Reading can unleash your child’s imagination, transport them to other lands, and spark new perspectives. Check out these book picks for the keiki in your life, because it’s never too early to plant the seeds for a lifelong reader.
Hawaiian Legends for Little Ones by Gabrielle Ahuli’i (Beach House Publishing)
Illustrated by Jing Jing Tsong
Every child growing up on Maui should learn the legends of the islands. This series combines rich storytelling to awaken the imagination of your keiki alongside illustrations that bring them to life. Among the adapted stories are Maui Slows the Sun, Pele Finds a Home, Hi’iaka Battles the Wind, and Naupaka.
Too Many Mangos by Tammy Paikai (Island Heritage)
Illustrated by Don Robinson
ages 3-6 years
I grew up eating the most delicious mangos from my Aunty and Uncle’s house on Front Street in Lahaina. That tree was symbolic of their home, which was a gathering place for the ‘ohana and where I Learned many lessons about community. This book shares that spirit beautifully.
Mina’s Rain Dance by Sarah McAneney (Green Square)
Illustrated by Zika Varga
Watching children dance without a care for who is watching is such a delightful experience. This book is about a “terrible dancer” and how she bravely stands up for her community.
Mop Rides series by Jaimal Yogis (Plum Blossom)
Illustrated by Matthew Allen
Teaching children how to become mindful will serve them throughout their entire life. Through the lens of surfing, your child will learn to navigate the rocky waters of big emotions. The first two titles in the series are Mop Rides the Waves of Life and Mop Rides the Waves of Change
Samira Surfs by Rukshanna Guidroz (Kokila)
Illustrated by Fahmida Azim
This novel for middle grade readers shares a young girl’s experience as a Rohingya refugee and how she bravely faces her fears and learns to embrace community.
The Awakening Storm: A graphic novel by Jaimal Yogis (Scholastic)
Illustrated by Vivian Truong
Excitement and adventure fill the pages of this fantasy novel for young adults. Themes of moving, making new friends, and uncovering a magical discovery will prove to be a page-turner for your pre-teen.