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The Power of a Dream

“The Power of a Dream” A Wynk, a Blynk, and a Nod to African American History Books African American History Month, or Black History Month, as it is often referred to, is observed every February in the United States. There are so many wonderful books that were published this past year. Narrowing down our list has been difficult at best. Just a few weeks ago, the American Library Association announced all of the children’s literature awards for 2015. Several of the books that we decided to feature for African American History Month are among those awards: Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña, illus. by Christian Robinson This book actually won several accolades, including a Caldecott Honor (the Caldecott Award is given for illustration), a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor, and perhaps the most coveted award of all, the Newbery Award, which is awarded to the most distinguished contribution to children’s literature for the year. This is also the first time that a Latino author has won the Newbery Award. The idea of a picture book winning the Newbery medal has caused quite a lot of discussion in the library world, but, it has actually happened a few times in the past. A Visit to William Blake’s Inn by Nancy Willard, illustrated by Alice and Martin Provensen won the Newbery medal in 1982. It was also named a Caldecott Honor book that same year. Newbery Honors have also gone to Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night by Joyce Sidman (2011), Doctor De Soto by William Steig (1983), and Wanda Gág’s Millions of Cats (1929).  In Last Stop, a young African American boy learns about the beauty of urban life while [...]

There’s SNOW Better Time to Read

A Wynk, a Blynk and a Nod to Books about Winter and Snow When the weather outside is frightful…reading is so delightful!  Reading can be snow much fun, and there are lots of new snowy and wintry titles from which to choose. We’ve reviewed several, so why not grab a few and cuddle up for a good read. New Books about Winter and Snow The Bear Report by Thyra Heder As homework, Sophie must compile three facts about polar bears. She isn’t interested in doing the assignment and would rather watch TV. As she settles in, a polar bear appears in her living room and takes her on an Arctic journey to complete her report. Even though this is a fictional story, lots of factual information is woven throughout.   Dear Yeti by James Kwan Two young hikers set out to look for Yeti one day. Their journey is chronicled in a series of letters trying to coax the shy creature out of hiding. When they meet a grizzly bear, Yeti appears when they most need him.   First Snow by Peter McCarty This is the newest picture book from Caldecott Honor winning author-illustrator Peter McCarty. Pedro arrives in the big city to visit his cousins and experiences his first snowfall. The illustrations are done in muted pastel watercolors and ink.   Flora and the Penguin by Molly Idle A follow-up to the Caldecott Honor book, Flora and the Penguin, Flora takes up figure skating in a chillier climate. This is a wordless picture book with clever flaps throughout.     It Snows by Tamra B. Orr Part of the Tell Me Why series, this non-fiction book answers children’s questions about winter weather with age [...]