Thursday, December 17, 2009

And Other People's Best Books

Now that The Horn Book has finally put out their Fanfare list, I can commence with compiling all the "best" book lists of the year for kids and teens, you know, for those of you who may not have seen them all already. Surely in all these great lists, you will find the perfect book for you and your young readers.

A compilation of all starred reviews of the year from the top review publications. This comes from the lovely folks at Publisher's Weekly's Shelftalker blog. Can I just say that we have needed this sort of thing for years? Thank you so, so much!

The aforementioned Fanfare from The Horn Book.

School Library Journal has published their best list and also their Heavy Medal blog (a mock Newbery discussion blog) has posted their final list of contenders.

Old news, but here's the New York Times Notable Children's Books and Best Illustrated Children's Books lists.

Even older news is Publisher's Weekly's Best Children's Books list. I suppose they can have theirs out by November 2, since they represent publishers, right?

Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Most Beautiful Books of the Year

The children's staff at the library had our mock Caldecott discussion this morning and it really hit home what an amazing array of gorgeous picture books were published this year. Favorite illustrators had more than one book each, even, making it harder and harder to choose. While our consensus (and that of bloggers and reviewers) was that Jerry Pinkney's wordless The Lion and the Mouse is an odds-on favorite to win the Caldecott this year, we were completely flummoxed in how to order the other books we love. Here is a list, organized by author, rather than by preference, of the picture books I thought were the most beautiful or creative this year. (I couldn't order it if I tried. I have 10 favorites!)

1. The Longest Night - words by Marion Dane Bauer, illustrations by Ted Lewin

2. Redwoods - words and illustrations by Jason Chin

3. A Book - words and illustrations by Mordicai Gerstein

4. The Negro Speaks of Rivers - words by Langston Hughes, illustrations by E.B. Lewis

5. Tsunami! - words by Kimiko Kajikawa, illustrations by Ed Young

6. The Lion and the Mouse - illustrations by Jerry Pinkney

7. Duck! Rabbit! - words by Amy Krouse Rosenthal, illustrations by Tom Lichtenheld

8. All the World - words by Liz Garton Scanlon, illustrations by Marla Frazee

9. But Who Will Bell the Cats? - words and illustrations by Cynthia von Buhler

10. The Scarecrow's Dance - words by Jane Yolen, illustrations by Bagram Ibatoulline

Illustrators I love who produced multiple books this year included Steve Jenkins, Bagram Ibatoulline, Ed Young, E.B. Lewis, and Barry Moser.