Children’s Books of the Year
Illustration by Krieg Barrie

2020 Children’s Books of the Year

Children’s Books of the Year | A TIME FOR VIGILANCE: Children need their parents not only to guard against objectionable books but to promote good ones. The titles in the following pages are books to consider
by Janie B. Cheaney
Posted 2/13/20, 02:46 pm

State Rep. Ben Baker, of Missouri House District 160, is concerned about the kind of books kids may encounter at the local library. “I want to be able to take my kids to a library and make sure they’re in a safe environment,” where objectionable material can’t slip by a parent’s notice. To that end, his House Bill 2044 attaches the “Parental Oversight of Public Libraries Act” to a routine funding measure.

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Picture books

Children’s Books of the Year | TURNING A SHACK INTO A HOME: Brightening colors help tell a story of hope amid tragedy
by Susan Olasky
Posted 2/13/20, 02:39 pm

WORLD’s Picture Book of the Year is Home in the Woods by Eliza Wheeler (Nancy Paulsen Books, ages 5-8), a hope-filled, true story of a family that survives and prospers despite tragedy. Adults will appreciate the enormity of the challenges the mother faces. Children will appreciate the simple story and luminous illustrations that show a family facing difficult circumstances with resourcefulness, tenacity, love—and fun.

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Novels

Children’s Books of the Year | BECOMING A GENTLEMAN: How tragedy can produce an honorable young man
by Janie B. Cheaney
Posted 2/13/20, 02:19 pm

“This book started with an image: a very formal butler standing on a stoop of a normal suburban house, on the first day of the oldest kid’s sixth-grade year, in the rain,” explained Gary D. Schmidt, author of Pay Attention, Carter Jones (Clarion Books, ages 10-12). “That whole image was there before anything else, and obviously, the question is: Why is he there?”

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