2022 Picture Books to Have on Your Radar, part two
Yes, this blog is called Teen Librarian Toolbox. Yes, we usually focus on middle grade and YA. BUT. Since I work in an elementary library, and since a lot of our readers serve patrons of all ages, I figured it’s not totally wild to include some posts on picture books. Here is the previous post that focused on picture books coming out in the first half of 2022.
Hop in the comments or catch me on Twitter @CiteSomething and tell me what you are excited to read in the second half of 2022!
All descriptions from the publishers or Goodreads summaries.
Two Dogs by Ian Falconer (ISBN-13: 9780062954473 Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Publication date: 06/28/2022, Ages 4-8)
From Ian Falconer, Caldecott Honor winner and #1 New York Times bestselling creator of the Olivia series, comes a dashingly delightful picture book about two unforgettable dachshunds and their search for fun!
Dachshund brothers Perry and Augie are home alone and desperately want to get outside and have a good time. Augie is the cautious one, the worrier; Perry is pure joy and excitement. When they finally manage to open the back door, mischievous adventures begin! Soon they’re diving into the swimming pool, digging an enormous hole, and more! Will all return to normal before their owners come home?
This witty and utterly heartwarming story plays perfectly off the exquisite illustrations. These are Ian Falconer’s first all-new characters since Olivia, and Two Dogs is sure to equally capture the hearts of readers everywhere.
Perfect for fans of imaginative dog books like Bark, George and A Ball for Daisy!
If You’re a Kid Like Gavin by Gavin Grimm, J Yang (Illustrator), Kyle Lukoff (ISBN-13: 9780063057562 Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Publication date: 07/12/2022, Ages 4-8)
A celebratory and empowering story from young trans activist Gavin Grimm, two-time Stonewall Award-winning and Newbery Honor-winning author Kyle Lukoff, and illustrator J Yang follows the true story of how a young boy stood up for himself—and made history along the way.
When you’re a kid like Gavin Grimm, you know yourself best. And Gavin knew that he was a boy—even if others saw him as a girl. But when his school took away his right to something as simple as using the boy’s restroom, Gavin knew he had a big decision to make.
Because there are always more choices than the ones others give you.
Gavin chose to correct others when they got his pronouns wrong. He asked to be respected. He stood up for himself. Gavin proved that his school had violated his constitutional rights and had the Supreme Court uphold his case—bringing about a historic win for trans rights. There are many kids out there, some just like Gavin Grimm, and they might even be you.
What choices will you make?
That’s Not My Name! by Anoosha Syed (ISBN-13: 9780593405178 Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group Publication date: 07/12/2022, Ages 3-5)
A debut picture book about loving your name, finding your voice, and standing up for yourself from the critically acclaimed illustrator of Bilal Cooks Daal and I Am Perfectly Designed.
Mirha is so excited for her first day of school! She can’t wait to learn, play, and make new friends. But when her classmates mispronounce her name, she goes home wondering if she shound find a new one. Maybe then she’d be able to find a monogrammed keychain at the gas station or order a hot chocolate at the cafe more easily.
Mama helps Mirha to see how special her name is, and she returns to school the next day determined to help her classmates say it correctly—even if it takes a hundred tries.
Kind Like Marsha: Learning from LGBTQ+ Leaders by Sarah Prager, Cheryl Thuesday (Illustrator) (ISBN-13: 9780762475001 Publisher: Running Press Book Publishers Publication date: 08/02/2022, Ages 4-8)
For fans of Little Leaders and Pride comes a nonfiction picture book celebrating 14 incredible LGBTQ+ change makers and forward thinkers throughout history.
Kind Like Marsha celebrates 14 amazing and inspirational LGBTQ+ people throughout history. Fan favorites like Harvey Milk, Sylvia Rivera, and Audre Lorde are joined by the likes of Leonardo da Vinci, Frida Kahlo, and more in this striking collection. With a focus on a positive personality attribute of each of the historical figures, readers will be encouraged to be brave like the Ugandan activist fighting for LGBTQ+ rights against all odds and to be kind like Marsha P. Johnson who took care of her trans community on the New York City streets.
The Baby-Changing Station by Rhett Miller, Dan Santat (Illustrator) (ISBN-13: 9780316459327 Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers Publication date: 08/02/2022, Ages 4-8)
Acclaimed singer-songwriter Rhett Miller teams up again with Caldecott Medalist and bestselling artist Dan Santat in a laugh-out-loud rhyming story about an older sibling who gets an opportunity to trade his younger brother for cool stuff when he finds a magical baby changing station.
Before Joe rolled in / I was the ten-year-old King / of all I surveyed / Now that he’s here / It’s perfectly clear / That I / am in the way.
James is NOT a fan of his new little brother, Joe. His parents adore Joe and don’t have time for James anymore. What is an older sibling supposed to do?!
When James stumbles upon a baby-changing station that can exchange younger siblings for much more exciting things, he is faced with endless options. Should he choose the night-vision googles, a cool chemistry set, a guitar, or keep his baby brother? James is put through the ultimate test until he realizes that being a big brother is not so bad after all.
With sly humor, playful rhymes, and dynamic art, The Baby-Changing Station celebrates the timeless theme of older-younger sibling rivalry with a humorous magical twist perfect for readers of all ages.
What Are Words, Really? by Alexi Lubomirski, Carlos Aponte (Illustrator) (ISBN-13: 9781536219807 Publisher: Candlewick Press Publication date: 09/27/2022, Ages 4-8)
A renowned photographer and a Pura Belpré Honor–winning illustrator join forces for a playful and stylish picture book that’s destined to make the world a better place, one word at a time.
Perfectly pitched to the youngest child, Alexi Lubomirski’s whimsical text is a gentle reminder that words have power—the power to hurt or to heal, to make someone feel small or feel tall. Carlos Aponte’s buoyant illustrations, in dazzling primary colors and bold black line, pair with a dynamic text design to create a visual symphony. An eye-catching appeal to our better natures, this inspired meditation on the purpose and power of words encourages children to choose them well—and use them wisely—to spread kindness, joy, and love.
Going Places: Victor Hugo Green and His Glorious Book by Tonya Bolden, Eric Velasquez (Illustrator) (ISBN-13: 9780062967404 Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Publication date: 10/04/2022, Ages 4-8)
In the vein of Hidden Figures comes a nonfiction picture book about the Green Book, a travel guide by Victor Hugo Green, a Black postal worker from Harlem, made to help African Americans stay safe while traveling during segregation.
As a mail carrier, Victor Hugo Green traveled across New Jersey every day. But with Jim Crow laws enforcing segregation since the late 1800s, traveling as a Black person in the US could be stressful, even dangerous.
So in the 1930s, Victor created a guide—The Negro Motorist Green-Book—compiling information on where to go and what places to avoid so that Black travelers could have a safe and pleasant time. While the Green Book started out small, over the years it became an expansive, invaluable resource for Black people throughout the country—all in the hopes that one day such a guide would no longer be needed.
Award-winning author Tonya Bolden and acclaimed illustrator Eric Velasquez shine a light on this little-known history of Victor Hugo Green and the deep impact of his incredible book on generations of Black families in America.
Tell the Truth, Pangolin by Melinda Beatty, Paola Escobar (Illustrator) (ISBN-13: 9780593180136 Publisher: Random House Children’s Books Publication date: 10/18/2022, Ages 4-8)
In this delightful, thoroughly entertaining picture book about the importance—and difficulty—of telling the truth, the queen’s trusty servant, a pangolin, breaks the royal swing and doesn’t know what to tell her!
Pangolin is enjoying himself on the royal swing in the bright summer sunshine when suddenly, the ropes break and—OW!—he falls to the ground. Whatwill I tell the queen?! Pangolin worries. He races to the stables to ask his friend Badger. “Tell her the musicians needed the swing’s rope for their lutes!” the stablemaster advises. Fox, the castle guard, has a different idea: “Might you say that the King needed to repair his royal jump rope?” Pug, Cat, and Goose all have suggestions, too. But which story will Pangolin tell the queen?! Here is a charming picture book, full of delightful animal friends, about finding the courage to be honest with those around you—and with yourself.
Filed under: Picture Books
About Amanda MacGregor
Amanda MacGregor works in an elementary library, loves dogs, and can be found on Twitter @CiteSomething.
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