6.28.2009

Queens Library Mock Caldecott Discussion

Recently Queens Library had its first Mock Caldecott discussion for the year. In the past, we've had our first meeting in June. We review what has come out so far, and we eliminate some possibilities to make our discussions in December and January a little smoother. Here are some of the books we discussed a couple weeks ago (in no particular order):
  • The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert and Sullivan by Jonah Winter, illus by Richard Egielski (Arthur Levine)
  • Tsunami by Kimiko Kajikawa, illus by Ed Young (Philomel)
  • Redwoods by Jason Chin (Roaring Brook)
  • A Book by Mordecai Gerstein (Roaring Brook)
  • Birds by Kevin Henkes, illus by Laura Dronzek (Greenwillow)
  • You Never Heard of Sandy Koufax?! by Jonah Winter, illus by Andre Carrilho (Schwartz & Wade)
  • Higher! Higher! by Leslie Patricelli (Candlewick)
  • Hook by Ed Young (Roaring Brook)
  • Mermaid Queen by Shana Corey, illus by Edwin Fotheringham (Scholastic)
  • Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Genadii Spirin (Marshall Cavendish)
  • Cuckoo's Haiku: and Other Birding Poems by Michael Rosen, illus by Stan Fellows (Candlewick)
  • All in a Day by Cynthia Rylant, illus by Nikki McClure (Abrams)
  • Chicken Little by Rebecca and Ed Emberley (Roaring Brook)
  • Sparrow Girl by Sara Pennypacker, illus by Yoko Tanaka (Hyperion)
  • The Fantastic Undersea Life of Jacques Cousteau by Dan Yaccarino (Knopf)
  • A Chair for Always by Vera B. Williams (Greenwillow)
  • Dinothesaurus by Douglas Florian (Beach Lane)
  • Curious Garden by Peter Brown (Little, Brown)
  • Bird, Butterfly, Eel by James Prosek (S&S)
  • One Red Apple by Harriet Ziefert, illus by Karla Gudeon (Blue Apple)
  • Down, Down, Down: A Journey to the Bottom of the Sea by Steve Jenkins (Houghton Mifflin)
We had some "easy" ones to get rid of, such as Higher! Higher! and Chicken Little. While we loooooved them for storytime, we agreed that they weren't "Caldecott worthy." Some other books went fairly easy under the category I-Get-What-They-Were-Trying-For-But-It-Wasn't-Entirely-Successful: The Fantastic Undersea Life of Jacques Cousteau, You Never Heard of Sandy Koufax?!, Down, Down, Down, and The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert and Sullivan. Under the "Whaaa...?!" category, our committee threw in All in a Day and Sparrow Girl.

** At this point, let me remind you that I speak for my whole committee and these "categories" I've made up don't necessarily reflect my own thoughts on these books - I only share our consensus.**

We adored the artwork in Cuckoo's Haiku, but some felt it was better suited to adult Audubon fans than children. Goldilocks was described as inaccessible. And let's just say that A Chair for Always didn't have anyone standing up for it.

There were two books we eliminated but, oh man, was it contentious! One Red Apple and Birds were the most divisive books! One Red Apple is just gorgeous with all kinds of lovely details and textures, but there is a foldout that has all kinds of design problems. Take a look: you'll know
what I'm talking about. And we all agreed that Birds is stunning; however, we got really hung up over the idea that the reader is an active participant throughout the book...and then you get a whammy at the end with the appearance of a girl and suddenly you realize that the story isn't about you and the birds at all but it's about this girl and the birds. The storytelling does a switcheroo and rips the reader right out of the story. It's jarring. Oh, the arguments over all this!

So here is the final group that will move on to our final considerations in
December:
  • Tsunami by Kimiko Kajikawa, illus by Ed Young (Philomel)
  • Redwoods by Jason Chin (Roaring Brook)
  • A Book by Mordecai Gerstein (Roaring Brook)
  • Mermaid Queen by Shana Corey, illus by Edwin Fotheringham (Scholastic)
  • Curious Garden by Peter Brown (Little, Brown)
  • Hook by Ed Young (Roaring Brook)
Is there an illustrator busier than Ed Young these days? I think not...

As many of my readers know, I actually will no longer be working at Queens Library as of July 1st. I have accepted a position with HarperCollins as their School & Library Marketing Manager! So if you're going to ALA in Chicago, be sure to stop by the booth
and say hi. As far as how this changes Pinot and Prose, I really can't say right now. Stay tuned!

4 comments:

Liz B said...

Congrats on the new job! I'll be at ALA Thursday-Tuesday so hopefully we can connect.

Stacy Dillon said...

Go Redwoods! Go Curious Garden.

Anonymous said...

Did you take a look at Dinotrux by Chris Gall. Very
powerful and active illustrations that fit the story perfectly!

Silly Bus said...

Great job!!!!