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News // Dec 13, 2022

Coast Guard Books for Young Readers: A Gift Giving Guide

  • Jennifer Crowley Fyke

Is there a better way to show your love for the Coast Guard than to give the gift of reading to a child in your life? Here are a few titles we think you’ll like!

In some cases, the links in our description point to online retailers, but we love small businesses, too, so check with your local bookseller to see if they have these titles in stock.

A note about online shopping: When you shop through smile.amazon.com, you can select the Coast Guard Foundation as your preferred charity and Amazon will make a small donation to our organization, at no cost to you. It’s super easy to do, just search for us in the set-up and all eligible purchases will generate a donation. Thank you!


Onyx and Kate

The Adventures of Onyx series, written by Tyler Benson, illustrated by David Geister. Prices range from $10-$20 depending on the book you select and gift sets.

Tyler Benson began writing his children’s book series as a way to explain his Coast Guard service to his four young children. The books feature Onyx, the Coast Guard station’s black lab, in the lead search and rescue role. Tyler’s stories honor Coast Guard heroism, mission excellence, and pay tribute to Coast Guard service members in a relatable, authentic way. As a way of giving back, the Benson family donates a portion of their book sales to the Coast Guard Foundation. You can order one book or several titles directly from the Adventures of Onyx website, plus add an adorable Onyx plush to your gift. These picture books are suitable for pre-school-5th grade.


Courage Like Kate: The True Story of a Girl Lighthouse Keeper. Written by Anne Crowley Redding, illustrated by Emily Sutton. List price $17.99

This book tells the true story of Kate Moore, a 12-year old lighthouse keeper in the 19th century who saved the lives of 23 sailors. In real-life, she served the Black Rock Harbor station in Connecticut for an impressive 72 years! The Coast Guard Cutter Kathleen Moore was commissioned in 2014 in recognition of her lifetime of service. This picture book is suitable for preschool-3rd grade.

From an online review: Courage Like Kate is an important book because it keeps the legacy of an exceptionally brave, kind, and independent woman alive. Readers will find the story empowering and the author’s note at the end moving. Share it with your children to talk about courage and skill and in classrooms to talk about the history of lighthouses and the brave women and men who kept sailors safe at sea.

Finest hours and connor cutter

The Finest Hours (Young Readers Edition): The True Story of a Heroic Sea Rescue. Written by Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman. List Price $7.99

From the book description: This adaptation for young readers of The Finest Hours: The True Story of the U.S. Coast Guard's Most Daring Sea Rescue tells the story of the shipwreck of two oil tankers and the harrowing Coast Guard rescue when four men in a tiny lifeboat overcame insurmountable odds and saved more than 30 stranded sailors. Also a major motion picture from Disney, starring Chris Pine and Casey Affleck. This edition is suitable for readers in grades 3-4.


The Adventures of Connor the Courageous Cutter series. Written by Rod Thompson and Scott McBride. Illustrated by Bruce Martin. List price $14.95

From the book description: In each of the three books in this series, you can “follow Connor and his fun-loving friends as they learn lessons in courage, teamwork, and friendship with each new adventure.” When you order directly from the series website, you can request personalized, signed editions, which make great gifts. Author Scott McBride is an active-duty Coast Guard service member, and author Rod Thompson serves in the Navy. This illustrated picture book series is best enjoyed by kids in pre-school-2nd grade.

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