Elmore is a young Hedgehog who can’t convince anyone to be his friend. The reason? His quills are too intimidating. Eventually, with the help of his uncle, Elmore eventually shows everyone why his quills are nothing to fear — and learns to appreciate himself, too. It’s a classic story of learning to love thyself, made all the better because Elmore is never a sadsack. Rather, he’s a plucky, problem-solver who takes matters into his own hand.

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How do you capture love and all of its various permutations on the page, let alone make it palatable for young readers? Somehow, Pena and illustrator Loren Long are able to do both in this book. As a collection of poems about the titular emotion, this book is successful because de la Pena is a good writer and a great observer who documents love in all its forms; from a baby hearing his parents’ voices to a child looking in the mirror. The poem dances on the precipice of precious but sticks the landing. And even if you think love is a battlefield, the illustration by Loren Long will soften you enough to let this one in.

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{"id":768647692337,"title":"Explorer Academy","handle":"explorer-academy","truncated_description":"\u003cp\u003eAdventure, danger, and a thrilling global mission await 12-year-old Cruz Coronado as he joins an elite school for explorers.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eCruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world's leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why? \u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eReaders can get in on the excitement with puzzles and codes embedded throughout.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This series opener from a new imprint of National Geographic is a fully packed high-tech adventure that offers both cool, educational facts about the planet and a diverse cast of fun characters.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Kirkus\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This exciting series opener introduces young readers to the joys of science and nature.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Publisher's Weekly\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Sure to appeal to kids who love code cracking and mysteries with cutting-edge technology.\"  \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Booklist\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"A fun, exciting, and action-packed ride that kids will love.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-J.J. Abrams, director and screenwriter of \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens,\" \"Lost,\" \"Alias\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Inspires the next generation of curious kids to go out into our world and discover something unexpected.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-James Cameron, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and acclaimed film-maker\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Explorer Academy is sure to awaken readers' inner adventurer and curiosity about the world around them. But you don't have to take my word for it, check out Cruz, Emmett, Sailor, and Lani's adventures for yourself!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-LeVar Burton, host of \"Reading Rainbow\" and \"LeVar Burton Reads\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Absolutely Brilliant! Explorer Academy is a fabulous feast for the mind and heart -- a thrilling, inspiring journey with compelling characters, wonderous places, and the highest possible stakes. Just as there's only one planet Earth, there's only one series like this. Don't wait another instant to enjoy this phenomenal adventure!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-T.A. Barron, author of the Merlin Saga\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"In the midst of fast-paced action, Explorer Academy captures the power of learning through exploration. The excitement of hands-on discovery is modeled in Cruz's adventures, which encourages kids to take on the mind-set of explorers.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Daniel Raven-Ellison, National Geographic Explorer and Guerilla Geographer\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003c\/p\u003e","description":"Adventure, danger, and a thrilling global mission await 12-year-old Cruz Coronado as he joins an elite school for explorers.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eCruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world's leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him, and why? \u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003eReaders can get in on the excitement with puzzles and codes embedded throughout.\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This series opener from a new imprint of National Geographic is a fully packed high-tech adventure that offers both cool, educational facts about the planet and a diverse cast of fun characters.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Kirkus\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"This exciting series opener introduces young readers to the joys of science and nature.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Publisher's Weekly\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Sure to appeal to kids who love code cracking and mysteries with cutting-edge technology.\"  \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Booklist\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"A fun, exciting, and action-packed ride that kids will love.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-J.J. Abrams, director and screenwriter of \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens,\" \"Lost,\" \"Alias\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Inspires the next generation of curious kids to go out into our world and discover something unexpected.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-James Cameron, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and acclaimed film-maker\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Explorer Academy is sure to awaken readers' inner adventurer and curiosity about the world around them. But you don't have to take my word for it, check out Cruz, Emmett, Sailor, and Lani's adventures for yourself!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-LeVar Burton, host of \"Reading Rainbow\" and \"LeVar Burton Reads\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Absolutely Brilliant! Explorer Academy is a fabulous feast for the mind and heart -- a thrilling, inspiring journey with compelling characters, wonderous places, and the highest possible stakes. 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Abrams, director and screenwriter of \"Star Wars: The Force Awakens,\" \"Lost,\" \"Alias\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Inspires the next generation of curious kids to go out into our world and discover something unexpected.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-James Cameron, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and acclaimed film-maker\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Explorer Academy is sure to awaken readers' inner adventurer and curiosity about the world around them. But you don't have to take my word for it, check out Cruz, Emmett, Sailor, and Lani's adventures for yourself!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-LeVar Burton, host of \"Reading Rainbow\" and \"LeVar Burton Reads\"\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"Absolutely Brilliant! Explorer Academy is a fabulous feast for the mind and heart -- a thrilling, inspiring journey with compelling characters, wonderous places, and the highest possible stakes. Just as there's only one planet Earth, there's only one series like this. Don't wait another instant to enjoy this phenomenal adventure!\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-T.A. Barron, author of the Merlin Saga\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\u003cbr\u003e\"In the midst of fast-paced action, Explorer Academy captures the power of learning through exploration. The excitement of hands-on discovery is modeled in Cruz's adventures, which encourages kids to take on the mind-set of explorers.\" \u003cb\u003e\u003ci\u003e-Daniel Raven-Ellison, National Geographic Explorer and Guerilla Geographer\u003c\/i\u003e\u003c\/b\u003e"}
A dog goes, or doesn’t go, for a walk in this charming book by English author and illustrator Claire Messer. There’s much to endear Lazybones to the young reader, from Messer’s bright prints to the (relatable) reluctance of the titular Lazybones (real name: Robert Exelby Perdendo). Oh, and two boy dogs in love is no big deal here. Why should it be? After all, it’s just puppy love.

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Long before the new little baby is old enough to enjoy stories, moms and dads delight in creating the child’s own story to share one day. Baby journals are a nice way to keep track of favorite photos, important milestones and any other information about your child’s development over the first few years. These linen covered journals also come personalized and feature the child’s photo on the front.
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“Wherever You Are, My Love Will Find You by Nancy Tillman. We are a military family and right before my husband’s third deployment he recorded that book for our children. This meant so much to our children being able to hear his voice. So now I give this book to my friends/family having babies because usually I’m the one that doesn’t live close by. I want them to know I’ll love them no matter where I am.” ― Kassie Rice
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