photographer | slp | language & literacy | love good design, engaging books, reggio emilia, documenting | @averyandaugustine on instagram

founder of | @littlelitbookseries on instagram




the only fish in the sea

Sadie is a girl with a plan.  Together with her pal Sherman, she sets out to save an abandoned goldfish that she names  Ellsworth (because “every fish deserves a proper name”).  Armed with fishing gear, twenty-one pink balloons and a strange band of monkeys clad in striped shirts, our scrappy heroine and her first mate embark on their rescue.  The clever visual humor will produce more than a few chortles whilst reading The Only Fish in the Sea.

Written by Philip C. Stead, illustrated by Matthew Cordell and published by Roaring Brook Press.  Out on August 15!


lifetime: the amazing numbers in animal lives

A fascinating look at numbers in the lives of animals.  A caribou will grow and shed 10 sets of antlers in its lifetime. A male seahorse will carry and birth 1,000 tiny seahorses in a lifetime!  More detailed information about the animals mentioned in the book awaits the reader at the end, along with how the writer used math to write Lifetime.

Lifetime: The Amazing Numbers in Animal Lives was written by Lola M. Schaefer, illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal and published by Chronicle Books.


little lit book series: middle grade

August is middle grade month for us at #littlelitbookseries.  If you read any book this month with your upper graders (ages 8-12) before the school year starts, let it be this one.

Two fifth graders from totally different backgrounds don't share too much in common—at first.  Ravi has just moved to America from India.  Joe has APD (auditory processing disorder) and is subject to misunderstandings and difficulties in communicating.  Save Me a Seat chronicles their story of standing up to one of the most intimidating bullies in their class and devising a plan to stop him over the course of a week.  Each chapter alternates between Ravi's and Joe's perspectives.  It's an exceptional story about friendship, acceptance and how assumptions are often wrong.  And how "it's possible for a couple of zebras to outsmart a crocodile."  It's relatable on so many levels.  Glossaries and recipes from both characters are included in the back.  A must-read.

Save Me a Seat was collaboratively written by Sarah Weeks and Gita Varadajaran, and was published by Scholastic Press.  For more insights on the book, check out this interview with both authors on Sarah Weeks' website.

For more notable middle grade books, check in at @littlelitbookseries throughout the month and head over to see other favorites of ours today by searching the hashtag #littlelitbookseries on Instagram.


hey, boy

Once your dog, always your dog.  A lovely and affecting story of a boy and his dog and their moments of elation and sadness that will resonate deeply with those of us who have grown up with pets.  The illustrations and text move together in a beautiful union — simple, graceful, honest and heartwarming.  This photograph doesn’t do justice to the handsome texture of the cover, so we encourage you to seek this one out for yourselves, hold it in your hands, find a quiet spot and spend some time with it.

Hey, Boy was written by Benjamin Strouse, illustrated by Jennifer Phelan and published by Margaret K. McElderry Books.


50 cities of the usa

Gabrielle Balkan and Sol Linero, the team behind the phenomenal 50 States series, need no introduction.  In 50 Cities of the USA, they set out to do something really special: paint a picture of each city's story, shining "a light on the people who strive to make their communities stronger, the places that encourage creativity, and the moments in history—even the history that we are making now—that highlight the achievements of our nation."

Each city map contains a quick introduction, key facts (including local lingo and a search-and-find game), icons that are unique to each city, a spotlight on a particular neighborhood and a timeline that shows an ideal day spent in the city (take note, travelers!).  Also featured are important industries, experiences, and reading suggestions and resources for further exploration.

An incredible resource, meticulously written and researched, thoughtfully designed and gorgeously illustrated.  We're blown away by the incredible care and work that went into producing 50 Cities.  It's sure to inspire wonder and curiosity in so many ways, and is a must for every home library.  Click here for a preview of the interior.

50 Cities of the USA was written by Gabrielle Balkan, illustrated by Sol Linero and published by Wide Eyed Editions.  The release date is September 7 and it's available for pre-order now.