‘Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving

This is one of my favorite Thanksgiving holiday books to read aloud. Dav Pilkey borrows from Clement Moore’s poem ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, to tell a hilarious story about a busload of children who are determined to save the turkeys on a nearby farm. They hide the turkeys under their coats and stagger back to the bus, with none the wiser. The illustrations are lively and upbeat: all in all it’s a great readaloud.

Notable Children’s books 2021

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If you’re looking for recommendations for a younger person, take a look at the American Library Association’s 2021 list of notable books. These titles have been considered by their committee of professionals:

“Each year a committee of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) identifies the best of the best in children’s books. According to the Notables Criteria, “notable” is defined as: Worthy of note or notice, important, distinguished, outstanding. As applied to children’s books, notable should be thought to include books of especially commendable quality, books that exhibit venturesome creativity, and books of fiction, information, poetry and pictures for all age levels (birth through age 14) that reflect and encourage children’s interests in exemplary ways.”

The list contains titles for preschoolers up to age 14 as well as an ‘All Ages’ category.

Looking for your next children’s book to read?

The UK’s Carnegie Medal list for 2021 provides a great resource of titles for the ‘tween-teen audience. This year’s titles include authors Elizabeth Acevedo (Clap When You Land), Patrick Ness, Kate DiCamillo (Beverly Right Here), Jason Reynolds (Look Both Ways), Sophie Anderson (The Girl Who Speaks Bear), Frances Hardinge (Deeplight), and Tom Palmer (After the War).

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Click here to see past years’ Carnegie Medal winners

Remembering 9/11 with Kids and Teens

Since we just had the 20th anniversary of 9/11, I had searched for some kids’ book titles and found the following list and discussion by several of the authors listed. You can view it here. There are a few titles left off the list: Eleven by Tom Rogers (2014) and a new picture book just out at the end of August: The Survivor Tree about a tree that managed to survive the destruction of that day. It is written by Marcie Colleen and illustrated by Aaron Becker.

September Roses

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As the 20 year mark approaches, I am reminded of this picture book about 9/11. When the planes hit the towers, two women from South Africa had just arrived in New York for a flower show. When the show was cancelled, they formed the thousands of roses into the shape of the Twin Towers in Union Square Park. This short picture book describes the memorial with heartfelt simplicity. Never intending the book to get published, Winter was persuaded to submit her handmade book. September Roses is a window into the events of this tragic time that children can understand.