School’s out for the summer. But that doesn’t mean Captain Smartypants can’t hit the books. Between trips to the playground and ice cream shop, ramp up imaginations with quality story time. Get started with these 10 new picture books that are worth cracking open on even the sunniest of days.

The Skeleton Pirate

Author David Lucas delivers a boatload of laughs in his story about a skeleton pirate that gets conquered by a mass of swashbucklers, rescued by a mermaid and swallowed by a whale. It's a fun adventure -- no bones about it. Available at, $10.