New Kids’ and YA Books: Week of July 19, 2021

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Here we round up new and forthcoming children’s titles, including a picture book about a boy who loves nature, a nonfiction picture book about wellness, an illustrated book about a gothic-romance obsessed teen, and more.

Bird Boy by Matthew Burgess, illus. by Shahrzad Maydani. Knopf, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-984893-77-2. Colored pencil, graphite, and watercolor art mingle in sweet illustrations by Maydani, in this picture book featuring mostly children of color. Any reader who has ever felt left out will cheer for the protagonist as he shows he can be “both a bird and completely, delightfully himself.”

My Body Is a Rainbow: The Color of My Feelings by Mallika Chopra, illus. by Izzy Burton. Running Press Kids, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-7624-9904-5. Adapted from wellness expert Chopra’s middle grade guide Just Feel, this nonfiction picture book debut teaches children to connect colors with their feelings, intending to increase physical and emotional awareness.

The Dire Days of Willowweep Manor by Shaenon K. Garrity, illus. by Christopher Baldwin. S&S/McElderry, $21.99; ISBN 978-1-5344-6087-4. In this middle-grade novel featuring full-color illustrations, a contemporary high schooler obsessed with gothic romance novels ends up in the setting of her dreams.

Sounds Like School Spirit by Meg Fleming, illus. by Lucy Ruth Cummins. Dial, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-593-10832-1. In this rousing picture book, an unnamed collective “we” begins a call and response, asking the reader to join in.

In the Same Boat by Holly Green. Scholastic Press, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-338-72663-3. Debut author Green, an experienced rower, writes a thrill-a-minute adventure/romance YA novel set during the 265-mile racecourse of the fictionalized Texas River Odyssey.

After the Ink Dries by Cassie Gustafson, illus. by Emma Vieceli. Simon & Schuster, $19.99; ISBN 978-1-5344-7369-0. Vieceli’s realistic YA novel will open eyes and start conversations about sexual assault, toxic masculinity, and victim shaming.

If the World Were 100 People: A Visual Guide to Our Global Village by Jackie McCann, illus. by Aaron Cushley. Crown, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-593-31070-0. This visually engaging nonfiction picture book begins with a simple conceit: “It’s tricky to picture 8,000,000,000 people, so instead, let’s imagine the whole planet is a village where 100 people live.” McCann proceeds to distill statistics about the 100 villagers, covering facts such as binary gender, population distribution, access to electricity and internet, wealth distribution, and more.

Better with Butter by Victoria Piontek. Scholastic Press, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-338-66219-1. In this heartwarming middle grade novel set in Northern California, Piontek (The Spirit of Cattail County) conveys the calming and strengthening power of connecting with an animal.

Kalamata’s Kitchen by Sarah Thomas, illus. by Jo Kosmides Edwards. Random House, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-593-30791-5. This picture book sweetly portrays one child finding comfort in her heritage. Back matter features a recipe for Kalamata’s Dal and a brief glossary of ingredients and methods mentioned.

For more children’s and YA titles on sale throughout the month of July, check out PW’s full On-Sale Calendar.


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