Great Picture Books of 2020, So Far

Last updated on August 4.

The Ocean Calls: A Haenyeo Mermaid Story Cover Image
By Tina Cho, Jess X. Snow (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781984814869
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Kokila - August 4th, 2020

Young Dayeon wonders if she's brave enough to be a haenyeo - a free-diver - like her Grandma. As she works up her courage to try, the reader is treated to gorgeous illustrations awash in lush purples and vibrant oranges. Complete with beautiful messages about working in partnership with other women and in harmony with the sea, this grandmother-granddaughter story is a delight to read aloud and a welcome addition to the picture book world. --Elese


Love by Sophia (The Sophia Books) Cover Image
By Jim Averbeck, Yasmeen Ismail (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781481477901
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Margaret K. McElderry Books - June 16th, 2020

A story about art, family, love and perspective. -Elese


How to Find a Bird Cover Image
By Jennifer Ward, Diana Sudyka (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781481467056
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Beach Lane Books - August 4th, 2020

A wonderful picture book introduction to the world of birds. There are a lot of bird books out there but this one has joined Kevin Henkes' Birds as an absolute favorite.--Elese


A Family for Louie Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781984813213
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers - June 9th, 2020

Louie, the most-adorable dog, has perfected his ideal day on the town -- pancakes, fish tacos, fettuccine and hot cocoa -- well, almost perfected. Louie is lonely! Kids will giggle at the ever-expressive Louie's idiosyncrasies as he navigates through a Goldilocks array of families until he finds the one just right for him. So much to love on these pages. --Elese


Alien Tomato Cover Image
By Kristen Schroeder, Mette Engell (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781624149764
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Page Street Kids - July 14th, 2020

You Matter Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781534421691
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum Books for Young Readers - June 2nd, 2020

Tad Cover Image
By Benji Davies, Benji Davies (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062563590
Availability: Backordered
Published: HarperCollins - June 9th, 2020

Nana Akua Goes to School Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780525581130
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Schwartz & Wade - June 16th, 2020

It's Grandparent's Day and a young girl wonders what her classmates will think of her beloved Nana Akua. A powerful story skillfully told, with magnificent illustrations. --Elese


Gustavo, the Shy Ghost Cover Image
By Flavia Z. Drago, Flavia Z. Drago (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781536211146
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick - July 14th, 2020

Unstoppable: (Family Read-Aloud book, Silly Book About Cooperation) Cover Image
By Adam Rex, Laura Park (Illustrator)
$16.99
ISBN: 9781452165042
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Chronicle Books - May 5th, 2020

A silly read-aloud that will have adult readers chuckling, too. --Elese


Spacebot Cover Image
By Mike Twohy, Mike Twohy (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781534444362
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books - May 19th, 2020

An odd but loveable space dog in an odd but loveable picture book.Short and silly. --ELese


When the Storm Comes Cover Image
By Linda Ashman, Taeeun Yoo (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780399546099
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - May 26th, 2020

From Chapel Hill's own Linda Ashman!


Everyone's Awake: (Read-Aloud Bedtime Book, Goodnight Book for Kids) Cover Image
By Colin Meloy, Shawn Harris (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781452178059
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Chronicle Books - March 3rd, 2020

What quirky picture book! The members of this unusual household stay awake all night in increasingly absurd ways. Had us all laughing out loud. --Elese


How to Be a Pirate Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9781681197784
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury Children's Books - March 3rd, 2020

A heartwarming and gorgeously illustrated book about the stories behind tattoos and realizing you can be whatever you decide to be. HOW TO BE A PIRATE will make your day. It will have readers young and old laughing and smiling from ear to ear. --Zach


Snail Crossing Cover Image
By Corey R. Tabor, Corey R. Tabor (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062878007
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Balzer + Bray - February 4th, 2020

A hilarious read-aloud about one very determined snail. --Elese ("Oh, Snail Crossing is so funny" says my 8-year-old as he saw me making this list.)


Lift Cover Image
By Minh Lê, Dan Santat (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781368036924
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers - May 5th, 2020

Young Iris has been her family's designated elevator-button-pusher for as long as she can remember, until the day when her role is unceremoniously usurped by her upstart of a baby brother ... --Elese


A New Kind of Wild Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780525553892
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dial Books - April 21st, 2020

A story of homesickness, memory and discovery. With the help of a new friend, Ren learns how to find the beauty & possibility in the city around him, while keeping space in his heart for the magic of the place he left behind. Lush, rainbow-filled illustrations are rife with small details that will delight upon repeat readings. --Elese


We Are Water Protectors Cover Image
By Carole Lindstrom, Michaela Goade (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781250203557
Availability: Backordered
Published: Roaring Brook Press - March 17th, 2020

This Way, Charlie Cover Image
By Caron Levis, Charles Santoso (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781419742064
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Abrams Books for Young Readers - April 21st, 2020

A picture book for slightly older readers about the friendship between Jack & Charlie, a skittish goat and a blind horse, who together find a way to face life's challenges. --Elese


Bedtime Bonnet Cover Image
By Nancy Redd, Nneka Myers (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781984895240
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Random House Books for Young Readers - April 7th, 2020

"A celebration of Black hair, family, and culture. ... This brightly hued picture book with loads of charm will entertain and empower readers." --Kirkus Reviews


¡Vamos! Let’s Go Eat Cover Image
$14.99
ISBN: 9781328557049
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Versify - March 24th, 2020

A follow-up to the fantastic ¡Vamos! Let's Go to the Market!


My N.C. from A-Z Cover Image
By Michelle Lanier, Dare Coulter (Illustrator)
$14.95
ISBN: 9780865264991
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: North Carolina Division of Archives & History - January 15th, 2020

This colorful board book celebrates pride of place, creates connections to North Carolina's rich African American heritage, and teaches children about human equality and social justice. P is for Pauli Murray!


Roy Digs Dirt (David Books) Cover Image
By David Shannon, David Shannon (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781338251012
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: The Blue Sky Press - April 7th, 2020

David Shannon, author of the No, David books, is back with the story of an earnestly naughty terrier. --Elese


Antiracist Baby Picture Book Cover Image
$8.99
ISBN: 9780593110508
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Kokila - July 14th, 2020

We Will Rock Our Classmates (Penelope #2) Cover Image
By Ryan T. Higgins, Ryan T. Higgins (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9781368059596
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Disney-Hyperion - July 21st, 2020

In a Jar Cover Image
By Deborah Marcero, Deborah Marcero (Illustrator)
$17.99
ISBN: 9780525514596
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers - January 21st, 2020

A joyous riot of color with a pair of ridiculously cute bunnies ... Llewellyn and Evelyn are the best of friends, collecting memories of the wonders of their world. When the day comes that Evelyn's family has to move to a new town, the two bunny friends endeavor to find a new way to share their experiences with each other across the distance. --Elese