From a sticker book of wildlife to a picture book on the infamous duel between Hamilton and Burr, I found 11 new 2015 nonfiction books for kids that they’ll love — they’re fantastic!
Nonfiction Books for Kids
Smithsonian Sticker Creations Wildlife by Kaitlyn DiPerna
I really like this interactive book with it’s eye-catching photographs, perfect text to picture ratio, and stickers. Kids will learn about specific animals, animal groups, and more.
The Disney Book: A Celebration of the World of Disney (DK)
My oldest daughter loves anything Disney and proclaimed that this is the best book ever written. 🙂 While I’m not sure about that, it is a dense fact-filled tome from the early years to the present day.
Genius! The Most Astonishing Inventions of All Time by Deborah Kespert
A visually appealing graphic layout makes it easy to access the invention information — in fact, it’s down-right enticing! Who knows I’d care about the Archimedes Screw and want to read all about it. Or the Elephant Clock — yes, that was a real thing which was super cool. You’ll learn about these early inventions and more modern inventions such as the space rocket. This is an well-done, readable nonfiction book.
Treasury of Norse Mythology: Stories of Intrigue, Trickery, Love, and Revenge by Donna Jo Napoli, illustrations by Christina Balit
This is a large, kid-friendly collection of Nordic myths with colorful illustrations and informative insets explaining more about subjects such as the Berserkers and the Norse diet. Excellent! Also on: Norse Mythology Books for Kids
Smithsonian Early Adventurers Level 1 Readers: Safari Animals, Animal Habitats, Insects, Vehicles, Outer Space, Reptiles by Brenda Scott-Royce, Ruth Starter, Emily Rose Oachs, and Kaitlyn DiPerna
Get this early reader book right away for your kids that love nonfiction and animal facts! They will have so much fun exploring and learning all the information included — and practice their new reading skills! I’m impressed with the photos, the text to photo ratio, and the repetition of sentence patterns.
Smithsonian Endless Explorations Level 4 Readers: World Wonders, Predators, Space Exploration, Natural Disasters, Ocean Habitats, Flight by Brenda Scott-Royce, Stephen Binns, Emily Rose Oachs, and Kaitlyn DiPerna
6 books in 1, this nonfiction book provides interesting factual information on a range of topics. Filled with photographs to support, this is a well-written but challenging book for early elementary age children. Added to: The Best Nonfiction Books for 7 Year Olds
Nonfiction Biography Picture Books
Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton by Don Tate
George loved words and even though he was a slave, he taught himself to read and began composing verses. When students at Chapel Hill began to pay George for his poetry, a professor helped him learn to write and helped his poems protesting slavery were published in the newspaper. But his owner would never sell George, no matter how what George’s fans and friends offered. It took until George was 66 years old to be freed from slavery with the Emancipation Proclamation. I liked this book a lot both the narrative and the illustrations but I would have LOVED for it to include George’s poetry.
Aaron and Alexander: The Most Famous Duel in American History by Don Brown
Good grief — can you imagine this happening?! That’s what I thought when I read the history of these two men. I think the author does a great job of sharing each man’s background, what led up to the duel, and the duel itself. It’s a fascinating part of American history.
Funny Bones: Posada and His Day of the Dead Calaveras by Duncan Tonatiuh
Mexican artist Don Lupe published short funny poems about skeleton and drew lithographs and skeleton etchings or engravings. His calaveras (skeleton pictures) showed all people types of people and usually had a message, political or social, and which are now iconic images for el Dia de Los Muertos. The artwork and graphic layouts perfectly complement this informative history.
Enormous Smallness: A Story of E.E. Cummings by Matthew Burgess, illustrations by Kris Di Giacomo
I adore e.e. cummings’ poetry and found this to be an interesting glimpse into his life as well as how his use of lower-case letters and word-painting was received. This is long for a picture book– double the usual length. I thought perhaps a bit too long. However, the illustrations are marvelous and if you enjoy the poet, it’s worth it.
Emmanuel’s Dream: The True Story of Emmanuel Ofosu Yeboah by Laurie Ann Thompson and Sean Qualls
Emmanuel’s mom helped Emmanuel be strong and believe in himself even though he only had one leg. He hopped 2 miles to school. He learned to ride a bike. He worked to support his family. As an adult, Emmanuel rode 400 miles across his country of Ghana to spread the message that disability is not inability. This is an inspiring true story that is a film called Emmanuel’s Gift.