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Kids Summer Reading - Nonfiction

Click on the links below to find out if these books are available at your local County Library. If not, place them on hold, and they'll be delivered to your Library where you can pick them up.

Find more reading suggestions at Books & More.

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The Animal Book: A Collection of the Fastest, Fiercest, Toughest, Cleverest, Shyest -- and Most Surprising Animals on Earth by Steve Jenkins

More than three hundred smooth, spiky, fast and slow animals hop and waddle through the two hundred plus pages of the Caldecott Honor artist Steve Jenkins's most impressive nonfiction offering yet.

Grades 2-6

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Aesop in California by Doug Hansen

A collection of Aesop's fables, retold and illustrated to feature places and creatures in California. Includes historical notes about Aesop and the tales, and facts about the animals and locations photographed.

Preschool - Grade 2

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Draw 50 Animal 'Toons: The Step-by-Step Way to Draw Dogs, Cats, Birds, Fish, and Many, Many More-- by Lee J. Ames

Draw 50 Animal 'Toons shows aspiring artists how to draw with ease by following simple, step-by-step instructions. Acclaimed author Lee J. Ames helps you bring to life a skateboarding crocodile, a funky monkey, and a juggling seal. Also included are dinosaurs, flamingos, squirrels, gorillas, and a whole spectrum of fun-loving animals. Lee J. Ames's drawing method has proven successful for children and adults alike over the past thirty years. The twenty-seven books in the Draw 50 series have sold more than 3 million copies and have shown everyone from amateurs to experts how to draw everything from animals to airplanes. Even the youngest artists can make these 'toons look great. It's easy to draw cartoon animals when you do it the Draw 50 way.

Grades 5 and up

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The Dolphins of Shark Bay by Pamela S. Turner

A scientific journey to study the dolphins of coastal Australia considers the many potential sources of dolphin intelligence and what dolphin behavior can inform the scientific community about human intelligence, captive animals and the future of the oceans.

Grades 5-9

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National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry: 200 Poems with Photographs That Squeak, Soar, and Roar! by

Combines photography with lyrical text celebrating the animal world, in a compilation that includes works by such poets as Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost and Rudyard Kipling.

Grades 1-5

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Can We Save the Tiger? by Martin Jenkins

Highlights the ways human behavior can either threaten or conserve the amazing animals that share our planet.

Preschool - Grade 2

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Fairy Tale Comics by

Presents seventeen fairy tales, including classics such as "Puss in Boots" and "Little Red Riding Hood" and more obscure tales such as "The Prince and the Tortoise."

Preschool and up

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Bring on the Birds by Susan Stockdale

Introduces young readers to different kinds of birds found around the world and their unique qualities.

Preschool-Grade 2

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Elephants Can Paint, Too! by Katya Arnold

The true story of a class of elephants that are taught to become artists by a teacher in Thailand.

Kindergarten-3

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Guess What is Growing Inside this Egg by Mia Posada

A simple riddle-in-verse narrative, prompting readers to identify various creatures and their eggs

Kindergarten-3

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Jimmy the Joey by Deborah Lee Rose

An endangered baby koala is rescued and cared for at Koala Hospital and raised among other injured koalas.

Grades 1 - 4

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Lifetime : the amazing numbers in animal lives by Lola Schaefer

A counting primer combines contrasting illustrations with animal facts that invite young children to count a woodpecker's thirty roosting holes, a giraffe's two hundred spots, and one thousand baby seahorses.

Kindergarten - Grade 4

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Button Up: Wrinkled Rhymes by Alice Schertle

This illustrated collection of poetry features animals wearing an array of shoes, jackets, hats, and other fun attire to demonstrate their unique personalities.

Kindergarten - Grade 2

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The Carnival of the Animals by Jack Prelutsky

A group of poems that match the animals that Saint-Saens portrayed in his famous classical work, composed in 1886.

Kindergarten - Grade 2

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National Geographic Book of Animal Poetry  by Patrick J. Lewis

Combines photography with lyrical text celebrating the animal world, in a compilation that includes works by such poets as Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost and Rudyard Kipling.

Kindergarten - Grade 4

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Read-Aloud Rhymes for the Very Young by Jack Prelutsky

A collection of more than 200 short poems by both known and anonymous American and English authors, arranged by topics, including animals, bath time, dragons, and play.

Preschool - Grade 3

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Step Gently Out by Helen Frost

Invites readers to make observations about the natural world while profiling such subjects as a katydid's eye, a spider on a silken web and a glowing firefly.

Kindergarten - Grade 3

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14 Cows for America by Carmen Agra Deedy

Maasai tribal members, after hearing the story of the September 11th attacks from a young Massai, who was in New York on that day, decide to present the American people with fourteen sacred cows as a healing gift.

Grades 2 - 5

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Frog Song by Brenda Guiberson

Introduces frogs and their vital role in environmental balance in places all over the world.

Kindergarten – Grade 4

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A Little Book of Sloth by Lucy Cooke

Profiles the animal residents of the Avarios Sloth Sanctuary in Costa Rica, the world's largest sloth orphanage.

Grades 1 and up