2017 Newbery and Caldecott Winners

The John Newbery Medal and Randolph Caldecott Medal winners, along with the Honor books, have been announced. I always love seeing what made the cut and then quickly going to my library account to reserve these books.

John Newbery Medal
Awarded for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature.
This one’s for the authors!


Winner:The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill


Honor: Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves,
Their Lives and Dreams Brought to Life by Ashley Bryan


Honor: The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or The Three Magical
Children and Their Holy Dog by Adam Gidwitz


Honor: Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

 Randolph Caldecott Medal

Awarded for the most distinguished American picture book for children.
This one’s for the illustrators!Image 2-12-17 at 1.48 PM

Winner: Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat illustrated and written by Javanka Steptoe


Honor: Leave Me Alone! illustrated and written by Vera Brosgol
Honor: Freedom in Congo Square illustrated
by R. Gregory Christie and written by
Carole Boston Weatherford
Honor: Du Iz Tak? illustrated and written by Carson Ellis

Honor: They All Saw a Cat illustrated and written by Brendan Wenzel

What I’ve Been Reading (Dec 2016)

Preschool (3-5 years) & Early Elementary (5-8 years):


Early Elementary (5-8 years) & Middle Grades (8-12 years):



Middle Grades (8-12 years):



What I’ve Been Reading (September 2016)

September came and went and the calm, but productive days of summer are gone. School is in full-swing and as a teacher, that means very little time for my “side gig” as a writer. I managed to get through a couple children’s books that I’d recommend, but that makes my list super short this month. Here they are:

Middle Grades (8-12 years):


Young Adult (12+ years):


Happy reading!

What I’ve Been Reading (August 2016)

In March of this year, I attended the SBCWI MD/DE/WV conference with my good friend and critique group buddy, Nicole Groeneweg. After listening to Traci Todd, the Executive Editor or Abrams Appleseed, Nicole and I were inspired. We decided to collaborate on a board book series to submit to her. Abrams Appleseed specializes in books for the youngest readers (babies, toddlers and preschoolers) and has a distinct style. Ms. Todd calls them, “beautiful, clever books.” To research our efforts, I read some of their books and I recommend every single one! If you want to see more of the books on their list, check out the Abrams Appleseed website.

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What I’ve Been Reading (July 2016)

Ahhh! Summertime! Lazy days and more trips to the public library. I attended a Children’s Literature Conference at Shenandoah University in June, so many of the books on this list are by the fantastic authors and illustrators I met there.

Preschool (3-5 years):


Preschool (3-5 years) & Early Elementary (5-8 years):


Early Elementary (5-8 years):
067166249X.01._SX450_SY635_SCLZZZZZZZ_0807501239.01._SX450_SY635_SCLZZZZZZZ_0763625302.01._SX450_SY635_SCLZZZZZZZ_Middle Grades (8-12 years):

What I’ve Been Reading (June 2016) Alphabet Books!

As research for an ABC story I’m working on, I read stacks and stacks of alphabet books. Gosh, there are a lot! Here are my favorites.

Preschool (3-5 years) & Early Elementary (5-8 years):


Early Elementary (5-8 years):