This past Monday, two of the premier awards for children’s books were announced: the Caldecott and Newbery Medals. The Caldecott is awarded annually for distinction in picture book illustration. The Newbery is awarded for distinction in children’s book writing. You can learn more on the American Library Association’s website.
This year’s winners include:
Caldecott Medal: This Is Not My Hat, illustrated and written by Jon Klassen
- Creepy Carrots!, illustrated by Peter Brown, written by Aaron Reynolds
- Extra Yarn, illustrated by Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett
- Green, illustrated by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
- One Cool Friend, illustrated by David Small, written by Toni Buzzeo
- Sleep Like a Tiger, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski, written by Mary Logue
Newbery Medal: The One and Only Ivan, written by Katherine Applegate
- Bomb: The Race to Build – and Steal – the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon, by Steve Sheinkin
- Splendors and Glooms, by Laura Amy Schlitz
- Three Times Lucky, Sheila Turnage
Congratulations to all of the winners! Looks like this is an extra good year for Jon Klassen.
So my mission today was to venture into the smallish Barnes and Noble in my town with my daughter, and spend some time looking through the books listed above. The only two I have read previously are Extra Yarn, and One Cool Friend (which we own). Unfortunately, my bookstore had NONE of these award winners. Very disappointing. I could go on and on how our Barnes and Noble needs to move into the space vacated by Borders so that it can have a proper selection, cafe, and places to sit… but that could be a whole post in itself.
So I will have to share my impressions on these books at a later time. I can tell you that both Extra Yarn (a tale about a girl who finds a magic box of yarn and proceeds to knit sweaters for everyone and everything) and One Cool Friend (about a boy who sneaks a penguin home from the aquarium in his backpack) are lovely, and are made even more charming by their illustrations.
Tomorrow I’m off to the winter conference of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI), and I should have much to tell when I get back. Have a great weekend!