top of page

Caterpillar Summer

Note from Gillian:

When I was a kid, summer was my favorite season. I loved having lots of unstructured time and my days were full of reading, swimming, going to the beach, and trips to Thrifty's, where you could get a double-scoop for 25 cents. 

I think of this book as a love letter to all the things I loved about summer.



A Great Fit for:

  • Readers who like books about family 

  • Readers who love summer stories

  • Readers who like fishing and being at the beach

  • Parent/kid discussion: Would you like to visit an island? What responsibilites should an older sibling have? Are first impressions always accurate? 

Honors & Awards

  • Parents Magazine Best Kids' Books

  • Kirkus Best Middle-Grade Books of the Year

  • Bank Street Best Children's Books of the Year, Outstanding Merit 

  • An Indies Introduce selection 

  • Indie Next Kids Top Ten

  • A Junior Library Guild selection

  • An Okra Pick - Southern Indie Booksellers Alliance

  • Amazon Teachers' Pick

    ★ Kirkus, starred review

    ​★ Publishers Weekly, starred review

  • Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List

  • Florida Sunshine State Young Readers Award List

  • South Carolina Children's Book Award List

  • Georgia Children's Book Award List 

  • Kentucky Bluegrass Award List

  • Nebraska Golden Sower Award nominee

  • Mississippi Magnolia Book Award nominee

  • Illinois's Bluestem Award nominee

  • Sakura Medal List


Why We Need Summer Stories by Gillian McDunn

(article for Nerdy Book Club)​

Book Details


Age range: 8-13

Grade level: 3-8

Hardcover: 304 pages

Publisher: Bloomsbury Children's Books

ISBN-10: 168119743X

ISBN-13: 978-1681197432

Art by Alisa Coburn, design by Jeanette Levy

Available in:

  • Hardcover

  • Paperback

  • Ebook

  • Large print

  • Audio book, narrated by Cassandra Morris

  • German

  • Polish

  • Chinese 

Signed copies available through Quail Ridge Books
Target logo.png
Quail Ridge logo_edited_edited.png
bottom of page