The Kids Are All Right

Great New Chapter Books!

Hi Kid Lit Friends!

There are a handful of great new chapter books (and one going out in October that I just had to put on your radar) that I want to share with you today! Chapter books are great for newly independent readers who need books that aren’t too intimidating. These books also include illustrations, which I LOVE! (And can we admire the fact the Newbery Medal winner Erin Entrada Kelly also illustrated her new chapter book?)

The Dragon Thief by Zetta Elliott, illustrated by Geneva B

This is the follow-up story to the hugely popular Dragons in a Bag book! Fans of fantasy will love this one! Jaxon has to return three baby dragons to the realm of magic but when he gets there, only two dragons were left in the bag. Kavita, Jaxon’s best friend, has stolen the third dragon, thinking she was doing what was best for the baby dragon, but now every time she feeds it, the dragon grows and grows! Kavita is definitely in over her head, and Jaxon needs all the help he can get to find Kavita, outsmart a trickster named Blue, and return the baby dragon to its true home.

Ivy and Bean Get to Work! by Annie Barrows, illustrated by Sophie Blackall

Fans of Ivy and Bean, rejoice! It’s the 12th book in this charming series, and this time it’s Career Day at Emerson Elementary School. All the students have to choose what they want to be when they grow up, and best friends Ivy and Bean already have that all figured out. At least, they thought so, until they met Herman the Treasure Hunter. Now everyone in the second grade is looking for treasure—and finding it. Everyone except Ivy and Bean, that is. They need to get out their shovels and turn up some treasure on the double!

Aven Green Sleuthing Machine by Dusti Bowling (April 13, 2021, Sterling)

I was first introduced to Aven Green through the middle grade book, Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus. In this new series for younger readers, third grader Aven Green, who was born without arms, finds herself confronted with not one, but two mysteries to solve! When her teacher’s lunch bag disappears and then Aven’s great-grandmother’s dog goes missing, Aven needs to summon all of her sleuthing powers to solve the mysteries.

Maybe Maybe Marisol Rainey by Erin Entrada Kelly (May 21, HarperCollins)

I love Marisol Rainey! This wonderfully spunky character is sure to capture your heart. Marisol’s family is different from any of the other families she knows in her small Louisiana town. Her mother was born in the Philippines and her father works and lives part-time on an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. But Marisol is ready for the summer, even though she has to figure out how to get annoying Evie Smythe to leave her alone and how to gain to courage to climb the big tree in her backyard.

One Smart Sheep by Gary D. Schmidt and Elizabeth Stickney, illustrated by Jane Manning (October 26, 2021, HMH Books for Young Readers)

This adorable book is filled with full color illustrations. Wilson was Abigail Atwood’s friendliest, woolliest, and smartest sheep. He was also a very a curious sheep, which gets him into trouble when he climbs into the back of a piano movers’ truck and ends up alone in the big city. Can Wilson find his way home?

What are you reading these days? Let me know! Find me on Twitter at @KarinaYanGlaser, on Instagram at @KarinaIsReadingAndWriting, or email me at

Until next time!

*If this e-mail was forwarded to you, follow this link to subscribe to “The Kids Are All Right” newsletter and other fabulous Book Riot newsletters for your own customized e-mail delivery. Thank you!*

The Kids Are All Right

Kidlit Deals for April 7, 2021

Happy April, kidlit pals! I hope that wherever you are, it’s starting to feel more like spring! If you want to spring into some great reading this month (I’m sorry, I had to), then I’ve got a great list of amazing book deals–there’s something for everyone here! As always, snag them while you can because these deals won’t last long!

TBH, This is So Awkward by Lisa Greenwald is a great book for that tween age group about the highs and lows of middle school, and it’s a series starter! Pick it up for $2!

Cover of Spirt Hunters

Do you have a graphic novel fan on your hands? Becoming Brianna, the latest in Terri Libenson’s Emmie & Friends series, is $4.

For the kid who loves spooky stuff, Spirit Hunters by Ellen Oh is $2.

The Newbery Honor book We Dream of Space by Erin Entrada Kelly is $2.

The Turtle of Oman by Naomi Shihab Nye is a moving novel about immigration, and it’s just $2.

For a picture book that celebrates poetry (April is Poetry Month, after all!), grab Woke: A Young Poet’s Call to Justice by YA authors Mahogany L. Brone and Elizabeth Acevedo, and Olivia Gatwood Theodore Taylor III. It’s a steal at $3.

Cover of Out of Wonder

For another picture book celebration of poetry, Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets by Kwame Alexander and Ekua Holmes is $3.

Speaking of gorgeous picture books, Where Are You from? by Yamile Saied Mendez and Jaime Kim is only $2!

A Place to Hang the Moon by Kate Albus is a read alike for fans of The War That Saved My Life, and it’s $3.

Brave Like That by Lindsey Stoddard is $2.

Happy reading!

The Kids Are All Right

New Children’s Book Releases for April 6, 2021

Hey readers! I’m back with another week of new children’s books!

Anita and the Dragons by Hannah Carmona, illustrated by Anna Cunha

In this beautiful picture book, Anita watches dragons fly above but has never feared them. Until the day arises when Anita and her family will have to be transported via dragon to a new land far away from the home she knows and loves.

I Sang You Down From the Stars by Tasha Spillett-Sumner, illustrated by Michaela Goade

This beautiful baby book tells the story of an expectant mother and the sacred bundle she begins to fashion to prepare for her baby’s birth.

Your Mama by Nonieqa Ramos, illustrated by Jacqueline Alcántara 

This fun and playful picture book takes an amusing and loving spin on Yo Mama jokes as a mother and daughter pair embark upon adventures together.

Merci Suárez Can’t Dance by Meg Medina

In this uplifting and hopeful followup to the first Merci Suárez book, Merci’s in seventh grade and contending with the challenges of her family and the approaching Valentine’s Day dance.

Fearless by Mandy Gonzalez

Aspiring theater actress Monica Garcia finally gets her chance on a Broadway stage. But despite her excitement to move to NYC with her abuela, Monica’s hopes are dashed when she realizes she won’t be in a starring role, and that the theater putting on the play is failing. And also that it’s haunted, and it’s up to Mandy and her new friends to solve the mystery and save the theater.

Thornwood by Leah Cypess

This inventive retelling of Sleeping Beauty is about two sisters. Briony, and her doomed older sister Rosalin, set with a horrible curse meant to befall her on her sixteenth birthday. But when Rosalin’s birthday arrives, Briony awakens to learn that she’s the only one who can save her sister and the kingdom.

Until next week! – Chelsea

The Kids Are All Right

Middle Grade Books About Baseball!

Hi Kid Lit Friends,

Baseball season is officially underway with opening day this past Thursday, so I thought I would round up some baseball related books! I’m really hoping this will be a good season, with players and staff and spectators staying safe during the pandemic. I’m exciting to share these baseball-themed books with you!

A High Five for Glenn Burke by Phil Bildner

Sixth grader Silas Walker loves baseball. He loves it so much he even does a school presentation on former Major League Baseball player Glenn Burke, known for being the inventor of the high five. Burke was a Black gay baseball player in the 1970s―and for Silas, the presentation is his own first baby step toward coming out as gay. Although he tells his secret to his best friend, he keeps the truth from his baseball teammates. But he suspects people begin to know the truth about him when a series of suspicious events happen. He ends up staging a cover-up with disastrous consequences. Will Silas continue to hide who he is, or find the courage to be who he is?

The Hero Two Doors Down by Sharon Robinson

Written by the daughter of legendary Jackie Robinson, this book is based on the true story of a boy in Brooklyn in 1948 who became neighbors and friends with his hero, Jackie Robinson. Stephen Satlow, eight years old and living in Brooklyn, New York, loves the Dodgers. He knows all their stats and facts. When Steve hears a rumor that an African American family is moving to his all-Jewish neighborhood, some of his neighbors are against it. Steve knows this is wrong. His hero, Jackie Robinson, broke the color barrier in baseball the year before.Then it happens — Steve’s new neighbor is none other than Jackie Robinson!

Out of Left Field by Ellen Klages

I really loved this middle grade book set in 1957 about a young pitcher named Katy Gordon who desperately wants to be in Little League. The only problem? The league doesn’t admit girls even though she’s the best pitcher in the neighborhood. Katy embarks on a quest to prove to the federation that girls can play baseball, and with the help of librarians she finds a whole list of female baseball players that excelled in their sport, giving her the confidence she needs to play the game she loves.

The Contract by Derek Jeter (series)

This middle grade book series is inspired by Derek Jeter’s childhood. From a young boy, he had dreams of being the shortstop for the New York Yankees and even going to the World Series. So when Derek is chosen for the Little League Tigers, he hopes to play shortstop. But on the day of the assignments, Derek starts at second base. Still, he tries his best while he wishes and dreams of that shortstop spot. And to help him stay focused on school, his parents make him a contract: keep up the grades or no baseball.

The Bona Fide Legend of Cool Papa Bell by Lonnie Wheeler

This book, written for adults but appropriate for upper middle grade readers, is a terrific biography about James “Cool Papa” Bell (1903–1991), a legend in Black baseball. Born to sharecroppers in Mississippi, Bell was part of the Great Migration. In St. Louis, baseball saved Bell from a life working in slaughterhouses. Historian Lonnie Wheeler charts Bell’s ups and downs in life and in baseball, in the United States, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico, where he went to escape American racism and MLB’s color line.

What are you reading these days? Let me know! Find me on Twitter at @KarinaYanGlaser, on Instagram at @KarinaIsReadingAndWriting, or email me at

Until next time!

*If this e-mail was forwarded to you, follow this link to subscribe to “The Kids Are All Right” newsletter and other fabulous Book Riot newsletters for your own customized e-mail delivery. Thank you!*

The Kids Are All Right

Kidlit Deals for March 31, 2021

Hey there, kidlit pals! It’s the last day of March already, and I hope it’s “out like a lamb” for you! I have another great bunch of deals, with plenty of delightful picture book deals in the mix! As always, snag them while they’re hot, because these deals won’t last long!

Pete the Cat: Big Easter Adventure by James Dean is $2, the perfect buy for anyone celebrating Easter this weekend!

Tiny T. Rex and the Impossible Hug by Jonathan Stutzman and Jay Fleck is just $2!

Some Places More Than Others by the one and only Renée Watson can be yours for under $5.

They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel is a Caldecott Honor book, and it’s only $2.

Speaking of picture books perfect for spring, Up in the Garden and Down in the Dirt by Kate Messner and Christopher Silas Neal is $4.

Rain Before Rainbows by Smriti Prasadam-Halls and David Litchfield is a lovely book about hard times for $1.

Happy reading!

The Kids Are All Right

New Children’s Book Releases for March 30, 2021

Hey readers! I’m back with another week of new releases!

Watercress by Andrea Wang, illustrated by Jason Chin

This sweet, tearjerker of a picture book follows a Chinese-American family that pulls over on the side of the road to gather watercress. Though the parents are delighted at their discovery, their daughter is embarrassed. But when her parents share a story of their lives in China, she understands the wonder and appreciation for the fresh watercress they’ve discovered.

Hugo and the Impossible Thing by Renee Felice Smith & Chris Gabriel, illustrated by Sydney Hanson

A French bulldog named Hugo decides it’s time someone took on the Impossible Thing that stands at the edge of the forest. No other animal has made the attempt, and a determined Hugo gets some help from his friends to conquer the Impossible Thing.

The House That Wasn’t There by Elana K. Arnold

In this magical, mystical novel neighboring families clash and come together. Though the shy Alder and outgoing Oak don’t get along well at first, they’re drawn together repeatedly by a series of coincidences that hint at magic, including the occasional disappearance of another house on their street.

We Belong by Cookie Hiponia Everman

When Stella and Luna ask their mom, Elsie, to tell them the story of how she came from the Philippines, Elsie tells two stories. One about her childhood with her sisters and another about the daughter of a god.

The Accidental Apprentice by Amanda Foody

In this delightful novel, Barclay is banished from his village when he accidentally bonds with a magical, wolf-like Beast in the wilderness and discovers he is a Lore Keeper, which are despised in his hometown of Dullshire. To make his way back home, Barclay will have to find a way to remove his Beast Mark, but the more time Barclay spends with his own Beast and the other Lore Keepers, the more he begins to feel like he belongs.

All You Knead is Love by Tanya Guerrero

When Alba’s sent to Barcelona to live with the grandma she’s never met, she’s instantly suspicious of her grandma’s kindness. But it’s not long before Alba begins to like her new life in Spain, learning how to bake, and becoming more confident in herself. That is, until the bakery comes under threat.

Until next week! – Chelsea

The Kids Are All Right

Children’s Books About Spring!

Hi Kid Lit Friends!

I don’t know about you, but I am excited about spring (besides the allergies it brings). What I’m excited about: birds nesting, warmer weather, planning a garden, and budding trees! What are you excited about? What children’s books about spring are you reading?

Busy Spring: Nature Wakes Up by Sean Taylor and Alex Morss, illustrated by Cinyee Chiu

A father puts on his sweater with the hole in it, and two siblings know it’s time to garden. There is so much to do: digging, adding to the compost heap, and planting carrots. But the family isn’t the only busy ones around. Bees and bugs are flying by, birds are gathering material for their nests, and tadpoles are zipping around in the water. It’s a busy spring!

Michelle’s Garden: How the First Lady Planted Seeds of Change by Sharee Miller

Former First Lady Michelle Obama wanted to grow the largest kitchen garden ever at the White House, but there was one problem. She had never gardened before. But every big project takes a village, so she enlisted help from local students, the White House staff, and even her husband, President Barack Obama. Her mission to inspire young people to adopt healthy eating habits continues now with her new Netflix show, Waffles + Mochi!

We Are The Gardeners by Joanna Gaines, illustrated by Julianna Swaney

Joanna Gaines of Fixer Upper (I love that show!) details her adventures of starting her own family garden in this sweet picture book. Starting a garden is a learning experience: failed endeavors, obstacles to overcome (bunnies that eat everything), and gathering knowledge. The Gaines family shares some of what they learn in this book, perfect for spring!

Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring by Kenard Pak

I adore all of Kenard Pak’s beautiful picture books celebrating the seasons. In this one, the days stretch longer, animals creep out from their warm dens, and green begins to grow again. A boy and his dog explore their neighborhood, taking in all the signs that point to spring: the melting brook, the chirping birds, and green growing everywhere.

Norooz A Celebration of Spring! The Persian New Year by Gail Hejazi, illustrated by Christina Cavallo

Norooz, also known as the Persian New Year, has been observed for over 3,000 year as people celebrate the first day of spring when everything starts anew. The trees will grow new leaves, the flowers new petals, and the grass new greenery. They call this day “Norooz,” or “New Day.” Preparations begin weeks in advance as people plant seeds and go about familiar rituals that usher in the new year.

What are you reading these days? Let me know! Find me on Twitter at @KarinaYanGlaser, on Instagram at @KarinaIsReadingAndWriting, or email me at

Until next time!

*If this e-mail was forwarded to you, follow this link to subscribe to “The Kids Are All Right” newsletter and other fabulous Book Riot newsletters for your own customized e-mail delivery. Thank you!*

The Kids Are All Right

Kidlit Deals for March 24, 2021

Hey there, kidlit pals! I hope that you’re having a great first week of spring and that things are starting to look green wherever you are! I have a great round of book deals that will help you get a jumpstart on your spring reading, but make sure you grab them while you can, as these book deals never last long.

Astronauts: Women on the Final Frontier by Jim Ottiavani and Maris Wicks is a great graphic nonfiction title about the first women in space, and it’s just $3!

The Adventures of Nanny Piggins is a fun new series starter by R.A. Spratt and illustrated by Dan Santat, and it’s just $2.

Igraine the Brave by Cornelia Funke, a novel by the author of Inkheart, is $4.

Bayou Magic by Jewell Parker Rhodes is $2.

Unstoppable Octobia May by Sharon Flake is a middle grade historical mystery that’s just $4.

Brand New School, Brave New Ruby by Derrick D. Barnes and Vanessa Brantley Newton is a series starter for just $4.

Want a wonderful heist novel? The Great Greene Heist by Varian Johnson is a great middle grade mystery for just $4.

Do you have a mystery lover on your hands? Super Puzzletastic Mysteries: Short Stories for Young Sleuths from Mystery Writers of America has a ton of great short stories by amazing authors such as Chris Grabenstein, Lamar Giles, Bruce Hale, Stuart Gibbs, and more!

Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis is great historical novel from a legendary middle grade author, and it’s just $5.

Happy reading!

The Kids Are All Right

New Children’s Book Releases for March 23, 2021

Hey readers! I’m back with another week of new releases!

What the Road Said by Cleo Wade and illustrated by Lucie de Moyencourt

In this inspiring picture book from poet Cleo Wade, young readers are encouraged to follow their roads wherever they may lead, so long as they make sure to continue their journey.

My Brave Little Girl by Hilary Duff and illustrated by Kelsey Garrity-Riley

This picture book is an empowering, encouraging text for little girls encouraged to remain brave in all ways as they make their way through life.

Something’s Wrong! by Jory John and illustrated by Erin Kraan

In this funny picture book, a bear leaves the house after forgetting to take off his underwear. As Jeff traverses the forest, he can’t figure out why the other animals are looking at him so strangely.

Itty-Bitty Kitty-Corn by Shannon Hale and illustrated by Leuyen Pham

In this cute picture book, a kitty is inspired to fashion a horn like unicorns do. But even though kitty feels like a unicorn, and does the same things unicorns do, her friends continue to tell her that she’s too much of a kitty to be one. Until a unicorn shows up, and kitty sees all the things they have in common.

Wonder Women of Science by Tiera Fletcher and Ginger Rue and illustrated by Sally Wern Comport

This collection of brief biographies of woman scientists is compiled by an aerospace engineer and a novelist. This isn’t just biographical information, however, but this book is also full of facts about each woman’s field of study.

Until next week! – Chelsea

The Kids Are All Right

Children’s Books To Read by AAPI Writers and Illustrators

Hi Kid Lit friends,

I write this newsletter with a heavy heart. After a year of rising anti-Asian hate, we witnessed the murder of six Asian women in Georgia on Tuesday as well as attacks on and murders of Asian elders across America. As an Asian-American woman, I am devastated by the news. This past Friday, I took over Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers’ Instagram account (my publisher) to recommend books by Asian authors and illustrators. I thought I would share these books with you, as I truly believe that one of the things we can do is read and recommend diverse stories so our new generation can be surrounded by stories of different cultures and experiences.

Spirit Hunters by Ellen Oh

I love Ellen Oh and her fantasy series. Spirit Hunters is a deliciously chilling story about Harper Raine, the new seventh grader in town who must face down the dangerous ghosts haunting her younger brother.

When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller

Also check out Newbery Medal winner When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller, a gorgeous book based on Korean folklore about the perils of bargaining with tigers.

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin

I love Grace Lin fantasy trilogy beginning with Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, the story of a young girl named Minli who sets off on an extraordinary journey to find the Old Man on the Moon to ask him how she can change her family’s fortune.

A Wish In The Dark by Christina Soontornvat

And one of my favorite books published in 2020, A Wish In The Dark by Christina Soontornvat, is a Les Miserables-inspired fantasy set in Thailand about a boy named Pong who discovers that life outside of the prison he grew up in is no fairer than the one behind bars.

These three picture books are all about family, one of my favorite book themes.

A Different Pond by Bao Phi, illustrated by Thi Bui

Check out A Different Pond by Bao Phi, illustrated by Thi Bui, a gorgeous book about a father and his son waking up in the early morning to fish.

Eyes that Kiss in the Corners by Joanna Ho, illustrated by Dung Ho

I love Eyes that Kiss in the Corners by Joanna Ho, illustrated by Dung Ho, a book that celebrates of Asian-shaped eyes.

Drawn Together by Minh Lê, illustrated by Dan Santat

Drawn Together by Minh Lê and illustrated by Dan Santat is a book I’ve given to so many friends. It’s a gorgeous story of a young boy and his grandfather and how they cross a cultural divide through art.

I have a video up talking my non-fiction recommendations – check it out on Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers’s Instagram account. Books mentioned are All Thirteen by Christina Soontornvat, Paper Son by Julie Leung, illustrated by Chris Sasaki, and The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee by Julie Leung, illustrated by Julie Kwon.

The Boring Book by Shinsuke Yoshitake

If your young readers love silly picture books, check out The Boring Book by Shinsuke Yoshitake, a book about that universal phrase: “I’m so bored!” (Another favorite of mine by Shinsuke Yoshitake is I Can Be Anything, which is hilarious!)

Hooray for Books! by Brian Won

Hooray for Books! by Brian Won is a love letter to books by a turtle who has misplaced his absolute favorite story

Bus! Stop! by James Yang

I love the unique size of Bus! Stop! by James Yang, a funny story about trying to find the right bus.

I have another video with some more wonderful picture books, which you can see on Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers’s Instagram account. The books mentioned are The Nian Monster by Andrea Wang and illustrated by Alina Chau, Crab Cake by Andrea Tsurumi, Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring by Kenard Pak, The Piano Recital by Akiko Miyakoshi, and Drawing from Memory by Allen Say.

Here are some recommendations from my favorite genre, middle grade realistic fiction.

Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly

Hello, Universe, the Newbery Medal winning book by Erin Entrada Kelly, is a story told in four points of view on one day where their lives intersect in surprising and important ways.

Checked by Cynthia Kadohata

Checked by Cynthia Kadohata is one of my favorite middle grade books. It’s beautiful story about a boy who loves hockey who has to put aside lessons so his dog Sinbad can have cancer treatments.

The Way to Bea by Kat Yeh

The Way to Bea by Kat Yeh is a poignant book about a lonely seventh grader learning to find her way in the world.

Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Author Extraordinaire by Susan Tan

Cilla Lee-Jenkins: Author Extraordinaire by Susan Tan, a wonderful series by Susan Tan, is great for younger middle grade readers who are looking for a spunky, hilarious heroine.

I love graphic novels, and there are so many great ones being published these days.

Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang

For upper middle grade readers, I highly recommend Gene Luen Yang’s Dragon Hoops. This biographical graphic novel is about Gene’s time as a high school teacher and his friendship with the basketball coach and the Varsity basketball team, the Dragons.

Stargazing by Jen Wang

This is one of my favorite graphic novels of all time! Another favorite is Jen Wang’s Stargazing, a beautiful story of a young girl who befriends her neighbor.

The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home by Konami Konata

And finally, my favorite cat book! The Complete Chi’s Sweet Home by Konami Konata is a wonderful series about a young cat discovering the world.

I have learned so much from reading historical fiction. Laurence Yep was one of the first Asian authors I read as a child. He is a true trailblazer! And, of course, I couldn’t just share one book by the legendary Linda Sue Park – I had to share three!

Dragonwings by Laurence Yep

Dragonwings was inspired by the story of a Chinese immigrant who created a flying machine in 1909, and his story touches on the struggles and dreams of Chinese immigrants navigating opportunity and prejudice in San Francisco.

A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park

Linda Sue is my hero, and I just adore all of her historical fiction books. A Single Shard is about a young boy who is tasked with bringing pottery from a master artisan to the Korean royal commission.

The Kite Fighters by Linda Sue Park

The Kite Fighters is set in 15th century Korea about two brothers with a passion for flying kites.

Prairie Lotus by Linda Sue Park

And finally, PRAIRIE LOTUS is about a half-Asian girl growing up in America’s heartland in 1880 facing deep rooted prejudice within the community she lives in.

Sending you peace in this turbulent time. To continue the conversation, find me on Twitter at @KarinaYanGlaser, on Instagram at @KarinaIsReadingAndWriting, or email me at

With love,

*If this e-mail was forwarded to you, follow this link to subscribe to “The Kids Are All Right” newsletter and other fabulous Book Riot newsletters for your own customized e-mail delivery. Thank you!*