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Reviews of 2021 Mind the Gap Award winners

Not all deserving books bring home ALA awards. Our annual Mind the Gap Awards pay tribute to our favorite books that didn’t win. Here’s how we reviewed our 2021 winners.   The Old Truck by Jarrett Pumphrey and Jerome Pumphrey; illus. by the authors Preschool, Primary    Norton    40 pp. 1/20   ...
      

Review of Lift as You Climb: The Story of Ella Baker

Lift as You Climb: The Story of Ella Baker by Patricia Hruby Powell; illus. by R. Gregory Christie Primary, Intermediate    McElderry    48 pp.    g 6/20    978-1-5344-0623-0    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-1-5344-0624-7    $10.99 “Church said / Help your neighbor. / Mama said / Lift as you climb.” So began the lifework of...
      

Review of R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul

R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul  by Carole Boston Weatherford; illus. by Frank Morrison  Primary, Intermediate    Atheneum    48 pp.    g  8/20    978-1-5344-5228-2    $18.99  e-book ed.  978-1-5344-5229-9    $10.99  This impressionistic picture-book biography of Aretha Franklin (1942–2018) consists of a series of rhyming couplets following the iconic singer through her life. Weatherford employs a...
      

Reviews of the 2021 Sibert Award Winners

Winner Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera by Candace Fleming; illus. by Eric Rohmann Primary    Porter/Holiday    40 pp. 2/20    978-0-8234-4285-0    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-0-8234-4304-8    $11.99 A worker bee breaks out of her honeycomb cell and begins a task-filled life in her colony. The “teeming, trembling flurry” of bees within...
      

Reviews of the 2021 Pura Belpré Illustrator Award Winners

Winner ¡Vamos!: Let’s Go Eat by Raúl the Third; illus. by the author; color by Elaine Bay Primary    Versify/Houghton    40 pp.    g 3/20    978-1-328-55704-9    $14.99 e-book ed.  978-0-358-33070-7    $9.99 Little Lobo and his canine sidekick Bernabé, whom we met in ¡Vamos!: Let’s Go to the Market (rev. 3/19),...
      

Reviews of the 2021 CSK Illustrator Award Winners

Winner R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul  by Carole Boston Weatherford; illus. by Frank Morrison  Primary, Intermediate    Atheneum    48 pp.    g  8/20    978-1-5344-5228-2    $18.99  e-book ed.  978-1-5344-5229-9    $10.99  This impressionistic picture-book biography of Aretha Franklin (1942–2018) consists of a series of rhyming couplets following the iconic singer through her life. Weatherford employs...
      

Reviews of the 2021 Caldecott Medal Winners

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Winner We Are Water Protectors by Carole Lindstrom; illus. by Michaela Goade Primary    Roaring Brook    40 pp.    g 3/20    978-1-250-20355-7    $17.99 The book opens with a young Indigenous girl collecting water with her grandmother, who tells her that “water is the first medicine.” Vibrant blues, greens, and purples...
      

Review of Girl, Serpent, Thorn

Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust High School    Flatiron    323 pp.    g 7/20    978-1-250-19614-9    $18.99 e-book ed.  978-1-250-19615-6    $9.99 “Stories always begin the same way. There was and there was not.” Soraya, sister of the Kingdom’s future shah, lives a privileged life in Golvahar Palace and loves to hear her...
      

Hotel, motel

If you're feeling wistful about November travel -- or about the Rosebud Motel -- here are three new books set in motels. See also the Hotels and Motels subject list in the Guide/Reviews Database (free COVID-19 access info here). No Vacancy by Tziporah Cohen Intermediate, Middle School    Groundwood    144 pp.    g  9/20    978-1-77306-410-9    $16.95  e-book ed. ...
      

Review of Desert Girl, Monsoon Boy

Desert Girl, Monsoon Boy by Tara Dairman; illus. by Archana Sreenivasan Preschool, Primary    Putnam    32 pp.    g 5/20    978-0-525-51806-8    $17.99 e-book ed.  978-0-525-51807-5    $10.99 In this beautifully rendered study of contrasts and commonalities, Dairman imagines a girl and boy from two different biomes in India. Split pages portray the girl...

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