2015 Newbery Medal
The John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature is The Crossover by Kwame Alexander! It’s written in prose, like the beat of a basketball game, about twins who compete on and off the court. As you might expect, it’s amazing.
The two Newbery Honor Books are:
El Deafo by Cece Bell, illustrated by Cece Bell It’s the author’s own story of growing up with a hearing issue and told in graphic novel form. I liked it and thought her story was empowering and would help teach empathy and compassion.
Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson is also written in prose and also the author’s own story about growing up as an African-American in the south and the north during the Civil Rights movement. It’s a good introduction to this time period and the issues of race in the United States since it’s told through the eyes of a child.
2015 Caldecott Medal
The Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children is The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend illustrated and written by Dan Santat. It’s a heart-warming story with absolutely incredible art. (Obviously.)
The six Caldecott Honor Books are:
Nana in the City illustrated and written by Lauren Castillo
I love this simple story of the little girl learning what there is to love about the city as she visits her beloved nana. And those illustrations!
The Noisy Paint Box: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art illustrated by Mary GrandPré, written by Barb Rosenstock
This looks incredible, I can’t wait to read it!
Sam & Dave Dig a Hole illustrated by Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett
I’m a big fan of both Klassen and Barnett but am somewhat surprised that this received an honor award. Perhaps Klassen’s use of a earthy palette? Why do you think the Caldecott committee selected it?
Viva Frida illustrated by Yuyi Morales, written by Yuyi Morales
This is the kind of art I would hang on my walls — very bright colors, a Latin-vibe, and I’m a huge fan of anything Kahlo and love the art in this book.
The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus illustrated by Melissa Sweet, written by Jen Bryant
Not only do I love how they made this history so interesting, I absolutely adore the collage artwork of the talented Melissa Sweet. I’ve been a fan of hers for years and think everything she does is award-winning.
This One Summer illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, written by Mariko Tamaki
I haven’t read this book yet but from what I understand, this is a YA graphic novel with language and sex. Have any of you read this book? It feels to me like an inappropriate selection for a children’s picture book award. Disappointing.
update: See the 2016 Caldecott and Newbery Award Winners