You’re the Hugs to My Kisses by author Barbara Herndon and illustrator Diane Ewen

Grade Level: 1 – 2

Publisher: Zonderkidz

Publication Date: January 4, 2022

Endearing bonds between parents and children, grandparents and grandchildren, adults, friends, siblings, owner and pet are depicted in a variety of scenarios. Illustrations are uplifting with fun sprinkled in. Diverse people are shown throughout this rhyming picture book.

Strong Mama by author Robin Arzon and illustrator Addy Rivera Sonda

Grade Level: Preschool – 3

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Publication Date: January 11, 2022

The storyteller is an athletic expectant mother. She shares her love of exercise, running, meditation, dancing and eating right with her growing baby. Her family welcomes the new baby and another person’s life adventures begin. This book is inspiring for all moms. Illustrations are filled with healthy lifestyle and good feelings.

Edible Crafts Kids’ Cookbook by Charity Matthews

Ages: 4 – 8 years

Grade Level: 1 – 2

Publisher: Rockridge Press

Publication Date: September 28, 2021

Children learn to make 25 eye pleasing recipes that are made from healthy foods. There is a note to the adults, a note to the children and a getting ready section which includes tools needed to cook and create. Each recipe includes a Did You Know? section which adds facts and additional science information to these artsy recipes. Great for year-long cooking. Perhaps some of these recipes will inspire a Mother’s Day concoction. Enjoy!

Not My Hats by author Tracy Gunaratnam and illustrator Alea Marley

Reading Age: 4 – 9 years

Grade Level: Preschool – 3

Publisher: Maverick Arts

Publication Date: March 2, 2021

In this rhyming picture book Hettie the polar bear will share many things with Puffin but not her hats. Finally Puffin has something that Hettie can use and they both wear the hats. This is a fun book to read and listen to as a determined polar bear is convinced that she will not share her hats. The repeated words will assist those learning to read. Patterns and bright colors are attractive.

I Love Strawberries by author Shannon Anderson and illustrator Jaclyn Sinquett

Reading Age: 4 – 8

Grade Level: 1 – 2

Publisher: Feeding Minds Press

Publication Date: April 5, 2022

Julie enjoys eating strawberries. She wants to grow them. Jolie shows her parents that she is responsible. She earns money to buy the seeds and grows a strawberry patch. She diligently tends to her garden, documenting her experiences in a journal. Is she prepared for strawberry patch invaders? Illustrations are warm with a touch of red on pages. Diverse characters are shown. Readers and listeners will enjoy learning about how to grow this scrumptious fruit. Backmatter includes information about growing strawberries and pest control.

One Good Night ’til Easter by author Frank J. Berrios III and illustrator Ramon Olivera

Reading Age: Baby – 3

Grade Level: Preschool and up

Publisher: LB Kids

Publication Date: February 8, 2022

In this rhyming board book, diverse children and their families get ready for Easter. There are treats to make, cards to create, eggs to decorate and to find, chocolate to taste, guests to welcome and new outfits to wear. The illustrations are bright and leave readers and listeners feeling happy. A fun read.

Jayden’s Impossible Garden by author Melina Mangal and illustrator Ken Daley

Reading Age: 4 – 9 years

Grade Level: Preschool – 3

Publisher: Free Spirit Publishing

Publication Date: March 5, 2021

A boy named Jayden lives in the city. He enjoys nature and sees it around him in the weather, his collections of stones and branches, and by observing birds and squirrels. Jayden discovers that his neighbor, Mr. Curtis, also enjoys nature. Spring arrives and the two neighbors spend time together listening to each others stories, building a fort, and planting flowers in reusable materials. Their garden attracts other neighbors who are glad to see nature sprouting.Illustrations are attractive. The book includes author and illustrator notes, information about insects and animals displayed in this book and information about recyclable crafts to make. My Book Eyes enjoyed seeing a warm relationship between a youngster and an older person with a disability and the emphasis on common interests.

Women in Art: 50 Fearless Creatives Who Inspired the World by Rachel Ignotofsky

Reading Age: 10 years and up

Grade Level: 5 – 9

Publisher: Ten Speed Press

Publication Date: September 10, 2019

This non-fiction children’s book highlights 50 diverse women from around the globe who have contributed to the history of art from 1200 to present. Their struggles and triumphs are highlighted in their descriptions. Under each illustration is a quote from the artist. The page spreads include an illustration of the artist and information about the artist. There is a matching color theme for the 2 page spread which is attractive. There is a timeline. This is a valuable resource for all bookshelves.

Waffles + Mochi: Get Cooking! by Yewande Komolafe and Michelle Obama

Reading Age: 4 years to 9 years

Grade Level: kindergarten – 4 years

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Publication Date: December 7, 2021

Rice, eggs, potatoes, corn are common food staples. How many people know that rice comes in different colors and sizes or how to grow potatoes at home or about the versatility of eggs or that corn porridge is in recipes of many cultures? This children’s cookbook offers this information. Also it showcases recipes from a variety of ethnicities for example pani puri from India, champurrado from Mexico, omurice from Japan to name a few. Children will learn to use herbs and spices to create spicy popcorn and a chickpeas snack. Most recipes use few ingredients and are easily made. My Book Eyes enjoyed seeing a recipe called hoppin’ john from South Carolina and also learning about quickles. Because mealtime is a good time to enjoy the company of others, there are conversation starters suggested in this book.

Stitch by Stitch: Elizabeth Hobbs Keckley Sees Her Way to Freedom by author Connie Schofield -Morrison and illustrator Elizabeth Zunon

Reading Age: 7 – 10 years

Grade Level: 2 – 5

Publisher: Holiday House

Publication Date: November 9, 2021

In this picture book biography, we follow the life of Elizabeth Hobbs from her birth into slavery in Virginia until her death. Elizabeth learned to sew from her mother Agnes. This book unveils harsh realities of slave life i.e. Being beaten for grieving instead of hiding feelings behind smiling faces or being sold and having to do the work of three people. As a slave, Elizabeth and her son were sent to live in St. Louis where she made clothes for the wealthy. She became popular. Her clients raised money for Elizabeth to buy freedom for both her and her son. Elizabeth repaid her clients and moved to Washington, D.C. She made dresses for the wives of leaders including Mrs. Lincoln. Over time Elizabeth became instrumental in helping former slaves who came to DC. She founded the Ladies Relief Contraband Association which gave food, clothing and shelter. Elizabeth had a dress shop that provided jobs for women. She wrote a book about her life as a slave as well as her years working in the White House. She worked at Wilberforce University teaching sewing. Mixed media illustrations depict lovely gowns and artistry throughout the book.