English Picture Books

A Peek at Beaks: Tools Birds Use

Author: Sara Levine

Illustrator: Kate Slater

Have you ever seen a bird using a jackhammer? What about one scooping up a meal with a net? Of course birds can’t really use tools, at least not the way humans do. But birds have surprisingly helpful tools with them at all times—their beaks!

Guess which birds have beaks resembling commonly used tools.

Avocado Asks

Author: Momoko Abe

Avocado is feeling just fine in the fruit and veg aisle at the supermarket - until a young customer asks a difficult question: "Is an avocado a fruit or a vegetable?"

Avocado doesn't know the answer either - and the question won't seem to go away!

The Barnabus Project

Author: The Fan Brothers

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 are 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.

Calling the Wind

Author: Trudy Ludwig 

Illustrator: Kathryn Otoshi 

In a small village in Japan, a family mourns the loss of their loved one. Each family member grieves in their own way, but it is not until they discover an old-fashioned telephone booth on a windswept hill that they begin to heal. Through the telephone, they are able to express feelings long bottled up--speaking directly to their loved one and also to each other. Slowly but surely, the pain subsides, and hope blossoms anew.

Concrete: From the Ground Up

Author: Larissa Theule 

Illustrator: Steve Light 

From a lowly mixture of stone, sand, water, and cement have sprung sidewalks, streets, and skyscrapers, sturdy lighthouses and magnificent palaces, long bridges and massive dams. In ancient building practices, in modern engineering, and in the architecture of the future, humble concrete plays a mighty role in the creation of the human-made world. 


Author: Matthew Cordell 

Evergreen the squirrel is afraid of many things: thunder, hawks, and the dark paths of Buckthorn Forest. But when her mother tasks Evergreen with delivering soup to her sick Granny Oak, the little squirrel must face her fears and make the journey.

Along the way, Evergreen is met by other forest dwellers – some want to help her, but some want her mother’s delicious soup! 


Author: Young Vo

It’s Dat’s first day of school in a new country! Dat and his Mah made a long journey to get here, and Dat doesn’t know the language. To Dat, everything everybody says — from the school bus driver to his new classmates — sounds like gibberish. How is Dat going to make new friends if they can’t understand each other?

Luckily there’s a friendly girl in Dat’s class who knows that there are other ways to communicate, besides just talking. Could she help make sense of the gibberish?

I Eat Poop

Author: Mark Pett

Dougie has a secret: he’s not a ground beetle.

He’s a dung beetle, and he loves eating poop.

Dougie knows he should be proud. Dung beetles help process waste and do other extraordinary things! But Dougie also knows that if anyone at school saw his lunch, he’d be an outcast.

One day, the lunchroom bugs out over a classmate eating poop, and Dougie must make a choice. Can he stand up for his friend—and for his true self?

I'm a Unicorn

Author: Helen Yoon

What happens when a one-horned calf with great logic is convinced they're a unicorn? "See?" cries the calf. "Uni means one, and corn means horn!" 

Even their baby picture proves it: they were born with one horn! But as the eager little calf continues their research, an identity crisis arises when they realize they don't quite check all the boxes.

I won't give up my Rubber Band

Author: Shinsuke Yoshitake

An everyday object (the endlessly versatile rubber band) becomes an invitation to imagine new possibilities.

What can you do with a rubber band? You can do everyday things, like keep it close when you sleep or bring it along at bath time. And you can do exciting, unexpected things, like use it to bungee jump out of a plane or to grab a snack. With a special object of your very own, the possibilities are as limitless as your imagination!

Just like Snowflakes

Author: Dianne Emi Chu

Illustrator: Ira Baykovska 

Just like snowflakes, there are no two people that are exactly alike. That is what makes each of us special.

Just like Snowflakes has an inspiring message that empowers us to embrace our uniqueness and to be proud of who we are.

Nana Nenek & Nina

Author: Liza Ferneyhough

Nina lives in San Francisco with her parents, and she loves visiting her two grandmas across the world. Follow Nina as her two trips unfold side by side: 

In each place, Nina wears different clothes, plays different games, and eats different food. But so much about visiting Nana and Nenek is the same, from warm hugs at the airport to beach days and bedtime snuggles. Nina is equally at home across the world in Malaysia or England, and both of her grandmas love her to California and back.

Niki Nakayama

Author: Jamie Michalak, Debbi Michiko Florence

Illustrator:  Yuko Jones

This picture book biography that tells the story of the powerhouse female Japanese-American chef and her rise to fame.

As a child and adult, Niki faced many obstacles in her pursuit of cooking and haute cuisine. 

A smart, strong woman with starpower, Niki is only just getting started.

On Account of the Gum

Author: Adam Rex

On Account of the Gum is a book about how the best intentions lead to some of the worst (and funniest) ideas!

Serious humor abounds in this story about one kid's hilarious misadventures with gum, and the buildup of stuff stuck in hair.

How do you get gum out of your hair—a pair of scissors? Butter? The cat? Call your aunt, she'll know what to do. She doesn't? Try the fire department?

Papa Brings me the World

Author: Jenny Sue Kostecki-Shaw

Most parents drive a car or ride a bus or train to work—but not Lulu’s papa. He navigates mountains, deserts, and oceans, each time returning home with pockets full of treasures. 

There’s an ancient calculator from China, a musical mbira from Zimbabwe, and a special game from Sumatra. But the best treasures are special stories Papa tells when he comes home—tales of playing peekaboo with rare birds in the Andes and befriending dragons in the Irish Sea.

This long-distance story between parent and child celebrates inclusivity, imagination, and the richness of global cultures.

Phyllis & Grace

Author: Nigel Gray

Illustrator: Bethan Welby

The moving story of how a little girl befriends her elderly neighbour who has dementia.

Grace is a little girl; Phyllis is the old lady next door. Phyllis lives alone and her memory is fading, but that doesn't stop Grace from liking her. They find that, despite the gap in their ages, they have much in common and a moving and enduring friendship is born.

That's my Carrot

Author: Il Sung Na

A  tale about a garden rivalry, a giant carrot and bunnies in construction vehicles!

When two rabbits find a giant carrot growing between their yards, they do the only thing that makes sense: they argue over whose carrot it is! One rabbit brings a shovel to dig it out, and the other rabbit brings a spade. Next comes the bulldozers and backhoes and cranes . . . and when the dust settles, the carrot is gone! Now, it will be up to the rabbits to join forces and find the giant carrot, and build a friendship along the way.

Too Crowded

Author: Lena Podesta

Gil the Goldfish lives in a fishbowl with 138 pebbles—he counts them every day—and a castle. It feels TOO CROWDED! When Gil leaves his bowl in search of open spaces, he finds a world full of many interesting... and loud ... and possibly dangerous creatures.

It turns out that life outside the bowl might not be right for a fish. Thank goodness for Turtle, a citizen of the not-so-great outdoors who comes to Gil's rescue! Will Gil make peace with his home sweet home, and maybe even find room for a friend in the process?

The Tree of Hope

Author: Anna Orenstein-Cardona

The true story of a beloved banyan tree and a community that fought to save it in the wake of Hurricane Maria.

On the tropical island of Puerto Rico, there was an ancient banyan tree. Long roots hung from his wide-spreading branches and his emerald, leafy crown greeted all who passed by. This beloved tree stood on the shore of the island for over a hundred years--until the fateful time when the biggest hurricane in Puerto Rico's history slammed into the island, devastating communities and uprooting that very tree.

Wings, Waves & Webs

Author: Robin Mitchell Cranfield

From the dots on a ladybug to the spiral on a snail, patterns in nature can be found anywhere. This simple and playful book introduces readers to both math and nature while engaging their creative potential. By the end, kids will be able to identify: