Celebrate summer by grabbing a book and heading to the shade to read. This month there’s no better time to celebrate our great nation!

Firefly July: A Year of Very Short Poems”
by Paul B. Janeczko

From fireflies in July, to a snow fence in winter and all the other seasons in between, enjoy short poems for every season illustrated with beautiful watercolor, gouache, and mixed media illustrations by Melissa Sweet. This fabulous book of short poems will take you through the year in style!   Candlewick Press,

$16.99; ages 4-8


I Pledge Allegiance
 by Pat Mora & Libby Martinez

Libby’s great-aunt, Lobo, has passed her citizenship test and will say the Pledge of Allegiance at the citizenship ceremony. Libby’s teacher invites her to say the Pledge in front of the class the day before so she will be ready for the ceremony as well. Libby and Lobo practice together. Libby does a wonderful job leading the pledge in her class and then goes to the ceremony with Lobo.  Alfred A. Knopf, $16.99; ages 4-8


Rules of Summer
by Shaun Tan

With few words and masterful illustrations, Shaun Tan shares the rules of summer as set out by an older brother.  Travel along with this brotherly team as they experience summer as only brothers can, and find out what happens if you follow (or break) the rules of summer!

Arthur A. Levine Books, $18.99; ages 4-8


The Star-Spangled Banner by Peter Spier

This book presents a gorgeously illustrated version of the Star-Spangled Banner. It also includes sheet music and words to the song and much of the
history behind it.  Wonderful!  Doubleday Books for Young Readers, $17.99; ages 4-10


We The People: The Constitution of the United States by Peter Spier

This book about the Constitution includes a beautifully illustrated preamble and pictures and names of the signers.  It tells the story of how the Constitution was conceived, and it has an actual version of the Constitution itself.  An amazing work! Doubleday Books for Young Readers, $17.99; ages 4-10


Half a Chance by Cynthia Lord

When Lucy and her family move to an old lake house in New Hampshire, her neighbors, Nate and Emily, teach her about the Loons that live there. Lucy’s dad, a photographer, goes away on assignment and she finds out about a contest he is judging over the summer. Lucy works hard to take the best photos she can for the contest. As she takes photos, some of them reveal that Nate’s grandmother’s memory isn’t what it used to be. Nate asks her not to enter a photo of his grandmother in the contest. Will she enter it anyway? Find out in this wonderful summer book about family, friendship and courage!  Scholastic Press, $16.99; ages 8-12


Jennifer Galvin is never far from her children, a paintbrush, or a good book.
You can find her on the web at



Moms read too!

Someday, Someday, Maybe by Lauren Graham

This fun, summer read is written by Lauren Graham, the popular star of Gilmore Girls and Parenthood.  In her debut novel, Graham writes a witty, charming, and hilariously relatable tale about hopes and dreams, being young in a city, and wanting something deeply, madly, desperately. It’s about finding love, finding yourself, and so much more.