Books for a Kid’s Summer

c.2023, various publishers
$7.99 – $25.90
various page counts

By Terri Schlichenmeyer
The Truth Contributor

The B-word has shown its ugly face in your house a time or two this summer.

Not birds or bats, not babies or bunnies. No, this B-word tells you that it’s time to give your kids something new to do. No more BOREDOM when you’ve got BOOKS, and these great books will keep your kids entertained.

For young readers ages three to five, Sam and the Incredible African and American Food Fight by Shannon Gibney, illustrated by Charly Palmer (University of Minnesota Press, $17.95) is a fun book about a boy who’s just plain hungry, but cultures clash in his kitchen and his stomach’s growling! Will dinner ever be finished? This book is yummy.

Kids who love comic books will want to read and re-read Like Lava in My Veins by Derrick Barnes, art by Shawn Martinbrough with Adriano Lucas (Penguin, $18.99). It’s a comic-book-like story of a young man with superpowers but good luck getting a teacher who can understand him. When he changes classes, everything else changes, too, and your seven-to-10-year-old will love knowing about it.

Your six-to-10-year-old dinosaur lover will roar over How to Survive in the Age of Dinosaurs by Stephanie Warren Drimmer (National Geographic Kids, $9.99). Filled with lots of full-color illustrations, plenty of “Hey, listen to this” sidebars and stories, and all kinds of stats, your child will become a dino expert in short order. Heads up: it’s a great take-it-on-vacation read, too.

The kid who got a puppy this summer, or who wants to more about dogs will beg for A First Guide to Dogs: Understanding Your Very Best Friend by Dr. John Bradshaw, illustrated by Clare Elsom (Penguin, $7.99). Part chapter book with a fictional story, part instruction, it’ll make any dog-loving seven-to-11-year-old happy and quite knowledgeable. Woof!

Your future doctor or nurse will very much enjoy Why? The Human Body by Page Towler (National Geographic Kidsm $12.99). Why can’t you stare at the sun? Why do you breathe air? Why does a tasty ice cream cone sometimes hurt your teeth? This is a book that answers all kinds of questions about how we move, think, and experience the world in our human bodies, and your nine-to-14-year-old will devour it.

And finally, don’t be surprised if you want to borrow back The National Geographic Kids Almanac 2024 (National Geographic Kids, $15.99 paperback / $25.90 hardcover).  There’s a little something for everybody ages 11-and-up here: jokes, quizzes, cartoons, chapters on food, mythology,  weather, science, history, and more. Dip in her and learn about Amelia Earhart, page over there to find out about ways to be an ecology hero, flip again and read about animals. This book is truly a browser’s delight.

If these great books don’t quite fill your child’s summertime wish list, then be sure to check with your favorite bookseller or librarian. They’ll know exactly what will hold your young reader’s interest, no matter how old the child. They’ll know how to keep away the B word (bored) and replace it with these B words: beautiful books!