On the Shelf: BONUS BOOKS! – Citizen Times

“Soccer Trophy Mystery” by Fred Bowen (Peachtree Publishing, ages 7 – 12)
This book by prolific writer Fred Bowen combines two things middle grade readers love: soccer and a hearty mystery. And though the story is fiction, there is plenty of real-life mystery here, too. This one will be a fantastic fun read for sports enthusiasts and when they fall in love with it, there are many others to try in Bowen’s Sports Story Series.
“Clap for the Helpers” by Patty Michaels, illustrated by Jason Fruchter (Simon & Schuster, ages 3 – 6)
With a Daniel Tiger finger puppet (that claps!) built right in, it really is a beautiful day in this neighborhood. This is a wonderful way to teach kids about expressing gratitude to those who help us all, even mom and dad.
Explore Jewish culture with beautiful new books from Kalanoit.
“A Snake, a Flood, a Hidden Baby” Translated by Ilana Kurshan, illustrated by Emanuele Luzzati (ages 6 – 11) 
Featuring stories from the Hebrew Bible, the illustrations here are gorgeous and fun and might inspire little readers to create their own collages.
“The Candy Man Mystery” by Rabbi Kerry Olitzky, illustrated by Christina Mattison Ebert (ages 4 – 11)
This is a wonderful introduction to synagogues for all children. Learn the roles of all involved in services, learn an important prayer (and how to sign it in ASL) and above all, see how caring for others spans generations. 
More new tales from Kalanoit:
“The Rabbi and the Painter” by Shoshana Weiss, illustrated by Jennifer Kirkham
“My Israel and Me” by Alice Blumenthal McGinty, illustrated by Rotem Teplow
“Construction Site: Road Crew, Coming Through!” by Sherri Duskey Rinker and AG Ford (Chronicle Books, ages 2 – 4)
Get ready to read this one again and again. These friendly road construction vehicles will captivate little readers and having them looking everywhere for their favorites. 
The Discovering Nature series by Happy Fox Books (ages 2 – 4) features “Discovering the Hidden Woodland World” and “Discovering Nature on the Mountainside” – both are shaped board books with incredibly detailed illustrations. I think these will be favorites for years to come. They are ideal for getting little ones ready for a family hike or for teaching older preschoolers about habitats. The books are big and sturdy, with plenty of finger-pointing spots for interactivity. 
“The Fox and the Forest Fire” by Danny Popovici (Chronicle Books, ages 5 – 8)
Wildfires are so often in the news. This beautifully illustrated story and the additional information for parents to share can help children understand what happens. The author here is a former forest firefighter who tells a story of resilience found in people, animals and the earth itself.