Monday, January 27, 2020

Monday Mini-Reviews Pre-Empted For A Special Awards Post

Today is the day I look forward to every year.  The ALA Midwinter meeting is underway and this morning the Children's Book Awards will be announced.  I love making predictions, I love listening to the announcements (which thanks to technology are live-streamed), and I love adding to my large TBR. 

I've listened to and read several different people's predictions and been asked what I am hoping wins as well.

The Caldecott Award, which is given for best illustrations is one I never seem to be able to guess.  Because I am in the middle school now, I also don't read as many picture books as I used to.  However, the one picture book that sticks out in my mind is Home in the Woods by Eliza Wheeler.

I love this book, which tells the story of the grandmother's childhood and the ability of her family to survive the challenges they faced.  However, it is the illustrations I remarked on.  The story starts with black, gray, and white illustrations as the shack they live in does not feel like a home. As the story unfolds, however, this run-down shack is fixed up a little, and because of the people inside, begins to feel like a home. As this happens the illustrations become more colorful.

My only hesitation is I fear the Caldecott committee will find these illustrations too similar to last year's winner, Hello Lighthouse by Sophie Blackall.

The Newbery Medal is awarded to a work of childrens literature for its writing, a book that will stand the test of time.  There are lots of of fantastic middle grade novels that are deserving of attention.  The one I'm most in love with is The Line Tender by Kate Allen.  

I read this book back in January 2019 and am still thinking about it.  Lucy's mom was a marine biologist until her death, something Lucy and her father are still getting over.  The summer that Lucy is twelve a great white shark shows up along with another tragedy.  This book broke my heart, gave me hope and has stayed with me for an entire year.  There are lots of great books I've read that could certainly get some Newbery love, but in addition to this being a great story, it is also by an unknown author.

I'm counting down until we can celebrate some new award winners!

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