The Winners of the Best Books of 2011 were announced last Monday at the American Library Association Conference. This year’s winners were (direct from the ALA website)…
The Newbery Medal is awarded annually to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children.
Moon Over Manifest written by Clare Vanderpool, published by Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc.
Abilene Tucker feels abandoned. Her father has put her on a train, sending her off to live with an old friend for the summer while he works a railroad job. Armed only with a few possessions and her list of universals, Abilene jumps off the train in Manifest, Kansas, aiming to learn about the boy her father once was.
Having heard stories about Manifest, Abilene is disappointed to find that it’s just a dried-up, worn-out old town. But her disappointment quickly turns to excitement when she discovers a hidden cigar box full of mementos, including some old letters that mention a spy known as the Rattler. These mysterious letters send Abilene and her new friends, Lettie and Ruthanne, on an honest-to-goodness spy hunt, even though they are warned to “Leave Well Enough Alone.”
Abilene throws all caution aside when she heads down the mysterious Path to Perdition to pay a debt to the reclusive Miss Sadie, a diviner who only tells stories from the past. It seems that Manifest’s history is full of colorful and shadowy characters—and long-held secrets. The more Abilene hears, the more determined she is to learn just what role her father played in that history. And as Manifest’s secrets are laid bare one by one, Abilene begins to weave her own story into the fabric of the town.
Newbery Honor Books
Turtle in Paradise written by Jennifer L. Holm, published by Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc.
Heart of a Samurai written by Margi Preus, published by Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams
Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night written by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Rick Allen, published by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
One Crazy Summer written by Rita Williams-Garcia, published by Amistad, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers
* * *
* * *
The Caldecott Medal is awarded annually to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children.
A Sick Day for Amos McGee illustrated by Erin E. Stead, written by Philip C. Stead, a Neal Porter Book, published by Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing
Friends come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. In Amos McGee’s case, all sorts of species, too! Every day he spends a little bit of time with each of his friends at the zoo, running races with the tortoise, keeping the shy penguin company, and even reading bedtime stories to the owl. But when Amos is too sick to make it to the zoo, his animal friends decide it’s time they returned the favor.
Caldecott Honor Books
Dave the Potter: Artist, Poet, Slave illustrated by Bryan Collier, written by Laban Carrick Hill, published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
Interrupting Chicken illustrated and written by David Ezra Stein, published by Candlewick Press
* * *
The Geisel Award is given annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished American book for beginning readers published in English in the United States during the preceding year.
Bink and Gollie written by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee, illustrated by Tony Fucile, published by Candlewick Press
Meet Bink and Gollie, two precocious little girls — one tiny, one tall, and both utterly irrepressible. Setting out from their super-deluxe tree house and powered by plenty of peanut butter (for Bink) and pancakes (for Gollie), they share three comical adventures involving painfully bright socks, an impromptu trek to the Andes, and a most unlikely marvelous companion. No matter where their roller skates take them, at the end of the day they will always be the very best of friends.
Geisel Honor Books
Ling & Ting: Not Exactly the Same! written and illustrated by Grace Lin, published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
We Are in a Book! written and illustrated by Mo Willems, published by Hyperion Books for Children, an imprint of Disney Book Group.
* * *
The Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal is awarded annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished informational book published in English during the preceding year.
Kakapo Rescue: Saving the World’s Strangest Parrot written by Sy Montgomery, photographs by Nic Bishop, published by Houghton Mifflin Books for Children, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company
On remote Codfish Island off the southern coast of New Zealand live the last ninety-one kakapo parrots on earth. These trusting, flightless, and beautiful birds—the largest and most unusual parrots on earth—have suffered devastating population loss.
Now, on an island refuge with the last of the species, New Zealand’s National Kakapo Recovery Team is working to restore the kakapo population. With the help of fourteen humans who share a single hut and a passion for saving these odd ground-dwelling birds, the kakapo are making a comeback in New Zealand.
Sibert Honor Books
Ballet for Martha: Making Appalachian Spring written by Jan Greenberg and Sandra Jordan, illustrated by Brian Floca. A Neal Porter Book., published by Flash Point, an imprint of Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing
Lafayette and the American Revolution, written by Russell Freedman, published by Holiday House
* * *
Although there were many, many books published this year, these are the cream of the crop! Check one out…you’ll sure to be impressed.