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National Literacy Month: Picture Books About Loving Books and the Power of Reading

September is National Literacy Month!

A whole month dedicated to celebrating reading? Count us in! In this compilation of book recommendations, you will find all sorts of picture books about BOOKS and READING! There’s something for everyone, including the struggling reader, the bookworm, and those who haven't yet discovered the magic of reading.

This book list is excellent for educators who are establishing hopes and dreams around reading and literacy, as well as caregivers who want to ignite a love of reading. We also included a number of books about education access and literacy around the world.

You can check out our entire bookish list on Bookshop. In the meantime, enjoy a snapshot of ten of our favorites below.

Dear Reader: a Love Letter to Libraries

Author/Illustrator: Tiffany Rose | Publisher: little bee books

“In this book a young girl pens a love letter to libraries and books, and powerfully expresses the need for diversity and the importance of representation in stories!”

We previously chose, Dear Reader: a Love Letter to Libraries, as part of our Books We Love program. In this story, a young girl loves reading all different kinds of books. She starts noticing that there aren’t a lot of books with characters who look like her - and what’s even worse, that most of the ones who do have characters like her, only talk about painful parts of history as opposed to showcasing love and joy.

This hopeful book will inspire readers to seek out stories that affirm and reflect the diversity of young readers, and that shine a spotlight on the beauty of differences and collective sameness of us all. Dear Reader is an important conversation starter for kids of all ages.

Grandmother School

Author: Rina Singh | Illustrator: Ellen Rooney | Publisher: Orca Book Publishers

"The narrator beams with pride as she drops her grandmother off with the other aajis to practice the alphabet and learn simple arithmetic. A moving story about family, women and the power of education―when Aaji learns to spell her name you’ll want to dance along with her.

Women in countless countries continue to endure the limitations of illiteracy. Unjust laws have suppressed the rights of girls and women and kept many from getting an education and equal standing in society. Based on a true story from the village of Phangane, India, this brilliantly illustrated book tells the story of the grandmothers who got to go to school for the first time in their lives."

How to Read a Book

Author: Kwame Alexander | Illustrator: Melissa Sweet | Publisher: HarperCollins

This book is simply gorgeous! The colorful, collage-like illustrations and poetic rhythm are perfect for inspiring a love of reading. Each thoughtful sentence conjures up delightful visualizations for young readers - so not only is it fun to read, it’s a great way to play with language and vocabulary. In How to Read a Book, readers will go on an adventure to discover the magic of reading, so find a cozy place to cuddle up and enjoy!