US Poet Laureate Joy Harjo’s iconic poem “Remember,” illustrated by Caldecott Medalist Michaela Goade, invites young readers to pause and reflect on the wonder of the world around them, and to remember the importance of their place in it. The poem paired with magnificent paintings makes for a picture book that is a true celebration of life and our human role within it.
Voices Of The People
Through poems that capture the essence of each person’s life, acclaimed Native American writer Joseph Bruchac introduces readers to famous indigenous leaders from The Peacemaker in 1000 A.D. to modern day dancer Maria Tallchief and Cherokee chief Wilma Mankiller. Each poem is illustrated by a modern-day tribally enrolled artist.
“From the unique voice of Bruno Tognolini, the most beloved children’s poet in Italy today, come these 24 “rhymes of hope to shout together”: a musical rhythmic chant that gives voice to the wishes and hopes of all children. From the biggest dreams of peace, solidarity between people, the protection of nature, to the smallest and most intimate dreams, which are no less heartfelt”–
Chronicling the story of the last Africans brought illegally to America in 1860, African Town is a powerful and stunning novel-in-verse.
In 1860, long after the United States outlawed the importation of enslaved laborers, 110 men, women and children from Benin and Nigeria were captured and brought to Mobile, Alabama aboard a ship called Clotilda. Their journey includes the savage Middle Passage and being hidden in the swamplands along the Alabama River before being secretly parceled out to various plantations, where they made desperate attempts to maintain both their culture and also fit into the place of captivity to which they’d been delivered. At the end of the Civil War, the survivors created a community for themselves they called African Town, which still exists to this day. Told in 14 distinct voices, including that of the ship that brought them to the American shores and the founder of African Town, this powerfully affecting historical novel-in-verse recreates a pivotal moment in US and world history, the impacts of which we still feel today.
Red, White, And Whole
Reha feels torn between two worlds: school, where she’s the only Indian American student, and home, with her family’s traditions and holidays. But Reha’s parents don’t understand why she’s conflicted–they only notice when Reha doesn’t meet their strict expectations. Reha feels disconnected from her mother, or Amma, although their names are linked–Reha means “star” and Punam means moon–but they are a universe apart. Then Reha finds out that her Amma is sick. Really sick. Reha, who dreams of becoming a doctor even though she can’t stomach the sight of blood, is determined to make her Amma well again. She’ll be the perfect daughter, if it means saving her Amma’s life.
The Great Realization
This idea sparked The Great Realization. Sharing the truths we may find hard to tell but also celebrating the things—from simple acts of kindness and finding joy in everyday activities, to the creativity within us all—that have brought us together during lockdown, it gives us hope in this time of global crisis.
Can You Hear Me?
Can you smell the spring wildflowers? How does it feel when you run your hand across rough tree bark? What about the sight of fluffy clouds? Nature surrounds us all — but are we really paying attention?
As nighttime falls over the city, two children visiting their grandparents in India find there’s so much fun to be had! Whether it’s listening to epic stories or observing rituals in the puja room, there are many moments that make this time together special. In this beautiful, rhyming ode to bedtime, the only thing more universal than getting ready for bed and saying goodnight is the love between children and their grandparents.
Tía Fortuna’s New Home: A Jewish Cuban Journey
When Estrella’s Tía Fortuna has to say goodbye to her longtime Miami apartment building, The Seaway, to move to an assisted living community, Estrella spends the day with her. Tía explains the significance of her most important possessions from both her Cuban and Jewish culture, as they learn to say goodbye together and explore a new beginning for Tía.
Viento, Vientito/ Wind, Little Wind
My name is Wind / but everyone knows me / as Little Wind.” In this beautiful, poetic ode to the refreshing but sometimes dangerous force of wind, award-winning children’s book author Jorge Argueta describes–in English, Spanish and Nahuat–the power of air from the perspective of a mischievous youngster.