2020 Picture Books

We Are Water Protectors
Lindstrom, Carole

Winner of the 2021 Caldecott Medal

Inspired by the many Indigenous-led movements across North America, We Are Water Protectors issues an urgent rallying cry to safeguard the Earth's water from harm and corruption--a bold and lyrical picture book written by Carole Lindstrom and vibrantly illustrated by Michaela Goade.

Water is the first medicine.
It affects and connects us all . . .

When a black snake threatens to destroy the Earth
And poison her people's water, one young water protector
Takes a stand to defend Earth's most sacred resource.

Item No. 9781250203557
$17.99
A Place Inside of Me
Elliott, Zetta

2021 Caldecott Honor Book

Caldecott Honor Book
Today Show Best Book for the Holidays
ALA Notable Book for All Ages

ALSC Notable Children's Book
NCTE Notable Poetry Book

Evanston Public Library's Top 100 Great Book for Kids
Nerdy Award Winner for Single Poem Picture Book


In this powerful, affirming poem by award-winning author Zetta Elliott, a Black child explores his shifting emotions throughout the year.

There is a place inside of me
a space deep down inside of me
where all my feelings hide.

Summertime is filled with joy--skateboarding and playing basketball--until his community is deeply wounded by a police shooting. As fall turns to winter and then spring, fear grows into anger, then pride and peace.

In her stunning debut, illustrator Noa Denmon articulates the depth and nuances of a child's experiences following a police shooting--through grief and protests, healing and community--with washes of color as vibrant as his words.

Here is a groundbreaking narrative that can help all readers--children and adults alike--talk about the feelings hiding deep inside each of us.

Item No. 9780374307417
$17.99
All Because You Matter
Charles, Tami

Receive an exclusive signed bookplate autographed by author Tami Charles and illustrator Bryan Collier free with purchase.

A lyrical, heart-lifting love letter to Black and Brown children everywhere: reminding them how much they matter, that they have always mattered, and they always will, from powerhouse rising star author Tami Charles and esteemed, award-winning illustrator Bryan Collier.

Discover this poignant, timely, and emotionally stirring picture book, an ode to Black and brown children everywhere that is full of hope, assurance, and love.

Tami Charles pens a poetic, lyrical text that is part love letter, part anthem, assuring readers that they always have, and always will, matter. This powerful, rhythmic lullaby reassures readers that their matter and their worth is never diminished, no matter the circumstance: through the joy and wonder of their first steps and first laughs, through the hardship of adolescent struggles, and the pain and heartbreak of current events, they always have, and always will, matter. Accompanied by illustrations by renowned artist Bryan Collier, a four-time Caldecott Honor recipient and a nine-time Coretta Scott King Award winner or honoree, All Because You Matter empowers readers with pride, joy, and comfort, reminding them of their roots and strengthening them for the days to come.

Lyrical, personal, and full of love, All Because You Matter is for the picture book audience what The Hate U Give was for YA and Ghost Boys was for middle grade: a conversation starter, a community touchstone, and a deep affirmation of worth for the young readers who need it most.

Item No. 9781338574852
$17.99
I Am Every Good Thing
Barnes, Derrick

An upbeat, empowering, important picture book from the team that created the award-winning Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut

I am
a nonstop ball of energy.
Powerful and full of light.
I am a go-getter. A difference maker. A leader.

The confident Black narrator of this book is proud of everything that makes him who he is. He's got big plans, and no doubt he'll see them through--as he's creative, adventurous, smart, funny, and a good friend. Sometimes he falls, but he always gets back up. And other times he's afraid, because he's so often misunderstood and called what he is not. So slow down and really look and listen, when somebody tells you--and shows you--who they are. There are superheroes in our midst!

Item No. 9780525518778
$17.99
Outside In
Underwood, Deborah

2021 Caldecott Honor Book

FIVE STARRED REVIEWS!
From the New York Times best-selling author behind The Quiet Book comes a mindful contemplation on the many ways nature affects our everyday lives, even when we're stuck inside. Perfect for fans of Joyce Sidman and Julie Fogliano, Outside In reminds emerging readers of the ways nature creates and touches our lives in homes, apartments, and cars, and is the perfect homeschooling tool to reflect on the world's connectedness.

Outside is waiting, the most patient playmate of all. The most generous friend. The most miraculous inventor. This thought-provoking picture book poetically underscores our powerful and enduring connection with nature, not so easily obscured by lives spent indoors.
Rhythmic, powerful language shows us how our world is made and the many ways Outside comes in to help and heal us, and reminds us that we are all part of a much greater universe. Emotive illustrations evoke the beauty, simplicity, and wonder that await us all . . . outside.

Item No. 9781328866820
$17.99
A New Green Day
Portis, Antoinette
If you listen, nature speaks. Explore nature through evocative riddles and bold imagery that take the reader from day to night and back again in this perfect read aloud.

From the author of the Sibert Honor-winning title Hey, Water! comes a book of poetic riddles that encourage young readers to explore the natural world.

Who scribbles on the sidewalk with glistening ink? Snail!

Who's a comma in a long, long sentence of a stream? Tadpole!

On each spread, children will solve riddles about the familiar animals, plants and the weather that one child encounters outdoors throughout a whole day. Active readers will delight in the clever language and striking illustrations.

An NCTE Notable Book in Poetry
A Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year
A Junior Library Guild Selection
Selected for the CBC Champions of Change Showcase
A Horn Book Fanfare Best Book of the Year

Item No. 9780823444885
$18.99
Barnabus Project
Fan, Devin
In a world built for Perfect Pets, Barnabus is a Failed Project, half mouse, half elephant, kept out of sight until his dreams of freedom lead him and his misfit friends on a perilous adventure. A stunning picture book from international bestsellers The Fan Brothers, joined by their brother Devin Fan.

Deep underground beneath Perfect Pets, where children can buy genetically engineered perfect creatures, there is a secret lab. Barnabus and his friends live in this lab, but none of them is perfect. They are all Failed Projects. Barnabus has never been outside his tiny bell jar, yet he dreams of one day seeing the world above ground that his pal Pip the cockroach has told him about: a world with green hills and trees, and buildings that reach all the way to the sky, lit with their own stars. But Barnabus may have to reach the outside world sooner than he thought, because the Green Rubber Suits are about to recycle all Failed Projects . . . and Barnabus doesn't want to be made into a fluffier pet with bigger eyes. He just wants to be himself. So he decides it's time for he and the others to escape. With his little trunk and a lot of cooperation and courage, Barnabus sets out to find freedom -- and a place where he and his friends can finally be accepted for who they are.

This suspenseful, poignant and magical story about following your dreams and finding where you truly belong will draw readers into a surreal, lushly detailed world in which perfection really means being true to yourself and your friends.

Item No. 9780735263260
$18.99
Black is a Rainbow Color
Joy, Angela

A child reflects on the meaning of being Black in this moving and powerful anthem about a people, a culture, a history, and a legacy that lives on.

Red is a rainbow color.
Green sits next to blue.
Yellow, orange, violet, indigo,
They are rainbow colors, too, but

My color is black . . .
And there's no BLACK in rainbows.

From the wheels of a bicycle to the robe on Thurgood Marshall's back, Black surrounds our lives. It is a color to simply describe some of our favorite things, but it also evokes a deeper sentiment about the incredible people who helped change the world and a community that continues to grow and thrive.

Stunningly illustrated by Caldecott Honoree and Coretta Scott King Award winner Ekua Holmes, Black Is a Rainbow Color is a sweeping celebration told through debut author Angela Joy's rhythmically captivating and unforgettable words.

An NCTE 2021 Notable Poetry Book
A New York Public Library Best Book of 2020
A Washington Post Best Book of 2020
A Horn Book Fanfare Best Book of the Year
A 2020 Jane Addams Children's Book Award Finalist

Item No. 9781626726314
$17.99
Blue House
Wahl, Phoebe
In the tradition of Virginia Lee Burton's The Little House comes a heartfelt story about a father and son learning to accept the new while honoring and celebrating the old.

For as long as he can remember, Leo has lived in the blue house with his dad, but lately the neighborhood is changing. People are leaving, houses are being knocked down, and shiny new buildings are going up in their place. When Leo and his dad are forced to leave, they aren't happy about it. They howl and rage and dance out their feelings. When the time comes, they leave the blue house behind--there was never any choice, not really--but little by little, they find a way to keep its memory alive in their new home.

Item No. 9781984893369
$17.99
Evelyn Del Ray is Moving Away
Medina, Meg
From Newbery Medalist Meg Medina comes the bittersweet story of two girls who will always be each other's número uno, even though one is moving away.

A big truck with its mouth wide open is parked at the curb, ready to gobble up Evelyn's mirror with the stickers around the edge . . . and the sofa that we bounce on to get to the moon.

Evelyn Del Rey is Daniela's best friend. They do everything together and even live in twin apartments across the street from each other: Daniela with her mami and hamster, and Evelyn with her mami, papi, and cat. But not after today--not after Evelyn moves away. Until then, the girls play amid the moving boxes until it's time to say goodbye, making promises to keep in touch, because they know that their friendship will always be special. The tenderness of Meg Medina's beautifully written story about friendship and change is balanced by Sonia Sánchez's colorful and vibrant depictions of the girls' urban neighborhood.

Item No. 9781536207040
$17.99
Every Color of Light
Osada, Hiroshi

"By employing landscapes in lieu of human or animal characters, Osada and Arai ask readers to look--really look--at the rain, the way the changing weather transforms the visible spectrum, and the magnificence of the night sky, phenomena all too often unseen in a hurry-up world. The result is a story that sharpens the senses and quiets the soul." -STARRED REVIEW, Publishers Weekly

Gentle and lyrical, Every Color of Light is a bedtime story told by the elements.

Every Color of Light opens on a lush, green forest in the rain. Illustrated by the masterful Ryoji Arai, the calm is shattered when the wind picks up and lightning cuts the sky. Yet out of this turbulence, the day blooms bright, the flowers open, and raindrops roll and drip down to the forest floor. The sun sets. The moon rises, and in a pool of water we see its reflection. We go to sleep with the forest, sinking into the pool, into the calm reflection of the moon. Harmonizing our human experience to the natural world, Arai invites the reader to hold imaginative space for our oneness with the natural world.

Item No. 9781592702916
$17.95
Freedom We Sing
León, Amyra
I wonder, then, what freedom is. Is it a place? Is it a thought? Can it be stolen? Can it be bought?

As powerful as it is beautiful, Freedom, We Sing is a lyrical picture book designed to inspire and give hope to readers around the world. Molly Mendoza's immersive, lush illustrations invite kids to ponder singer/songwriter Amyra León's poem about what it means to be free. It's the perfect book for parents who want a way to gently start the conversation with their kids about finding hope in these very tense times we are living in.

Item No. 9781912497324
$16.95
Honeybee
Fleming, Candace

2021 Robert F. Siebert Award Winner

Take to the sky with Apis, one honeybee, as she embarks on her journey through life!

A tiny honeybee emerges through the wax cap of her cell. Driven to protect and take care of her hive, she cleans the nursery and feeds the larvae and the queen. But is she strong enough to fly? Not yet!

Apis builds wax comb to store honey, and transfers pollen from other bees into the storage. She defends the hive from invaders. And finally, she begins her new life as an adventurer.

The confining walls of the hive fall away as Apis takes to the air, finally free, in a brilliant double-gatefold illustration where the clear blue sky is full of promise-- and the wings of dozens of honeybees, heading out in search of nectar to bring back to the hive.

Eric Rohmann's exquisitely detailed illustrations bring the great outdoors into your hands in this poetically written tribute to the hardworking honeybee. Award-winning author Candace Fleming describes the life cycle of the honeybee in accessible, beautiful language. Similar in form and concept to the Sibert and Orbis Pictus award book Giant Squid, Honeybeealso features a stunning gatefold and an essay on the plight of honeybees.

Item No. 9780823442850
$18.99
I Am the Storm - Autographed
Stemple, Heidi E y

A tornado, a blizzard, a forest fire, and a hurricane are met, in turn, with resilience and awe in this depiction of nature's power and our own.

In the face of our shifting climate, young children everywhere are finding themselves subject to unfamiliar and often frightening extreme weather. Beloved author Jane Yolen and her daughter Heidi Stemple address four distinct weather emergencies (a tornado, a blizzard, a forest fire, and a hurricane) with warm family stories of finding the joy in preparedness and resilience. Their honest reassurance leaves readers with the message: nature is powerful, but you are powerful, too. Illustrated in rich environmental tones and featuring additional information about storms in the back, this book educates, comforts, and empowers young readers in stormy or sunny weather, and all the weather in between.

Item No. 9780593222751
$17.99
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I Talk Like a River - Autographed
Jordan Scott & Sydney Smith

Autographed by both author Jordan Scott and illustrator Sydney Smith

2021 Schneider Family Book Award Winner

What if words got stuck in the back of your mouth whenever you tried to speak? What if they never came out the way you wanted them to? Sometimes it takes a change of perspective to get the words flowing.

I wake up each morning with the sounds of words all around me.

And I can't say them all . . .

When a boy who stutters feels isolated, alone, and incapable of communicating in the way he'd like, it takes a kindly father and a walk by the river to help him find his voice. Compassionate parents everywhere will instantly recognize a father's ability to reconnect a child with the world around him.

Poet Jordan Scott writes movingly in this powerful and ultimately uplifting book, based on his own experience, and masterfully illustrated by Greenaway Medalist Sydney Smith. A book for any child who feels lost, lonely, or unable to fit in.

Item No. 74234175
$18.99
If You Come to Earth
From two-time Caldecott Winner author-illustrator Sophie Blackall!

If You Come to Earth is a glorious guide to our home planet, and a call for us to take care of both Earth and each other.

This stunning book is inspired by the thousands of children Sophie Blackall has met during her travels around the world in support of UNICEF and Save the Children.

- An engaging storybook about a single curious and imaginative child
- Simultaneously funny and touching
- Carries a clear message about the need to care for the earth and each other

If you come to Earth, there are a few things you need to know. . .
We live in all kinds of places.
In all kinds of homes.
In all kinds of families.
Each of us is different. But all of us are amazing.
And, together, we share one beautiful planet.

This masterful and moving picture book is a visually comprehensive guide to the earth, imbued with warmth and humor.

- Ideal for children ages 3 to 5 years old
- Resonates year-round as a go-to gift for birthdays, holidays, and more
- A great pick for teachers looking for a crowd-pleasing picture book about the world for little students
- Perfect for parents, grandparents, and caregivers
- Add it to the shelf with books like The Travel Book by Lonely Planet Kids, Atlas of Adventures by Rachel Williams, and If You Lived Here: Houses of the World by Giles Laroche.

Item No. 9781452137797
$18.99
In a Jar
Marcero, Deborah
A #1 Indie Bestseller!

Here's a marvelous picture book, charmingly written and beautifully illustrated, about the power of memory and the magic of friendship.

Llewellyn, a little rabbit, is a collector. He gathers things in jars--ordinary things like buttercups, feathers, and heart-shaped stones. Then he meets another rabbit, Evelyn, and together they begin to collect extraordinary things--like rainbows, the sound of the ocean, and the wind just before snow falls. And, best of all, when they hold the jars and peer inside, they remember all the wonderful things they've seen and done. But one day, Evelyn has sad news: Her family is moving away. How can the two friends continue their magical collection--and their special friendship--from afar?

Item No. 9780525514596
$17.99
Joni: The Lyrical Life of Joni Mitchell
Alko, Selina

"Colors burst across each page, with layers of collage-work emphasizing the richness of Mitchell's influences and imagination. Will speak to readers just starting their own exploration of artistic expression. --Booklist (starred review)

Celebrate the captivating life of Joni Mitchell, the world-famous songbird who used her music to ignite and inspire an entire generation, in this stunning picture book biography from award-winning author and illustrator Selina Alko. This nonfiction picture book is an excellent choice to share during homeschooling, in particular for children ages 4 to 6. It's a fun way to learn to read and as a supplement for activity books for children.

Joni Mitchell painted with words.

Sitting at her piano or strumming the guitar, she turned the words into songs.

The songs were like brushstrokes on a canvas, saying things that were not only happy or sad but true.

But before composing more than two hundred songs, Joni was a young girl from a town on the Canadian prairie, where she learned to love dancing, painting, birdsong, and piano. As she grew up into an artist, Joni took her strong feelings--feelings of love and frustration, and the turbulence that came with being a young woman--and wrote them into vivid songs.

Brought to life by Selina Alko's rainbow collages and lyrical language, this heartfelt portrait of a feminist and folk icon is perfect for parents, children, and music lovers everywhere.

Back matter includes a letter from the author and Joni's full discography.

"An inspired and creative ode to the inimitable Joni Mitchell."--Kirkus

"Layered mixed-media collages featuring cut paper, found images, and colorful smears of paint effectively evoke the richly rendered emotional landscapes of Mitchell's songwriting." --Publishers Weekly

Item No. 9780062671295
$18.99
Julian at the Wedding
Love, Jessica

The star of Julián Is a Mermaid makes a joyful return--and finds a new friend--at a wedding to be remembered.

Julián and his abuela are going to a wedding. Better yet, Julián is in the wedding. Weddings have flowers and kissing and dancing and cake. And this wedding also has a new friend named Marisol. It's not long before Julián and Marisol set off for some magic and mischief of their own, and when things take an unexpected turn, the pair learns that everything is easier with a good friend by your side. Jessica Love returns with a joyful story of friendship and individuality in this radiant follow-up to Julián Is a Mermaid.

Item No. 9781536212389
$16.99
Lift
Lê, Minh
From the award-winning and bestselling creators of Drawn Together comes the fantastic tale of a magical elevator that will lift your spirits--and press all the right buttons!
Iris loves to push the elevator buttons in her apartment building, but when it's time to share the fun with a new member of the family, she's pretty put out. That is, until the sudden appearance of a mysterious new button opens up entire realms of possibility, places where she can escape and explore on her own. But when she's forced to choose between going at it alone or letting her little brother tag along, Iris finds that sharing a discovery with the people you love can be the most wonderful experience of all.
Using their dynamic comics-inspired storytelling, acclaimed author Minh Lê and Caldecott Medal-winning artist Dan Santat carry readers on a journey of ups, downs, and twists and turns that will send hearts--and imaginations--soaring.
*"Beautiful" ---School Library Journal, starred review
*"Dazzling"---Publishers Weekly, starred review
*"Delightful"---School Library Connection, starred review
*"Immersive"---Booklist, starred review
*"Inspired"---Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Item No. 9781368036924
$17.99
My Best Friend
Fogliano, Julie
An NPR Best Book of the Year!

New York Times bestselling author Julie Fogliano and Caldecott Honor winner Jillian Tamaki come together to tell a delightful story of first friendship.

she is my best friend i think
i never had a best friend so i'm not sure
but i think she is a really good best friend
because when we were drawing
she drew me
and i drew her.

What is a best friend, if not someone who laughs with you the whole entire day, especially when you pretend to be a pickle? This pitch-perfect picture book is a sweetly earnest, visually stunning celebration of the magic of friendship.

Item No. 9781534427228
$17.99
My Friend Earth
MacLachlan, Patricia
Celebrate Earth Day with this valentine to our wonderful planet from the Newbery Award-winning author of Sarah, Plain and Tall.

Our friend Earth does so many wonderful things! She tends to animals large and small. She pours down summer rain and autumn leaves. She sprinkles whisper-white snow and protects the tiny seeds waiting for spring.

Readers of all ages will pore over the pages of this spectacular book. Its enticing die-cut pages encourage exploration as its poetic text celebrates everything Earth does for us, all the while reminding us to be a good friend in return.

- Interactive format and kid-friendly art will engage both toddlers and young readers.
- A celebration of the natural world and rallying cry for positive action for Planet Earth
- Great opportunities to share life science concepts and amazing facts about the environment with children

This beautiful and innovative ode to our natural world will appeal to readers of Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth, The Poet's Dog, and Thank You, Earth.

- Read aloud books for kids ages 3-5
- Earth books for kids
- Climate change books for kids

Patricia MacLachlan is an acclaimed author who has written dozens of books--from picture books to novels--including the Newbery Medal winner Sarah, Plain and Tall and the Barkus series, also published by Chronicle Books. She lives in western Massachusetts.

Francesca Sanna grew up on the Italian island of Sardinia. She studied illustration at the School of Visual Arts in New York and the Academy of Art and Design in Lucerne. Her book The Journey received five starred reviews and was lauded by the New York Times and the Guardian. Francesca currently lives in Zurich, but you can visit her at francescasanna.com.

Item No. 9780811879101
$17.99
Nana Akua Goes to School
Walker, Tricia Elam
In this moving story that celebrates cultural diversity, a shy girl brings her West African grandmother--whose face bears traditional tribal markings--to meet her classmates. This is a perfect read for back to school--no matter what that looks like!

It is Grandparents Day at Zura's elementary school, and the students are excited to introduce their grandparents and share what makes them special. Aleja's grandfather is a fisherman. Bisou's grandmother is a dentist. But Zura's Nana, who is her favorite person in the world, looks a little different from other grandmas. Nana Akua was raised in Ghana, and, following an old West African tradition, has tribal markings on her face. Worried that her classmates will be scared of Nana--or worse, make fun of her--Zura is hesitant to bring her to school. Nana Akua knows what to do, though. With a quilt of traditional African symbols and a bit of face paint, Nana Akua is able to explain what makes her special, and to make all of Zura's classmates feel special, too.

Item No. 9780525581130
$17.99
Natural History of Fairies
Hawkins, Emily

This enchantingly illustrated natural history of fairies, compiled in the 1920s by the botanist Professor Elsie Arbour for her niece, is now unveiled for readers of today.

Featuring a gold foil-embossed cloth cover, a ribbon marker, and sprayed gold edges, this gorgeous volume is filled with colorful sketches and precise notes detailing the secret life of fairies and their important role in the natural world.

Inside, you will discover the wide and wonderful array of different species of fairies around the globe and explore where and how they live. Delight in this hidden world as you learn all about:

  • The anatomy of a fairy (Land-based fairies have individual, separated toes, just as humans do. However, many species of water fairies have webbed feet.)
  • The life cycle of a fairy (When walking in the heather, be careful of the tiny flutterpillar of the Wicklow Fairy, decked out in greens and purples.)
  • Clever fairy camouflage (Reed fairies living in wetlands usually wear striped clothes to hide among the tall reeds.)
  • Fairies around the world (Meet the Lily Hopper of sub-Saharan Africa, the Queen Fairy of New Guinea, the Penguin Fairy of the Antarctic, and many more.)
  • Fairy habitats (Fairies make their homes in all types of places: woodlands, jungles, deserts, the Poles, and even human homes.)

Concluding with a reminder that we must protect the endangered habitats of fairies, and all other creatures too, this is a book to be treasured for a lifetime.

Item No. 9781786037633
$30.00
Neighbors
Denisevich, Kasya

Staff Pick

Neighbors is a contemplative picture book about the lives of our neighbors--who are all around us and ever-present, yet somehow surprisingly elusive.

They're everywhere: next door, above, and even below. More often than not, they are a mystery, a presence suggested by low hums, footfalls, or perhaps a slammed door.

This book explores the ways that we think about those we exist among, but who remain strangers until we make the brave--and affirming--decision to connect.

- From debut author-illustrator Kasya Denisevich
- An exploration of neighbors coexisting together in one very special apartment building
- Dynamic black-and-white illustrations blur the line between imagination, dreams, and reality.

As Neighbors illustrates so beautifully, that moment of connection is a portal to a world of possibility.

This unique book uses both visual storytelling and compelling text to consider how we map the landscape of the vast world around us, starting with the person just on the other side of the apartment wall.

- Explores what it means to exist in a world of strangers, friends, and neighbors who are both alike and completely different from each other
- Resonates year-round as a charming and unique gift for birthdays, holidays, and more
- Perfect for children ages 3 to 5 years old
- Makes a great pick for parents and grandparents, as well as librarians, teachers, and educators
- Add it to the shelf with books like Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller, The Berenstain Bears Learn About Strangers by Stan and Jan Berenstain, and The Big Umbrella by Amy June Bates.

Item No. 9781452177755
$18.99