During quarantine, my family and I dusted off our library and dug back into the joy of reading. And so far, it has stuck with us! Since National Read A Book Day is September 6, it’s the perfect time to discover, or rediscover, Atlanta’s wealth of literary talent, independent bookstores, and local-themed books, just for kids.
Who to read
Atlanta-based Children’s Authors
Becky Albertalli: Her most famous book was turned into the movie, Love, Simon, and there’s more where that came from!
Robert Burch: This author was well-known for his stories about small-town life, and the lessons we learn as we grow. One notable book is Queenie Peavy.
Roshani Chokshi: She writes middle and young adult books, all with a mystical theme, such as The Gilded Wolves and Aruh Shah and the City of Gold.
R Gregory Christie: Technically, he’s an illustrator, but his work is beautiful, and the books he creates art for tell important stories in history.
Eric Litwin: Chances are, you’ve heard of the “Pete the Cat” series. We get to claim Pete’s creator as one of our own! He also has series called “The Nuts” and “Groovy Joe.”
Terra Elan McVoy: This author also writes middle and young adult books, with a common theme of love and friendships. Also, McVoy is my maiden name, so I am claiming her as a relation.
Natalie Nelson: Multi-media artist who creates award-winning picture books, such as The King of the Birds and Holi-Monday!
Aisha Saeed: Her work spans all ages; she has something for everyone, including the YA novel Yes No Maybe So and the children’s book, Bilal Cooks Daal.
Surishtha and Kabir Sehgal: While they have written several children’s books, one book, A Bucket of Blessings, was adapted into a stage production at the Alliance Theatre.
Laurel Snyder: In addition to her “Charlie & Mouse” series, this prolific writer has created picture books, poetry, and chapter books for kids.
What to Read
Atlanta-themed Children’ Books
Here are some fun books that celebrate the people and places of Atlanta!
The Awesome Atlanta Mystery, by Carole Marsh
Good Night Atlanta, by Adam Gamble
A Kid’s Guide to Atlanta, by Sara Day and Paul Scharff
Immigration Stories from an Atlanta High School: Green Card Youth Voices, by Tea Rozman Clark, Darlene Xiomara Rodriguez, et al.
Atlanta, GA: Cool Stuff Every Kid Should Know, by Kate Boehm Jerome
Atlanta from A to Z, by Morgan H Rose
Ballpark Mysteries #18: The Atlanta Alibi, by David A. Kelly and Mark Meyers
P is for Peach, by Carol Crane and Mark Braught
Where to buy
Atlanta Independent Bookstores
You’ve found your next favorite author or book – what better way to support the city than by patronizing one of these local shops!
Brave and Kind Books: Decatur – They offer virtual book fairs and author events
Listening Tree: Also in Decatur – Your kids can join a book club or learn more about their young entrepreneurship program.
Little Shop of Stories: You guessed it, Decatur! This store hosts storytime on Facebook, as well as a community reading group.
FoxTale Book Shoppe: Woodstock – Your little ones can hang out in the kids’ room while you browse.
Tall Tales Bookstore: Atlanta, in the Toco Hills shopping center. They also have something for everyone in the family.
Posman Books: Ponce City Market or the Avalon – After your kids have checked out their section in the back, they can pick up a cool puzzle, or go to a tokidoki event (I know, I had to Google it too!)
Rhen’s Nest Toys: While you are at the Ponce City Market, check out this place as well – they have a nice selection of children’s books too.
Medu Bookstore: Greenbriar Mall – this is the second-largest African-American-owned bookstore in Atlanta.
The Story Shop: Located in Monroe, GA, it may be a bit of a drive for some, but it’s a beautiful place, and you can even book a family portrait there.
How will you celebrate National Read a Book Day? Are there any Atlanta-based authors, books, or bookstores we missed?