Each month we post an annotated bibliography of books that were rated ‘Outstanding’ at our previous month’s meeting and nominated for our year-end Distinguished List. Members can see full reviews of these books and many more in the February edition of BayViews. Not a member? Join, come to our (currently virtual) monthly meetings, and hear about these Outstanding books “in person”!
¡Vamos! Let’s Go Eat written and illustrated by Raúl the Third; Versify/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2020.
Little Lobo, his dog Bernabé and his friend, Kooky Dooky provide food for the hungry luchadores before the Lucha Libre 5000 match. The kaleidoscope of colors conveys the excitement of, and pays homage to, the lucha libre tradition. This book is a feast for the eyes and electrifies the senses. (Grades PreK-2.)
We Are Water Protectors written by Lindstrom, Carole and illustrated by Goade, Michaela; Roaring Brook, 2020.
A young girl tells a simple, yet powerful story about the importance of standing up for ourselves and for others who are not able to. Inspiring words and illustrations make this outstanding book great for anyone teaching about environmental causes and the value of water to life. (K-3.)
Amari and the Night Brothers written by Alson, B.B.; Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins, 2021.
Amari, a young Black girl, is recruited to the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs and embraces her talent for magic to find her missing brother. Despite dealing with issues of bullying and discrimination, the book’s exciting plot, humor and enjoyable characters make this a fun read. (4-7.)
The Chance to Fly written by Stroker, Ali and Davidowitz, Stacy; Amulet/Abrams, 2021.
Natalie Beacon auditions for a role in her favorite musical, “Wicked,” refusing to be held back by the fact that she uses a wheelchair. Diverse, theater loving characters and an honest portrayal of disability set in every day middle grade life combine to make an enlightening and enjoyable story. (4-8.)
When You Trap a Tiger written by Keller, Tae; Random House/Penguin Random House, 2020.
Coming of age, loss, and sibling relationships are all themes in this expertly crafted novel which weaves a contemporary story, family memories and a mystical tiger from Korean folklore into a compelling portrait of a family coming to terms with loss. It will take your breath away. (3-6.)
All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys’ Soccer Team written by Soontornvat, Christina; Candlewick, 2020.
A boys’ soccer team led by their coach explored a local cave and were stranded due to flooding in Thailand on June 23, 2018. The efforts to rescue them, which took seventeen days, is described using an edge-of-your-seat narrative and color photos on every other page. (5-10.)
Rural Voices: 15 Authors Challenge Assumptions About Small Town America edited by Shalaway Carpenter, Nora; Candlewick, 2020.
Sixteen short stories explode expectations and stereotypes about rural America by giving voice to characters whose perspectives are often overlooked. Authors use a variety of formats, including prose, verse, memoir and comics, to tell unique and authentic stories. (8-12.)
This is Your Time written by Bridges, Ruby; Random House/Penguin Random House, 2020.
Activist and civil rights icon Ruby Bridges writes a passionate letter to children reflecting on her experiences and the Black Lives Matter Movement. Historic and contemporary black and white Pictures accompany each page of text. A small, yet powerful book that will appeal to all ages. (1-Adult.)