A Brief Pause for "Nominations"

Image of five books laid out on a table -- Double Bass Blues; My Papi Has a Motorcycle; Saturday; Two Brothers, Four Hands; and Vroom!Hello, everyone! As you may be aware, the Real Committee has been busy all year with its regimented system of (informal) suggestions and (formal) nominations. Jules and I thought we would pause in our coverage of 2019 Caldecott-eligible titles to solicit your input. What books are your current top favorites?

Just to briefly recap the system: "suggestions" by committee members have been accumulating for months, in order to put titles of interest on the radars of fellow committee members. A committee member may suggest as many or as few titles as they wish:  

"The Chair solicits suggestions of eligible titles from committee members, usually on a monthly basis. Each time, committee members are asked to suggest books deemed to be strong contenders based on the award criteria."

Nominations are more formal, and occur in a much more regimented way, as follows:

"Prior to the Midwinter Selection Meeting the Chair will request three rounds of nominations from committee members. Committee members will be asked to nominate 3, 2, and 2 books (for a total of 7 distinct nominations) and to provide justification for each book."

(You may, of course, read about the process in more detail in the manual.)

Here at Calling Caldecott, we won't interrupt our coverage three times this fall/winter in order to attempt to exactly replicate this (very thorough and effective!) system of suggestions and nominations. We really are trying to cover as many eligible titles as possible! But we thought we'd pause now and ask you, the readers of this blog, to name four of your top contenders. It's mid-November now; we'll ask for three more nominations in mid-December. That way, if you want to participate, you will end up "nominating" seven titles, just as the Real Commitee members will. (Written justifications for your books are not necessary in order to participate.)

So, without further ado: of the 2019 books you've encountered irl or seen covered so far here on Calling Caldecott, what would your top four choices be at the moment? (Remember, you will have a chance to add three more book choices next month.) Please let us know in the comments! 


Martha V. Parravano
Martha V. Parravano
Martha V. Parravano is book review editor of The Horn Book, Inc., and co-author of the Calling Caldecott blog.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.

Ellen Gittes

My nominations (excluding some favorites with ineligible illustrators): Bear Came Along written by Richard T. Morris, illustrated by LeUyen Pham A Stone Sat Still by Brendan Wenzel Sea Bear: A Journey for Survival by Lindsay Moore Hum and Swish by Matt Myers

Posted : Dec 06, 2019 05:47

Susan Dailey

Little Guys by Vera Brosgol, Undefeated by Kwame Alexander illus. by Kadir Nelson, Sea Bear by Lindsay Moore & Sonny's Bridge by Barry Wittenstein illus. by Keith Mallett

Posted : Dec 04, 2019 02:39

Julie Danielson

I also want to thank everyone for leaving your nominations / favorites. I love reading these. Some of these illustrators aren't eligible for the award. I know, for instance, that Matthew Forsythe isn't (though POKKO is one of my favorite picture books this year), and I don't think Eva Eland is eligible (and I also really like her beautiful, sensitive book). Keep the titles coming! Thanks for taking the time to visit and share your favorites.

Posted : Dec 01, 2019 04:03

Sam Juliano

And yes, I'd sign a petition in a heartbeat to have the magnificent "Small in the City" achieve qualification status. That book seriously contends for poll position designation methinks.

Posted : Nov 27, 2019 06:34

Sam Juliano

Field Trip to the Moon (Hare); Going Down Home With Daddy (Lyons, Minter); A Place to Land (Wittenstein, Pinkney); Hi, I'm Norman (Burleigh, Minor). However like practically everyone else, I am loathe not to make mention of other other titles that are in the same sphere of excellence, each of which can make such a shortlist and in fact could well land in Round 2. On that front I will name Vroom (McClintock); What is Given from the Heart (McKissack, Harrison); The Bluest of Blues (Robinson); Manhattan (Thermes); Saturday (Mora); Fry Bread (Maillard; Martinez-Neal); Good Boy (Ruzzier) and Bear Came Along (Morris, Pham) among other distinguished American titles too numerous to mention here.

Posted : Nov 27, 2019 06:30

View More Comments


Stay Connected. Join our devoted community of librarians, educators, and parents in the world of children’s and young adult literature.