New Fall Books for Kids and Tweens
Summer weather is hanging on a bit longer than we want here in California. Nevertheless, we are in the mood for autumn! Below are our favorite new fall books for kids and tweens, with everything from board books for little readers all the way up to middle grade novels for your tweens. They also include some great books just for Halloween!
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New Fall Books for Kids and Tweens
Enjoy these new fall books for kids, including some great ones for Halloween!
If you love The Very Hungry Caterpillar, you will enjoy The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s First Fall, part of a new collection of seasonal books for very young readers from the World of Eric Carle. Little ones will discover along with the Caterpillar just what is so special about autumn, as they explore changing leaves, prickly pinecones, and trips to the pumpkin patch with friends.
I’m a Little Pumpkin is a simply adorable board book, perfect for your little pumpkin! The lyrical text, meant to be sung to the tune of “I’m a Little Teapot,” is paired with gorgeous illustrations of different kinds of pumpkins, gently introducing children to the idea that we can look different and still have a lot in common!
Another cute board book to read this fall is Happy Halloween, Corduroy! The beloved character enjoys getting ready for Halloween as he picks out a pumpkin, chooses a costume, and decorates. The action culminates in a Halloween party with friends! A sweet book to celebrate Halloween, and I love the subtle message, as several of Corduroy’s buddies carry UNICEF bags to go trick-or-treating!
Adults and children alike will identify with Sweater Weather! The simple text is paired with effective illustrations that evoke the struggles of “sweater weather,” when clothes can be itchy and uncomfortable, and no one can seem to get dressed on time. Papa Bear is frustrated that his little bear cubs can’t seem to get ready to leave the house, but in the end, they all learn that the most important part of fall is spending it with those you love.
Leila the Perfect Witch is a wonderful new picture book from Flavia Z. Drago. It is a companion (not a sequel!) to her previous book Gustavo the Shy Ghost. Leila is a very talented witch and good at everything she tries – well, *most* everything. Although Leila comes from a family of wonderful bakers (her grandmother made the gingerbread house they live in), she discovers that baking does not come easily to her. But Leila is determined, and she works hard to improve so that she can win the upcoming baking competition. Luckily her family is on hand to share their baking tricks and teach Leila to enjoy the process. A fun book to share with beginning bakers or anyone who struggles with perfectionism. Includes great examples of mindfulness techniques for when you are stressed out!
My daughter’s new favorite book is If Your Babysitter Is a Bruja! What would you do if your babysitter zoomed in on a broom, with a black sombrero on her head? Would you try to escape, or would you decide that she’s a good witch? (And maybe you are, too!) This is such a great book to read out loud, and of course I love the Spanish sprinkled throughout. It is especially loved in a Spanglish house like ours, but if you don’t speak Spanish, don’t worry! It is very cleverly done, with the translations included or obvious from context. And the illustrations are wonderful, channeling the energy and vibrancy of the text. I also love that the main character is mixed race, something my daughter picked up on right away!
Little Moar and the Moon is a wonderful book to share with children who might be a little scared about some aspects of fall. Little Moar, an Inuit boy who lives in the far north, loves fall, but he definitely does NOT love that it gets dark so early. Moar is scared of the moon, because to him it looks like it has a creepy little half-smile, which scares him. Moar tries to make it home before dark, but he is distracted by wanting to play with his friends and help his cousin take care of his dogs. In the end, his mother helps soothe Moar’s fears with a gentle scientific explanation about what the moon is really like. Children will identify with Moar and learn that when they are scared, the best thing to do is talk to someone they trust. The book is also a wonderful introduction to everyday life in a modern day Inuit town.
In 2009, author Jarrett Dapier was invited to drum at the White House during the Obamas’ first Halloween celebration as First Couple. Dapier and his fellow drummers were dressed as skeletons, causing him to wonder, What if real skeletons performed at the White House? The Most Haunted House in America is the story of a group of skeleton drummers who perform at a White House Halloween celebration – and meet real ghosts! The book weaves in real ghost stories associated with White House (kids can read more about these at the back of the book) and includes a special appearance by the Obamas as well as the ghosts of other famous residences, like Abraham Lincoln. A fun book to read at Halloween or after a trip to DC!
Nina Soni Halloween Queen is a fun Halloween book for younger middle grade readers, especially those that like to tinker – or those that, like Nina, tend to get distracted and wait until the last minute to decide on a Halloween costume! When her best friend Jay says he has the best costume ever, Nina knows she needs to do something amazing…but there are only a few days left until Halloween! In the end, she decides to create her own haunted house in her basement, with help from her little sister (one of my favorite characters!) The book is about inventing and building as well as about navigating friendships. As a list maker myself, I love all of the lists Nina makes throughout the book, about, for example, her haunted house ideas, or reasons her best friend’s cousin seems determined to ruin the fun for everyone. Part of the lovely series about the adventures of a creative and very relatable Indian-American girl.
Something Wicked is the third in the Spirit Hunters series, starring a Korean-American heroine. When Harper and her best friend discover that an ancient evil is on the prowl and her sister is caught up in the middle, they must find a way to rescue her. While not strictly a Halloween tale, this supernatural mystery is perfect for this time of year. I love the diverse cast of characters, and the way that Harper’s heritage is woven naturally into the book, without being a main focus.
The Halloween Moon is a great spooky read for tweens and early teens. What if Halloween night suddenly came to a halt and stretched into infinity – and you, your best friend, and the class bully were the only ones who could lift the curse and save everyone? The book, from New York Times best-selling author Joseph Fink, is on one level a creepy adventure story about an unlikely group of heroes, but at its core it’s also a coming of age story. Its 13 year old heroine must learn to face her fears of growing older and the terrifying reality that her comfortable life can’t stay the same forever.
What are your favorite fall books for kids?