EJ’s Top 10 Children’s Books of 2017

The year of 2017 was a great one for children’s books.  I have comprised this list in case you missed out on some of the great works published for children last year.  This is  EJ’s list of top 10 children’s books of 2017:

1. Be Kind – Pat Zietlow Miller

“These days, it seems more important than ever for books to show young people how to act with thoughtfulness, civility, and kindness.” —The New York Times Book Review

When Tanisha spills grape juice all over her new dress, her classmate wants to make her feel better, wondering: What does it mean to be kind?

From asking the new girl to play to standing up for someone being bullied, this moving story explores what kindness is, and how any act, big or small, can make a difference—or at least help a friend.

With a gentle text from the award-winning author of Sophie’s Squash, Pat Zietlow Miller, and irresistible art from Jen Hill, Be Kind is an unforgettable story about how two simple words can change the world.

 

2. Baby goes to market – Atinuke  Angela Brooksbank

Join Baby and his doting mama at a bustling southwest Nigerian marketplace for a bright, bouncy read-aloud offering a gentle introduction to numbers.

Market is very crowded.
Mama is very busy.
Baby is very curious.
When Baby and Mama go to the market, Baby is so adorable that the banana seller gives him six bananas. Baby eats one and puts five in the basket, but Mama doesn’t notice. As Mama and Baby wend their way through the stalls, cheeky Baby collects five oranges, four biscuits, three ears of sweet corn, two pieces of coconut . . . until Mama notices that her basket is getting very heavy! Poor Baby, she thinks, he must be very hungry by now! Rhythmic language, visual humor, and a bounty of delectable food make this a tale that is sure to whet little appetites for story time.

 

3. We are what we eat – Kristy Hammill

Do your kids eat too much sugar? Do you find yourself saying, “eat your vegetables” all too often?

Give yourself a break and let these hilarious, rhyming, food characters take over for you!

Parents love reading it and kids love hearing it! If you like books like Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, then this book is for you!

Many parents are becoming aware of how effective it is to feed their kids healthy food.

Feeding your family nutritious, whole foods is one of the best ways you can be pro-active in keeping them healthy!

Encourage them to love real food with this catchy book about all the delicious and nutritious whole food choices!

These talking food characters will make you laugh while giving you some great ideas.

Your kids will start to recognize the difference between foods that are nourishing to their bodies and foods that aren’t. They will be telling YOU when a certain treat is going to make them feel yucky from their head to their feet!

You will laugh at some of the great ideas, and some of the not so great ideas, when it comes to filling your plate!

We Are What We Eat is a fun way to help you to be mindful while you eat, and encourage your kids to do the same.

Vegan friendly!

 

4.We’re all wonders – R.J. Palacio

The unforgettable bestseller Wonder has inspired a nationwide movement to Choose Kind. Now parents and educators can introduce the importance of choosing kind to younger readers with this gorgeous picture book, featuring Auggie and Daisy on an original adventure, written and illustrated by R. J. Palacio.

Over 6 million people have fallen in love with Wonder and have joined the movement to Choose Kind. Now younger readers can meet Auggie Pullman, an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face, and his beloved dog, Daisy.

Countless fans have asked R. J. Palacio to write a book for younger readers. With We’re All Wonders, she makes her picture-book debut as both author and artist, with a spare, powerful text and striking, richly imagined illustrations. Palacio shows readers what it’s like to live in Auggie’s world—a world in which he feels like any other kid, but he’s not always seen that way.

We’re All Wonders may be Auggie’s story, but it taps into every child’s longing to belong, and to be seen for who they truly are. It’s the perfect way for families and educators to talk about empathy and kindness with young children.

Praise for Wonder:
A #1 New York Times Bestseller
A USA Today Top 100 Bestseller
An Indie Bestseller
A Time Magazine 100 Best Young Adult Books of All Time Selection
A Washington Post Best Kids’ Book
A Parents Magazine Top 10 Book of the Year
A New York Times Book Review Notable Book
An NPR Outstanding Backseat Book Club Pick
An Entertainment Weekly 10 Great Kids’ Books Selection
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year
A School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year
A Booklist Editors’ Choice
An E. B. White Read Aloud Award Winner
An ALA Notable Book
A Bank Street Best Book of the Year
An IRA-CBC Teachers’ Choice
A New York Public Library 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing Selection
A Christopher Award Winner

“A beautiful, funny and sometimes sob-making story of quiet transformation.” —The Wall Street Journal

“A crackling page-turner filled with characters you can’t help but root for.” —Entertainment Weekly

“Rich and memorable.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Wonder is the best kids’ book of the year.” —Slate.com

“A glorious exploration of the nature of friendship, tenacity, fear, and most importantly, kindness.” —The Huffington Post

“Endearing, enduring Auggie and his family and friends will find a place in the hearts of readers and prompt reflection on how we treat others.” —The Washington Post

 

5.  After the Fall – Dan Santat

From the New York Times–bestselling creator of The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend comes the inspiring epilogue to the beloved classic nursery rhyme Humpty Dumpty.

Everyone knows that when Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall. But what happened after?

Caldecott Medalist Dan Santat’s poignant tale follows Humpty Dumpty, an avid bird watcher whose favorite place to be is high up on the city wall—that is, until after his famous fall. Now terrified of heights, Humpty can longer do many of the things he loves most.

Will he summon the courage to face his fear?

After the Fall (How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again) is a masterful picture book that will remind readers of all ages that Life begins when you get back up.

2018 NCTE Charlotte Huck Award Winner
A Kirkus Reviews Best Picture Book of 2017
A New York Times Notable Children’s Book of 2017
A New York City Public Library Notable Best Book for Kids
A Chicago Public Library Best Book of 2017
A Horn Book Fanfare Best Book of 2017
An NPR Best Book of 2017

 

6. What should Danny do? – Ganit & Adir Levy

9 Stories in 1! What Should Danny Do? is an innovative, interactive book that empowers kids with the understanding that their choices will shape their days, and ultimately their lives into what they will be. Written in a “Choose Your Own Story” style, the book follows Danny, a Superhero-in-Training, through his day as he faces choices that kids face on a daily basis. As your children navigate through the different story lines, they will begin to realize that their choices for Danny shaped his day into what it became. And in turn, their choices for themselves can shape their days, and ultimately their lives, into what they will be.

Boys and girls both love and relate to Danny, while enjoying the interactive nature of the book–they never know what will come next! Parents and Teachers love the social-emotional skills the book teaches through empowering kids to make positive choices while demonstrating the natural consequences to negative choices. A must have on every bookshelf.

 

7. Be brave little one – Marrianne Richmond

From the author of If I Could Keep You Little comes Be Brave Little One, which honors and celebrates the power of courage in every child. Perfect for cheering someone on, this story affirms how bravery can show up in all different ways!

When I look at you,
shining bright as the sun,
I wish for you this…
be brave little one!

 

8. The Invisible Boy – Trudy Ludwig 

A simple act of kindness can transform an invisible boy into a friend…

Meet Brian, the invisible boy. Nobody ever seems to notice him or think to include him in their group, game, or birthday party . . . until, that is, a new kid comes to class.

When Justin, the new boy, arrives, Brian is the first to make him feel welcome. And when Brian and Justin team up to work on a class project together, Brian finds a way to shine.

From esteemed author and speaker Trudy Ludwig and acclaimed illustrator Patrice Barton, this gentle story shows how small acts of kindness can help children feel included and allow them to flourish. Any parent, teacher, or counselor looking for material that sensitively addresses the needs of quieter children will find The Invisible Boy a valuable and important resource.

Includes backmatter with discussion questions and resources for further reading.

 

9. Here we are – Oliver Jeffers

#1 New York Times bestseller
TIME Magazine Best Book of the Year
NPR Best Book of 2017
A Boston Globe Best Book of 2017

“Moments of human intimacy jostle with scenes that inspire cosmic awe, and the broad diversity of Jeffers’s candy-colored humans…underscores the twin messages that ‘You’re never alone on Earth’ and that we’re all in this together.”–Publisher’s Weekly (starred review)

“A true work of art.”–BuzzFeed

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.

Praise for Here We Are:

-“A sweet and tender distillation of what every Earthling needs to know and might well spend a lifetime striving to achieve. A must-purchase for new parent shelves”–School Library Journal

-“From the skies to the animal kingdom to the people of the world and lots of other beautifully rendered examples of life on Earth, Here We Are carries a simple message: Be kind.” —NPR

-“[An] enchanting gem of a children’s book”–NBC’s Today Show

-“A must-have book for parents.”–Gambit

-“A celebration of people all shapes and sizes, and of the beauty and mystery of our Earth.”–Booklist

-“…a beautifully illustrated guide to living on Earth and being a good person.”–Brightly

-[Here We Are] is a tour through the land, the sea, the sky, our bodies; dioramas of our wild diversity….[Jeffers] is the master of capturing the joy in our differences.”–New York Times Book Review

 

10. The Book of Mistakes – Corinna Luyken

Zoom meets Beautiful Oops! in this memorable picture book debut about the creative process, and the way in which “mistakes” can blossom into inspiration

One eye was bigger than the other.  That was a mistake.
The weird  frog-cat-cow thing? It made an excellent bush.
And the inky smudges… they look as if they were always meant to be leaves floating gently across the sky.

As one artist incorporates accidental splotches, spots, and misshapen things into her art, she transforms her piece in quirky and unexpected ways, taking readers on a journey through her process. Told in minimal, playful text, this story shows readers that even the biggest “mistakes” can be the source of the brightest ideas—and that, at the end of the day, we are all works in progress, too.

Fans of Peter Reynolds’s Ish and Patrick McDonnell’s A Perfectly Messed-Up Story will love the funny, poignant, completely unique storytelling of The Book of Mistakes. And, like Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, it makes the perfect graduation gift, encouraging readers to have a positive outlook as they learn to face life’s obstacles.

 

Download Aimee and Fluffy the Cat: ABC’s are FUNdamental by EJ Samuwel on Apple iBooks or Amazon Kindle now!

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