ALA Best of the Best

Each year a committee of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) identifies the best of the best in children’s books. The list is quite lengthy, but here are just a few owned by our library system:

Younger Readers-

Ada Twist, Scientist. By Andrea Beaty. Illus. by David Roberts. Abrams.

Inquisitive Ada Twist is determined to identify a mysterious smell. Her mission includes some not-so-successful science experiments, supportive parents, and insatiable curiosity.

Coyote Moon. By Maria Gianferrari. Illus. by Bagram Ibatoulline. Roaring Brook.

Striving to feed her pups, a coyote hunts in the moonlight until dawn. This strikingly illustrated, nonfiction offering holds many facts and celebrates this skilled predator.

Middle Readers-

Ms. Bixby’s Last Day. By John David Anderson. HarperCollins/Walden Pond.

Ms. Bixby is the sort of teacher that makes going to school worthwhile. When she is diagnosed with cancer, three boys decide to make sure her last day is perfect.

Pax. By Sara Pennypacker. Illus. by Jon Klassen. HarperCollins/Balzer+Bray.

Readers join a stirring search for peace in this poignant tale of loss and reconciliation, told in the alternating views of a fox and his boy.

Older readers-

In the Shadow of Liberty: The Hidden History of Slavery, Four Presidents, and Five Black Lives. By Kenneth C. Davis. illus. Holt.

The lives of five enslaved people owned by four U.S. presidents reveal the contradictions of a land founded upon the idea of freedom.

Wolf Hollow. By Lauren Wolk. Dutton.

In this coming-of-age story, spunky and courageous Annabelle defends a veteran who has become the target of local bullying attacks. (Newbery Honor Book)

All Ages-

Giant Squid. By Candace Fleming. Illus. by Eric Rohmann. Roaring Brook/Neal Porter.

Plunging into the “depths of the sunless sea,” readers are wrapped in the tentacles of Fleming’s text and Rohmann’s illustrations, gaining an appreciation for the ever-elusive giant squid. (Sibert Honor Book)

Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. By Javaka Steptoe. Illus. by the author. Little, Brown.

This article was written by Donna