Top trends in children's books for 2017

What will be next year's top trends in children's books?

Curated by Scholastic Reading Club editors, this list aims to help more kids discover the power and joy of reading and encourage parents to build home libraries with books guaranteed to engage even the most reluctant reader.

“Last year, we predicted Harry Potter and the wizard universe to grow in a large way in 2016. Now we know Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: Parts One and Two was the number one selling book according to many retail sellers. In addition, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them became a pop culture juggernaut,” said David Allender, Editorial Director of Scholastic Reading Club. “Other predictions that became a reality were the growth of superheroes in kid-friendly titles, the boom of coloring books for all ages, as well as the continual growth and demand for graphic novels. We look forward to seeing our trends help kids discover the power and joy of reading.” To hear last year’s trends, listen to our Scholastic Reads podcast.

Don't forget! All titles are available for purchase via Scholastic Reading Club or the Scholastic Store at store.scholastic.com. Parents, ask your teacher if her/his classroom or school offers Scholastic Reading Club.

 

Scholastic Top Trends in Children’s Books for 2017:

 

1.)    LESSONS ON KINDESS WILL BE KEY

This past year’s news headlines can provide children a false perception that the world is unkind and hostile. Parents and educators can take the opportunity to find books by authors and artists who are doing their part to implement the need for kindness in an uncertain world. For younger children, look for titles that teach the importance of empathy, openness and sharing. For older children, discover titles that showcase the power of unexpected friendships.

Our official Scholastic Reading Club blog, JudyNewman at Scholastic, just recently highighted how to teach kindness through children's books. It's a great read!

Top book recommendations: 

Among many others, for young readers and listeners, look for HOW DO DINOSAURS STAY FRIENDS? by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague (Scholastic), HOORAY FOR HAT by Brian Won (HMH), BERNICE GETS CARRIED AWAY (Dial), and WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE KIND? by Rana DiOrio and Stephane For older readers, look for launch of the series, THE KINDNESS CLUB by Courtney Sheinmel (Bloomsbury) and, the perennial bestseller, WONDER by R. J. Palacio (Random House). WONDER will be coming to movie theaters in April 2017 so even more people will know Palacio’s story. And Disney’s BEAUTY AND THE BEAST (March 17, 2017) is also a story where the plot turns on acts of kindness. So let’s hope this is a trend that’s here for good!

 

2.)    BOOK ANNIVERSARIES WILL REINTRODUCE MODERN CLASSICS

Millennials will remember the joys of picking out the latest titles from their favorite book series at the Scholastic Book Fair or through monthly Scholastic Reading Club flyers.  The 30th anniversary of The Magic School Bus, the 25th anniversary of Goosebumps, and the 20th anniversary of Captain Underpants will introduce a new fan base to these popular franchises. In addition, the new television series revamp of The Magic School Bus, as well as the upcoming film release of Captain Underpants and a new release in Dav Pilkey’s Dog Man series will be on every kid’s reading wish list.

Top book recommendations:

GOOSEBUMPS SLAPPYWORLD #1: SLAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU by R.L. Stine (Scholastic), DOG MAN UNLEASHED by Dav Pilkey (Scholastic) and The MAGIC SCHOOL BUS series by Joanne Cole and Bruce Degan (Scholastic).

Don't forget other "book" anniversarie with anniversaries with ELEPHANT & PIGGIE by Mo Willems (Hyperion).The early reader series first launched in 2007 with two titles: MY FRIEND IS SAD and TODAY I WILL FLY.

 

3.)    “FUNNY” IS STILL NUMBER ONE

Recent research shows that kids worldwide say that the number one characteristic kids look for when picking out a book to read for fun is “make me laugh.”Looking for “laugh out loud” reads is one way to help a child associate reading as a fun and pleasurable activity.

Top book recommendations:

The youngest readers have great new books including MOBY SHINOBI: NINJA ON THE FARM by Luke Flowers (Scholastic) and SUPER HAPPY PARTY BEARS: KNOCK-KNOCK ON WOOD by Marcie Colleen and Steve James (Macmillan). Older readers should look for FRAZZLED: EVERYDAY DISASTERS AND IMPENDING DOOM by Booki Vivat and MY WEIRDEST SCHOOL: MR. NICK IS A LUNATIC by Dan Gutman (both HarperCollins).

 

 

4.)    THE IMPORTANCE OF RESEARCH WILL GROW

As social media grows and it becomes more difficult to decipher what’s “real” news versus fake “news,” parents and educators can introduce children to the structure of nonfiction reads, biographies and other important titles that will teach children the basic skills of discerning accurate information.

Top book recommendations:

For young readers, LEGO NONFICTION: BUG OFF! (Scholastic) and NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC READERS: FREDERICK DOUGLAS (National Geographic). 

For older readers, LEGO NONFICTION: FACTASTIC (Scholastic), HISTORY BUSTERS: THE TRUTH (& MYTHS ABOUT THE PRESIDENTS) by Linda Peacock (Scholastic), FACT OR FAKE? by Allan Zullo (Scholastic), and HIDDEN FIGURES YOUNG READERS EDITION by Margot Lee Shetterly (HarperCollins).

 

5.)    CLASSICS WILL RETURN – AND BE REINVENTED

A great way to get kids introduced to new genres and stories is reading classic fairy tales – with an unexpected twist. Meet Little Red Riding Hood, but this time as a superhero. Revisit the land of Oz with the Scarecrow, Tinman, and Cowardly Lion as the cast of characters from the Geronimo Stilton series. Children’s literature is always being reimagined in new ways and putting favorite characters into a new world of hijinks is bound to get children of all ages interested in reading for fun.

Top book recommendations:

For younger readers and listeners, look for SUPER RED RIDING HOOD by Claudia Davila (Kids Can Press), THERE WAS AN OLD DRAGON WHO SWALLOWED A KNIGHT by Penny Parker Klostermann and Ben Mantle (Random House), and ITSY BITSY DUCKLING  by Jeffrey Burton and Sanja Rescek (Little Simon). For older readers, the GERONIMO STILTON series (Scholastic) has a new line of classic tales including THE WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ and ALICE IN WONDERLAND. Also look for the launch of the LITTLE LEGENDS series (Sourcebooks) as it follows favorite fairy-tale characters in legendary new adventures.