Award Winning Books
Robert McCloskey (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Children's Picture Books; Book Theme: Animals
"Blueberries for Sal" is a classic book that tells a gentle and engaging story. Funny noise words such as Kuplink, kuplank and kuplunk add to the attraction of this great read-aloud book. A little girl named Sal and a little bear have a bit of an adventure when the little bear follows little Sal's mother and little Sal follows the little bear's mother on a blueberries-picking trip. Preschoolers, kindergarteners and beginning readers will enjoy this Caldecott honor book by Robert McCloskey. "Blueberries for Sal" is one of the best picture books for children.
Ludwig Bemelmans (Hardcover)
Genre: Fiction - Children's Picture Books; Book Theme: Rhyming Stories
"Madeline" by Ludwig Bemelmans, often considered one of the best picture books, is a classic book that has delighted children for generations with its memorable character, engaging pictures and humorous rhyming texts. A spirited little girl named Madeline is rushed to the hospital from her boarding school in Paris. Preschoolers and beginning readers will enjoy this Caldecott Honor book. "Madeline" is also a great story to read aloud.
Mo Willems (Hardcover)
Genres: Fiction - Children's Picture Books, Humorous Stories
"Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus" by Emmy Award-winning writer Mo Willems is a funny picture book that children in preschool, kindergarten and first grade will have great time reading and interacting with. When a bus driver takes a break, he asks readers to keep an eye on his bus and the pigeon. What a determined pigeon! He reasons, begs and bargains. Of course, readers always say no to the pigeon's request to drive the bus. The frustrated pigeon finally falls into a temper tantrum. But he cheers up after seeing a huge tractor-trailer truck drive up. The pigeon's feelings and emotions are amply expressed in this simply illustrated Caldecott Honor Book. The humorous story is great for reading aloud.
Chris Van Allsburg (Hardcover)
Genre: Fiction - Children's Picture Books; Book Theme: Christmas
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg is a wonderful classic children's book for the Christmas holiday. On Christmas Eve, a boy, narrator of the story, boards the Polar Express, a mysterious train that is headed for the North Pole. He finds the Polar Express is full of children who are having fun singing Christmas carols and eating candies. The children finally arrive at the North Pole, where Christmas toys are made. The boy is picked by Santa to receive the first gift of Christmas, and he asks for a silver bell from Santa's sleigh. Our narrator gets his wish and the Polar Express takes him home, but his bell is nowhere to be seen. To his great joy, the boy finds his lost bell under the tree on Christmas morning. Chris Van Allsburg's Caldecott Medal award-winning illustrations are soothing and enchanting; it gives a heart-warming feel to the Christmas tale. The Polar Express is a good picture book for children in kindergarten through third grade.
Patricia MacLachlan (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Family, Frontier and Pioneer Life
In "Sarah, Plain and Tall", author Patricia MacLachlan tells a moving story about the creation of a family. In simple language, a little girl named Anna talks about how Sarah from Maine comes to the prairie to live with her, her brother, and her widowed father. This historic fiction has won many awards, including Newbery Award, Christopher Award, Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction for Children, Golden Kite Award for Fiction and Notable Children's Book. "Sarah, Plain and Tall" is one of the best children's books. Kids in second grade through sixth grade will enjoy this classic chapter book.
Genre: Fiction - Animal Fantasy; Book Theme: Animals
"Poppy" by Avi, winner of the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, is a fast-paced and suspense-filled animal fantasy book. Main characters are two talking animals: a deer mouse named Poppy and a great horned owl called Mr. Ocax. The owl claims to be the ruler of the Dimwood Forest and promises to protect the mice headed by Poppy's father Lungwort in exchange for their obedience. After the owl kills Poppy's best friend Ragweed and refuses the request by the Poppy's father to move half of the mice family to a new place, Poppy sets out to find the new home. Along the way, Poppy makes friends with Ereth, a porcupine. In the end, Poppy engages in a fierce battle with the owl. Children in 4th grade through 7th grade will enjoy this award-winning chapter book.
George Selden, Garth Williams (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Animal Fantasy
The Cricket in Times Square by George Selden and Garth Williams is a charming animal fantasy book about Chester Cricket's adventure in New York City. At the start of this classic children' book, the country cricket arrives at the Times Square subway station by accident. Mario Bellini, whose parents own a newsstand, finds him and lets him stay in the newsstand. The cricket goes on to make friends with the boy, Tucker Mouse and Harry Cat. With interesting characters and an imaginative story, The Cricket in Times Square is a great chapter book for children in 4th grade through 7th grade.
Elizabeth George Speare (Paperback)
Genre: Fiction - Historical Fiction; Book Themes: Friendship, Frontier and Pioneer Life, Native American, Survival Stories
"The Sign of the Beaver" by Elizabeth George Speare is one of the best children's books in the genre of historic fiction. Left alone to guard his family's home in the 18th century Maine, 12-year old Matt learns wilderness survival skills from a proud Native American boy Attean and teaches Attean to read. The two boys found friendship in spite of themselves. "The Sign of the Beaver" has won many awards, including the Newbery Award, ALA Notable Children's Book, Christopher Award and Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction. Children grade 4 and up will enjoy this wilderness survival story and learn about Native American culture as well as frontier and pioneer life.
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