Although any year is a great year to be published, authors with new books out this year have faced some extreme challenges because of the global pandemic. I never thought I’d grow to appreciate social media, but just think about how isolated we all would have been without it these past few months. Hopefully, meet-and-greet events will resume in the near future and authors will once again get out and about to promote their books.  One of my favorite ways to help pass the time is by reading this year’s newly published picture books. Here are just a few of my many favorites. I’m also looking forward to seeing what the second half of 2020 brings to the market. Enjoy!

The Nest That Wren Built

“The Nest That Wren Built” written by Randi Sonenshine and illustrated by Anne Hunter (Copyright 2020, Candlewick Press) is a debut picture book by a first-time author. Using the repetitive rhyming style of “The House That Jack Built,” a pair of Carolina Wrens are put on display as they work together to build a nest and raise their brood. Each turn of a page presents nesting items that range from predictable to downright surprising. When the nest is complete, their focus shifts to the care and raising of the nestlings, who seem to fly away too soon–leaving behind an empty nest.  The back of the book contains both a glossary and a fact page that will give you a whole new appreciation for Carolina Wrens. Illustrations of ink and color pencil on tinted paper bring both charm and personality to this focused look at these unique birds.

The Old Truck

“The Old Truck” written and illustrated by Jarrett and Jerome Pumphrey (Copyright 2020, Norton Young Readers imprint of W.W. Norton and Company) is a debut picture book about a forgotten old truck finding a renewed purpose on the family farm. Inspired by the hard-working women in their family, this collaboration between brothers, who are also authors and illustrators, features pictures designed using over 250 stamps they created. The result is a nostalgic look at how something like an old truck in a pasture can find new life thanks to the hard work and determination of a young farmer who dares to dream.

This is the Church

“This is the Church” written by Sarah Raymond Cunningham and illustrated by Ariel Landy (Copyright 2020, Beaming Books imprint of 1517 Media) puts a modern-day spin on a classic children’s rhyme to remind us that although “churches” can be found in many different places, shapes, and sizes, the true church is the people–God’s family of believers. Colorful, kid-friendly illustrations add to the appeal of this very timely children’s book.

If you have a favorite picture book that was published this year, I’d love to hear about it.

Happy Reading 😊

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