister Asiya’s first day of hijab–a hijab of beautiful blue fabric, like the ocean waving to the sky. But not everyone sees hijab as beautiful, and in the face of hurtful, confusing words, Faizah will find new ways to be strong. Paired with Hatem Aly’s beautiful, whimsical art, Olympic medalist Ibtihaj Muhammad and Morris Award finalist S.K. Ali bring readers an uplifting, universal story of new experiences, the unbreakable bond between siblings, and of being proud of who you are.

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The Nativity
Written by & illustrated by Julie Vivas
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-7

The biblical story of the Nativity is one about faith, love–and a miracle. With illustrations that are enchanting and unexpected, Julie Vivas reveals the human side to Mary’s story, beautifully imagining the Angel Gabriel delivering the news to her, the exhausting journey with Joseph to Bethlehem, and at last the deliverance of the baby Jesus.

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  • Elizabeth Leads the Way: Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the Right to Vote - Elizabeth Cady Stanton stood up and fought for what she believed in. From an early age, she knew that women were not given rights equal to men. But rather than accept her lesser status, Elizabeth went to college and later gathered other like-minded women to challenge the right to vote. Here is the inspiring story of an extraordinary woman who changed America forever because she wouldn’t take “no” for an answer. Elizabeth Leads the Way is a 2009 Bank Street - Best Children’s Book of the Year.

  • The Little I Who Lost His Dot - Little i can’t wait to meet his friends at school, but there’s just one problem: he can’t find his dot anywhere? Each letter offers a replacement–an acorn from Little a, a balloon from Little b, a clock from Little c–but nothing seems quite right. Adorable illustrations teach alphabet letters and sounds with a surprising and satisfying ending to Little i’s search.

  • Diana’s White House Garden - Diana Hopkins lived in a white house. THE White House. World War II is in full force across the seas. It’s 1943, President Roosevelt is in office, and Diana’s father, Harry Hopkins, is his chief advisor. And Diana wants to be part of the war effort. After some well-intentioned missteps (her quarantine sign on her father’s office door was not well-received), the President requests her help with his newest plan for the country’s survival: Victory Gardens! From award-winning author Elisa Carbone comes the true story of how Diana Hopkins started her own Victory Garden on the White House lawn under the tutelage of Eleanor Roosevelt. With dedication and patience, she showed the nation that the war effort started first on the homefront.

  • Christmas Day in the Morning - From Pulitzer and Nobel Prize-winning author Pearl S. Buck and acclaimed artist Mark Buehner comes a heartwarming story that illustrates the true meaning of Christmas.Rob wants to get his father something special for Christmas this year–something that shows how much he really loves him. But it’s Christmas Eve, and he doesn’t have much money to spend. What could he possibly get? Suddenly, Rob thinks of the best gift of all…The acclaimed author of nearly a hundred books for children and adults, Pearl S. Buck captures the spirit of Christmas in this elegant, heartening story about a boy’s gift of love. Originally published in 1955, this timeless story with glorious full-color art by Mark Buehner will be a welcome addition to your holiday collection.

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Wherever You Go
Written by Pat Zietlow Miller & illustrated by Eliza Wheeler
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Roads give you chances to seek and explore. Want an adventure? Just open your door. Join an adventurous rabbit and his animal friends as they journey over steep mountain peaks, through bustling cityscapes, and down long, winding roads to discover the magical worlds that await them just outside their doors. Award-winning author Pat Zietlow Miller’s lilting rhyme and bestselling illustrator Eliza Wheeler’s enchanting, lush landscapes celebrate the possibilities that lie beyond the next bend in the road–the same road that will always lead you home again.

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Goodbye, Friend! Hello, Friend!
Written & illustrated by Cori Doerrfeld
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From the creator of The Rabbit Listened comes a gentle story about the difficulty of change . . . and the wonder that new beginnings can bring.

Change and transitions are hard, but Goodbye, Friend! Hello, Friend! demonstrates how, when one experience ends, it opens the door for another to begin. It follows two best friends as they say goodbye to snowmen, and hello to stomping in puddles. They say goodbye to long walks, butterflies, and the sun…and hello to long evening talks, fireflies, and the stars. But the hardest goodbye of all comes when one of the friends has to move away. Feeling alone isn’t easy, and sometimes new beginnings take time. But even the hardest days come to an end, and you never know what tomorrow will bring.

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Hello, Mr. Dodo!
Written & illustrated by Nicholas John Frith
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Martha loves birds, so one day when she meets and makes friends with a Dodo, a species supposed to be extinct, in the woods behind her house, she resolves to keep him secret to keep him safe–but sometimes it is hard to keep a big secret.

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A Letter to My Teacher
Written by Deborah Hopkinson & illustrated by Nancy Carpenter
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

This funny, touching picture book—the perfect gift for a child to give to their own teacher—celebrates the difference a good teacher can make. Written as a thank-you note to a special teacher from the student who never forgot her, this moving story makes a great read-aloud and a perfect gift for Teacher Appreciation Day or Graduation!

Dear Teacher, Whenever I had something to tell you, I tugged on your shirt and whispered in your ear. This time I’m writing a letter. So begins this heartfelt picture book about a girl who prefers running and jumping to listening and learning–and the teacher who gently inspires her. From stomping through creeks on a field trip to pretending to choke when called upon to read aloud, this book’s young heroine would be a challenge to any teacher. But this teacher isn’t just any teacher. By listening carefully and knowing just the right thing to say, she quickly learns that the girl’s unruly behavior is due to her struggles with reading. And at the very end, we learn what this former student is now: a teacher herself.

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The Perfect Sofa
Written & illustrated by Fifi Kuo
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Penguin and Panda decide it’s time for a new sofa–but they are overwhelmed by the options. Will they find what they’re looking for? When Penguin and Panda decide their tired sofa is in need of replacement, they set out to find the perfect one. But none of the options are quite right and no sofa can seem to match the comfort of the one they already have. Is what they’re looking for closer than they think?

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  • The Crayon Man - Celebrating the inventor of the Crayola crayon! This gloriously illustrated picture book biography tells the inspiring story of Edwin Binney, the inventor of one of the world’s most beloved toys. A perfect fit among favorites like The Day the Crayons Quit and Balloons Over Broadway. purple mountains’ majesty, mauvelous, jungle green, razzmatazz… What child doesn’t love to hold a crayon in their hands? But children didn’t always have such magical boxes of crayons. Before Edwin Binney set out to change things, children couldn’t really even draw in color. Here’s the true story of an inventor who so loved nature’s vibrant colors that he found a way to bring the outside world to children – in a bright green box for only a nickel! With experimentation, and a special knack for listening, Edwin Binney and his dynamic team at Crayola created one of the world’s most enduring, best-loved childhood toys – empowering children to dream in COLOR!

  • The Unadoptables - Neil Gaiman meets Hans Christian Andersen in this delicious fairy tale full of mysterious spirits, daring escapes, and a beautiful message about the power of found families. Egbert, Lotta, Sem, Fenna, and Milou. They are an artist, an inventor, a sewist, a baker, and their imaginative ringleader–and they are the unadoptables: children who have lived their whole lives at the Little Tulip orphanage in Amsterdam. When a corrupt sea captain threatens to make them his minions, Milou knows it’s time to plot a daring escape. But she has no idea their caper will begin with a crime, or that it will take them down back roads and alleys, along frozen canals, to an old windmill housing an abandoned puppet theater, where the truth about her origins lies hidden if she can only untangle the clues. But with the sea captain hunting them down, and a nosy neighbor threatening to reveal them to the authorities, the unadoptables will have to work fast to uncover the truth and find a way to save each other.

  • One Thousand Things - Find out what one thousand really looks like in this visual encyclopedia of first words to see and say. Search-and-find Little Mouse on every page and discover new words with every turn of the page. Stylishly laid out, the book is arranged by theme and features fully illustrated collections of “things”, each clearly labeled and easy to recognize. This value-packed 80 page book covers everything from space, to the human body, to the world around us, bringing contemporary appeal to a classic subject.

  • This Is How We Do It - Follow one day in the real lives of seven kids from around the world—Italy, Japan, Iran, India, Peru, Uganda, and Russia! In Japan, Kei plays Freeze Tag, while in Uganda, Daphine likes to jump rope. While the way they play may differ, the shared rhythm of their days—and this one world we all share—unites them. This genuine exchange provides a window into traditions that may be different from our own as well as mirrors reflecting our common experiences. Inspired by his own travels, Matt Lamonthe transports readers across the globe and back with this luminous and thoughtful picture book. Perfect for kids learning about new cultures and customs Educates children on the importance of similarities and differences Gives kids a unique look into the lives of others across the globe If you enjoyed Carson Ellis’ Home, you’re sure to enjoy the window into the world provided by This is How We Do It. This children’s picture book is ideal for parents or teachers looking for the following: World Book for Kids Travel Book for Kids Beginning Reading Books Cultures for Kids Books Families Around the World Books

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Corduroy Lost and Found
Written by B.G. Hennessy & illustrated by Jody Wheeler
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-5

A new adventure for a classic teddy bear! Corduroy the beloved bear slips out very early one morning to get a birthday present for Lisa. He spies what he thinks is a yellow balloon up in the sky, thinking that would be perfect for her. But when the sun rises, the balloon (really the full moon) disappears. And now Corduroy is lost. Lisa finds him, but not before Corduroy succeeds in getting just the right gift—a lollipop as yellow and round as the moon. Written in the whimsical style of Don Freeman and illustrated in the exact scratchboard technique he used to create Corduroy and A Pocket for Corduroy.

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My Best Friend
Written & illustrated by Rob Hodgson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Meet Mouse! Mouse lives in the tree with his best friend . . . Giant Owl. They used to do the most fun stuff imaginable! They’d play chase and Giant Owl would nearly catch Mouse, but not quite. Giant Owl loved Mouse so much that she used to give him as many donuts as he wanted and the most amazing presents, including his own house (a cage)! But then one day something happened, and now Mouse has found himself stuck in a very dark place . . . will his best friend help come to his rescue? This deliciously dark tale of a mouse and the “best friend” who wants to eat him will delight fans of Rob’s previous books, The Cave and The Woods.

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Koalas Eat Gum Leaves
Written & illustrated by Laura Bunting and Philip Bunting
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

This is the tale of one little koala, who has had quite enough of his eucalyptus diet. And so he goes on the lookout for some tastier tucker. A simple cautionary tale, highlighting the importance of moderation and balance.

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What Is Given from the Heart
Written by Patricia C. McKissack & illustrated by April Harrison
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

This final, magnificent picture book from three-time Coretta Scott King Award winner and Newbery Honor author Patricia McKissack is a poignant and uplifting celebration of the joy of giving.

“Misery loves company,” Mama says to James Otis. It’s been a rough couple of months for them, but Mama says as long as they have their health and strength, they’re blessed. One Sunday before Valentine’s Day, Reverend Dennis makes an announcement during the service— the Temples have lost everything in a fire, and the church is collecting anything that might be useful to them. James thinks hard about what he can add to the Temple’s “love box,” but what does he have worth giving? With her extraordinary gift for storytelling, McKissack—with stunning illustrations by Harrison—delivers a touching, powerful tale of compassion and reminds us all that what is given from the heart, reaches the heart.

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The Grizzly Bear Who Lost His GRRRRR!
Written & illustrated by Rob Biddulph
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From the award-winning author and illustrator of Blown Away, Rob Biddulph, comes a delightfully hilarious story about a grizzly bear named Fred who loses his GRRRRR. Each year, for as long as the forest has stood, a contest is held for the bears of the wood… Fred is the champion. He’s the best. But being the best takes time and training, especially when it comes to having the loudest growl. Then, one morning, disaster strikes—Fred’s GRRRRR is gone! Oh, no! Will Fred find his GRRRRR and realize that there’s more to life than being a winner?

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  • Grandpa's Top Threes - A young boy’s original game coaxes a grieving grandpa to reconnect with the world in a touching intergenerational story of love and resilience. Henry loves talking with Grandpa, but Grandpa has stopped listening. Mom says to just give him time. But Henry wants to talk to Grandpa now. So Henry tries his favorite game: Top Threes. And something amazing happens: Grandpa starts talking again. Out of a tale of favorite sandwiches and zoo animals, outings and trains, emerges a moving story about love, loss, and the wonder of grannies and grandpas.

  • The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey - The spirit of Christmas heals a sorrowing woodcarver’s heart in this splendid reissue of a Candlewick holiday classic, dressed in a radiant new cover. The spirit of Christmas heals a sorrowing woodcarver’s heart in this splendid edition of a holiday classic, complete with a CD masterfully narrated by James Earl Jones.

  • The Polar Express - 1986 Caldecott Medal Winner A young boy, lying awake one Christmas Eve, is welcomed aboard a magical trip to the North Pole . . . Through dark forests, over tall mountains, and across a desert of ice, the Polar Express makes its way to the city atop the world, where the boy will make his Christmas wish. For millions of readers worldwide, this mysterious journey to the North Pole has become a beloved classic. In this 30th anniversary edition, the inimitable artistry of Chris Van Allsburg is revealed in a never-before-seen fashion, with a new jacket design and expanded interior layout. Includes author’s note, downloadable audio read by Liam Neeson, and golden “All Aboard” ornament.

  • To the Sea - Sometimes Tim feels invisible at school-until one day, when Tim meets Sam. But Sam isn’t just any new friend: he’s a blue whale, and he can’t find his way home! Returning Sam to the sea is hard work, but Tim is determined to help. After all, it’s not every day you meet a new friend! This picture book about the power of friendship by new talent Cale Atkinson is brought to life by charming, dynamic illustrations.

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The Little Red Cat Who Ran Away and Learned His ABC's (the Hard Way)
Written & illustrated by Patrick McDonnell
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Bestselling and award-winning artist Patrick McDonnell uses the ABC’s to tell a hilarious, high-energy alphabetical adventure. It starts with an ALLIGATOR and a BEAR chasing a CAT. When a DRAGON (and a chicken and an egg!) join in pursuit, things start to get REALLY interesting. A wild and wacky chase through snow and ice, and to jungles and over mountaintops, leads the whole crew to a wonderful realization: They’re better off as friends. From New York Times bestselling author and Caldecott Honor recipient Patrick McDonnell comes an exciting new take on the alphabet book for everyone who has ever wondered what’s just beyond the front door.

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The Night Before Christmas
Written by Clement C. Moore & illustrated by Loren Long
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

#1 New York Times bestselling illustrator Loren Long presents a fresh, modern take on the classic Christmas poem about a visit from Santa Claus in this gorgeous new edition.

Cozy up with the timeless tale that’s been reimagined for the twenty-first century by acclaimed artist Loren Long. Featuring four different homes that reflect the diverse world we live in, Long’s lush landscapes and charming scenes capture the wonder and magic of Christmas.

This gorgeous, modern edition of The Night Before Christmas will delight readers old and new and is a must-have for every family library.

An illustrator’s note is included that gives further context to Long’s approach for retelling this classic.

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Snowmen at Christmas
Written by Caralyn Buehner & illustrated by Mark Buehner
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Snowmen at Night shared with us the magical, slip-sliding adventures of snowmen after dark . . . but have you ever wondered what snowmen do for Christmas? Well, now’s your chance to find out! The snowmen are back, and this time they’re celebrating Christmas—the snowman way! This snappy and entertaining companion to the New York Times bestseller Snowmen at Night depicts all the best parts of the holiday, replete with icy treats and a snowman Kris Kringle. Told in the same bouncy verse as the original, Snowmen at Christmas is perfect for a snowy evening read-aloud.

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Stone Soup
Written & illustrated by Jon J Muth
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

An award-winning artist adds a Zen twist to a favorite tale. As three monks travel along a mountain road, they encounter villagers ravaged by harsh times, making them cold to strangers. When the monks entice them to make soup from stones, the villagers discover how much they have to give. Full color.

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The Donut Chef
Written & illustrated by Bob Staake
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-7

When his competitor sets up his business right next door to the first doughnut shop in town, culinary chaos ensues as the original doughnut guru and the newcomer try to outdo one another with their crazy creations, including Gooey Coca-Mocha Silk and Peanut-Brittle Buttermilk.

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  • Madeline - “In an old house in Paris that was covered with vines lived twelve little girls in two straight lines the smallest one was Madeline.” Nothing frightens Madeline—not tigers, not mice, not even getting sick. With its endearing, courageous heroine, cheerful humor, and wonderful, whimsical drawings of Paris, the Madeline stories are true classics that continue to charm readers even after 75 years!

  • Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth - Oliver Jeffers, arguably the most influential creator of picture books today, offers a rare personal look inside his own hopes and wishes for his child—and in doing so gifts children and parents everywhere with a gently sweet and humorous missive about our world and those who call it home. Insightfully sweet, with a gentle humor and poignancy, here is Oliver Jeffers’ user’s guide to life on Earth. He created it specially for his son, yet with a universality that embraces all children and their parents. Be it a complex view of our planet’s terrain (bumpy, sharp, wet), a deep look at our place in space (it’s big), or a guide to all of humanity (don’t be fooled, we are all people), Oliver’s signature wit and humor combine with a value system of kindness and tolerance to create a must-have book for parents.

  • Sakamoto's Swim Club: How a Teacher Led an Unlikely Team to Victory - The inspirational and little-known story of a dedicated teacher who coached Hawaiian swimmers all the way to the Olympics, beautifully told in simple rhyme.When the children of workers on a 1930s Maui sugar plantation were chased away from playing in the nearby irrigation ditches, local science teacher Soichi Sakamoto had an idea. He offered to take responsibility for the children — and then he began training them how to swim. Using his science background, Sakamoto devised his own innovative coaching techniques: he developed a strict practice regime for the kids, building their strength and endurance by using the ditch water’s natural current. The children worked hard under the dedicated Sakamoto’s guidance, and their skills improved. They formed a swim club and began to dominate in swimming events around the world. And then one day, the proud Sakamoto saw an impossible dream come true — Olympic gold!In a unique approach that makes for a moving read-aloud, Julie Abery uses limited rhyming text to tell the little-known story of Coach Sakamoto and the Three-Year Swim Club. The stunning art of award-winning and highly acclaimed Chris Sasaki perfectly complements the lyrical storytelling. This inspiring picture book offers excellent lessons in perseverance, believing in yourself and not letting others define you, while wonderfully capturing how one person can make a huge difference in the lives of others. In highlighting the team’s “bright and loud” presence at events, with their Hawaiian dress and ukulele, it also encourages children to take pride in their heritage and view it as a strength. An author’s note with photos and more information tell the fuller story of Soichi Sakamoto and his Three-Year Swim Club.

  • Fur, Feather, Fin—All of Us Are Kin - There are so many wild and wonderful animals in our world. Some have fur, some have feathers, some have fins, but all are connected. This fact-filled rhyming exploration of the diversity of the animal kingdom celebrates mammals, birds, insects, fish, reptiles, amphibians, and more! It’s a perfect match for budding naturalists and animal enthusiasts everywhere.

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Dia de Los Muertos
Written by Roseanne Greenfield Thong & illustrated by Carles Ballesteros
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

It’s Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) and children throughout the pueblo, or town, are getting ready to celebrate! They decorate with colored streamers, calaveras, or sugar skulls, and pan de muertos, or bread of the dead. There are altars draped in cloth and covered in marigolds and twinkling candles. Music fills the streets. Join the fun and festivities, learn about a different cultural tradition, and brush up on your Spanish vocabulary, as the town honors their dearly departed in a traditional, time-honored style. ¡Es el Día de los Muertos y todos los niños del pueblo y ciudad están listos para celebrar! Decoran con calaveras lo calavera de azucar, pan de muertos y banderas. Hay altares cubriertos de manta con muchas flores, y velas parpadiendo. Musica llena las calles. Hay que unirse con los festivales y abrender una diferente cultura y traduciones y repasar el vocabulario en español, mientras el pueblo honra sus queridos en una tradución con el transcurso y con el estilo del tiempo.

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Animalkind
Written & illustrated by Pablo Salvaje
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Featuring beautifully distinctive prints of the natural world and sensitive text, this book helps children understand the inextricable connections between human and animal life. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that humans are not the only inhabitants of Earth. This visually striking book reminds us that not only do we share an ecosystem with other living things, but that we can also learn much from the behavior and instincts of our animal neighbors. In Pablo Salvaje’s handcrafted, softly colored prints readers encounter a wide range of creatures–from jellyfish and peacocks to polar bears and snakes. With chapters on love, survival, change, habitat, water, and other topics, this book takes readers on a journey across the planet to show how animals, like humans, form bonds, engage in rivalries, adapt their behavior to cope with challenges, and do anything to protect their offspring. A beautiful lesson in compassion, this book carries a universal message that readers young and old will appreciate and return to again and again.

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Before After
Written by Anne-Margot Ramstein & illustrated by Matthias Aregui
picture book
Recommend Ages: 3-6

Everyone knows that a tiny acorn into a mighty oak grows, and a caterpillar emerges into a butterfly. But in this clever, visually enchanting volume, it’s also true that a cow can result in both a bottle of milk and a painting of a cow, and an ape in a jungle may become an urban King Kong. Just as day turns into night and back again, a many-tiered cake is both created and eaten down to a single piece. With simple, graphic illustrations sure to appeal to even the youngest of children, this smart exploration of the fascinating theme of before and after will please the most discerning adult readers, too.

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Pirate Nell's Tale to Tell: A Storybook Adventure
Written by Helen Docherty & illustrated by Thomas Docherty
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

From the author/illustrator team behind The Snatchabook comes a book-filled adventure on the high seas!

Nell is finally a pirate!

And she has her trusty Pirate’s Almanac to help her sail the seas, even if Captain Gnash doesn’t like books on his ship. But when the journey gets rough and the captain is in trouble, it’s Nell and all her pirate knowledge that saves the day and leads them to the greatest buried treasure of all…

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The Day Santa Stopped Believing in Harold
Written by Maureen Fergus & illustrated by Cale Atkinson
picture book
Recommend Ages: 4-8

Santa has a problem. This kid? Harold? Santa doesn’t think he’s real. He WANTS to believe in Harold–after all, Harold is one of the most magical parts of Christmas. Getting Harold’s letters, eating the cookies he leaves out, feeding his carrots to the reindeer… what would Christmas be without that? But Santa’s just not sure. Some of his friends are telling him they think Harold’s not real. And the Harold that sat on his knee last Christmas looked AWFULLY different. Santa comes up with a plan to find out once and for all if Harold really exists… with hilarious consequences.

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