Books by Theme

The Stuff of Summer

What does thunder and lightning have to do with ants and birthday cakes? How are gardens like boats? Why are baths similar to green peppers? And what do any of these have to do with an adventure inside a digestive track? Each can be explored now! Gardens grow; ants visit picnics (and gardens); there is indoor and outdoor water play and more. So find a cool place, pick up a book, and discover the stuff of summer!

Quotable Quotes: The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you'll go. -- Dr. Seuss


By: Mari Schuh
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Clear photographs in a colorful format combine with brief information to provide an introduction to ants. A photo-glossary, index and an age-appropriate website for more information extends the use and appeal of this book (and the series).

Green Is a Chile Pepper

By: Roseanne Thong
Illustrated by: John Parra
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

Colors introduce foods and more Mexico and other Spanish-speaking counties. Naïve style illustrations accompany bouncy rhymes that incorporate Spanish words; all colors appear in both Spanish and English.

How Does My Garden Grow?

By: Gerda Muller
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Sophie lives in a big city but eagerly anticipates summer at her grandparents. There, she learns about growing vegetables and gardens as she prepares, plants, observes and harvests. Realistic illustrations show an entire scene as well as close-ups on each double page spread.

Milo and Millie

By: Jedda Robard
Age Level: 0-3
Reading Level: Pre-Reader

Before Milo and his teddy go to bed, they have an imaginative bath time adventure in a boat, sailing past a busy city, through a storm and more. Soft illustrations communicate the gentle nature of their jaunt. Easy instructions for Milo’s folded paper boat are sure to inspire bathtub explorations and experiments.

Survive! Inside the Human Body Volume 1: The Digestive System

By: Gomdori co, Hyun-dong Han
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Geo along with Dr. Brain and a couple of friends explore the digestive system from within in their nano-ship. The last chapter sets up the team’s next adventure. First published in South Korea and translated into English, the comic book format provides adventure and information.

The Legend of Lightning and Thunder

By: Paula Ikuutaq Rumbolt
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Orphaned siblings could travel no farther without food and so while camp folk were distracted, the children grabbed meat to eat and a caribou skin and flint with which to play. To avoid punishment, they hid in the sky where they play to this day. And so it is that there is thunder and lightning. The Arctic and its residents are evoked in swirling illustrations and a straightforward telling of an appealing traditional tale.

The Open Ocean

By: Francesco Pittau, Bernadette Gervais
Age Level: 6-9
Reading Level: Independent Reader

Guess whose silhouette? Find out with a lift of a flap. Examine a close-up, lift the tab and up pops a small ocean-dwelling creature. Put pages together to see an entire fish. The large format and sturdy pages with meticulous illustrations engage, surprise, and hold lots of information for readers.

Tyler Makes a Birthday Cake

By: Tyler Florence
Illustrated by: Craig Frazier
Age Level: 3-6
Reading Level: Beginning Reader

When Tyler forgets his dog’s birthday, he goes to Mr. Baker to learn how to bake a cake. There the boy learns about where the ingredients for a carrot cake originate. Childlike illustrations provide information and humorous asides from Tofu, the dog. Tyler’s DOG carrot cake recipe is included.

Proceeds from the sale of books purchased at help support the Reading Rockets project. Thank you!

Sign up for our free newsletters about reading

Lindamood-Bell Learning Centers

Our Literacy Blogs

Gene Luen Yang
Gene Luen Yang
October 18, 2016

Start with a Book: Read. Talk. Explore.


"Books make great gifts because they have whole worlds inside of them. " — Neil Gaiman