By this point, most know of the harrowing story of bravery of Nobel Prize-winning Malala Yousafzai. Taking the very real story of how a young girl in Pakistan was shot by the Taliban for fighting for young girls’ rights to an education and interpreting it for children is no easy feat but Raphaele Frier and Aurelia Fronty manage it beautifully with Malala: Activist for Girls’ Education from Charlesbridge Publishing. Raphaele Frier’s words are beautifully written and convey the sufferings of Yousafzai in a child-friendly way without losing the necessary impact and realism. Aurelia Fronty’s bright and vibrant illustrations captivate the reader with their delicate details. For more advanced or simply more curious readers, there is a more in depth biography of Yousafzai, further information on Pakistan, the state of education in Pakistan, and the people who inspire her.
Alphabet books are very common but for good reason. No alphabet book seems to be wacky enough to deter little readers from being engaged with letter recognition. Juana Medina takes a different approach to letters and illustrations by pairing them with noodles in ABC Pasta: An Entertaining Alphabet. Each page is devoted to a different letter with a circus-themed illustration based around a shape of pasta (or pasta accompaniment as in the case of herbs and basil). Children will enjoy practicing the alphabet while they recognize food items from their own pantry.