New summer releases to occupy young readers’ time and imagination
By Brian Lampkin
Admit it. It’s only July and already, the kids have driven you to serious thoughts of how good it would be for them to have extended summer camp in the Arctic. They could help feed the polar bears. At the very least you’ve moved cocktail hour several clicks closer to noon. Don’t worry, your case of frayed nerves is nothing a good book won’t help. Your sprouts will stay happily immersed in these great new children’s and young adult books and won’t bother you again until August. Here’s the highlights of kids literature released this month:
July 4: The Unicorn in the Barn, by Jacqueline Ogburn (Houghton Mifflin, $16.99). The Story of Doctor Dolittle meets The Last Unicorn in this tender and illustrated middle-grade fantasy about a boy and the unicorn that changes his worldview. Ms. Ogburn lives in Durham.
July 4: You Can Fly: The Tuskegee Airmen, by Carole Boston Weatherford (Atheneum, $16.99). This is the paperback release for High Point’s own Ms. Weatherford. This history in verse celebrates the story of the Tuskegee Airmen: pioneering African-American pilots who triumphed in the skies and soared past the color barrier.
July 4: Who Was Andrew Jackson? by Douglas Yacka (Penguin, $5.99). In which we learn that Mr. Jackson died before he could have prevented the Civil War. Another in the long line of great Who Was books from Penguin.
July 11: 75 Years of Little Golden Books: 1942-2017: A Commemorative Set of 12 Best-Loved Books (Golden Books, $59.88). This beautiful, celebratory boxed set of 12 iconic Little Golden Books honors Golden Books 75th anniversary in 2017. Gold foil and beautiful cloth adorn this special package containing the following titles: The Poky Little Puppy, I Can Fly, The Sailor Dog, Scuffy the Tugboat, Wonders of Nature, The Three Bears, A Day at the Seashore, The Blue Book of Fairy Tales, I’m a Truck, I Am a Bunny, The Whispering Rabbit, and Katie the Kitten, a newly reissued 1949 title available only in this box.
July 11: The Land of Stories: Worlds Collide, by Chris Colfer (Little Brown, $19.99). In the highly anticipated conclusion to The Land of Stories series, Conner and Alex must brave the impossible. All of The Land of Stories fairy tale characters — heroes and villains — are no longer confined within their world!
July 18: Fragile Like Us, by Sara Barnard (Simon Pulse, $17.99). In the tradition of Sarah Dessen and Morgan Matson comes a pitch perfect YA novel about friendship and what it takes to break the bonds between friends.
July 25: Steven Universe Original Graphic Novel: Anti-Gravity (Kaboom, $14.99). Electromagentic disturbances cause objects and people around Beach City to hover off the ground, and the gang goes to the Gem Temple
to figure out what’s happening. Beach City has always been proudly weird, and this trip to the moon and
back is no different.
July 25: Far from the Tree: Young Adult Edition — How Children and Their Parents Learn to Accept One Another (Simon & Schuster, $18.99). When all else fails, perhaps we can live together after all. Elegantly reported by a spectacularly original and compassionate thinker, Far From the Tree explores how people who love each other must struggle to accept each other — a theme in every family’s life. OH
Brian Lampkin is one of the proprietors of Scuppernong Books.