By Megan Ciskowski, Assistant Publicist

Check out March new releases from Lerner Publishing Group!

Picture Books

Rissy No Kissies by Katey Howes and illustrated by Jess Engle

A lovebird who doesn’t like kisses? Rissy’s friends and family wonder if she’s sick, confused, or rude. But kisses make Rissy uncomfortable. Can she show everyone there’s not one right way to share affection?

Spread from Rissy No Kissies in which Rissy confronts her family and speaks up for herself.

Educator Resources

Continue the conversation of consent and autonomy with four free classroom activities and crafts!

Praise for Rissy No Kissies

★”Radiant.”—starred, Kirkus Reviews

★”[A] refrain (‘No kissies!’) and soft watercolor art by Engle reinforce the message that speaking up for one’s bodily agency should always be embraced.”—starred, Publishers Weekly

“A cute conversation-starter.”—Booklist

“[P]rovides a platform to empower children to discuss what makes them feel good and how they like to show their love best.”-Celebrate Picture Books

Classified: The Secret Career of Mary Golda Ross, Cherokee Aerospace Engineer by Traci Sorell and illustrated by Natasha Donovan

Mary Golda Ross designed classified projects for Lockheed Aircraft Corporation as the company’s first female engineer. Find out how her passion for math and the Cherokee values she was raised with shaped her life and work.

Spread from Classified in which Mary studies difficult equations.

Educator Resources

Find a free poster for the classroom here!

Praise for Classified

★”A stellar addition to the genre that will launch careers and inspire for generations, it deserves space alongside stories of other world leaders and innovators.”—starred, Kirkus Reviews

“[A] valuable addition to units on Indigenous individuals or women in STEM.”—Booklist

“[A]uthor Traci Sorell and illustrator Natasha Donovan capture the life of a little-known pioneer in STEM, celebrating how she blazed a trail for others behind her.” -A Mighty Girl

The Floating Field: How a Group of Thai Boys Built Their Own Soccer Field by Scott Riley and illustrated by Nguyen Quang and Kim Lien

On a tiny Thai island without room for a soccer field, a group of resourceful teen boys gathers scraps and works together to build a floating field so they can play the game they love.

Spread from The Floating Field in which the boys put the finishing touches on their field.

Praise for The Floating Field

★”A compelling book for football [soccer] fans and readers seeking examples of ingenuity.”—starred, Publishers Weekly

“This inspiring tale will appeal to soccer fans, of course, but also has applications for problem solving and determination.”—Booklist

“An intriguing true story elevated by striking illustrations.”—Kirkus Reviews

“This is a book for soccer players, soccer lovers, friendship partakers, diverse culture lovers, DIY builders, dreamers, or anyone who loves a good story!” –Good Reads with Rona

Graphic Novels

The Wolf in Underpants at Full Speed (Wolf in Underpants Book 3) by Wilfrid Lupano and illustrated by Mayana Itoïz and Paul Cauuet

It’s race day in the forest, but a surly chickadee has ruined the event’s posters! When the Wolf learns why the little bird feels left out, he hatches a plan to launch it to victory.

Spread from The Wolf in Underpants at Full Speed in which he slingshots a surly chickadee into the air.

The Hunt Is On (Seekers of the Aweto Book 1) by Nie Jun

Xinyue and his brother are seekers, hunting aweto—a rare, plantlike treasure—along the Silk Road. When Xinyue discovers the child of a deity that creates aweto, it disrupts his already turbulent life.

Spread from The Hunt Is On in which the seekers escape with the aweto.

Praise for The Hunt Is On

“An enchanting, beautifully crafted adventure for children and adults alike.”—Booklist

“Packed with action and intrigue.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Jun’s delicate watercolors practically sing in their movement and detail. An exciting story with dreamlike illustrations.” —School Library Journal

“[C]hock full of the wonder, humor and magic…” -The Good Man Project

Young Adult

The Secret Life of Kitty Granger by G.D. Falksen

In 1967 London, sixteen-year-old Kitty Granger, a working-class girl on the autism spectrum, is recruited to spy for the British government. On her very first mission, she must foil a fascist plot and save the country.

Educator Resources

Discussion guides, crosswords, character profiles and more can be found here!

Praise for The Secret Life of Kitty Granger

“[T]his rip-roaring tale starring a compelling heroine will satisfy anyone looking for a fun, quirky adventure.”—Booklist

“[A] ripping read that is historically grounded, drawing a direct line from past events to current debates over diversity, immigration, and the eternal peril of fascism. Nail-biting fascism-fighting featuring an atypical heroine.”—Kirkus Reviews

“A fun thriller spotlighting a neurodivergent protagonist . . .”—School Library Journal

“Delightful, poignant, and suspenseful.”—Jennieke Cohen, author of Dangerous Alliance

“You’ll root for Kitty Granger, a heroine for our times, from the first to the last page.”—Sarah Ahiers, author of Assassin’s Heart and Thief’s Cunning


Reinventing Invention: A Crayola ® Guide to Innovation by Jennifer Boothroyd

This dive into the history of popular and lesser-known inventions is sure to inspire reader curiosity. Untold details behind the invention of the lightbulb, the Super Soaker, and more challenge what readers might have heard.

Spread from Reinventing Invention which details the creation of the Super Soaker

Crayola ® Art of Coding: A Celebration of Creative Mindsets by Kiki Prottsman

Young readers will love delving into some of the most important basics of computational thinking and coding. Readers will learn concepts from sequencing to debugging through unplugged activities that empower them to think like coders.

Spread from Crayola ® Art of Coding which details a coding exercise.

Crayola ® STEAM Teams: Creativity, Innovation, and Teamwork by Kevin Kurtz

Take a look at the many ways that teams use STEAM to solve problems. From developing smartphones to capturing images of black holes, there’s nothing teams can’t do when they work together!

Spread from Crayola ® STEAM Teams which discusses how to make city infrastructure and design smarter with STEAM.

Odd Bods: The World’s Unusual Animals by Julie Murphy

Long snouts, bright-red lips, pointy heads . . . the animal kingdom is full of critters with unique features. Learn about the incredible adaptations that help these creatures—and their odd bods—survive and thrive all around the globe!

Spread from Odd Bods which discusses the red-lipped batfish.

Praise for Odd Bods

“High-interest content and visuals will appeal to reluctant readers and animal lovers alike.”—Booklist

“[T]his album introduces strikingly unusual-looking members of the animal kingdom from around the world.”—Kirkus Reviews

“This informational book seems just right for readers who are fact hounds…beautifully designed, high-interest and appealing.” –Prose and Kahn

“[P]rovides plenty of information about animal adaptations and how these adaptations help the animals survive.”—School Library Journal

Planet Ocean: Why We All Need a Healthy Ocean by Patricia Newman and photography by Annie Crawley

Travel beneath the waves and visit three distinct ocean zones to examine climate change, pollution, and sustainability, and find out what you can do to protect the sea. Page Plus QR codes link to videos of the featured sites.

Spread from Planet Ocean in which readers discover the Coral Triangle.

Educator Resources

Show your students this spectacular video of Anne Crawley diving in the Coral Triangle!

Praise for Planet Ocean

“Presenting a good deal of information within a well-organized framework, the book conveys a strong sense of urgency to clean the global ocean and restore the ecosystems it supports.”—Booklist

“[A] clear narrative that combines science, images, and the voices of young divers and Indigenous peoples to get across their point. . . . Worth exploring in depth.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Consider this a first-purchase! Your conservation collection wouldn’t be complete with out Planet Ocean.” –Prose and Khan

Hothouse Earth: The Climate Crisis and the Importance of Carbon Neutrality by Stephanie Sammartino McPherson

As hurricanes, droughts, floods, and wildfires are increasing in regularity and intensity, climate change can no longer be ignored. Examine how science, politics, and social justice must all be part of the equation to counteract climate change.

Spread from Hothouse Earth which discusses negative and positive feedback loops.

Praise for Hothouse Earth

“This attractive offering considers climate change through scientific, political, and personal responsibility lenses. . . . fresh and up-to-date, creating a vibe of immediacy and emphasizing the need for action.”—Booklist

“Brief but tightly packed with current information; a strong choice.”—Kirkus Reviews

“McPherson does a fantastic job of breaking down the science behind global warming and climate change. . . . A great addition to middle school libraries . . .”—School Library Journal

When Dogs Heal: Powerful Stories of People Living with HIV and the Dogs That Saved Them by Jesse Freidin, Robert Garofalo, Zach Stafford, Christina Garofalo, photography by Jesse Freidin

Compiled by an LGBTQ advocate, an adolescent HIV specialist, and a fine-art photographer, When Dogs Heal illustrates a refreshing, beautiful and totally unique portrait of HIV infused with a deep message of hope for young adults.

Spread from When Dogs Heal in which a dog comforts his human.

Praise for When Dogs Heal

★”[D]eals affectingly with a subject that remains too absent in books for young readers. It deserves the widest possible readership.”—starred, Booklist

★”A unique collection that is unflinchingly honest and infused with hope. These valuable lessons of empathy, self-care, and acceptance will inspire all readers and will be especially encouraging for young people who are living with HIV.”—starred, School Library Journal

“[T]he stories are uplifting and well written . . . connecting a range of HIV-positive queer experiences with dog ownership.”—Kirkus Reviews

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