Check these out!

picture book picks

I love these books!

I am actually pretty picky when it comes to picture books I can say that about.  There are many that I like a lot but to say, “I love this book” it has to have certain qualities.  For one, my kids have to really like it too.  I am a fan of picture books and will sit and read them myself but when my kids want to listen it becomes something to share and that makes it so much more special.  Next it has to tell a new story and an old one at the same time.  There has to be something universal but it also has to be accomplished in a highly unique or modern way.  And finally the images need to inspire me.  There are styles I prefer like ones that are simple, graphic, and innocent but I especially love when I see something I didn’t know I loved.  Does that makes sense?  Something that has the power to win we over and redefine my preferences.  

What do I do when I love a book this much?  I buy it.  In addition to feeling like it is something I have to have I also know publishers can’t survive selling to just libraries.  So “check these out” at the library and maybe you will love them enough to buy them too!

New Picture Book Picks

First up is Gus, the Dinosaur Bus by Julia Liu and illustrated by Bei Lynn.  It is a little story about how fun but impractical it is to ride Guss to school.  Will Guss find another way to be useful when he is no longer allowed to transport the kids?  Read the book!  I love the gestural, cartoony, vintage illustration style.  I think there are just three colors in this book.  I challenge you not to like this book!

Next up is The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt.  Honestly we can’t get enough of writing and drawing instruments coming to life!  My kid also love The Pencil.  Colors have such personalities don’t they?!  In this story the crayons quit.  It seems perfectly plausible that with all these big personalities problems would arise.  This book is beautifully handwritten by the illustrator, Oliver Jeffers.  Check out this short video of his process.

Arlo’s ARTrageous Adventure written and illustrated by David LaRochelle is next on the list.  This would be the perfect book to read if you are planning a trip to an art museum with kids.  This is a book with 50 awesomely fun and surprising flaps!  If you are a fan of flaps also check out this post.

A Funny Little Bird written and illustrated by Jennifer Yerkes is a book about learning the hard lesson to be yourself.  I love, love, love the illustrations.  This white bird feels and looks invisible on her white background but it is fun finding her on each page with all the visual clues.

And finally The World Belongs to You by Riccardo Bozzi which is a book for graduates like Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Dr. Seuss.  But who said we can’t enjoy a message that celebrates our uniqueness and an optimistic future anytime?!  I also love the simple illustrations by the editorial illustrator Olimpia Zagnoli that perfectly compliment the simple text.

What is your criteria for buying books?  Please share!

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This post is linked up with the AfterSchool at Relentlessly Fun, Deceptively Educational.  Check it out for lots of great after school learning ideas and activities!

And at Booknificent, check it out for more book reviews!



I'm a practical mom inspired by nature & I enjoy sharing ideas that encourage kids' innate curiosity & creativity. Interested in subscribing? Check out the blue box at the top of my sidebar. I'm also a wannabe author/illustrator & product designer by day. Let's connect! If you purchase through my Amazon links I get a small commission at no additional cost to you (thanks for supporting Doodles and Jots)! And remember to always credit your source here & elsewhere on the internet.


  1. I’m excited to have an Ann-endorsed book list. I just so happen to be on my way to the library, so I’ll check these out and hopefully add a few to my collection, too. Not from the library, of course. I wouldn’t steal the books from the library. We’ll just leave our germs all over the library books and buy pristine copies at the bookstore. Okay, it’s been nice chatting; gotta go! (Not enough caffeine yet.)

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