Camp, Enrichment, Stages

From the Bookshelf: Spring Into Summer Camp

In March, summer might seem ages away, but it will be here sooner than you think, and it’s time to start thinking about camp again! Get your kiddos excited for the summer with these campy reads from the New Orleans Public Library.


Join the Beginning Baby animal friends for a day filled with fun in illustrator Nicola Slater’s Let’s Go to Color Camp! Here, babies will learn to identify nine different colors, each with its own tabbed section, as they tap, touch and count their way through an activity-packed day.

In Nugget and Dog: S’more Than Meets the Eye by Jason Tharp, young readers meet a hot dog named Dog and a chicken nugget named Nugget, as they plan for a fun-filled summer at camp. But things get sticky when fellow camper Dijon implements his evil plan…

Middle Grade

In Summer at Squee by Andrea Wang, we follow Chinese American tween, Phoenny Fang, a senior camper at Summertime Chinese Culture, Wellness and Enrichment Experience (Squee), as she finds her summer even more transformative than she could’ve imagined, with new friendships, her first crush, and a bigger love for and understanding of her community.

Mariama J. Lockington’s In the Key of Us tells the story of Zora and Andi, the only two Black girls in a sea of mostly white faces at Harmony Music Camp. In kayaks and creaky cabins, the two begin to connect, unraveling their loss, insecurities, and hopes for the future. And as they struggle to figure out who they really are, they may just come to realize who they really need: each other.


In Sunshine by Jarrett J. Krosoczka, the author shares his extraordinary experiences as a counselor at Camp Sunshine, a camp for seriously ill kids and their families, where he met campers and fellow counselors who forever changed the course of his life.

For mystery-loving teens, The Box in the Woods by Maureen Johnson is a great choice. The story follows Stevie Bell, a teenage detective who just received a message from the owner of Sunny Pines – a camp formerly known as Camp Wonder Falls and the site of the infamous Box in the Woods murders. The new camp owner wants Stevie to help him work on a true-crime podcast about the unsolved case. Going undercover as a camp counselor, Stevie learns that something evil still lurks at the camp, and The Box in the Woods is willing to make room for more victims.

Rosewood: A Midsummer Meet Cute by Sayantani Dasgupta is perfect for any budding star. Sister Eila and Mallika Das are attending a summer camp where the campers are trying out for minor parts in a romance/detective television show set in Regency times–but when Eila meets the handsome Rahul there is plenty of drama to be had outside of the screenplay.

Be on the lookout for the Library’s 2024 Summer Fun & Reading Challenge, to keep kids engaged with reading and activities on those long summer days between camp sessions.

This article was originally published in March 2024.

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