The Best New Children’s and YA Books of July

Welcome to the dog days of summer! With temperatures rising, it’s an excellent time to check out some new and exciting books. From nonfiction picture books to fantasy for tweens and teens, these are the best books hitting bookstore shelves in July. Whether you’re looking for your next poolside read or a new addition to your storytime stack, you’ll find some excellent options on this list.

yes no Picture Books 9780593425459 Everyone Loves Career Day but Zia by Jenny Liao, illustrated by Dream Chen

As Career Day approaches, Zia can’t wait to introduce her seamstress mother to her class. However, language barriers and time constraints make Zia’s hopes fall until she comes up with a creative workaround for both problems. This delightful follow-up to Everyone Loves Lunchtime but Zia shows the unique challenges immigrants and their children face.

9780593533369 I am Jesse Owens by Brad Meltzer, illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos

Introduce your little one to the amazing Olympic gold medalist Jesse Owens with this picture book biography! Readers will learn about Jesse’s childhood, challenges, and how he rose to the top and shattered world records.

9780593650219 Yum, Yum, Mexico! by Diane de Anda, illustrated by Emily Mendoza

Dive into the delicious world of Mexican food with this colorful board book for babies and toddlers! From sweet to spicy, a different food represents each letter of the alphabet. It’s the perfect read for little foodies!

9780593624692 Bridges Instead of Walls by Mavis Staples and Carole Boston Weatherford, illustrated by Steffi Walthall

Young activists will enjoy this inspiring biography featuring Civil Rights activist and Grammy-winning singer Mavis Staples. Beloved poet and children’s author Carole Boston Weatherford brings Staples’s story to life alongside Steffi Walthall’s vibrant and joyful illustrations.

9780593569665 Sheepwrecked by Ashley Belote

Take to the high seas with this giggle-worthy pirate adventure! A group of pirate sheep set sail with their booty in tow. When a disaster befalls their ship, the sheep become trapped on an island, scared they’ll be lost forever. But a sense of adventure and an unexpected friend show them that every “baaad” situation has a silver lining.

9780593529201 I Am La Chiva!: The Colorful Bus of the Andes by Karol Hernández, illustrated by Lorena Alvarez Gómez

It’s colorful, musical, and packed with people. It’s la chiva — the South American bus that winds its way through the Andes mountains. Readers tag along for an unforgettable ride through Columbia, exploring villages and the countryside and celebrating the vibrant culture.

9780593707265 Raashi’s Rakhis: A New Celebration of Raksha Bandhan by Sheetal Sheth, illustrated by Lucia Soto

Raashi can’t wait to celebrate Raksha Bandhan with her family. She helps prepare the food, decorations, and music. But when it comes time to give all the boys a handmade bracelet, Raashi speaks up and inspires everyone to give bracelets to all the children, regardless of gender.

9780593698488 The Imaginoodles by Christopher Eliopoulos

From the illustrator of the Ordinary People Change the World series comes a funny new picture book about friendship and imagination. Henry is a quiet hedgehog who suffers from anxiety. Chester is an outgoing chipmunk with a taste for adventure. With encouragement from a new friend, this unlikely pair looks past their differences and becomes best friends.

9780593372760 Ode to Grapefruit by Kari Lavelle, illustrated by Bryan Collier

James Earl Jones is a legendary actor with one of Hollywood’s most recognizable voices. But when he was a child, he struggled to speak without stuttering. This picture book biography takes young readers through James’s struggle, his solution (not talking), and how writing poetry helped him overcome his fear of speaking and become the actor we all know and adore.

9780593406014 Angélica and la Güira by Angie Cruz, illustrated by Luz Batista

When summer ends, Angélica’s grandfather gives her a güira, an instrument to remind her of home in the Dominican Republic. In Washington Heights, Angélica uses the güira to keep her memory of home fresh and share her heritage with her neighbors.

yes no Chapter Books & Middle Grade 9780593754825 Who Is Lionel Messi? by James Buckley, Jr. and Who HQ, illustrated by Manuel Gutierrez

Soccer enthusiasts will love reading the latest novel in the Who Is series. Kids will learn about Lionel Messi’s upbringing and how he became interested in soccer. From making his team debut at 16 years old to winning the World Cup in 2022, readers will discover all the details about this fascinating and ambitious footballer.

9780593660942 The 66th Rebirth of Frankie Caridi #1 by Johnny Marciano, illustrated by Ashley Mackenzie

Frankie has always looked after her younger brother, who has horns sprouting from his head. When the siblings enroll in a new boarding school for kids like her brother, it doesn’t take long for Frankie to realize something is amiss. As Frankie learns about the school, she uncovers long-kept secrets, gains immense power, and must deal with the fallout of both.

9780593616864 Penny Draws a Class Trip by Sara Shepard

Series fans will eagerly dive back into the world of Penny Draws with her latest graphic novel adventure. Penny is a young girl with anxiety who uses her sketchbook to manage her nerves. In this installment, Penny goes on a field trip to New York City with her class. This series from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Pretty Little Liars is an excellent choice for young readers who love stories about humor, friendship, and small acts of bravery.

9780593372906 Meesh the Bad Demon #2: The Secret of the Fang by Michelle Lam

This is the second book in the Meesh the Bad Demon graphic novel series. When an evil force starts threatening residents of the underworld, newly appointed Guardian Meesh finds herself saving the world — again. Colorful artwork, magic, and adventure make this series a must-read for fantasy fans.

9780593646977 It Came from the Trees by Ally Russell

Bigfoot, scouts, and a missing girl — this dark adventure novel has enough thrills and chills to keep young readers up all night. When a mysterious creature kidnaps her best friend, Jenna joins a local scout troop to look for her. Before long, Jenna and her new troop find themselves alone in the woods with nothing but their wits to help them get home alive.

9780593617656 The Night Librarian by Christopher Lincoln

Twin siblings Page and Turner join forces with a mysterious librarian and characters from classic literature to save the New York Public Library in this graphic novel adventure. If your young reader enjoys reading books about books or stories like Escape From Mr. Lemoncello’s Library, add this book to their “to read” list this summer!

yes no YA 9780593352052 Two Sides to Every Murder by Danielle Valentine

Seventeen years after an infamous murder at Camp Lost Lake, two teens return to the camp, searching for answers. Olivia and Reagan each have their own reasons for returning, but as they search for clues to the past, they learn that someone is willing to do anything — even murder — to keep those secrets hidden.

9780593705568 The Midnight Game by Cynthia Murphy

The next time you are in the mood for an addictive thriller you can’t set down, pick up this novel. It’s about a group of online friends who decide to meet in person to play a spooky game they all obsess over. But once they start playing, there’s no way to stop, and the players realize that losing the game will cost them their lives.

9780593697863 On the Bright Side by Anna Sortino

When Ellie’s school for deaf students closes, she must return home and attend her mainstream school. She struggles to fit in until she meets Jackson, a boy dealing with his own disability. The teens become a lifeline for each other in this hopeful novel about friendship, romance, and community.

9780593485057 Such Charming Liars by Karen M. McManus

From the bestselling author of One of Us Is Lying comes a new thriller to keep you turning pages long into the night. A jewelry heist at a billionaire’s birthday party goes sideways when Kat and her mother run into her ex-stepbrother and his father. When the billionaire gets murdered, Kat and Liam must work together to expose the killer before they become the next victims.

9780593703953 Our Wicked Histories by Amy Goldsmith

If you love things that go bump in the night, pick up this chilling YA horror novel about a Halloween weekend gone wrong. When Meg gets invited to spend the weekend at an Irish estate, she hopes to mend the divide between herself and her old friend group. But Wren Hall has secrets, and when the weekend takes a horrifying turn, Meg realizes she and her friends might not survive.

The post The Best New Children’s and YA Books of July appeared first on Brightly.

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