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Another September; another welcome

As we have done for the past six years, Calling Caldecott is gearing up for another season of intense discussion about picture books, especially Caldecott-eligible titles. This year is not like the others, however, because it will be the first time that we will be operating without Robin Smith. As most of you know, Robin (along with Lolly Robinson) founded this blog and has been its most passionate and distinctive voice. As I’ve said before, for me Calling Caldecott = Robin Smith. I still have trouble writing these next words, but: our beloved Robin died in July — way too young and to this world’s enormous detriment.

Many of you have known Robin for years, at least through this blog; for initiates who’d like to know more about her, here are a few places to look. (See also the editorial in the September/October Horn Book Magazine.) We miss her so much; we will never forget her; and we’ll do our best to live up to her example, on Calling Caldecott and everywhere else. We will try to keep her energy and spirit alive here. For myself, I know I’ll be thinking of her every time I open a new picture book; I’ll try to look at each one through her eyes, to listen for that unique and inimitable and irreplaceable voice.

So, this September welcome to Calling Caldecott is a bittersweet one, but it’s a welcome nonetheless. We are very lucky to be joined by the wonderful Julie Danielson, picture-book advocate and expert; author of the Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast blog; Kirkus and Horn Book Magazine contributor — and great friend of Robin. You will be hearing from Jules herself later this week, and after that we will begin our usual call for titles you are all interested in discussing on the blog this fall and winter. And then, of course, we will begin: another season of lively conversation about exciting new books.

Welcome, everyone.


Martha V. Parravano About Martha V. Parravano

Martha V. Parravano is book review editor of The Horn Book, Inc., and co-author of the Calling Caldecott blog.



  1. Allison Grover Khoury says:

    I am very excited it is time to get back to work here. I’ve been checking every day for weeks hoping. Thank you for your loving words about Robin and the heart-wrenching loss of her amazing self to the world, and her voice and passion and expertise here on the blog. I offer my sincerest condolences to all of you who knew her in person. I first learned about Robin on this blog. I am among those who have not meet her, and only admired her from afar from thousands of miles away. I will miss her with every posting and comment. Thank you for continuing Calling Caldecott. I’m delighted that Jules will join the crew – excellent. I am looking forward!

  2. Jules will be a wonderful addition to Calling Caldecott, and I’m so glad the blog is continuing. For those of us in the hinterlands who don’t get to see many new picture books, Calling Caldecott is ever so useful– and also fun.

  3. Sam Juliano says:

    Ms. Danielson is a truly fabulous writer, and a splendid choice for Caling Caldecott, methinks. Of course Robin Smith is as you note irrepleaceable, though I’m sure her guiding light will continue to inspire this annual endeavor in thought, word and deed.

    This is quite a moving and beautiful post.

  4. A belated thanks, you all.

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