I Am Every Good Thing by Derrick Barnes; illustrated by Gordon C. JamesWhat it is: An affirming, encouraging poem that centers and celebrates Black boyhood, accompanied by lush, high-impact paintings of realistic boys living their lives with confidence.
Book buzz: You might recognize author Derrick Barnes and illustrator Gordon C. James as the multi-award-winning creators of Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut.
Try this next: Useni Eugene Perkins' Hey Black Child, another poetic picture book emphasizing the many ways in which Black childrens' lives matter.
Robobaby by David WiesnerWhat it's about: Young robot Cathode is excited when the kit for building her new baby brother arrives. Her parents, however, struggle to assemble the round little robot, and after some rocket-powered "improvements" go awry, Cathode steps up with her toolkit.
Art alert: Intricate details and retro-modern charm distinguish this robot romp from three-time Caldecott Medalist David Wiesner.
Did you know? This robot family (and many other imagined worlds) can also be found in the app David Wiesner's Spot.
I Am Enough by Grace Byers; illustrated by Keturah A. BoboWhat it is: an inclusive litany of the power and potential of girls.
Read it for: the always-welcome message of self-confidence and self-acceptance, as well as the energetic, expressive illustrations depicting the book's narrator (along with all kinds of girls) as she celebrates her skills, strength, kindness, and growth.
Kids might also like: I Believe I Can, the similarly encouraging follow-up book from creators Grace Byers and Keturah A. Bobo.
Say Hello! by Rachel IsadoraWhat it's about: As Carmelita walks down the street to visit her Abuela Rosa, she thoughtfully greets each of her neighbors in their own language.
Languages included: Carmelita uses salutations in Arabic, French, Japanese, Hebrew, Swahili, Spanish, and English.
Art alert: Richly patterned and textured cut-paper illustrations echo the busy, cheerful vibe of Carmelita's neighborhood.
All Are Welcome by Alexandra Penfold; illustrated by Suzanne KaufmanWelcome to: a new year at a city school, filled with playtime, classroom time, shared food, family visits, and friendship with all kinds of new classmates.
Why kids might like it: During these isolating times, children may be reassured by the titular refrain, as well as the reminder that they're part of their communities: “No matter how you start your day, what you wear when you play, or if you come from far away, all are welcome here.”
Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You by Sonia Sotomayor; illustrated by Rafael López What it's about: As twelve kids work together in a garden, they get to know each other by asking questions.
What kind of questions? Questions such as "how do you use your senses?", "how do you get from place to place?", and "are you really good at something?" allow the kids to be matter-of-fact about how they live with disabilities and illnesses.
About the author: Other people's assumptions about her type 1 diabetes inspired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor to write this refreshingly straightforward book.
Contact your librarian for more great books for ages 0-8!