Author: Tasha

2017 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal Longlist

The longlist for the Kate Greenaway Medal has been announced. The UK award is given for illustration. The list is slightly more diverse than this year’s Carnegie longlist.

Here are the books on the longlist:

Alpha. Abidjan-Gare du Nord: Abidjan-Gare du Nord (Hors collection) A Beginner's Guide to Bear Spotting Cover

Alpha by Bessora, illustrated by Barroux

A Beginner’s Guide to Bear Spotting by Michelle Robinson, illustrated by David Roberts

Bob the Artist Cover Counting Lions Cover

Bob the Artist by Marion Deuchars

Counting Lions by Virginia McKenna and Katie Cotton, illustrated by Stephen Walton

A Great Big Cuddle Cover The Great Fire of London Cover

The Great Big Cuddle by Michael Rosen, illustrated by Chris Riddell

The Great Fire of London by Emma Adams, illustrated by James Weston Lewis

Greenling Cover Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone Cover

Greenling by Levi Pinfold

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by JK Rowling, illustrated by Jim Kay

The Journey Cover The Lion Inside Cover

The Journey by Francesca Sanna

The Lion Inside by Rachel Bright, illustrated by Jim Field

Little One Cover The Marvels Cover

Little One by Johanna Weaver

The Marvels by Brian Selznick

Perfect Rain Cover

Perfect by Nicola Davies, illustrated by Cathy Fisher

Rain by Sam Usher

Return Cover There Is a Tribe of Kids Cover

Return by Aaron Becker

There Is a Tribe of Kids by Lane Smith

Tidy Cover The Whale Cover

Tidy by Emily Gravett

The Whale by Vita Murrow, illustrated by Ethan Murrow

Wild Animals of the North Cover The Wolves of Currumpaw Cover

Wild Animals of the North by Dieter Braun

The Wolves of Currumpaw by William Grill

2017 CILIP Carnegie Medal Longlist

The longlist for the 2017 Carnegie Medal has been announced. The all-white list has drawn controversy and anger since not a single nominated author of color was included in the list. The award is 80 years old and authors are nominated by librarians in the UK.

Here is the longlist:

Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot Beck Cover

Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot by Horatio Clare

Beck by Mal Peet with Meg Rosoff

Beetle Boy Cover The Bone Sparrow Cover

Beetle Boy by MG Leonard

The Bone Sparrow by Zana Fraillon

Dreaming the Bear Cover How Not To Disappear

Dreaming the Bear by Mimi Thebo

How Not to Disappear by Clare Furniss

Island The Marvels Cover

Island by Nicky Singer

The Marvels by Brian Selznick

Orbiting Jupiter Cover Pax Cover

Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt

Pax by Sara Pennypacker

Railhead Cover Salt to the Sea Cover

Railhead by Philip Reeve

Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

The Serpent King Cover The Smell of Other People's Houses Cover

The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner

The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock

Sputnik's Guide to Life on Earth Cover The Stars at Oktober Bend

Sputnik’s Guide to Life on Earth by Frank Cottrell Boyce

The Stars at Oktober Bend by Glenda Millard

Time Traveling with a Hamster Cover Unbecoming Cover

Time Traveling with a Hamster by Ross Welford

Unbecoming by Jenny Downham

Whisper to Me Cover Wolf Hollow Cover

Whisper to Me by Nick Lake

Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

Strange Fruit by Gary Golio


Strange Fruit: Billie Holiday and the Power of a Protest Song by Gary Golio, illustrated by Charlotte Riley-Webb

Billie Holiday had survived a rough childhood that saw her jailed at age 14 and become a successful jazz singer. Despite her success though, she was still forbidden to do things that her white band members were allowed. She had to hide in rooms, take freight elevators and pretend to be someone different in order to stay in hotels and not sleep on the tour bus. This was all dangerous and eventually she quit. She found a new place to sing in Cafe Society, the first jazz club that welcomed African-American audience members. It was there that she was given the song, Strange Fruit, a song that would become her best-known work. A song that was so powerful that it was met with silence the first time she sang it. A song that would come to speak to a new generation as they stand together today.

Golio has taken a song that is about lynching and turned it into a picture book. It’s a daring subject for a book for young readers, yet he makes it entirely understandable. He uses notes at the end of the book to continue Holiday’s story and also speak about lynching and its history in the United States. The bulk of the picture book is about Holiday’s struggles in the 1930s with pervasive racism and the way that this song spoke to her personal experience and that of all African-Americans.

The illustrations are deep and powerful. They show the pain of racism, the power of song, the energy of a performance and the drama of silence and darkness. Done in acrylic paint and tissue collage, they have a wild freedom of line that works well with the intense subject matter.

An important picture book about a song that has transcended generations and speaks to the struggles of today and yesterday. Appropriate for ages 7-11.

Reviewed from e-galley received from NetGalley and Lerner Publishing Group.

This Week’s Tweets, Pins and Tumbls

Here are some cool links I shared on my Twitter, Pinterest, and Tumblr accounts this week:


12 Fundamental Truths About Having A Bookworm Kid

Check out our latest Podcast with

Hervé Tullet on the Move

I am a storyteller, says Frances Hardinge

Life lessons in “best friend” easy readers — The Horn Book

New children’s book tells the story of iconic artist and activist Keith Haring

Top 100+ Recommended African-American Children’s Books via

Top Rainbow Reads for Kids!


Dallas Library Embraces Role As Haven For The Homeless

Librarians take up arms against fake news: via

Libraries that are providing education about fake news, fighting intolerance, and welcoming all their patrons:

Louisville Library Workers Champion Preferred Pronoun Badges

A visual guide to fake news from

Simini Blocker:


5 YA Books That Would Make Great Graphic Novels

The best romances in YA novels

Here’s the haunting cover of Adam Silvera’s upcoming novel ‘They Both Die At The End’

LGBTQA Science Fiction and Fantasy YA by Authors

Raymond Briggs’s ‘captivating’ work wins lifetime achievement award

Children’s Book Award 2017

The Federation of Children’s Book Groups has announced the shortlist for their Children’s Book Award for 2017. The UK award is selected by children with voting closing on May 12th. Here is the shortlist, representing the Top Ten:


Chicken Nugget Gracie Grabbit and the Tiger

Chicken Nugget by Michelle Robinson, illustrated by Tom McLaughlin

Gracie Grabbit and the Tiger by Helen Stephens

Grandad's Island Cover Oi Dog!

Grandad’s Island by Benji Davies

Oi Dog by Kes Gray and Claire Gray, illustrated by Jim Field



The Voyage to Magical North Cover An Eagle in the Snow Cover The Jam Doughnut That Ruined My Life

The Accidental Pirates: Voyage to the Magical North by Claire Fayer

An Eagle in the Snow by Michael Morpurgo, illustrated by Michael Foreman

The Jam Doughnut That Ruined My Life by Mark Lowery, illustrated by Hanna Shaw



Car-Jacked Mistletoe and Murder (Murder Most Unladylike Mysteries, #5) One Cover

Car-Jacked by Ali Sparkes

Mistletoe and Murder by Robin Stevens

One by Sarah Crossan


A List of Cages by Robin Roe


A List of Cages by Robin Roe (9781484763803)

Julian just wants to get through high school without attracting anyone’s attention. He has a secret spot to hide during lunch where he feels safe, something he never feels anywhere else even at home. Julian’s parents died when he was a child and now he lives with his last remaining relative, an uncle by marriage. Adam is a popular kid in high school, bouncing with energy from his ADHD and full of smiles to brighten everyone’s day. When Adam is sent to find a freshman who is missing his sessions with the school counselor, he is surprised to discover it is Julian, who had once been his foster brother. But as the two get closer, it is clear that something awful is happening to Julian, something that may be too big for them to handle.

This teen novel is about grief, loss and pain. It’s about possibilities lost, other lives dashed. It’s gut-wrenching and powerful and devastating. And yet, it is also brimming with hope, with a gritty potential for change that just won’t stop, with the power of friendship and the deep abiding love of brotherhood. It’s complicated and not easy in any way. It’s wonderful.

The writing by Roe makes everything powerful and dense with meaning. Here is how she has Adam describe Julian on Page 170 of the book:

I used to think struggle was what aged you, but if that were the case, Julian should’ve been a hundred years old. Now I wonder if the opposite is true. Maybe instead of accelerating your age, pain won’t let you grow.

The characters here are brilliantly juxtaposed. She does not turn to the trope of the well-off teen being a bully or a jerk. Instead, Adam is a bright spot for everyone until he faces something he can’t deal with. It’s such a mix of tragedy, hope and fear. One that Roe has written with depth and care.

A stunning debut novel that is deeply moving and wondrously hopeful. Appropriate for ages 15-18.

Reviewed from library copy.