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First Times

Charles Ghigna (author), Lori Joy Smith (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781459811997

Experience the adorable first adventures of childhood with this picture book from bestselling author Charles Ghigna and celebrated illustrator Lori Joy Smith. From the first slip down a slide to the first time picking out a book to read, this rollicking narrative takes readers on a journey of discovery into the memorable firsts in a child's world. A story that will be enjoyed by the whole family, from the youngest, eager to experience their own adventures, to the oldest, so proud to watch them grow.

By A Thread

Ned Dickens (author), Graham Ross (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 1551433257

The toy box has erupted and the toys are perched high, dangling low, hanging by a thread. Bard, the old bear, has been lucky enough to land in the underwear drawer and from there is able to assist his friends, if only they will follow his daring directions. By a Thread is about heroism in small places, all the different kinds of courage a child can draw upon. The text rhymes, and its rhythm takes the tongue on a rollicking ride. Even the most determined reader will not be able to read the story silently.

What Makes Us Unique? Our First Talk About Diversity

Dr. Jillian Roberts (author), Cindy Revell (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781459809499

When it comes to explaining physical, cultural and religious differences to children, it can be difficult to know where to begin. What Makes Us Unique? provides an accessible introduction to the concept of diversity, teaching children how to respect and celebrate people's differences and that ultimately, we are all much more alike than we are different. Additional questions at the back of the book allow for further discussion. Child psychologist Dr. Jillian Roberts designed the Just Enough series to empower parents/caregivers to start conversations with young ones about difficult or challenging subject matter. Other books in the series deal with birth, death, separation and divorce. For more information, visit www.justenoughseries.com.

Best Friend Trouble

Frances Itani (author), Geneviève Després (Illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554698929

Hanna is fed up with her best friend, Lizzy, who is always trying to be better than her. When Lizzy tells Hanna she can throw her ball farther and succeeds, it’s the last straw. Hanna is tired of feeling second best, but what she doesn’t realize is that sometimes she makes Lizzy feel that way too. Maybe there’s a way they can still be best friends after all. A funny and relatable story about best friends, competition and learning to see things from another’s point of view.

Once Upon a Balloon

Bree Galbraith (author), Isabelle Malenfant (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781459803251

Theo is brokenhearted when he accidentally lets go of the string of his party balloon. As he watches it float out of sight, Theo wonders where his balloon might have gone. Luckily, his older brother Zeke knows everything about everything. Zeke explains that it is a little-known fact that all lost balloons end up in Chicago, the Windy City. Then he tells Theo about Frank, who is responsible for collecting all the balloons in the world. Theo is so touched by Frank's story that he decides to send him a message of hope the only way he knows how.

Pierre le Poof

Andrea Beck (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554690299

Pierre, a pampered show poodle in training, is torn between his love for his devoted owner, Miss Murphy, and his dreams of running wild in the park. One day, an open door beckons and Pierre escapes. But, this spunky little pooch gets more than he bargains for and learns that home is the best place of all. Pierre Le Poof! is this charming character's first adventure in a new series by author-illustrator Andrea Beck.

Clever Rachel

Debby Waldman (author), Cindy Revell (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554690824

In this retelling of a Jewish folktale, Jacob tries to stump Rachel with his best riddles but fails repeatedly. When a young woman in need of help presents Rachel and Jacob with the trickiest riddles of all, they discover the only way to solve them is to work together.

Richard Was a Picker

Carolyn Beck (author), Ben Hodson (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554690893

Richard picks his nose, until one day he discovers the perils of his habit. When his finger gets stuck up his nose, Richard panics. Then his nose sucks up his arm. Before he knows it, all of him slides up his nose. Richard has become a giant booger. He propels his booger-ball self out of his house. But as he rolls down the sidewalk things get worse, way worse. Soon the whole town is chasing after him and jabbing at him. Will Richard be poked to pieces? With some quick thinking and a little luck, Richard avoids a terrible end.

Elliot's Fire Truck

Andrea Beck (author)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554691449

Elliot Moose is on the loose once more. As he jumps aboard his bright red fire truck and takes off to the next rescue, he feels courageous. All his friends want to ride on the truck and be firefighters too. Nobody wants to be rescued. One by one,Elliot's friends climb aboard until there is no more room on the truck. When suddenly they all need a rescue for real, it is his two youngest and smallest friends who save the day. This lively new addition to the Elliot Moose series is a charming tale of friendship and fair play.

Room Enough for Daisy

Debby Waldman (author), Cindy Revell (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781554692569

Daisy has more toys than she knows what to do with. In this story, inspired by an Eastern European folktale about a house that's too small, Daisy thinks she needs a bigger bedroom for all the gifts on her birthday list. Her clever mom helps her realize less is more, and Daisy decides to donate many of her things to a Mitzvah Day rummage sale. In the process, Daisy learns about sharing and the satisfaction that comes from choosing what's important.

Pocket Rocks

Sheree Fitch (author), Helen Flook (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438153

No matter how hard he tries, Ian Goobie can't do the things that the other children in his class can do. Then he finds a rock, a rock that fits perfectly into his pocket, a rock that touches all his senses and whisks him away into a whole other world. From then on, as long as he has a rock in his pocket, Ian Goobie can begin to cope with his daily challenges. That is until he stuffs so many rocks in his pockets that his pants fall down right outside in the schoolyard.

A Sack Full of Feathers

Debby Waldman (author), Cindy Revell (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551438634

Yankel loves to tell stories, as long as they are someone else's. He does not see the hurt that his stories cause, the way they spread and change. Then the rabbi hands him a bag of feathers and tells him to place one on every doorstep in the village. Yankel is changed by what happens and finds himself with his best story yet, one of his very own.

Ben's Big Dig

Daniel Wakeman (illustrator), Dirk Van Stralen (illustrator)

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers ISBN: 9781551433844

If you dug a hole to the other side of the earth, where do you think you would end up? In this wordless picturebook, pictures tell Ben's story of a midnight journey through the center of the earth and the surprising journey home. Ben's mother has dropped him off for a visit with his grandmother, a woman with a penchant for baking. Ben feels lost and lonely until he discovers a chest full of mining gear. He embarks on an adventure that will make him grateful for the hundreds of pies stacked in his grandmother's kitchen.