Tried & True and New: Picture Book Reviews

Our storytime experts are bringing you reviews of the latest from our Easy collection (or picture books) as well as some of their favorites used during storytime. We have thousands of picture books at each library, so this is just a small introduction to the collection. See all of our Tried & True and New reviews here on the blog.

Don’t Touch My Hair! by Sharee Miller 

Reviewed by: Stephanie Tamayo

Aria loves her beautiful, luscious hair, and so does everyone else! But her hair is so big and beautiful, that even strangers want to touch it.. without asking her for permission first. This makes Aria very uncomfortable, and she must learn how to ask people to respect her space. 

Don’t Touch My Hair teaches kids about microaggressions and respecting each other’s boundaries. Kids can learn how to compliment others without intruding in their space. The artwork is bright and quirky, which is sure to capture any child’s attention. 

Read-alikes
  • Hair Love by Matthew A. Cherry, Illustrated by Vashti Harrison 
  • Princess Hair by Sharee Miller 
  • Stella’s Stellar Hair by Yesenia Moises 
  • Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut by Derrick Barnes 
  • My Hair is a Garden by Cozbi A. Cabrera 

A House by Kevin Henkes

Reviewed by: Jaime Eastman

How does a house turn into a home? Simple illustrations and a series of questions explore what makes up a house. From colors and shapes to opposites like big and little, questions encourage adult and child to explore the house together.

This story is perfect to explore together, as each question prompts you to look more closely at the house through the seasons and talk together. But something is missing from this house.  Can you help figure out what will make this house a home?

Read-alikes:
  • Home Is by Hannah Rodgers Barnaby
  • Just Because by Mac Barnett
  • This Is Our House by Hyewon Yum

Lost Things by Carey Sookocheff

Reviewed by: Parisa Nasiripour

This short and sweet story explores the journey of misplaced items, and how they impact those who lost them and those who find them. Carey Sookocheff’s illustrations are detailed and delightful, creating a world where the character interactions might be brief but are incredibly meaningful.

Read-alikes:
  • The Longest Letsgoboyby Derick Wilder and Catia Chien
  • My City Speaks by Darren Lebeuf and Ashley Barron
  • What Is Love? by Mac Barnett and Carson Ellis
  • What’s in Your Pocket?: Collecting Nature’s Treasures by Heather L. Montgomery and Maribel Lechuga

My Garden by Kevin Henkes

Reviewed by: Sarah Deay

Written and illustrated by Caldecott medal recipient Kevin Henkes, My Garden is an enchanting tale of a girl helping in her mommy’s real-life garden, even as she lets her imagination run wild in her make-believe garden. There’s no limit to what she can create! She grows color-changing flowers, jellybean bushes, strawberries that glow like lanterns, and even umbrellas!

With equally captivating illustrations and text, this uplifting book is sure to sow seeds of creativity and wonder. What will you grow in your garden?

Read-alikes:
  • My Day in the Garden by Miela Ford
  • In the Night Garden by Barbara M. Joosse
  • The Imaginary Garden by Andrew Larsen
  • The Invisible Garden by Valarie Picard

Anzu the Great Kaiju by Benson Shum

Reviewed by: Erik Knapp

Anzu is not like the other Kaiju who strike fear into the hearts of their given city. Instead of causing fear, his gentle heart just wants to make flowers bloom and grow. He feels like he is a failure and maybe not even a real Kaiju. But Anzu learns there are more ways to strike at the heart of your city and become a great Kaiju; sometimes all you have to do is be yourself.

Read-alikes:
  • The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf
  • Leo the Late Bloomer by Robert Krause
  • The Carrot Seed by Ruth Krauss
  • I Like Me! by Nancy Carlson
  • Hilda Must Be Dancing by Karma Wilson

See all of our Tried & True and New reviews here on the blog.

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