On Monday, January 28, the American Library Association will announce the winners of the major book awards, including the Caldecott Medal. The Caldecott is given annually to “the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children published by an American publisher in the United States in English during the preceding year.” (That’s the official verbiage from ALA.)
I love finding out what books won which awards, and I’ll be watching the webcast on Monday. But there are a few important things about the picture books of 2012 that won’t be revealed when the ALA announces the big winners.
Here’s what you won’t find out on Monday:
Best Depiction of Dog Nostrils in a Picture Book
And the winner is: Black Dog by Levi Pinfold (Templar Books/Candlewick, 2012)
I’ve never seen nostrils jumping across a page spread before. Frankly, I hope it doesn’t become a trend, but it’s fun to see in this particularly entertaining book about facing our fears.
Most Poignant Line of Text in a Picture Book
And the hands-down winner is: Big Little Brother by Kevin Kling with illustrations by Chris Monroe (Borealis Books/Minnesota Historical Society, 2012)
You simply cannot beat:
“With his largeness and his fists full of donuts.”
Playwright Kling packs large amounts of meaning into that sentence fragment. It nearly made me cry…and want to eat a donut. It also made me think of Sergio Leone movies, bullies, all of my big sisters, and kid-sized kitchens filled with plastic foods.
Worst Picture Book to Read on an Empty Stomach
And the crispy-tasty winner is: Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin with illustrations by Daniel Salmieri (Dial Books for Young Readers, 2012)
So, you didn’t know either? You, like me, were unaware that dragons love tacos? Try reading this text and not simultaneously craving tacos:
Why do dragons love tacos?
Maybe it’s the smell from the sizzling pan.
Maybe it’s the crunch of the crispy tortillas.
Maybe it’s a secret.
Either way, if you want to make friends with dragons, tacos are key.
Really Bad (Actually, the Worst) Sweaters in a Picture Book
There’s no competition here. The winner is Lester’s Dreadful Sweaters by K.G. Campbell (Kids Can Press, 2012).
Trust me on this one.
Lester's sweaters are beyond bad.
And all of these picture books are really good.