YALSA has announced their Best Fiction for Young Adults list for 2019, which selects the top fiction titles published for young adults in the past 16 months that are for ages 12-18. The committee also selects a Top Ten List, selected with input from teens:
The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
Darius the Great Is Not Okay by Adib Khorram
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
Foolish Hearts by Emma Mills
Frankie by Shivaun Plozza
A Heart in the Body in the World by Deb Caletti
Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson
Neanderthal Opens the Door to the Universe by Preston Norton
The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera
Here are the items I shared on my Twitter feed this week:
17 Children’s Books For Kids Struggling With Anxiety And Worry
20 Great Board Books for One-Year-Olds
2019 Ezra Jack Keats Award Winners Announced
LIBRARIES & READING
Chicago Public Libraries Are Having A Moment
‘I love these kids with all my heart’: Principal reads bedtime stories to students via Facebook
NY Times now free in all 1,200 California public libraries
The Surprising History of Americans Sharing Books
11 Book-to-Film Adaptations Heading Your Way in 2019 | Bookish
The finalists for the 2018 Nebula Awards have been announced by The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America. Winners will be announced in May. The awards are given in several categories, one of which is focused on youth adult science fiction and fantasy. Here are the finalists in that category:
THE ANDRE NORTON AWARD FOR OUTSTANDING YOUNG ADULT SCIENCE FICTION OR FANTASY BOOK
Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi
Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
A Light in the Dark by A.K. DuBoff
Peasprout Chen: Future Legend of Skate and Sword by Henry Lien
Tess of the Road by Rachel Hartman
The Moon Within by Aida Salazar (9781338283372)
Celi loves to dance, especially when her best friend is drumming. She’s danced since she was a toddler, but now everything else seems to be changing. Her body is changing into a woman’s body. She has a crush on a boy. She has to figure out how to support her best friend being genderfluid. Meanwhile, her mother is pressuring her to have a moon ceremony when Celi gets her first period. Celi can’t imagine anything more embarrassing. Celi has some difficult decisions to make, and she makes mistakes along the way. As Celi pushes people she loves most away, she will need to figure out how to be the person she wants to be before she loses her best friend forever.
Written in verse, this novel is dazzling. Salazar combines themes of feminism, connection to one’s culture, self expression, and gender fluidity into one amazing novel. Her verse is well written and just right for young readers without being overly simplistic. Comparisons to Are You There God, It’s Me Margaret are apt with its focus on menstruation and growing up as a young girl.
Celi is a marvelous character. She is a character who makes mistakes that are bad enough that readers will get angry at her as she makes certain decisions in the novel. Still, she is always likable and the book shows the flawed reasons she has for making the choices she does. Celi’s connection to her mother is strained in most of the novel and one of the most important parts of the novel is when they finally start communicating and working together.
A great verse novel for middle grade readers that takes classic themes and makes them fresh again. Appropriate for ages 9-12.
Reviewed from ARC provided by Arthur A. Levine Books.
The longlist for the 2019 CILIP Kate Greenaway Longlist has been announced. Given for the best in illustration in children’s books, the award is one of the longest running UK awards for children’s literature. Here are the 20 books that made the longlist:
Animals with Tiny Cat by Viviane Schwarz
Beyond the Fence by Maria Gulemetova
Bob’s Blue Period by Marion Deuchars
The Day the War Came by Nicola Davies
The Family Tree by Mal Peet, illustrated by Emma Shoard
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Illustrated Edition by J.K. Rowling, illustrated by Olivia Lomenech Gill
If All the World Were… by Joseph Coelho, illustrated by Allison Colpoys
Illegal by Eoin Colfer and Andrew Colfer, illustrated by Giovanni Rigano
Julian Is a Mermaid by Jessica Love
The Last Wolf by Mini Grey
The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane, illustrated by Jackie Morris
Mary’s Monster by Lita Judge
Mrs. Noah’s Pockets by Jackie Morris, illustrated by James Mayhew
Norse Myths: Tales of Odin, Thor and Loki by Kevin Crossley-Holland, illustrated by Jeffrey Alan Love
Ocean Meets Sky by Eric and Terry Fan
A Stone for Sascha by Aaron Becker
Suffragette: The Battle for Equality by David Roberts
The Wolf, the Duck and the Mouse by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Jon Klassen
This Zoo Is Not for You by Ross Collins
You’re Safe with Me by Chitra Soundar, illustrated by Poonam Mistry
The longlist for the 2019 CILIP Carnegie Longlist has been announced. This and the Kate Greenaway Medal are the two oldest UK book awards for youth. The medals are judged by children’s librarians. Here are the 20 finalists who made the longlist, selected from over 250 books that were nominated:
The Astonishing Colour of After by Emily X.R. Pan
Bone Talk by Candy Gourlay
The Boy at the Back of the Class by Onjali Q. Rauf
The Colour of the Sun by David Almond
A Different Boy by Paul Jennings
Hilary McKay’s Fairy Tales by Hilary McKay
The House with Chicken Legs by Sophie Anderson
The Land of Neverendings by Kate Saunders
Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds
The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane
Moonrise by Sarah Crossan
Mud by Emily Thomas
My Side of the Diamond by Sally Gardner
Norse Myths: Tales of Odin, Thor and Loki by Kevin Crossley-Holland
The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo
Rebound by Kwame Alexander
A Skinful of Shadows by Frances Hardinge
Station Zero by Philip Reeve
Things a Bright Girl Can Do by Sally Nichols
The Weight of a Thousand Feathers by Brian Conaghan
How to Give Your Cat a Bath by Nicola Winstanley, illustrated by John Martz (9780735263543)
A simple five-step guide to giving your cat a bath becomes a romp of a picture book. Just filling the tub with the right amount of water is a challenge. First too much, then too little. Then the cat disappears. Maybe it’s time for a milk and cookie break? The girl returns to the bathroom with her cat, but now the water is cold. The cat escapes again. She chases after forgetting to turn off the water which creates a flood. Once the water is mopped up, it’s time to start again. Or perhaps there’s a simpler solution?
The flat voice of a guide book adds so much to the humor here. The timing is also exceptionally done with the design of the page turns adding a touch of suspense to the fun. The entire book is lighthearted and played for laughs. The art is done in simple lines which emphasizes the chaos that eventually occurs on the page. The messes accumulate, moving into new rooms.
A complete giggle-fest of a book particularly for families who love cats. Appropriate for ages 2-4.
Reviewed from library copy.
The Neighbors by Einat Tsarfati (9781419731686)
A little girl with a big imagination lives in a seven-story building. On her way up to the seventh floor, where she lives, she imagines who lives behind each of the other doors. Each floor has a different door with things outside that give her clues to the type of family or person who might live there. She imagines that the door with many locks and lots of security leads to a family of thieves. Another door with lots of plants outside opens to a jungle lived in by an old explorer and his pet tiger. As she climbs higher, her imagination gets wilder, filling the apartments with vampires, pirates and mermaids. Her home is the most mundane, or is it?
Told in first person by the little girl, this book builds off of a straightforward concept and into a world of make-believe. The text is simple, steadily counting upwards as the girl ascends the stairs. The girl’s imagination is vivid and captivating with much of it being shown in the illustrations rather than being told in the text.
The illustrations are done in bright colors, moving from the white backgrounds of the stairway and hall to bright colors that each imaginative family lives inside. Their apartments are filled with details that are worth lingering over too.
A very enjoyable look at living in an apartment building and using one’s imagination. Appropriate for ages 3-5.
Reviewed from copy provided by Abrams.
The NAACP Image Awards include literary categories with one award specifically focused on Outstanding Literary Work for Youth/Teens. Here are the nominees, a nice mix of fiction and nonfiction:
Chasing King’s Killer: The Hunt for Martin Luther King, Jr’s Assassin by James L. Swanson
Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson
The Journey of Little Charlie by Christopher Paul Curtis
A Very Large Expanse of Sea by Tahereh Mafi
We Are Not Yet Equal: Understanding Our Racial Divide by Carol Anderson with Tonya Bolden