Congratulations to the authors, illustrators, and publishers of these outstanding nonfiction picture books. Selected by teachers, librarians, and families, this list opens up the world for kids, expands their understanding of the past and present, and helps them create a more inclusive and interconnected future for all living things.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to consider and nominate books. Your recommendations will inspire and engage young readers.

A Life of Service: The Story of Senator Tammy Duckworth by Christina Soontornvat, illustrated by Dow Phumiruk

Christina Soontornvat’s website

Dow Phumiruk’s website

A Perfect Fit: How Lena “Lane” Bryant Changed the Shape of Fashion by Mara Rockliff, illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal

Mara Rockliff’s website

Juana Martinez-Neal’s website

Ablaze with Color: A Story of Painter Alma Thomas by Jeanne Walker Harvey, illustrated by Loveis Wise

Jeanne Walker Harvey’s website

Loveis Wise’s website

Bessie the Motorcycle Queen by Charles R. Smith Jr., illustrated by Charlot Kristensen

Charles R. Smith Jr.’s website

Charlot Kristensen’s website

Big as a Giant Snail by Jess Keating, illustrated by David DeGrand

Jess Keating’s website

David DeGrand’s website

Blue: A History of the Color as Deep as the Sea and as Wide as the Sky by Nana Euka Brew-Hammond, illustrated by Daniel Minter

Nana Euka Brew-Hammond’s website

Daniel Minter’s website

Finding My Dance by Ria Thundercloud, illustrated by Kalila J. Fuller

Ria Thundercloud’s Linktree

Kalila J. Fuller’s website

H Is for Harlem by Dinah Johnson, illustrated by April Harrison

Dinah Johnson’s website

April Harrison’s website

Honeybee Rescue: A Backyard Drama by Loree Griffin Burns, photographs by Ellen Harasimowicz 

Loree Griffin Burns’s website

Ellen Harasimowicz’s website

Hope Is An Arrow: The Story of Lebanese-American Poet Khalil Gibran by Cory McCarthy, illustrated by Ekua Holmes

Cory McCarthy’s website

Ekua Holmes’s website

Maya’s Song by Renée Watson, illustrated by Bryan Collier

Renée Watson’s website

Bryan Collier’s Instagram

Mushroom Rain by Laura K. Zimmerman, illustrated by Jamie Green

Laura K. Zimmerman’s website

Jamie Green’s website

One Million Trees: A True Story by Kristen Balouch

Kristen Balouch’s website

One Wish: Fatima al-Fihri and the World’s Oldest University by M.O. Yuksel, illustrated by Mariam Quraishi

M.O. Yuksel’s website

Mariam Quraishi’s website

Over and Under the Waves by Kate Messner, illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal

Kate Messner’s website

Christopher Silas Neal’s website

Pizza! A Slice of History by Greg Pizzoli

Greg Pizzoli’s website

The Tower of Life: How Yaffa Eliach Rebuilt Her Town in Stories and Photographs by Chana Steifel, illustrated by Susan Gal

Chana Steifel’s website

Susan Gal’s website

The Universe in You: A Microscopic Journey by Jason Chin

Jason Chin’s website

Yoshi and the Ocean: A Sea Turtle’s Incredible Journey Home by Lindsay Moore

Lindsay Moore’s website

Donalyn Miller is a Texas educator and the author or co-author of numerous books, articles, blog posts, and speeches about engaging young people with reading and ensuring meaningful book access. Her most recent books are The Joy of Reading (2022) co-written with Teri Lesesne and The Commonsense Guide to Your Classroom Library (2022) co-written with Colby Sharp. Donalyn lives near the Riverwalk in downtown San Antonio with her spouse and his goblin dog. You can find her online on Twitter and Instagram.