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2019 Calling Caldecott ballot #1 and voting instructions

Vote Here Friday

It’s time for the 2019 mock vote here at Calling Caldecott! We have been discussing books here at the blog as far back as early March, and we hope you all have been reading and thinking and poring over books. The actual ALA Youth Media Awards will be in less than two weeks, but it’s also fun to engage in the mock vote and hear what we all have to think about our favorite choices.

Our ballot for voting will open in just two days — Friday, January 18, at 9 a.m. EST.  Feel free to discuss your thoughts about 2018 books, if you’re so inclined, in the comments of this post. We hope that all of you vote, even if you’ve not been commenting throughout the year and have been merely lurking. You will have the opportunity to choose the three books you think are the most distinguished picture books of the year. You do not have to have read all the books.

We hope you encourage friends and colleagues to vote, but please please be cool and follow the rules by voting only once. And our usual plea: we implore you to avoid engaging in ballot-stuffing. In other words, do not send this link to everyone you know to drum up support for that one book you love (or your friend published, or your sister-in-law wrote). That throws things seriously off balance for those of us keeping up with the vote tally. Please. Puh-leeze. For reals. Thank you.

OK, let’s carry on.

Here are the 26 books on this year’s mock Calling Caldecott ballot:

  1. Adrian Simcox Does Not Have a Horse by Corinna Luyken
  2. Alma and How She Got Her Name by Juana Martinez-Neal
  3. A Big Mooncake for Little Star by Grace Lin
  4. Blue by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
  5. The Day You Begin illus. by Rafael López
  6. Drawn Together illus. by Dan Santat
  7. Dreamers by Yuyi Morales
  8. The Field illus. by Jacqueline Alcántara
  9. Fox + Chick by Sergio Ruzzier
  10. Hello Hello by Brendan Wenzel
  11. Hello Lighthouse by Sophie Blackall
  12. Hey, Kiddo by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
  13. A House That Once Was illus. by Lane Smith
  14. Imagine! illus. by Raúl Colón
  15. Julián Is a Mermaid by Jessica Love
  16. Nothing Stopped Sophie illus. by Barbara McClintock
  17. Otis and Will Discover the Deep illus. by Katherine Roy
  18. A Parade of Elephants by Kevin Henkes
  19. The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang
  20. Seeing Into Tomorrow illus. by Nina Crews
  21. The Stuff of Stars illus. by Ekua Holmes
  22. Thank You, Omu! by Oge Mora
  23. They Say Blue by Jillian Tamaki
  24. The Wall in the Middle of the Book by Jon Agee
  25. Water Land by Christy Hale
  26. We Are Grateful illus. by Frané Lessac

(Please revisit the relevant Calling Caldecott posts if you need to refresh your memory — or just need to think further — about any of these books!)

Here’s the voting schedule. All times listed are Eastern Standard Time.

Happening now! Discussion of books on ballot
Friday, January 18 at 9 a.m. Ballot 1 open for voting
Tuesday, January 22 at 9 a.m. Voting on ballot 1 closes
Tuesday, January 22 afternoon Ballot 1 results announced on Calling Caldecott; ballot 2 announced for discussion.
Wednesday, January 23 at 9 a.m. Ballot 2 open for voting
Thursday, January 24 at 9 a.m. Ballot 2 closes at 9 a.m.
Thursday, January 24 around noon Calling Caldecott mock vote results posted


We imagine that, at this point, the Real Committee is busy rereading all their nominated books and making thoughtful, detailed notes on what they have read. They start face-to-face deliberations soon. We wish them productive and passionate discussions.

Happy considering, choosing, and voting!

Julie Danielson About Julie Danielson

Julie Danielson writes about picture books at the blog Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast. She also writes for Kirkus Reviews and BookPage and is a lecturer for the School of Information Sciences graduate program at the University of Tennessee. Her book Wild Things!: Acts of Mischief in Children’s Literature, written with Betsy Bird and Peter D. Sieruta, was published in 2014.



  1. This is perhaps the most fantastic Calling Caldecott opening ballot nomination ballot I’ve ever seen! Of course like everyone else I do mourn the absence of some really terrific books, but there has to be a cut off number, and 26 is ideal. I love em all and was so thrilled to see a nomination for the gifted Frane Lessac who graduated the same year from the same Cliffside Park High School, New Jersey as I did. (I will refrain from mentioning the year, LOL!) My “mourning for” list includes both titles previously reviewed in the Calling Caldecott lineup and books that were never reviewed, but again the Horn Book’s final 26 is magisterial!!!)

    A Home in the Barn (Jerry Pinkney) reviewed by Julie Danielson
    Ocean Meets Sky (Fan Brothers) not reviewed/ fourth place winner in our Mock Caldecott
    Hawk Rising (Gianferrari/Floca) reviewed by Dean Schneider
    Pie is For Sharing (Ledyard/Chin) reviewed by Martha Perravano
    The Party (Sergio Ruzzier) reviewed by Dean Schneider
    Night Train Night Train (Burleigh/Minor) not reviewed
    The Unwanted reviewed in CaldeComic Part 2
    Heartbeat (Evan Turk) not reviewed
    The Faithful Spy (John Hendrix) not reviewed
    Nanny Paws (Wendy Wahman) not reviewed
    Run Wild (David Covell) not reviewed
    If I Had a Horse (Gianna Marino) not reviewed
    Bub (Elizabeth Rose Stanton) not reviewed
    Martin Rising (Pinkney/Pinkney) reviewed by Julie Danielson
    Stop That Yawn! (Levis/Pham) reviewed by Tarie Sabido
    Be Prepared (Vera Brosgol) reviewed in CaldeComics

  2. My apologies, “The Party” (Ruzzier) is indeed on the ballot as “Fox + Chick.”

  3. And one more mistake. FOX + CHICK was reviewed by ADRIENNE PETTINELLI actually, but was dedicated to Dean Schneider’s beloved wife Robin Smith, co-founder of Calling Caldecott.

  4. Allison Grover Khoury says:

    I must admit I’ve done a lot of lurking this year, but read every review and the comments and enjoyed them all. This is a very interesting list out of a VERY interesting year of books. I thank you all for your writing and reviewing. I’m going off to think and look at some of the books again before voting this weekend.

  5. Bill Wright says:

    Great list…will be hard to choose just three!! Is They Say Blue actually eligible this year? I know she won an honor a couple of years ago, but TSB’s flap says she is living in Canada and Wikipedia says she was born in Canada…did she do the work on TSB while still living in the US?

  6. Bill, yes, Tamaki is eligible. I just confirmed this with the publisher to be extra sure. She is a dual citizen.

  7. Bill Wright says:

    Jules…thanks for the info!

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