By Guest Blogger Ellen Bryant Lloyd 

Win a book of your choice from today’s blog! 

Was it just me, or did the summer fly by? Soon, yellow school buses will be on the roads and we will be making trips to purchase school supplies. As much as we welcomed the lazy days of summer, there is a lot to be said for getting back into schedules and routines. While time may be more limited with busy fall schedules, remember, there is always time to read. Check out this month’s selections, all with themes of kindness and friendship — a great reminder as a new school year begins.

Enjoy the last of the summer sunshine as you prepare for a great year!

Preschool — You’re Here for a Reason (board book) by Nancy Tillman

National-bestselling author Nancy Tillman has crafted another timeless book with an important message for all children (and everyone for that matter):  you are here for a reason. The gorgeous illustrations and the examples of treating everyone with kindness add to the special gift of this book. This title will be a keeper for all home libraries.

Pre-K to Early Elementary — Be Kind by Pat Zietlow Miller and illustrated by Jen Hill

This New York Times bestseller shares an important message that is always relevant — be kind. This memorable story shares example after example of what being kind looks like. Children will easily relate to each situation and realize how being kind can make a real difference. A perfect story for children as they begin a new school year.

Older Elementary/Early Middle School — Ellie’s Story: A Dog’s Purpose Puppy Tale by W. Bruce Cameron

This story helps bring home the idea that every dog has a special purpose. Part of the A Dog’s Purpose Puppy Tales series, this story features Ellie, a pup trained to be a search-and-rescue dog. She finds and saves people because that is what she is meant to do, but her handlers, Jakob and Maya, need to be saved in their own way. A sweet story that will definitely warm the hearts of readers.

Young Adult —Hope and Other Punch Lines by Julie Buxbaum

Buxbaum, the New York Times bestselling author of Tell Me Three Things and What to Say Next, has written a story that will pull at your emotions and give you hope. Abbi Hope Goldstein is a teenager with a past that won’t seem to let her be. Her image is captured in a photograph of her wearing a birthday crown and holding a red balloon September 11, 2001, just as the South Tower of the World Trade Center is collapsing. As hard as she tries to escape her past, it comes back in full force when she meets Noah, and they both are faced with challenging questions surrounding that horrible day. This book will make readers think about loss, friendship and the stories we sometimes tell ourselves to make it through life.

Moms — Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah

Hannah is a New York Times bestselling author who has written a great story of friendship and love that takes place over three decades. Set in the Pacific Northwest, the tale begins in the summer of 1974 when Kate Mularkey and Tully Hart, two complete opposites, become best friends. The description on sums the book up perfectly: “Firefly Lane is for anyone who ever drank Boone’s Farm apple wine while listening to Abba or Fleetwood Mac. More than a coming-of-age novel, it’s the story of a generation of women who were both blessed and cursed by choices. It’s about promises and secrets and betrayals. And ultimately, about the one person who really, truly knows you—and knows what has the power to hurt you . . . and heal you. Firefly Lane is a story you’ll never forget . . . one you’ll want to pass on to your best friend.”

Win a book of your choice from today’s blog!

Remember to share your thoughts and comments, and you could be selected to win a copy of one of the books, compliments of Barnes & Noble, Friendly Shopping Center, Greensboro. The staff of Triad Moms on Main will choose a random winner one week after the blog runs. (Please be sure to enter your email address when you fill out your comment so they have a way to contact you.)

Ellen Bryant Lloyd is the author of FRECKLES and FRECKLES and The Great Beach Rescue. Please visit and to learn more about Freckles. Ellen writes a blog about her perspectives on life and parenting at and tweets at @EllenBLloyd. She lives in Greensboro with her husband and two children.