Staff Picks Youth Nonfiction

« All Staff Picks

July 2024

Hike it : a complete guide to camping, hiking, and backpacking in the U.S.A.

by Iron Tazz

Looking for a fun family activity – try hiking! In this book, it explores 20 different national parks with diverse terrains. Great illustrated book with entry level introduction to the outdoors.  It covers everything from essential hiking equipment, fire safety and encountering wildlife.  It even covers how to go to the bathroom in the woods! Enjoy summer and the natural beauty of the USA!
Recommended by: Lenore Garoufalis, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

June 2024

Could You Ever Waddle With Penguins!?

by Sandra Markle

Popular animal science author, Sandra Markle, has done it again creating a cute, informational series about animals that kids are sure to love! Could You Ever Waddle with Penguins!? is full of big, bright pictures and illustrations, and fun facts, about Adélie penguins. Geared towards younger elementary readers, there is enough text to learn something new, but not so much that it becomes overwhelming. After penguins, kids can see how they’d do with dolphins in the next book! Fans of Markle’s other youth nonfiction series, or the Who Would Win books will be sure to like these too!

Recommended by: Erin Cady, Youth Services Reference Librarian

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

Colours of Islam


This beautiful songbook is a compilation of poems and songs. The book is good for ages 6 and up.  If your children like religious books with poetry and songs, this book will be a favorite. I would like to share some of the author’s words from this lovely book.
So many of our brothers and sisters, all across the land, they have no food to eat at all and they need a helping hand.
Smiles, warm and shining, like the sun upon our faces. Hope as rich and green as the trees of an oasis. The colours of Islam bloom in so many places.
Recommended by: Ghada Rafati, Patron Service

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

Butt or Face: can you tell which end you’re looking at?

by Kari Lavelle

Butt or Face by Kari Lavelle is a fun book that has the reader guessing “is this a butt, or is it a face?” Each page has a photo of a part of an animal and the reader must guess if it’s a butt…or is it a face? This is a fun book to read along with your child. The question is then answered when you turn the page and see a full photo of the animal and also learn facts about the (usually) obscure animal. There is a map at the end of the book and it showcases where each animal lives and this also becomes a great geography lesson. This book works best for ages 4-8. You and your child will have a fun time and a few laughs going through this book together!

Recommended by: Stacie Pendleton, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

May 2024

The importance of being Ernie (and Bert): a best friends’ guide to life

Bert and Ernie have been entertaining kids for over 50 years with their pals on Sesame Street, but how do two with so much different between them make their friendship work? This silly “self-help” book authored by both of our Sesame Street friends switches between both of their perspectives as they describe the important things that go into a friendship. Bert and Ernie certainly have their differences, but they are also able to find common ground on important things such as how to spend time together and what makes each other unique. Whether you rely on a rubber ducky or have a penchant for pigeons, this book will have you smiling from ear to ear and thinking about your relationships with your own friends.

Recommended by: Alexander Pappas, Youth Services Reference Librarian

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

April 2024

The Playbook: 52 Rules To Aim, Shoot, And Score In This Game Called Life

by Kwame Alexander

The Playbook: 52 Rules To Aim, Shoot, And Score In This Game Called Life by Kwame Alexander – Kwame Alexander, author of The Crossover and other prolific poetry and sports books, brings an approachable self-help book excellent for reluctant readers. Featuring lovely illustrations and using the game of basketball as a model for real life, Alexander gives kids guidance on several of the tough questions they will face or have already. Alexander’s short, rhythmic poetry and rhymes flow with such ease that the book will fly by and the lessons he brings truly shine. With motivational quotes from prolific athletes such as LeBron James and public figures such as Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, this quick read will give your readers that little push they need to step up to the free throw line and keep pushing whether their shot is a swish or short.

Recommended by: Alexander Pappas, Youth Services, Reference Librarian I

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

January 2024

A Year of Good News

by Martin Smatana

This book was a pleasure to read as it is filled with happiness and positivity! These 52 true short stories are derived from all over the world.  Reading good news has a tremendous impact on both mental and physical health by increasing feelings of joy and hope.  It also demonstrates how kids can show kindness and make a difference in their own world! The illustrations are so creative and well done and made from recycled fabric.  If you want to put a smile on your face, read a few of these good deeds!
Recommended by: Lenore Garoufalis, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

November 2023

Secret Schools True Stories of the Determination to Lear

by Heather Camlot

Can you imagine not being able to go to school?  What if you had to keep it a secret and it meant hiding, sneaking out late at night or risk going to prision!! This book explores hidden classrooms all over the world. These true stories of courage introduce readers to the important person who played a role in each secret school. It shows the power of education and throughout history how far some have had to go to access it. Great lesson for middle school readers.

Recommended by: Lenore Garoufalis, Youth Services Assistant

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

August 2023

Underground Fire: Hope, Sacrifice, and Courage in the Cherry Mine Disaster

by Sally M. Walker

The town of Cherry, Illinois still exists and is the setting for the latest non-fiction book written by Sally M. Walker. On Saturday November 13, 1909 a fire began in part of the mine that eventually killed hundreds of men. The rescue efforts continued for eight days until the mine was sealed. Walker’s account relates the tragedy from the miners’ efforts to survive as well as the rescuers’ efforts to save them. The Cherry Mine Disaster remains one of the worst coal mining disasters in United States. The disaster led to changes in mining and labor regulations.

Recommended by: Joan Stoiber, Youth Services Reference Librarian 1

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

July 2023

Who’s the Bendiest?

by Emilie Dufresne

This Animal vs Animal nonfiction book series by Emilie Dufresne is sure to capture the attention of readers who love Jerry Pallotta’s Who Would Win? series or Kieran Downs’ Animal Battles series. Who’s the Bendiest? explores six “contenders,” the rat, cat, ferret, octopus, hagfish, and California Sea Lion. They are paired off in rounds where facts and pictures are shared with readers to determine who is the bendiest and why. At the end of the book, there is a “Hall of Fame” of honorable mentions, a quiz, an activity suggestion, and a glossary. Each book in the series is structured this way to make for a super fun reading experience! Grab a copy of Who’s the Bendiest? today to find out which animals can twist, squeeze, and squish the most to win the title!

Recommended by: Erin Cady, Youth Services References Librarian

Posted in: Youth Nonfiction

1 2 3 5