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"Chase Your Dreams"

In "Chase Your Dreams," World Cup- winning soccer player Julie Ertz inspires kids to lead a life of faith and virtue. She shares her own stories and the lessons she learned in childhood and now in her illustrious playing career. Each chapter focuses on a character trait essential to success on and off the playing field. Children will discover the value of sacrifice, hard work and having a good attitude. Packed with engaging photos and filled with timely wisdom and biblical truth for tweens, this book will help boys and girls chase their dreams with passion and purpose. Available wherever books are sold.

"Bath Time with Aquaman"

This is the perfect beach or pool book for babies! "Bath Time with Aquaman" by Sarah Parvis inspires imaginative play and a love of being in the water. This squishy, waterproof book encourages little ones (ages 0-3) to swim and splash (lightly) with the King of the Seven Seas. The light, (mostly) indestructible material makes it ideal for shoving into a beach bag or a suitcase! $9.99 Available on Amazon and at bookstores around the country.

— Jenny L. Heinbaugh

Book Reviews

Travel with Books

By Mary Quattlebaum

babies / tots

Three Grumpy Trucks

Under the direction of an imaginative little girl in a hard hat, three toy trucks dig and build at the playground. Like tots everywhere, though, they act out when it's time to go home. The lively rhyming verse and dynamic illustrations capture their stomping and fit-throwing, till their owner gently lifts, washes and tucks them beside her bed. The final spread reveals the child dreaming of her next project, as she and her trucks work together on the moon. Little ones will get a kick out of the toys' temper tantrum and enjoy searching the pictures for the frequently appearing, expressive earthworm.

ages 3 - 8

A Colorful Tail

A creative fox invites youngsters to travel back through time and space to France, to meet the famous artist Claude Monet. Award-winning Maryland author/ illustrator Joan Waites captures the shimmering beauty of Monet's gardens at Giverny as the fox, inspired by the Impressionist painter, tries to create his own art. He finally finds an ingenious solution - using the tip of his tail to paint on a blank canvas - when Monet takes a break. Youngsters will love watching the evolving friendship between the two artists and looking for the yellow butterfly on every double-page spread.

ages 9 - 14

Up for Air

Sometimes you don't have to travel far to learn and grow, as Annabelle discovers one summer. The 13-year-old middle schooler is an ace swimmer, but she struggles with her grades. When she is asked to join the high school swim team, Annabelle is thrilled. Suddenly, she has cool friends, and a cute older guy named Connor is texting her. She gets mad at her old friend, Jeremy, when he warns her about flirtatious Connor, and then everything comes crashing down at a humiliating beach party. In Annabelle, author Laurie Morrison has created an endearing protagonist whose perceptions and mistakes will speak to many middle schoolers as they, too, come to better understand and appreciate their unique selves.

Mary Quattlebaum is the author of 27 award-winning children's books, most recently "Brother, Sister, Me and You," a National Geographic picture book about animal siblings. Mary is a popular school and conference