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12 picture books that share summer adventures
"The Day the Crayons Came Home" is by Drew DayWalt and Oliver Jeffers. - photo by Christine Rappleye
These 12 picture books that have recently crossed our desks share an adventure, whether its a plan that goes unexpectedly awry, learning a new skill, making a new friend or taking a trip and finding joy in returning home.


THE DAY THE CRAYONS CAME HOME, by Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers, Philomel, $18.99 (ages 5-8)

Duncan sorted out his crayons requests in The Day the Crayons Quit, and now hes getting postcards including from Neon Red, who was left at a hotel on a family vacation; Maroon, who is under the couch cushions; Burnt Sienna, who had an unfortunate run-in with the dog; Turquoise, who is stuck to a sock thanks to the dryer; and Pea Green, who changed his name to Esteban the Magnificent.

Duncan has to figure out a way to find and make these crayons feel welcome, as the crayon box wont work, in this clever and entertaining story of coming home.

EDMUND UNRAVELS, by Andrew Kolb, Nancy Paulsen Books, $16.99 (ages 5-8)

Edmund is a ball of yarn and has always liked exploring with its adventures and new sights, people and places. Through his travels, he finds theres something missing, and he may not find it until hes home with familiar faces in this tale of ends and beginnings.

THERES A LION IN MY CORNFLAKES, by Michelle Robinson, illustrated by Jim Field, Bloomsbury, $16.99 (ages 0-5)

When two brothers see the offer on a cereal box for a free lion well, with the cost of 100 coupons from the boxes of cereal they spend all of their allowance on theres a little mix-up with the cereal people. They end up with a bear, a crocodile and a gorilla, which lead to all sorts of lessons, both fun and not so much, in this entertaining adventure.

MUST. PUSH. BUTTONS! by Jason Good, illustrated by Jarrett J. Krosoczka, Bloomsbury, $16.99 (ages 0-5)

Comedian Jason Good is the father of two young boys and uses his observations as a dad in Must. Push. Buttons!

A young toddler who is curious about the world wants to play with Daddys phone, put on Mommys shoes and turn the microwave on and off in this picture book that gives a little peek into what a child might be thinking as he goes from one thing to the next.

YELLOW COPTER, by Kersten Hamilton, illustrated by Valeria Petrone, Viking, $16.99 (ages 2-5)

Its the day of the fair, and a teacher gets stuck on the top of the Ferris wheel. Yellow Copter is called to the rescue. Yellow Copter has rhymes and plenty of sounds to delight young children.

CATERINA AND THE BEST BEACH DAY, by Erin Eitter Kono, Dial, $16.99 (ages 3-5)

Penguins Caterina and her little brother Leo head to the beach, where Leo wants to see a whale. Caterina, who is sure they wont see a whale, makes other plans to enjoy their day unless a determined Leo can convince her to put aside her plans to go after something unpredictable in this story of being flexible. The author/illustrators mixed-media collages add dimension to the penguins adventures.

ZIG AND THE MAGIC UMBRELLA, by Sylvie Kantorovitz, Dial, $16.99 (ages 3-5)

Zig wakes up on a rainy day and is bored until a red umbrella flies by and takes him to a new place and he meets a yellow bird. With a little ingenuity and the red umbrella, Zig can help his new friend as they have quite the adventure in this book with bright illustrations and many sound words.

RUFUS GOES TO SEA, by Kim T. Griswell, illustrated by Valeri Gorbachev, Sterling Books, $14.95 (ages 3-6)

Rufus Leroy Williams III decided he wanted an adventure as a pirate, so he packed his lunch, backpack and blanket and set off to find pirates. But when the pirates dont want a pig on board, Rufus has to convince them he has the right skills to help them find treasure in this book on the value of reading and knowledge.

MY COUSIN MOMO, by Zachariah OHora, Dial, $16.99 (ages 3-6)

The squirrels are excited to have their cousin Momo, a flying squirrel, come to visit, but he seems shy and has very different ideas on how to play the squirrels usual games. Its not until the squirrels give their cousin and the new ideas a chance that they also give their friendship a chance, in this book about accepting differences and trying new things.

ACTION MOVIE KID, by Daniel Hashimoto and Mandy Richardville, illustrated by Valerio Fabbretti, Atria/Keywords Press, $14.99 (ages 4-8)

With an active imagination and a few props, James can battle or become just about anything to fight monsters and defend his family until things get a little out of hand and hes supposed to play quietly. Then he hears noise from the basement and finds an alien coming from another dimension through the washing machine, and it might be more than he can handle.

This book is a fun adventure and is based on the Action Movie Kid YouTube channel.

TALLULAHS TAP SHOES, by Marilyn Singer, illustrated by Alexandra Boiger, Clarion Books, $16.99 (ages 4-8)

Tallulah likes to dance ballet and is very excited about dance camp because she will get to dance ballet every day. But shes not looking forward to taking tap.

A new friend, Kacie, likes tap and doesnt like ballet too much.

When they become friends and help each other, they learn its OK to make mistakes and that learning something new takes time and a little encouragement.

ICE CREAM SUMMER, by Peter Sis, Scholastic, $17.99 (ages 4-8)

Young Joes grandpa wants to hear about his summer, and Joe demonstrates how hes learning new words, math and history by describing ice cream, counting scoops and sharing the history of ice cream. The author/illustrator shares about Joes summer in a fun, tasty and entertaining way.
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