When we asked our staff and reviewers to name their favorite Boston Globe–Horn Book Award winners, many of them struggled to choose just one. Kitty Flynn, executive editor of The Horn Book Guide, sent us her six favorites:
In Big Momma Makes the World (Candlewick, 2003 Picture Book Award winner), Phyllis Root’s earthy text is perfectly paired with Helen Oxenbury’s warm, loving illustrations of Big Momma and her chubby baby in this original creation story. As Big Momma would say, “That’s good. That’s real good.”
In Revenge of the Whale: The True Story of the Whaleship Essex (Putnam, 2003 Nonfiction Honor Book), Nathaniel Philbrick writes with such immediacy and intensity about an almost-two-hundred-year-old event — this is one of the most riveting and memorable works of nonfiction I’ve ever read.
Steven Kellogg’s dynamic paintings match the wonder and awe in Faith McNulty’s informative text in If You Decide to Go to the Moon (Scholastic, 2006 Nonfiction Award winner). I love the trajectory of this book: in the beginning, readers look out into the vastness of space along with the boy astronaut; by book’s end, we’re looking at the beauty of our own home planet with fresh eyes.
I struggled with The Fire-Eaters (Delacorte, 2004 Fiction Award winner) the first time through. But something about the story compelled me to try again. And when the fog cleared, I was blown away by David Almond’s command of imagery and setting.
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (HarperCollins, 2009 Fiction Honor Book). What’s not to love about this book? Seriously. And the audiobook, narrated by Neil himself, is perfection.
Salley Mavor’s homespun fabric relief sculptures in Pocketful of Posies: A Treasury of Nursery Rhymes (Houghton, 2011 Picture Book Award winner) are mesmerizing. I love getting lost in her scenes with the music of these traditional rhymes in my head.
For more Boston Globe–Horn Book love, click on the tag my favorite BGHB winner.