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Lucy

lucy

Were I on the Caldecott committee this year (I propose a rule change: please allow me to be on the committee every year), I would be eager to discuss Lucy by Randy Cecil. Why is this book so discussion-worthy? So many things set it apart from other modern picture books. The duotone (which here basically […]

They All Saw a Cat

they-all-saw-a-cat

It’s become old hat for an artist to have more than one really great picture book out in the same year, but usually it’s a familiar name. (Think Melissa Sweet, Jon Klassen, Philip Stead…) What’s unusual is when the artist has a rather unfamiliar name. This year, illustrator Brendan Wenzel has two books that many people […]

Are We There Yet?

are-we-there-yet

There’s nothing like the words “by Caldecott Medalist…” on a book’s cover to generate award buzz. With Are We There Yet?, Dan Santat’s first authored picture book since The Adventures of Beekle, there’s a lot to examine. The front endpapers show a car advancing — frame by frame — down a highway. Its destination is revealed […]

The Airport Book

airport

I suppose I should begin this post with the standard disclaimer about how this doesn’t look like a traditional Caldecott choice and blah blah and BLAH. But really, is there such a thing anymore? So I’ll just say, This book is brilliant and deserves Caldecott recognition. The fact that it manages to be, simultaneously, an informative report […]

Come Home, Angus

come-home-angus

I have never been on a Caldecott committee (and nor will I ever be, since I write publicly at more than one place throughout the year about picture books), and I have a deep reverence for the work these committees do annually. But I admit to a sort of hushed reverence, because it’s all rather […]

School’s First Day of School

schools-first-day

Well, if Lolly schooled us on Frankie and Lucky Get Schooled, I guess it’s inevitable that I educate you about School’s First Day of School. Christian Robinson’s other books have stickers all over their covers: Sibert, Coretta Scott King, Boston Globe-Horn Book, and even a Newbery Medal. So, when he has a new book out, we […]

Frank and Lucky Get Schooled

perkins_frank and lucky get schooled

In many of the books we look at for this blog, the illustrator has created virtuosic art that looks as if it required a lot of time and skill. Perkins, on the other hand, makes it look easy. As far as I can tell, all of Lynne Rae Perkins’s work has a feeling of improvisation and […]

The Sound of Silence

sound-of-silence

This may be an odd thing to say about a book about the search for peace and quiet, but I’m hoping The Sound of Silence makes a lot of noise around Caldecott season. When people ask me for a 2016 book recommendation, I invariably bring up Katrina Goldsaito and Julia Kuo’s story, which I always […]

This Is Not a Picture Book!

this-is-not-a-picture-book

Words and pictures. Pictures and words. What makes a book a book, at least in the mind of a young child? Ask any little kid and they will not hesitate to tell you that it’s the pictures. Anyone who has read this blog for more than a year knows that I agree with my young […]

Twenty Yawns

twenty-yawns

Having won a 2015 Caldecott honor for Nana in the City, Lauren Castillo will surely be on the Caldecott committee’s radar. This is a very different book in theme and even in palette, but once again she does here what she does best: keep the focus tightly on the child’s experience, and get it just right. […]