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I'm not so sure how we pick out books.  For grown-up books, I am usually always pleased with a pick from Oprah's old book lists (Did you know that Oprah also has a kid's book list sorted by age group?)  For the kids' books, I like to use the Library's book lists (also sorted by age group).  I'm also always drawn to the prestigious Newbery award (for illustration in children's books) and the Caldecott award (for children's story books).  How happy was I to see the winner of this year's Newbery: Chris Raschka, a longtime fave in our household.  Run to Powell's to pick up your copies now! 

... snipets below courtesy NYTimes.com ...

On Jan. 23rd, the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, announced the winners of the 2006 Newbery and Caldecott Medals in San Antonio, Tex. The most prestigious awards in children's book publishing, they honor outstanding writing and illustration of works published in the United States during the previous year.

Every year there are only two Medal winners, but there can be an unlimited number of Honor awards (or none). This year there are four Caldecott Honor books and four Newbery Honors as well. A listing follows of the 2006 Medal and Honor books, with brief descriptions taken from the award citations.

2006 RANDOLPH CALDECOTT MEDAL FOR ILLUSTRATION:author Chris Raschka, for "The Hello, Goodbye Window"

The Hello, Goodbye Window, By Norton Juster, illustrated by Chris Raschka. Michael di Capua/Hyperion, $15.95.
"In this sunny portrait of familial love, a little girl tells us about her everyday experiences visiting her grandparents' house."


Rosa, By Nikki Giovanni, illustrated by Bryan Collier. Henry Holt, $16.95.
"With Giovanni's spare, elegant prose and Collier's iconic illustrations, celebrates the quiet courage of Rosa Parks."

Zen Shorts, By Jon J. Muth. Scholastic, $16.95
"Muth's story of inquisitive siblings befriending a wise panda is told through luminous watercolors interwoven with three lessons."

Hot Air: The (Mostly) True Story of the First Hot-Air Balloon Ride, By Marjorie Priceman.  Anne Schwartz/Atheneum, $16.95.
"An aerial adventure over 18th-century France," involving "three animals swept up in the winds of history."

Song of the Water Boatman and Other Pond Poems, By Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Beckie Prange. Houghton Mifflin, $16.95.
"Eleven joyful songs of everyday pond life throughout the seasons," in a "combination of visual drama, poetry and scientific facts."

2006 JOHN NEWBERY MEDAL: Lynne Rae Perkins, for "Criss Cross"

Criss Cross, By Lynne Rae Perkins. Greenwillow Books, $16.99
"Follows the lives of four 14-year-olds in a small town," and "deftly captures the tentativeness and incompleteness of adolescence." An Illustrated Excerpt (PDF format.)


Whittington By Alan Armstrong, illustrated by S. D. Schindler.Random House, $14.95
"Weaves together three tales: Whittington the cat's arrival on Bernie's farm, his retelling of the traditional legend of his 14th-century namesake, and one boy's struggle to learn to read."

Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler's Shadow By Susan Campbell Bartoletti. Scholastic Nonfiction, $19.95.
Explores Hitler's rise to power "through the first-hand experiences of young followers . . . a powerful addition to Holocaust literature for children."

Princess Academy By Shannon Hale. Bloomsbury USA, $16.95.
The girls of a mountain village are sent away to princess school when the prince of the realm must choose a bride. "A fresh approach to the traditional princess story."

Show Way By Jacqueline Woodson. Illustrated by Hudson Talbott. Putnam, $16.99.
A "magnificent poem" that "tells the story of slavery, emancipation and triumph" for each generation of the author's maternal ancestors.

Here are all past Caldecott winners and here are all past Newbery winners.


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» 2006 Caldecott and Newbery award winners from parent hacks
Olivia has written up a lovely sum-up on urbanMamas of this year's Caldecott and Newbery award winners. She also pointed out something I didn't know: that Oprah maintains a kid's reading list in addition to her regular book club [Read More]


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Enough to warm this librarian's heart! Thanks for posting this wonderful list for all to see!

Thanks for sharing the list, which reminds me that not everyone may know about Title Wave, a used book store run by the Multnomah Public Library. It's just a block or two off the intersection of NE Knott & MLK. I found a ton of board books (including some award winners) for 75 cents each or less. Tons of kids books, new shipments daily.

great post, but one small nitpick: Newberys are given to authors for outstanding writing for children. The Caldecott is an illustrator award for outstanding illustrations on a book for children. Generally the Caldecott is a picture book, the Newbery is a novel (this year's choice of Show Way notwithstanding).

I find both those awards and Oprah lists to be a bit on the over-earnest side.


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