The Little Mermaid by author/illustrator Jerry Pinkney

Grade Level: Preschool – 3

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Publication Date: November 3, 2020

In this version of The Little Mermaid, an inquisitive mermaid named Melody desires to encounter life on land. Her craving leads her to trade a gifted voice for legs so that she can explore an anti aquatic lifestyle. Melody does not realize that the Sea Witch who grants her wish for legs has evil plans. Mr. Pinkney’s intricate details, color variations and depictions of movements are delightful to view.

One Fox: A Counting Book Thriller by author/illustrator Kate Read

Reading Level: 2 – 6 years

Publisher: Peachtree Publishing Company

Publication Date: October 1. 2019

Who would have thought that a counting book for children could create tension and unnerving moments then leave readers feeling safe and victorious at the end? A sly fox thinks he found a meal in the hen house but birds of a feather flock together in this picture book. Word selection matches the books theme. Brightly colored collage illustrations with some black backgrounds add chilling moments i.e. eight beady eyes and ten sharp teeth. This is another story that can be read anytime of the year however with the right voice, a Halloween fright could be delivered before a snug ending.

Callaloo: A Jazz Folktale by author Marjuan Canady and illustrator Nabeeh Bilal

Reading Level: 3 – 7 years

Publisher: Sepia Works, LLC

Publication Date: November 18, 2013

A young boy named Winston loves eating callaloo which is a popular Caribbean meal. His aunt asks him to go to the store to buy a bush that she needs to make more callaloo. On his way, Winston stops to buy not one but two frozen treats and eats them. He boards a train and suddenly finds that he is no longer in New York but on the beautiful island of Tobago. He decides to get some crabs. Winston encounters several Caribbean folklore creatures that are somewhat creepy and mysterious after he collects the crabs and eventually releases them. He learns not to take more than he needs. This story is entertaining and teaches a lesson about greed. Unfamiliar words are bold throughout the text. There is a glossary in the back of the book. My Book Eyes enjoyed learning about the Caribbean mythical creatures. Illustrations match the text and add gloom, darkness and slight scare when needed but nothing that a young child couldn’t handle. This picture book ends happily with Winston safe at home. It can be read anytime of the year however, it would be a great read at a Halloween party by a storyteller who knows how to tell a spooky story.

I Believe in Me (Wonderful Me) by author Lorie Ann Grover and illustrator Carolina Buzio

Grade Level: Preschool and up

Publisher: Cartwheel Books

Publication Date: January 7, 2020

This board book is filled with fun rhyming affirmations for young children. It builds confidence by acknowledging tasks that little ones can do. The illustrations are large and filled with bold colors and diverse characters. Some pictures show sequential actions. A good book to share with an individual or a group.

B is for Breathe: The ABCs of Coping with Fussy and Frustrating Feelings by Dr. Melissa Munro Boyd

Grade Level: Preschool – 5

Publisher: Melissa Munro Boyd

Publication Date: February 28, 2019

Just looking at this picture book’s cover makes My Book Eyes feel relaxed and like a huge burden has been lifted. The audience learns from A to Z, activities that can be done in order to reach a better state of mind. The text is just enough description for children to understand without being overwhelmed. Illustrations are adorable and easily discernible. Multicultural people are shown throughout the book. From counting to imagine to yoga and all tasks not mentioned, this book is a treasure for any library.

Every Night Is Pizza Night by author J. Kenji Lopez-Alt and illustrator Gianna Ruggiero

Grade Level: Preschool – 2

Publisher: Norton Young Readers

Publication Date: September 1, 2020

A finicky eater named Pipo only wants to consume pizza for dinner. She believes pizza is the best food. Pipo visits and assists neighbors while they prepare their treasured dishes. Initially some of the ingredients seem repelling to her however upon tasting the finished products, she discovers that these meals are delicious. Inclusion of foods that are not typically found in childrens’ books increases knowledge of various cultures and foods i.e. tagine, red beans and rice and bibimbap. The more known dumpling is also included. Illustrations show colorful details and add diverse culinary shops for eyes to peruse. Readers may be enticed to try new cuisines after reading this picture book. A pizza recipe is included.

Let’s Dance by author Valerie Bolling and illustrator Maine Diaz

Age Range: 3 – 7 years

Publisher: Boyd Mills Press

Publication Date: March 3, 2020

In this picture book, readers travel to learn through rhyme and illustrations about dances and traditional dress that accompany select dances of Africa, China, Cuba, India, Ireland, Spain, and United States to name many. Children depict their cultural maneuvers with exuberance. Text concentrates on action, inviting onlookers to try steps. In the back matter the author briefly elaborates on each dance.

Popsicle Cookbook Healthy and Easy Ice Pop Recipes for Kids and Adults by Kaitlyn Donnelly

Publication Date: May 5, 2019

With the warm weather upon us, it is nice to snack on something cooling. These popsicles are a tasty and chilly treat. This cookbook features helpful hints for making popsicles in its basic section. The author discusses popsicle molds, fruit, chocolate, berries, yogurt and vegetables in recipes. Popsicles for adult palates are added. Conversion tables are inside this cookbook.