Monday, August 1, 2016

Beach reading for summer days: 5 picture books to share (ages 3-8)

Welcome August! I am going to embrace these summer days, plan trips to the beach, and make time for reading and relaxing. If you want to savor the fun, check out these five favorite picture books.

  • A Beach Tail, by Karen Lynn Williams, illustrated by Floyd Cooper -- I love this gentle, warm portrayal of an African American son and father enjoying a summer day at the beach. Gregory ventures farther and farther down the beach, soon realizing that he has lost sight of his dad. Children especially relate to Gregory’s problem-solving and courage.
  • If You Ever Want to Bring a Piano to the Beach, Don’t! by Elise Parsley -- A perfect book for when your own headstrong child is driving you crazy. When head-strong Magnolia demands to bring a piano to the beach, her mom just calmly tells her, “Don’t lose it.” Each antic leads to crazier situations. Magnolia shines as the true star, with exaggerated expressions that will get all would-be divas laughing.
  • Sea Rex, by Molly Idle -- "Ready for a carefree day of fun in the sun?" Read this picture book for a charming look at instructions for just what to do. I love how the straightforward text is complemented with funny illustrations as the day goes awry in big and little ways.
  • Surf’s Up! by Kwame Alexander, illustrated by Daniel Miyares -- "SURF'S UP, BRO!" Dude yells to his best friend, but Bro doesn’t respond--he’s too caught up in his book. Dude can’t believe it! “You’d rather read a book than go to the beach?” “Dude, books are fascinating!” Great dialog and bright illustrations make this a terrific celebration of reading, friendship and the beach--perfect for summer!
  • Twenty Yawns, by Jane Smiley, illustrated by Lauren Castillo -- After spending a day at the beach, Lucy's parents are sure she'll fall right to sleep. Now that it’s time for bed, she is wide awake. How will she fall asleep with the mysterious moon shining through the windows? Smiley’s simple, reassuring text is complemented by warm, evocative illustrations. Castillo portrays this biracial family in an especially lovely, straightforward way.

Many thanks to the publishers for sharing review copies: Boyds Mills, Little Brown, Chronicle, North/South, Two Lions. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books. Thank you for your support.

©2016 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books

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