Summer 2023 new children’s books – here’s our selection of top new titles coming out during the school Summer term 2023 in April, May, June and July 2023. These reading recommendations include picture books, early and middle-grade fiction; young adult novels and non-fiction for children aged 3-16. The titles below are books that (at the time of writing) are now due to be released this summer and during the summer term in UK schools and in time for the summer holidays. These books have been chosen with classroom teaching, school libraries, home learning and reading for pleasure in mind.
Summer 2023 new children’s books – our recommendations
New picture books for Summer 2023
The Dream Book: A bedtime adventure about dream journalling for the very young! by Bia Melo
Nia loves her exciting and adventurous and even scary dreams so much that she wants to write them down. An amazing dream journal is born in this boldly illustrated picture story that will spark imaginative play and writing ideas in EYFS classes. A uniquely inspirational book.
Picture book | Bedtime story
My Dad is a Tree by Jon Agee
When Madeleine pretends to be a tree, her dad joins in as they both discover all sorts of insights and unexpected consequences of being a tree. Inventive, imaginative and filled with positivity, My Dad is a Tree by Jon Agee is a wonderful book to read and share with younger children and use to explore and discuss mindfulness and develop inference and empathy skills. It’s highly recommended for sparking creative ideas in EYFS settings. Scallywag Press has a range of free lesson plans.
Picture book | Mindfulness
An Anthology Of Aesop’s Animal Fables by Helen Ward
The Hare and the Tortoise, The Lion and the Mouse and The Goose that Laid the Golden Eggs are just some of the timeless traditional tales of wisdom in this large format collection. Beautifully produced with exquisite illustrations, this anthology of Aesop’s Animal Fables is a book to treasure. It’s the perfect gift for 6-9-year-olds and a stunning book to share with whole classes in KS1. Highly recommended.
Picture book | Fables
New fiction 5-7 for Summer 2023
New fiction 7-9 for Summer 2023
Son of the Sea by Richard Pickard
Caspar dreams of swimming but has to hide his uniquely webbed feet. But then he discovers how he’s linked to the sea and his life changes forever. Perfect for more able readers in Year 4, Son of the Sea will make for an enthralling and thought-provoking class reader. It’s a sparkling tale of positivity for 9+ year-olds. Read Tracy Wood’s review.
Funny | Family | Diverse
New fiction 9-12 for Summer 2023
The Thief of Farrowfell by Ravena Guron
When Jude Ripon tries to prove her worth by stealing a valuable item of magic, little does she know that it’s protected by a powerful curse in this faced-paced and riveting tale of crime, magic and intrigue. Highly recommended, this is the first of an anticipated new series. Read Melanie Dillon’s full review.
Adventure | Fantasy
Kofi and the Rap Battle Summer by Jeffrey Boakye
When Kofi finds out that his best friend Kelvin has a photographic memory, they hatch a plan to make lots of money in this engrossing music-themed pageturner for 9-11-year-olds. With laugh-out-loud dialogue and characters that children will empathise with, Kofi and the Rap Battle Summer is ideal for KS2 libraries. Read Amanda Demwell’s review.
Adventure | Music | Funny
Ajay and the Jaipur Moon by Varsha Shah
Ajay races to be the first to discover a crashed meteor and hopes it will catapult him to fame. ‘Ajay and the Jaipur Moon,’ the sequel to the Carnegie shortlisted Ajay and the Mumbai Sun, is a riveting and realistic adventure anchored by critical real-world concerns such as fake news and fair play. It’s perfect for KS2 children interested in writing, news and the media. Featured in our April 2023 book club picks.
Adventure | News
New 12-16 young adult novels for Summer 2023
The Lesbiana’s Guide To Catholic School by Sonora Reyes
Yami doesn’t want anyone to know that she’s gay – especially not her mum. When she is outed in school her attempts to keep a low profile cause her huge internal conflicts as she shares her thoughts with the reader in this searingly honest and moving YA novel. An award-winning combination of warmth and romantic pathos with sprinklings of achingly funny prose, The Lesbiana’s Guide To Catholic School is highly recommended for students in KS3 and KS4.
Relationships | LGBT
How Far We’ve Come by Joyce Efia Harmer
Desperate to flee plantation slavery in Barbados, Obah puts her trust in Jacob, an outsider. But Jacob is from 200 years in the future and his idea of escape lies in the 21st century. Powerful and unforgettable, How Far We’ve Come is not just a cracking historical timeslip story, but a prescient and pertinent text that tackles important themes of equality and how we view the past. It’s highly recommended for secondary school libraries, novel studies in Y9-11 and KS4 book club discussions.
Slavery | Historical fiction | Timeslip
The Isles of the Gods by Amie Kaufman
An unforgettable and winning combination of all-powerful gods, magical fantasy and YA romance, The Isles of the Gods sees protagonist Selly thrust into the dangerous and exciting world of Prince Leander of Alinor in this, the first of a blockbuster series. Startlingly immersive, we think The Isles of the Gods will be extremely popular with students in KS4. Highly recommended.
Fantasy | YA Romance
New children’s poetry books for summer 2023
New nonfiction children’s books for Summer 2023
Animal FACTopia!: Follow the Trail of 400 Beastly Facts by Julie Beer
Did you know that apes pick lice out of each other’s fur and eat them? This and 400 other ‘beastly’ nuggets feature in this chunky hardback that’s bursting with fact-checked energy and inspiration. With bright backgrounds and eye-popping photography, Animal FACTopia! will be a surefire hit with children in KS2.
Super Small: Miniature Marvels of the Natural World by Tiffany Stone
4-8-year-olds will love this exciting and brightly illustrated guide to small creatures that possess incredible real-life superpowers. There’s a lot to interest EYFS children, including a regenerating salamander, a tiny tardigrade, and a jellyfish that lives forever – all presented in short rhymes with fun facts and accessible chunky comic strips.
People Power by Rebecca June and Ximo Abadia
Highlighting 13 pivotal instances of peaceful protest in the past 100 years, this accessible and boldly illustrated nonfiction history book is perfect for upper KS2 classrooms and libraries. Including the Montgomery Bus Boycott, The Fall of the Berlin Wall and Fridays for Future, children will appreciate and empathise with the issues and non-violent approaches. Uplifting and inspiring, each page is filled with hope and positivity. Highly recommended and ideal for individual projects and home learning.
This page was first published on April 17th, 2023, and last updated on.
Summer 2023 new titles – bulk orders and class sets
To buy a pack of all or some of the books in this list, or to order class sets of any of the book(s) in this list, please click the button below to order via uk.bookshop.org, an organisation that supports local bookshops.
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For more top picks and new books, why not read our Book of the month page?