2013 Notable Children’s Books–Younger Readers

Each year the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association, selects the best children’s books.  Here is the selected list for Younger Readers, preschool through 2nd grade that includes easy reader books:

And Then It's Spring Black Dog Charley's First Night

And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano. Illus. by Erin E. Stead.

Black Dog by Levi Pinfold.

Charley’s First Night by Amy Hest. Illus. by Helen Oxenbury.

Creepy Carrots! Demolition 

Creepy Carrots! by Aaron Reynolds. Illus. by Peter Brown. 

Demolition. By Sally Sutton. Illus. by Brian  Lovelock. 

Dogs on Duty: Soldiers' Best Friends on the Battlefield and Beyond Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building

Dogs on Duty. By Dorothy Hinshaw Patent.

Dreaming Up. By Christy Hale.

Extra Yarn Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns: A Muslim Book of Colors

Extra Yarn. By Mac Barnett . Illus. by Jon Klassen.

Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns: A Muslim Book of Colors. By Hena Khan. Illus. by Mehrdokht Amini.

Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs Green Hippopposites

Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs. By Mo Willems.

Green. By Laura Vaccaro Seeger.

Hippopposites. By Janik Coat.

Infinity and Me Just Ducks! Let's Go for a Drive! (An Elephant and Piggie Book)

Infinity and Me. By Kate Hosford. Illus. by Gabi Swiatkowska.

Just Ducks. By Nicola Davies. Illus. by Salvatore  Rubbino.

Let’s Go for a Drive!  By Mo Willems.

Machines Go to Work in the City Magritte's Marvelous Hat Martin de Porres: The Rose in the Desert

Machines Go to Work in the City. By William Low.

Magritte’s Marvelous Hat : A Picture Book. By D. B. (Donald B.) Johnson.

Martin de Porres: The Rose in the Desert.  By Gary D. Schmidt, Illus. by David Diaz.

More Nighttime Ninja

More. By I. C. Springman. Illus. by Brian Lies.

Nighttime Ninja. By Barbara DaCosta. Illus. by Ed Young.

Oh, No! One Cool Friend

Oh, No! By Candace Fleming. Illus. by Eric Rohmann.

One Cool Friend. By Toni Buzzeo. Illus. by David Small.

One Special Day: A Story for Big Brothers and Sisters Penny and Her Doll Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons

One Special Day. By Lola M. Schaefer. Illus. by Jessica Meserve.

Penny and Her Doll. By Kevin Henkes.

Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons. By Eric Litwin. Illus. by Dean, James.

Rabbit and Robot: The Sleepover Sleep Like a Tiger

Rabbit and Robot: The Sleepover. By Cece Bell.

Sleep Like a Tiger. By Mary Logue. Illus. by Pamela Zagarenski.

This is Not My Hat This Moose Belongs to Me

This Is Not My Hat. By Jon Klassen.

This Moose Belongs to Me. By Oliver Jeffers.

Up, Tall and High Z Is for Moose

Up, Tall, and High! By Ethan Long.

Z Is for Moose. By Kelly Bingham. Illus. by Paul O. Zelinsky.

Review: One Frozen Lake by Deborah Jo Larson

one frozen lake

One Frozen Lake by Deborah Jo Larson, illustrated by Steven Johnson and Lou Fancher

A boy and his grandfather head out on the frozen lake to go fishing.  They drill through four inches of ice and set up their canvas ice shack.  Inside they open their tackle box and have four watery holes to fish through.  Other join them out on the ice and cocoa is shared, but after seven hours they haven’t seen a single fish.  They play cards together and wait until night falls then, a fish!  A ten incher and a keeper!  But the boy has different ideas than a fish dinner.  This picture book captures the quiet times spent fishing out on the ice with a loved one.  It’s sure to appeal to children who have headed out themselves and waiting those long hours for just one bite.

Larson nicely weaves numbers and counting into her words in this book.  One frozen lake, two friends, three bundles of gear, four inches of ice, five hours to wait.  Then she starts again from one, building her poetic story upon the foundation of counting.  But this is not a counting book, instead it is a celebration of Minnesota winters and family.

The art here is exceptional.  The story above the ice is shown in realistic paintings that show with accuracy the relationship between grandfather and grandson.  The tones are bright, sun-filled but also cold as a northern winter should be.  Below the ice is a completely different world.  There the images are done as collages with whimsical old-fashioned touches taken from signs and flyers.  The result is a pairing that shows the stark difference between surface and depths.

Growing up on a Wisconsin lake, this picture book brought back many memories of walking the frozen lake and seeing the shanties.  It’s sure to do the same for many grandparents and grandchildren.  This is definitely a keeper!  Appropriate for ages 4-6.

Reviewed from library copy.