Check out some of our Youth & Teen Services staff favorites, all published in 2021. These books represent a wide variety of formats and intended audiences. We hope you will find something of interest in these selections.

Little Turtle Tries by Michael Dahl

It’s time to get dressed, which is no easy task for Little Turtle! But Little Turtle will not give up. This book shows your toddler that new tasks can be difficult, but with patience and encouragement, they can learn to do new things.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Hoopla)

Courage Is by Jason Kander

Courage is about being scared – but doing the scary things anyway. Whether it’s going to the dentist, trying a strange new food, asking for help, or going to sleep all by yourself, this book addresses the many surprising ways that little ones can develop courage and character. Illustrations depict a diverse range of both famous heroes and children showing courage in everyday life.

Available formats: Book

Fish and Sun by Sergio Ruzzier

One day, a bored little fish journeys up to the surface of the ocean, where it meets the sun. A wonderful friendship blooms… Only, right in the middle of their fun, the sun starts to set! Fish and Sun is a powerful story about newfound friendship.

Fish and Sun is a Level One I Can Read Comic, a simple story for shared reading, familiarizing children with the style of graphic novels and encouraging visual literacy.

Available formats: Book


I’m on It! by Andrea Tsurumi

Goat likes to lead. Goat also likes Frog to follow. When Goat jumps on it, Frog does too. Soon Goat and Frog are on it, along it, above it, inside it, beside it, around it, and under it. This Elephant and Piggie-like Reading book is not only fun and playful, but also reinforces directional and positional vocabulary. Perfect for a new reader or for reading aloud.

Available formats: Book

Itty-Bitty Kitty-Corn by Shannon Hale

Kitty, who looks like a kitten yet feels she is actually a unicorn, begins to doubt herself as others ridicule her, until she meets a unicorn that helps her discover and embrace who she is.

Available Formats: Book, Ebook (Overdrive, Hoopla)

No Pants! by Jacob Grant

This hilarious and heartwarming picture book celebrates the relationship between father and son. Pablo and his dad are ready for a great day. It’s party day! A cookout with the whole family. All they need to do to get ready is: eat breakfast, brush their teeth and put on pants. However, Pablo has another idea: No Pants!  Colorful illustrations enhance witty dialogue as this father and son battle over the best way to wear or not wear pants.

Available Formats: Book

Scribbly  by Ged Adamson

Maude moves to a new town and needs to make friends. With a scribble here, and a scribble there, and some imagination, she makes a scribbnificient new pal.

Available formats: Book

Off to See the Sea by Nikki Grimes 

In rhythmic verse, a mother spins a whimsical tale of adventure for her young child’s bathtime.

Available formats: Book

Outside, Inside by LeUyen Pham

Something strange happened on an unremarkable day just before the season changed. Everybody who was outside . . . . . . went inside. Outside, it was quieter, wilder, and different. Inside, we laughed, we cried, and we grew. We remembered to protect the ones we love and love the ones who protect us. While the world changed outside, we became stronger on the inside and believed that someday soon spring would come again. From Caldecott honoree LeUyen Pham, Outside, Inside is a moving picture book celebrating essential workers and the community coming together to face the challenges of the global COVID-19 pandemic.  – from the publisher.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand), Eaudiobook (Hoopla)

What Happened to You by James Catchpole

Every time Joe goes out, the questions are the same… what happened to his leg? But is this even a question Joe has to answer? A ground-breaking, funny story that helps children understand what it might feel like to be seen as different.

Available formats: Book

Butterflies are pretty … gross!  by Rosemary Mosco

Butterflies are not just the gentle, lovely creatures you think they are. Be prepared– the truth will gross you out!

Available formats: Book

We Are Still Here!: Native American Truths Everyone Should Know by Traci Sorell 

Author Traci Sorell of the Cherokee Nation presents   an informative and moving look at historical and current events that affect Native Nations communities through the lens of  twelve Native American kids.

Available Formats: Book, Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand, Hoopla)

Odd Bods: the world’s unusual animals by Julie Murphy

Long snouts, bright-red lips, pointy heads . . . the animal kingdom is full of critters with unique features. Learn about the incredible adaptations that help these creatures–and their odd bods–survive and thrive all around the globe!

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Hoopla)

Ticks : an augmented reality experience  by Sandra Markle

A tick cuts through a host’s skin. It begins to drink blood as its body slowly swells. Learn about the life cycles of ticks with amazing augmented reality experiences and tons of creepy, bloody details.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Hoopla)

Two grooms on a cake : the story of America’s first gay wedding by Rob Sanders

Two wedding cake toppers tell the love story of the men they represent, Michael McConnell and Jack Baker, and their difficult journey to become the first married gay couple in the United States.

Available formats: Book

Headstrong Hallie: the story of  Hallie Morse Daggett, the first female “fire guard” by Aimee M. Bissonette

This picture-book biography tells the story of Hallie Morse Daggett, the first woman “fire guard” hired by the US Forest Service, whose hard work and dedication led the way for other women to join the Forest Service.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Hoopla)

Pawcasso by Remi Lai 

When lonely 11 year old Jo is just about ready to give up on finding friendship, she meets an unlikely companion: a strangely confident little dog that trots through town with a  basket and a shopping list. Everyone loves it! Especially the kids at her school she so desperately wants to be friends with.  But when Jo falsely claims the dog as her own, she soon finds out just quickly a small lie can spiral into a big one. 

Available formats: Book, Ecomic (Overdrive Media on Demand)

Monster Friends by Kaeti Vandorn 

Despite their differences, monster neighbors Reggie and Emily make the perfect pair of explorers, and with a map to make, a beach party to plan, and a sea monster to find, Reggie will have to learn to talk about his feelings and let new friends in. A colorful graphic novel full of friendship and encouragement.

Available formats: Book, Ecomic (Overdrive Media on Demand)

The Legend of Auntie Po by Shing Yin Khor

Aware of the racial tumult in the years after the passage of the Chinese Exclusion Act, Mei tries to remain blissfully focused on her job, her close friendship with the camp foreman’s daughter, and telling stories about Paul Bunyan–reinvented as Po Pan Yin (Auntie Po), an elderly Chinese matriarch.

Available formats: Book, Ecomic (Overdrive Media on Demand)

Oh My Gods by Stephanie Cooke

When Karen leaves her hometown to head to Mt. Olympus Junior High, she finds out that being both the new kid, and only mortal at a school for gods and goddesses is not all it’s cracked up to be. When people start mysteriously being turned to stone, students look to blame the new kid. Can Karen clear her name and maybe make some friends along the way?

Available formats: Book

Pony by R. J. Palacio

The bestselling author of Wonder returns with an enthralling adventure about a boy on a quest to rescue his father, with only a ghost as his companion and a mysterious pony as his guide.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand, cloudLibrary), eAudiobook (Overdrive Media on Demand, cloudLibrary)

Root Magic by Eden Royce

Having always been fascinated by tales of African American folk magic, eleven year old twins Jez and Jay Turner are in for the surprise of the lifetime when they find out their aptitude for charms and potions are deeper rooted than they knew. Facing a socially turbulent South Carolina in 1963, the twins will find out the true power behind the legacy of their family’s magic.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand), Eaudiobook (Overdrive Media on Demand)

Star Fish by Lisa Fipps

12 year old Ellie has always been picked on for being overweight. That is until some encouraging new friends come into her life and give her the confidence boost to live life to the fullest and start standing up for herself.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand), Eaudiobook (Overdrive Media on Demand)

Last night at the Telegraph Club by Malinda Lo

Seventeen-year-old Lily Hu can’t remember exactly when the feeling took root—it definitely bloomed the moment she and Kathleen Miller walked under the flashing neon sign of a lesbian bar called the Telegraph Club. But America in 1954 is not a safe place for two girls to fall in love, especially not in Chinatown. Lily and Kath risk everything to let their love see the light of day. This YA historical LGBTQ romance has vivid characters, perfect pacing, and incredible descriptions.

Available formats: Book, Ebook (Overdrive Media on Demand), Eaudiobook (Overdrive Media on Demand)

Wings of Ebony by J. Elle

Rue’s taken from her neighborhood by the father she never knew, forced to leave her little sister behind, and whisked away to Ghizon–a hidden island of magic wielders. Rue is the only half-god, half-human there, where leaders protect their magical powers at all costs and thrive on human suffering. Rue must embrace her true identity and wield the full magnitude of her ancestors’ power to save her neighborhood before the gods burn it to the ground. A riveting and emotional fantasy debut.

Available formats: Book, Ecomic (Overdrive Media on Demand)

The Girl from the Sea by Molly Ostertag

Morgan has a secret: She can’t wait to escape the perfect little island where she lives. She’s desperate to finish high school and escape her divorced mom, her volatile little brother, and her great group of friends. Then one night, Morgan is saved from drowning by a mysterious girl named Keltie. The two become friends and suddenly life on the island doesn’t seem so stifling anymore. But Keltie has some secrets of her own, and everything they’re each trying to hide will find its way to the surface. A graphic novel about first love, family, and finding your way.

Available formats: Book, Ecomic (Overdrive Media on Demand), Eaudiobook (Hoopla)

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