“Be Yourself” Booklist | For Kids

Miss Diane from the Youth Services Department has hand-picked her favorite picture books encouraging kids to “be yourself”!

  • All of the books featured here are books that we have in our collection. To see if an item is available to check out or place on hold, click the cover image or button to the right of the description.

Miss D's "Be Yourself" Picks

Giraffes Can't Dance

by Giles Andreae

Gerald the giraffe wants nothing more then to dance but all the animals laugh at him…that is until he learns to dance to his own tune.

AGES: 4 to 8 years old

The Story of Ferdinand

by Munro Leaf

Ferdinand isn’t like the other bulls. He just wants to sit and smell the flowers. So, what do you think happen when he’s picked for the bullfights in Madrid?

AGES: 4 to 8 years old

The Little White Owl

by Tracey Corderoy

The little white owl meets some colorful owls and wants to share his happy stories, and his toast, with them. They’re not interested in a plain white owl and that’s when the magic begins!

AGES: 3 to 7 years old

Elmer

by David McKee

All the other elephants are grey, but Elmer is a patchwork of colors and he hates it! Find out what happens when he sets off one day to make a change.

AGES: 4 to 8 years old

More favorites... Click the cover to view in our online catalog!

Perfectly Norman

by Tom Percival

Norman is perfectly normal, until one day when he grows wings! He loves his wings but will everyone else? See what he does to hide who he really is.

AGES: 3 to 7 years old

Tacky the Penguin

by Helen Lester

Tacky is pretty odd compared to the other pretty penguins. But, when hunters show up, being different can save the day!

AGES: 3 to 7 years old

How to Be a Lion

by Ed Vere

Leonard the lion and Marianne the duck are best friends. But the other bully lions say a lion a duck can’t be friends, ducks are for eating! How many ways exactly are there to be a lion?

AGES: 3 to 7 years old

Spoon

by Amy Krouse Rosethal

Spoon was always a happy utensil, until one day when he decides fork, knife and chopsticks are much cooler. But wait until you read what they think about that!

AGES: 3 to 6 years old

Now Recommending: Great Eats & Cool Treats

Need some new recipe ideas and inspirations for your summertime cooking? Look no further! Whether you prefer to be behind the grill, or if you’d rather stay cool in the kitchen, we’ve got a variety of cookbooks in our collection — grilling, barbecuing, salads, sandwiches, and sweet treats — all perfect for summertime fun and good eating.

Want more recommendations?

 

You can check out all of our online booklists (for kids and for adults), or reach out to us! Our staff is ready and willing to make reading, listening, or viewing recommendations to you! Email us at reference@benlib.org or contact us via our online form!

If You Liked… “Little Fires Everywhere”

Did you love Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng? It’s also now a mini-series on Hulu starring Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington! If you’re looking for more reads like this one, check out this list of read-alikes.

Such a Fun Age

by Kiley Reid

A striking and surprising debut novel from an exhilarating new voice, Such a Fun Age is a page-turning and big-hearted story about race and privilege, set around a young black babysitter, her well-intentioned employer, and a surprising connection that threatens to undo them both. With empathy and piercing social commentary, Such a Fun Age explores the stickiness of transactional relationships, what it means to make someone “family,” and the complicated reality of being a grown up. It is a searing debut for our times.

Commonwealth

by Ann Patchett

Commonwealth is the story of two broken families and the paths their lives take over the course of 40 years, through love and marriage, death and divorce, and a dark secret from childhood that lies underneath it all. Told with equal measures of humor and heartbreak, Commonwealth is a meditation on inspiration, interpretation, and the ownership of stories. It is a brilliant and tender tale of the far-reaching ties of love and responsibility that bind us together.

The Leavers

by Lisa Ko

One morning, Deming Guo’s mother, Polly, an undocumented Chinese immigrant, goes to her job at a nail salon-and never comes home. No one can find any trace of her. With his mother gone, eleven-year-old Deming is left mystified and bereft. Eventually adopted by a pair of well-meaning white professors, Deming is moved from the Bronx to a small town upstate and renamed Daniel Wilkinson. But far from all he’s ever known, Daniel struggles to reconcile his adoptive parents’ desire that he assimilate with his memories of his mother and the community he left behind.

Ask Again, Yes

by Mary Beth Keane

In Mary Beth Keane’s extraordinary novel, a lifelong friendship and love blossoms between Kate Gleeson and Peter Stanhope, born six months apart. One shocking night their loyalties are divided, and their bond will be tested again and again over the next thirty years. Heartbreaking and redemptive, Ask Again, Yes is a gorgeous and generous portrait of the daily intimacies of marriage and the power of forgiveness.

The Mothers

by Brit Bennett

A dazzling debut novel from an exciting new voice, The Mothers is a surprising story about young love, a big secret in a small community–and the things that ultimately haunt us most. Set within a contemporary black community in Southern California, Brit Bennett’s mesmerizing first novel is an emotionally perceptive story about community, love, and ambition. It begins with a secret.

The Perfect Nanny

by Leila Slimani

A dazzling debut novel from an exciting new voice, The Mothers is a surprising story about young love, a big secret in a small community–and the things that ultimately haunt us most. Set within a contemporary black community in Southern California, Brit Bennett’s mesmerizing first novel is an emotionally perceptive story about community, love, and ambition. It begins with a secret.

The Most Dangerous Place on Earth

by Lindsey Lee Johnson

The wealthy enclaves north of San Francisco are not the paradise they appear to be, and nobody knows this better than the students of a local high school. Despite being raised with all the opportunities money can buy, these vulnerable kids are navigating a treacherous adolescence in which every action, every rumor, every feeling, is potentially postable, shareable, viral.

A Good Neighborhood

by Therese Anne Fowler

A gripping contemporary novel that examines the American dream through the lens of two families living side by side in an idyllic neighborhood, and the one summer that changes their lives irrevocably. A Good Neighborhood asks big questions about life in America today―what does it mean to be a good neighbor? How do we live alongside each other when we don’t see eye to eye?―as it explores the effects of class, race, and heartrending love in a story that’s as provocative as it is powerful.

Big Little Lies

by Liane Moriarty

A murder…A tragic accident…Or just parents behaving badly? What’s indisputable is that someone is dead. Big Little Lies is a brilliant take on ex-husbands and second wives, mothers and daughters, schoolyard scandal, and the little lies that can turn lethal.

The Gifted School

by Bruce Holsinger

Crystal, Colorado. Four young families juggle the stresses of parenthood, careers, and marriage. As the kids head for middle school, the families are still tight. But when an exclusive magnet school for ‘gifted children’ is being built, cracks begin to form in their relationships. As the parents go to great lengths to ensure their child is accepted, relationships turn toxic and secrets are exposed.

Want more recommendations?

 

You can check out all of our online booklists (for kids and for adults), or reach out to us! Our staff is ready and willing to make reading, listening, or viewing recommendations to you! Email us at reference@benlib.org or contact us via our online form!

A Father’s Day Booklist | For Kids

Father’s Day is Sunday, June 21! Our Youth Services staff handpicked a bunch of their favorite books all about dads! All of the books featured here are books that we have in our collection. To see if an item is available to check out or place on hold, click the cover image or button to the right of the description.

Our Favorite Father's Day Picks

Father's Day

by Anne Rockwell

What’s the perfect gift for Dad? In Mrs. Madoff’s class, it’s a book made just for him. First the kids think about their special moments with their fathers. Sam’s dad is so strong, he can carry Sam on his shoulders. Eveline’s dad sings to her when Maman has to work at night. Jessica writes about her father in Texas and her stepfather at home. And when it’s time to celebrate at school, both of her fathers give Jessica the best surprise of all.

The Night Before Father's Day

by Natasha Wing

In rhyming text based on “The Night Before Christmas”, Mom and the kids have a plan to surprise Dad with a special gift. When Dad goes for a bike ride, everyone gets to work. Dad wakes up the next day to find his garage newly organized and his car sparkly clean. So, of course, he celebrates by taking everyone for a spin!

I Love Dad with the Very Hungry Caterpillar

by Eric Carle

Celebrate Dad’s special day by saying “I Love You” — with a little help from The Very Hungry Caterpillar. This bright and colorful book is the ideal way to tell the person you call “Dad” how much you love them.

A Brave Bear

by Sean Taylor

After suggesting he and his father go to the river to cool down, a little bear tries to impress his father along the way.

For very young children just beginning to dare to do new things and their supportive and loving parents, this gentle read-aloud just might be the best thing in the world.

More favorites... Click the cover to view in our online catalog!

I Am Perfectly Designed

by Karamo Brown

I Am Perfectly Designed is an exuberant celebration of loving who you are, exactly as you are, from Karamo Brown, the Culture Expert of Netflix’s hit series Queer Eye, and Jason Brown―featuring illustrations by Anoosha Syed.

In this empowering ode to modern families, a boy and his father take a joyful walk through the city, discovering all the ways in which they are perfectly designed for each other.

Daddies are Awesome

by Meredith Costain

Loving and thoughtful, playful and daring, cuddly and caring–daddies are awesome. This gentle rhyming text celebrates the special bond between father and child. Adorable doggy daddy and pup illustrations make this perfect for sharing!

Daddies are Awesome

by Meredith Costain

So you want to surprise your dad? You’re in luck! The pages of this book are full of tips on how to become a super dad surpriser, including tips for things you can make, do, or find—just for your dad.

Two siblings provide instructions for how to surprise one’s dad, including surprises you can make, do, or find — and how to plan a Special Day surprise party for him.

My Two Dads and Me

by Michael Joosten

Celebrate Pride every day with this adorable board book for the babies and toddlers of gay fathers, featuring a variety of diverse, loving families with two dads. Families with same-sex parents are celebrated in this board book that follows busy dads and their kids throughout their day — eating breakfast, getting dressed, heading out to the park, and settling back in at night with a bubble bath and a good-night lullaby. 

More favorites... Click the cover to view in our online catalog!

It's Great Being a Dad

by Dan Bar-El

A gang of mythical creatures is roaming around a magical land having a great time, until Bigfoot gets his foot stuck in a tree trunk and Unicorn gets her horn impaled on a table and Robot’s saw-arm gets rusted into position. But no fear! Dad is there to fix things – even when a Sneaky Flying Alligator Pirate steals the Fairy Queen Ballerina Doctor’s wand.

When a Dad Says I Love You

by Douglas Wood

How do you like to hear “I love you”? This cozy picture book shows all the ways dads can say it best.

Dads know how to do everything. They can help with homework and carry you on their shoulders. They can make pancakes and teach you how to sing songs. These loving actions are just some of the ways dads show how much they care—and no matter how he says it, “I love you” is wonderful to hear!

Free Comic Book Day — Online!

Even though we can’t celebrate Free Comic Book Day in person this year, Mr. Parish put together an awesome list of his must-read comics (available to check out or place on hold on Overdrive!), and some of his favorite free webcomics! Enjoy! To read more about the nationally-celebrated Free Comic Book Day and updates for 2020, click here.

Parish's Picks — Comics Found on Overdrive

New Kid

by Jerry Craft

Seventh grader Jordan Banks loves nothing more than drawing cartoons about his life. But instead of sending him to the art school of his dreams, his parents enroll him in a prestigious private school known for its academics, where Jordan is one of the few kids of color in his entire grade.

Age: Middle School

Black Panther: The Young Prince

by Ronald L. Smith

Life is comfortable for twelve-year-old T’Challa in his home of Wakanda, an isolated, technologically advanced African nation. When he’s not learning how to rule a kingdom from his father-the reigning Black Panther-or testing out the latest tech, he’s off breaking rules with his best friend, M’Baku. But as conflict brews near Wakanda, T’Challa’s father makes a startling announcement: he’s sending T’Challa and M’Baku to school in America.

Age: Middle School

Chasma Knights

by Boya Sun

Beryl lives in a world full of toys. But these aren’t your ordinary toys―they’re mechanical marvels that almost seem alive! And at the slightest touch, these toys “catalyze,” that is, they merge with their owner and give them special abilities. But not Beryl. She’s a Neon Knight, and Neon Knights can’t catalyze.

All Ages

The Okay Witch

by Emma Steinkellner

Thirteen-year-old Moth Hush loves all things witchy. But she’s about to discover that witches aren’t just the stuff of movies, books, and spooky stories. When some eighth-grade bullies try to ruin her Halloween, something really strange happens. It turns out that Founder’s Bluff, Massachusetts, has a centuries-old history of witch drama. And, surprise: Moth’s family is at the center of it all! 

Age: Middle School

Dog Man

by Dav Pilkey

George and Harold have created a new breed of justice. With the head of a dog and the body of a human, this heroic hound digs into deception, claws after crooks, rolls over robbers, and scampers after squirrels. Will he be able to resist the call of the wild to answer the call of duty?

All Ages

Cape (The League of Secret Heroes)

by Kate Hannigan

Josie O’Malley does a lot to help out Mam after her father goes off to fight the Nazis, but she wishes she could do more—like all those caped heroes who now seem to have disappeared. If Josie can’t fly and control weather like her idol, Zenobia, maybe she can put her math smarts to use cracking puzzles for the government.

Age: Middle School

Parish's Picks — FREE Webcomics Available Online

Lost Nightmare

by Julia K.

Lost Nightmare is a comic about a young nightmare named Ink who is next in line to be the new Bogeyman. However, Ink doesn’t want to be scary so he seeks the help of the Sandman.

All Ages

JL8

by Yale Stewart

JL8 follows the adventures of popular DC comic characters as kids in elementary school. This is an enjoyable read for any fans of DC Comics characters as well as people who enjoy the traditional syndicated comic strip.

All Ages

Kill Six Billion Demons

by Tom Parkinson-Morgan

Sorority sister Allison Ruth must travel to Throne, the ancient city at the center of the multiverse, in an epic bid to save her boyfriend from the clutches of the seven evil kings that rule creation.

Ages: Teens & Adults

Ghost Junk Sickness

by Kristen Lee

Trigger Elliot is a bounty hunter who travels around the galaxy with his not-so-fully-licensed-and-technically-illegal-hunting-partner Vahn Gavotte. They’re lousy at what they do and often resort to petty tactics just to get a bounty; this is their life. After an unsuccessful hijacking of another hunter’s game, the two find themselves in a lot more debt than they bargained for.

Ages: Teens

Parish's Picks — Webcomic Online Collections

Tapas is home to a creator community that has published 77,000 stories to date. Creating an account is FREE, and you can read webcomics for free! You can also watch ads that give you Ink, which is used to pay the creator for upcoming pages. Tapas has something for everyone!

Viz Media, or Shonen Jump, has the latest manga favorites from: My Hero Academia, One-Punch Man and Demon Slayer, just to name a few. Creating an account is FREE, however you can only read the latest pages. To read previous pages, you’ll have to subscribe for the membership, which costs $1.99 a month.