Favorite Books of the Year

It's my favorite time of the year again.  Youth Services librarians all over the country are rushing around trying to read the most talked about books of the year.  We all try to predict which ones we think will win the Newbery, Caldecott and Printz awards in January. 

I was jumping with joy last January when the winners were announced.  The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate is about a gorilla, who lives in a circus themed mall.  When a new baby elephant is added to the exhibit, Ivan decides he must rescue her so she is not destined to live her life in the mall.  Told in verse from Ivan's point of view, it's a quick read, but have a tissue or two handy. This one was deserving of the Newbery award.

This year's Caldecott went to This is not my Hat by Jon Klassen.  A small fish steals a cute little hat from a very large sleeping fish.  Will he get away with it?  Simple but expressive pictures tell this story.

Rockland Librarians have selected our favorites to discuss for the 2013 award.  My absolute favorite is The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man  Swamp by Kathi Appelt. Raccoon brothers Bingo Na J'miah are the newest recruits of the Official Super Man Swamp Scouts. They must follow 2 rules: always heed the Voice of Intelligence and in the event of an emergency, wake up the Sugar Man! During a storm, they hear the Voice (which happens to be the radio in the 1928 DeSoto that the raccoons live in), and so they must go to wake up the Sugar Man to save the swamp.  Little do they know that the swamp is actually in danger of being taken over by a greedy man and woman who wrestles gators.
This book has a great ecological message wrapped up in a tale tall story. 

The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt is my favorite picture book.  Duncan arrives at school one day to a stack of letters.  Each one is from a different crayon complaining how Duncan used them.  By the end of this story, you will want to go color. 

My favorite YA read this year was Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell.  I couldn't get enough of these two.  A sweet love story about two teens who are forced to sit next to each other on the bus to school.  I listened to this on CD.  I found myself going out on my lunch break so I could have a few more minutes with them.  

Fingers crossed that my favorites win again this year. 


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