If you’re in NYC run to your nearest library so that you can get a limited-edition Hip-Hop library card. And while you’re there, look for these nine books. They’re fun reads that have some really good messages included.
Flora La Fresca & The Art of Friendship – This is a fabulous middle-grade fiction series. We already can’t wait for the second book. Flora is refreshing. At ten, JustaBXfirl can relate to her. I adore that the struggles she goes through are age appropriate. JustaBXgirl was pleasantly surprised by the images included in the book. One of the things she dislikes about reading chapter books is that there are rarely any images. This book includes images sparingly throughout and JustaBXgirl was excited to share them with me. Flora La Fresca is a new friend in our home.
Doodle From The Boogie Down – Any chance we get to check out Bronx-based books is a win for us. I don’t remember ever reading about Bronx kids when I was growing up. This graphic novel about a young artist from the Bronx is a perfect addition to my little artist’s bookshelf. I love the reminder that art is everywhere and that everyone won’t understand your dream but that doesn’t mean that you stop dreaming it.
Hands – Sometimes we can’t see our options because we’re too busy looking at our problems. Trev wants to protect his family so he wants to box. He also wants to be an artist so he knows boxing has the potential to stop that dream. How does he choose between the two? I believe this is such a strong read and leaves so much room for discussion with out littles. Great summer read for the family.
A Girl Can Build Anything – “A girl can build anything. A girl can build everything.” What more is there to say? The message of the book is clear and beautifully delivered. It is a wonderful reminder that our imagination is the blueprint of all that we can do. My favorite part is that throughout the book it shares that we can use different tools and materials. While it is telling us about the things we can physically build I think that lesson can transcend into our day-to-day lives.
Like Lava In My Veins – I think this is a book for all educators to read. It is a reminder that how we treat students really impacts who they become. It is also a fun read for kids as they learn about Bobby Beacon and his superpowers.
First Night of Howlergarten – Starting school can be scary even in you aren’t a little werewolf. In Sophie’s case, it was even scarier because she is a werewolf. She worried about if she would be able to transform. She worried if her pack would accept her. She was fortunate to have a family that loved her and found friends that made her first day that much better. This is a cool gift idea for a little one that might be nervous about starting school
The World’s Best Class Plant – A plant for a class pet! I’m sure that you’re wondering how that could be fun for the students. After reading this book, you will agree that plants should be in every class. This was a cute intro to plant keeping for littles. Chances are after reading this, your little will want a plant of their own.
How to Speak in Spanglish – Don’t worry if you don’t speak Spanglish, the book comes with a glossary. I love how Sami introduces Spanglish to his community. It shows us how language is fluid and when we bled two languages together we can get something even more beautiful.
The Neighbor Favor – This title was one I happened upon at our local library and I am so happy that I picked it up. It was a very sweet read. I enjoyed getting to know Lily and Nick. The email exchange between them at the beginning of the book was a nice touch. There was a great deal of character growth in the book for both Nick and Lily. I even enjoyed the side stories more than I do in other books. I would love to see this adapted into a film.