Polar Bear with PresentKids' Gift Book Suggestions

Great books make great gifts! Your Youth Services librarians have selected some of our favorite recent reads that we think you'll want to share with the children in your life, this holiday season and all year long. When you shop, please consider buying books from your local independent bookseller.

Picture Books | Early Readers | Novels | Graphic Novels | Nonfiction

Picture Books

A Is for Another Rabbit

A Is for Another Rabbit

By Hannah Batsel

You’ll chuckle at this alphabet book that breaks all the rules. A stuffy owl takes on a rambunctious, rabbit-loving narrator as they hop through the alphabet along with many, many rabbits. Suggested for ages 4–8. —Janet


Can I Be Your Dog?

Can I Be Your Dog?

By Troy Cummings

A lonely homeless dog writes to all the houses on one street explaining what he’s looking for and hoping someone will adopt him. Suggested for ages 4–7. —Alice


Daniel’s Good Day

Daniel’s Good Day

By Micha Archer

Look on the bright side with young Daniel as he explores his vibrant neighborhood, asking neighbors what makes their day a good one. It’s a fun reminder of the important things in life, large and small. Happily, we can still enjoy most of those things, even while wearing a mask. Suggested for ages 3–6. —Janet


Federico and the Wol

Federico and the Wolf

By Rebecca J. Gomez & illustrated by Elisa Chavarri

A clever and modern retelling of the Little Red Riding Hood story with a Mexican American twist involving a visit to Abuelo at his bodega, a recipe for pico de gallo, and a creative use of chili powder. Suggested for ages 3–8. —Ruth


Fungus Is Among Us!

Fungus Is Among Us!

By Joy Keller & illustrated by Erica Salcedo

A funny, informative, and suspenseful look at fungus, which is EVERYWHERE! A great book for nature lovers. Suggested for ages 4–10. —Ruth


Goodnight, Rainbow Cats

Goodnight, Rainbow Cats

By Bàrbara Castro Urío

A sweet board book with cut out windows and colorful cats. A good bedtime read for little ones to read and touch. Suggested for ages 0–3. —Ruth


Hair Love

Hair Love

By Matthew A. Cherry & illustrated by Vashti Harrison

A tender and humorous father-daughter story that shows how far a dad will go to help his child become her natural, beautiful self. A family story to read again and again. Suggested for ages 4–7. —Diane


How Do You Dance?

How Do You Dance?

By Thyra Heder

Find out how a cast of all ages and races dances on all sorts of occasions. I dare you to do “the poot” without shaking your booty—and shaking your belly with laughter! Suggested for ages 3 and up. —Janet


How to Read to a Grandma or Grandpa

How to Read to a Grandma or Grandpa

By Jean Reagan & illustrated by Lee Wildish

With the roles reversed, the kids tell how to choose a book and share it aloud with a grandparent. Suggested for ages 4–8. —Alice


In a Jar

In a Jar

By Deborah Marcero

Beautiful illustrations tell a touching story about friendship and enjoying mindful moments together. Suggested for ages 3–8. —Ruth


Just Like Me

Just Like Me

By Vanessa Brantley-Newton

There are all kinds of girls in the world. This collection of poetry includes vibrant words and beautiful illustrations about every girl out there. Suggested for grades K–3. —Jennifer


Kamala and Maya's Big Idea

Kamala and Maya’s Big Idea

By Meena Harris & illustrated by Ana Ramírez Gonzalez

An empowering story about two “per-sisters” who have the idea to build a playground at their apartment building and work with their community to achieve their goal. Suggested for ages 4–8. —Ruth


Old Rock Is Not Boring

Old Rock (Is Not Boring)

By Deb Pilutti

A clever science lesson about the magnificent history of an ordinary rock! Suggested for ages 4–7. —Susan


Over in the Woodland

Over in the Woodland: A Mythological Counting Journey

By Nicole Abreu and Shar Abreu & illustrated by Susanna Covelli

A fun version of the counting rhyme “Over in the Meadow,” with beautifully detailed mythological creatures. Suggested for ages 3–8. —Ruth

[Top]

Early Readers

Dear Beast

Dear Beast

By Dori Hillestad Butler & illustrated by Kevan Atteberry

In an early reader for our times, a dog and cat engage in a hilarious letter-writing competition for their mutual child friend. Suggested for grades K–2. —Sheri


Jack at Bat

Jack at Bat

By Mac Barnett & illustrated by Greg Pizzoli

In this beginning early reader, Jack’s team needs him to hit a home run win the game. He gets a hit...but can he score? Suggested for grades PreK–1. —Sheri

[Top]

Novels

Accidental Trouble Magnet

Accidental Trouble Magnet

By Zanib Mian

Imaginative Omar goes through the ups and downs of a new school and new friends with the help of his funny Pakistani family. Suggested for grades 3–6.—Susan


Elatsoe

Elatsoe

By Darcie Little Badger

A Lipan Apache teen uses her ability to raise animal spirits while solving the mystery of her cousin’s death in a so-perfect-it's-creepy town. This inventive page-turner is pleasantly shivery, wryly funny, and utterly unputdownable. Suggested for grades 7 and up. —Lisa


Fly on the Wall

Fly on the Wall

By Remy Lai

Anyone who’s felt underestimated will relate to Henry Khoo, a kid so desperate to escape his helicopter family that he secretly hops an airplane halfway around the world. This funny, heartfelt story is told in comics and notebook entries, in the vein of Diary of a Wimpy Kid and The Dork Diaries. Suggested for grades 4–7. —Lisa


From the Desk of Zoe Washington

From the Desk of Zoe Washington

By Janae Marks

This is a heartwarming story of a girl named Zoe, who gets a letter from her father who is serving time in prison. This is a hopeful and inspiring story about family. Suggested for grades 4–7. —Jennifer


The List of Things That Will Not Change

The List of Things That Will Not Change

By Rebecca Stead

After Bea’s parents divorce, her life changes in many ways. This book beautifully portrays what Bea is going through and how she finds her family's love no matter what. Suggested for grades 3–5. —Jennifer


Prairie Lotus

Prairie Lotus

By Linda Sue Park

A hopeful story about overcoming racism during pioneer times, with many references to the Little House books. What's different is how it illuminates the prejudice endured by non-White settlers. Suggested for grades 4–7. —Diane


Reeni’s Turn

Reeni’s Turn

By Carol Coven Grannick

I loved this novel-in-verse about a young dancer coming into her own. Reeni’s insecurities in the face of diet culture and sibling rivalry ring true in this short, sweet, and powerful read by a local author. Suggested for grades 4–6. —Lisa


Refugee

Refugee

By Alan Gratz

I didn’t look up once when reading these three riveting, interlocking stories of refugees—from Syria, from Hitler’s Reich, and from Cuba. Suggested for grades 5–8. —Sheri


The Runaway Princess

The Runaway Princess

By Johan Troïanowski

Princess Robin is on the run to the Aquatic Carnival and beyond. Menacing characters are easily turned into friends and problems are solved with ingenuity as Robin jumps from one fantastical situation to another. The comic features interactive mazes and other diversions. This colorful, imaginative French import will allow you to escape…right along with Princess Robin. Suggested for grades 2–6. —Janet


Stand Up, Yumi Chung!

Stand Up, Yumi Chung!

By Jessica Kim

Funny and brave Yumi Chung takes on new challenges in her 11-year-old life. In addition to coping with her parents’ high expectations at school, she decides to stand up and join a comedy camp, where she is mistaken for another student. Suggested for grades 4–6. —Jennifer


When You Trap a Tiger

When You Trap a Tiger

By Tae Keller

This emotional story inspired by Korean folklore starts when Lily and her family move in with her sick grandmother. Soon Lily learns a family secret, and she needs to be brave to save her grandmother from a magical tiger. Suggested for grades 4–7. —Jennifer

[Top]

Graphic Novels

The Deep & Dark Blue

The Deep & Dark Blue

By Niki Smith

After a deadly political coup, twins Hawke and Grayson go undercover in a community of magical women. In their new identities, they discover new talents and hatch a plan to retake their beloved home. This exciting, fantastical graphic novel will appeal to fans of Witch Boy and The Prince and the Dressmaker. Suggested for grades 4–8. —Lisa


Twins

Twins

By Varian Johnson & illustrated by Shannon Wright

Maureen and Francine: twin sisters with very different personalities, both vying for the student council presidency! What could possibly go wrong? Everything, of course. Fans of Smile and New Kid will gobble up this thoughtful, slice-of-life graphic novel. Suggested for grades 3–6. —Lisa


When Stars Are Scattered

When Stars Are Scattered

By Victoria Jamieson & Omar Mohamed

The author of reader favorite Roller Girl teams up with Omar Mohamed, a Somali refugee and social worker now living in the United States, to tell his story. Omar and his brother have been living in a refugee camp for years. What will it take for them to survive, thrive, and get resettled? This graphic novel tells an urgent, emotionally wrenching, and ultimately hopeful story. Suggested for grades 5 and up. —Janet

[Top]

Nonfiction

Barefoot Books Incredible Animals

Barefoot Books Incredible Animals

By Dunia Rahwan & illustrated by Paola Formica

With beautiful illustrations, here are unusual facts about animals from all over the world. Suggested for grades 1–4. —Alice


Bill Nye’s Great Big World of Science

Bill Nye’s Great Big World of Science

By Bill Nye

The renowned science expert shares information on a wide variety of subjects with lots of illustrations and experiments. Suggested for grades 5 and up. —Alice


The Dog Patrol

The Dog Patrol: Our Canine Companions and the Kids Who Protect Them

By Rob Laidlaw

A super-cute book that every dog lover will want to own. It includes many dog photos and useful information about dog biology, care, behavior, and training. Suggested for grades 4–7. —Susan


How We Got to the Moon

How We Got to the Moon: The People, Technology, and Daring Feats of Science Behind Humanity’s Greatest Adventure

By John Rocco

This is a facinating look at how so many people worked on the first successful moon landing. Suggested for grades 5 and up. —Alice


In Focus: Space

In Focus: Space

By Elizabeth Jenner

This book drew me in with its compendium of space facts, fold-out spreads, and fun facts I had never seen before. Suggested for grades 4 and up. —Sheri


My First Cookbook

My First Cookbook

By America's Test Kitchen

I found comfort and inspiration in these wonderfully simple recipes, with tips, illustrations for each step in the cooking process, and a focus on dishes kids love. Suggested for grades K–3. —Sheri


Making a Difference

A Smart Girl's Guide: Making a Difference: Using Your Talents and Passions to Change the World

By Melissa Seymour

Join the changemakers, girls who make a difference in our world. Tips, quizzes, and inspiration from real girls. Dream big, girls! This is truly an inspiring book I wish I could have had when I was a kid! Suggested for grades 3 and up. —Susan


Who Is Ruth Bader Ginsburg?

Who Is Ruth Bader Ginsburg?

By Patricia Demuth

This title from a popular series explores the life of the late RBG, Supreme Court justice and popular hero to many. As a lawyer, she advocated for gender equality and women’s rights when few did, and forever continued to be a strong force for progressive legislation. Suggested for grades 2–4. —Susan


Wild Girl

Wild Girl: How to Have Incredible Outdoor Adventures

By Helen Skelton

For the adventurous type, this book will make you want to go outdoors and discover how much fun you can have. Suggested for grades 4–7. —Alice

[Top]

 

Go to top