The school season is in full force! We get it… It’s hard to encourage your kiddos to read when their schedule is already so demanding. Keep their passion for page-turning going with audiobooks!
Here are a few titles that are sure to entertain your little listener with wholesome stories featuring characters they can relate to.
The Braid Girls
By Sherri Winston
Narrated by Erin Ruth Walker, Tyla Collier, and Jade Wheeler
“This enjoyable slice-of-life novel centers three Black girls navigating family, friendship, and belonging.” – School Library Journal
Maggie’s world is turned upside down when she learns that her father, whom she admires, has a second daughter, Callie, whom no one knew existed. But she won’t let a new family member get in the way of her summer plans with her best friend, Daija. They’re determined to make tons of money braiding hair for kids around the neighborhood.
Daija’s always felt like she had a sister in Maggie. So she can’t let Maggie’s new half-sister, Callie, take her place! And she can’t let her interfere with their new Braid Girls business either. She needs the money to pay for extra ballet lessons so she can go en pointe and earn a spot in the fall dance showcase, making her distant father proud at last—if she pulls this off, he’ll have to pay attention to her.
Callie’s still grieving her late mom. Now she’s leaving her old home in the Bahamas behind, including her old school and friends to move in with the father she’s never met, plus his family. When she hears of Maggie’s and Daija’s business, she sees a chance to prove her skills and a way to be accepted.
With three very different girls on board, the Braid Girls arrive to a summer camp full of kids with locs begging to be braided. Business is booming, until rival Angela shows up with her friends and starts a new braiding business—the Sistahs Who Braid. With competition heating up, the Braid Girls are sure to have an unforgettable summer.
By Ken Wilson-Max
Narrated by Jade Wheeler
In this tender celebration of family tradition, a little girl becomes an environmental steward to express her love for all things leafy and green.
Eve loves living next to a forest because it means being close to her favorite baobab trees. Doing her best to imitate them, Eve practices patience. She feeds and shelters birds, just as her beloved trees do, stretching toward the sky as if her arms were branches. Eve longs to communicate with the leafy giants she admires, and while she can’t become a tree, she can contribute to the beauty of the forest—just like her dad and grandma before her—by nurturing her very own baobab seedling.
A companion story to Ken Wilson-Max’s Astro Girl, this thoughtful introduction to the concept of land stewardship and the joys of giving back celebrates reciprocity while honoring our connection to our own branching family trees.
Merci Suárez Plays It Cool
By Meg Medina
Narrated by Frankie Corzo`
The third and final book in the Merci Suárez series, our titular character enters a new year full of changes – friendships, responsibilities, and heartbreaking loss.
For Merci Suárez, eighth grade means a new haircut, nighttime football games, and an out-of-town overnight field trip. At home, it means more chores and keeping an eye on Lolo as his health worsens. It’s a year filled with more responsibility and independence, but also with opportunities to reinvent herself. Merci has always been fine with not being one of the popular kids like Avery Sanders, who will probably be the soccer captain and is always traveling to fun places and buying new clothes. But then Avery starts talking to Merci more, and not just as a teammate. Does this mean they’re friends? Merci wants to play it cool, but with Edna always in her business, it’s only a matter of time before Merci has to decide where her loyalty stands. Whether Merci is facing school drama or changing family dynamics, listeners will empathize as she discovers who she can count on—and what can change in an instant—in Meg Medina’s heartfelt conclusion to the trilogy that began with the Newbery Medal-winning Merci Suárez Changes Gears.
Sofia Valdez and the Vanishing Vote
By Andrea Beaty
Narrated by Marisa Blake
Part of the bestselling chapter book series The Questioneers, Sofia Valdez is put in charge of the class election for a new class pet.
Miss Lila Greer announces it’s time for Grade Two to get a class pet, and she wants the kids to participate in choosing which one. After all, they will all have to share the responsibility of caring for it. The class narrows it down to two options: Team Turtle and Team Bird. Sofia is named Election Commissioner, in charge of overseeing a fair and honest election between the two teams. There’s a class-wide campaign, complete with posters, articles, and speeches. Then it’s time for the election! But when the votes are counted, there’s a tie, and one vote is missing. How will the class break the tie? And what happened to the vanishing vote? It’s up to Sofia Valdez and the Questioneers to restore democracy!
You Are Life
Written and narrated by Bao Phi
From an award-winning picture-book author comes a poem that celebrates the wonderful and complex identity of children of immigrants and refugees, reminding them that who they are is always enough and promising what they will never be: invisible.
There are so many more children’s audiobooks to choose from! Check them all out here.