Thursday, January 13, 2022

Books that I read in 2021

 Here's the list of Children's Books I read in 2021:

Booklist of Books Read in 2021



Picture Books


Angleberger, Tom. Crankee Doodle. Illus Cece Bell. NY: Clarion, 2013.

Buchet, Nelly. Cat Dog Dog the story of a blended family. Illus. Andrea Zuill. NY: Schwartz &

             wade books, 2020.  

Cabrera Cozbi. Me and Mama. NY: Simon & Schuster, 2020. 

            (2021 Caldecott Honor book and Coretta Scott King honor book.) 

Colleen, Marcie. Survivor Tree. Illus. Aaron Becker. NY: Little Brown, 2021. 

Coville, Bruce. The thief of worlds. NY: Random House, 2021.

Doyon, Samara Cold. Magnificent Homespun Brown. Illus Kaylani Juanita. Thomaston, Maine: 

            Tilbury House publishers 2020. (2021 Corretta Scott King Honor book)

Elliott, Zetta. A place inside of me, a poem to heal the heart. NY: Farrar Straus Giroux, 2020.

            (2021 Caldecott Award.) 

Grady, Cynthia. Write to me, letters from Japanese American children to the librarian they left 

            behind. Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge, 2018.  

            (San Diego, CA - city 2021 One Book for children)

Henderson, Leah. Illus. Floyd Cooper. A day for Rememberin’  NY: Abrams, 2021. 

Hunter, Anne.  Where’s Baby? Canada: Tundra books, 2020. 

            (2021 Theodor Seuss Geisel award honor book)

Kusel, Susan. The Passover guest. Illus Sean Rubin. NY:  Holiday House/Neal Porter books,


Latham, Irene and Karim Shamsi-Basha. The cat man of Aleppo. Illus. Yuko Shimizu. NY: 

            G.P. Putnam’s sons, 2020.

Leung, Julie. Paper son, the inspiring story of Tryus Wong, immigrant and artist. Illus. Chris

             Sasaki.  NY: Schwartz & wade books, 2019. 

            (2021 ALA Asian Pacific American award for best picture book.)

Lindstrom, Carole. We are water protectors. Illus Michaels Goade. NY: Roaring Brook Press,

             2020.  (2021 Caldecott Award)

Newman, Leslea. Welcoming Elijah, a Passover tale with a tail. Illus. Susan Gal. Watertown, 

            MA: Charlesbridge, 2020.  (2021 Sydney Taylor Book Award, Pura Belpre Award)  

E Spanish Raul           Raul the third. !Vamos! Let’s go Eat.  illus Elaine Bay. NY: Houghton 

            Mifflin Harcourt, 2020. (2021 Pura Belpré Award Winner: Randolph Caldecott Honor

             and Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor)

Scott, Jordan. I talk like a River. Illus. Sydney Smith. NY: Neal Porter Books/ Holiday

             House, 2020. (2121 Schneider Family book Award – about stuttering.)

Tatsukawa, Maya. The bear in my family. NY: Dial books for young readers 2020.

            (2021 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award)

Underwood, Deborah. Outside In. Illus. Cindy Derby.  NY: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2020.

            (2021 Caldecott Honor book)

Van Draanen, Wendelin. Sammy Keyes and the hotel thief. NY: Alfred Knopf, 1998.

Wang, Andrea. Watercress. Illus Jason Chin.  NY: Holiday House/ Neal Porter Books, 2021.

Yamada, Kobi. What do you do with a Problem? Illus. Mae Besom. London, UK:  Compendium,


   …     What do you do with a chance? Illus. Mae Besom. London, UK: Compendium, 2017.

Yolen, Jane.  Miriam at the River. Illus Khua Le. Minneapolis, MN: Kar-Ben publishing/Lerner, 

            2020. (2021 ALA Sydney Taylor honor book)

    ….   Owl Moon. Illus John Schoenherr. NY: Philomel books, 1987.

            (1988 Caldicott Award winner) (A poem about Owling expeditions her husband and

             daughter Heidi made every year. Heidi still participates in the December Owl count.)

    ….   What to do with a String. Illus. C.R. Payne.  Mankato, MN:  Creative Editions, 2019.

Yolen, Jane and Heidi Stemple. I am the storm. Illus. Kristen and Kevin Howdeshell.  NY:

             Rise/Penguin Workshop, 2020.


I Can Read


Higgins, Ryan. What about Worms!? A Mo Willems Elephant & Piggie like reading! Book.

              Hyperion books for children, 2020.  (2021 Geisel Honor Book)

LaRochelle, David. See the Cat. Illus. Mike Wohnouka. Sommerville, MA: Candelwick, 2020.

            (2021 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award winner)

Lyons, Kelly Starling. Ty’s Travels – Zip, Zoom. Illus. Nina Mata. NY: Harper, I Can Read!,

             2020.  (2021 Geisel Honor Book)




Bradley, Kimberly Brubaker. Fighting Words.  NY: Dial books for young readers, 2020.

            (2021 Newbery Honor book. Her second honor book.  Trigger Warning!  This is about

             sexual abuse. Be prepared to cry.)

Durst, Sarah Beth. The girl who could not dream. NY:  Clarion Books, 2015.

                        (This one was the most emotional of her books)

    ….   Journey across the hidden islands. NY:  Clarion Books, 2017.

    ….   The Stone Girl’s Story. NY:  Clarion Books, 2018.

    ….     Spark. NY:  Clarion Books, 2019.

    ….   Catalyst. NY:  Clarion Books, 2020.

    ….   Even and Odd. NY:  Clarion Books, 2021.

Johnson, Varian.  Playing the cards you’re dealt. NY: Scholastic Press, 2021.

Juster, Norton. The phantom tollbooth, special 35th anniversary edition. NY: Random House, 

            1961.  (boring book. I managed to trudge through it, trying to see why others thought it

             was so special. I’m not sure that modern children would like it.)

Keller, Tae.  When you trap a tiger. NY: Random House, 2020. (2021 Newbery Award winner)

            (I don’t care that it won this award; I could not finish this book.  Too sad. I hate books

             that make me cry.)

LeZotte, Ann Clare. Show me a sign. NY: Scholastic Press, 2020. 

            (historical fiction about the deaf community on Martha’s Vineyard.) 

            (2021 Schneider Family Book Award )

Nix, Garth and Sean Williams. Have Sword, Will Travel. NY: Scholastic Press, 2017.

    ….   Let Sleeping Dragons Lie. NY: Scholastic Press, 2018. (sequel to Have Sword…)

Park, Linda Sue.  Forest of Wonders, Book 1 of Wing and Claw series. NY: Harper, 2016.

    ….   Cavern of Secrets, Book 2 of Wing and Claw series. NY: Harper, 2017.

    ….   Beast of StoneBook 3 of Wing and Claw series. NY: Harper, 2018.

Pincus, Greg. The Homework Strike. NY: Arthur Levine Books/ Scholastic, 2017.

Selznick, Brian. Kaleidoscope. NY: Scholastic Press, 2020. 

            (there should be a note at the beginning that these are flash fiction- short stories)

Soontornvat, Christina. A wish in the Dark.  Sommerville, MA: Candlewick, 2020.

            (2021 John Newbery Medal award)

Valentine, Nicole. A time traveler’s theory of relativity. Minneapolis: Carolrhoda books, 2019. 

            (I love time travel books and I loved the fact that I knew at least half of the people she

             acknowledged at the back of the book.  Hurrah for VCFA folks and Highlights folks)       



YA Fiction:


Boulley, Angeline. Fire Keeper’s Daughter – keep the secret, live the lie, earn your truth. 

            NY: Henry Holt & Co., 2021.  (went to Loonsong/ Turtle Island retreat) 

            (Should be a Printz winner 2022 if ALA has any sense. Already tapped to be a Netflix


Garcia, Rita Williams. A sitting in St. James.  NY: Quill Tree books/ HarperCollins, 2021.

            (VCFA retired professor.  I predict multiple awards for this one.)

Jones, Diana Wynne. Dark Lord of Derkholm. NY: Greenwillow/ Harper Trophy, 1998.

Nix, Garth. Frogkisser! NY: Scholastic Press, 2017.

    ….   The left-handed booksellers of London. NY: HarperCollins/ Katherine Tegen books, 

            2020.  (fantasy)

Nix, Garth and Sean Williams. TroubleTwisters. NY: Scholastic Press, 2011.

Paulsen, Gary. The time hackers. NY: Random House/ Wendy Lamb books, 2005.

Price, Tirzah. Pride and Premeditation, A Jane Austen murder mystery. NY: Harper Teen, 2020.

            (VCFA grad – first of a series of books)

Springer, Nancy.  Enola Holmes and the Black Barouche. NY: Wednesday books/ St. Martin’s

             publishing group, 2021.





Kimmelman, Leslie. Write on, Irving Berlin!  Illus. David Gardner.  Ann Arbor, MI: Sleeping

             Bear Press, 2018.

Rose, Caroline Starr. Illus. Alexandra Bye. A Race around the world, the true story of Nellie Bly

            and Elizabeth Bishland.  Park Ridge, IL: Albert Whitman & Co., 2019.

Slade, Suzanne. Exquisite, the poetry and life of Gwendolyn Brooks. (see J 8ll.54)

Weatherford, Carole Boston. R-E-S-P-E-C-T, Aretha Franklin, the queen of soul. Illus Frank 

            Morrison. NY: Atheneum, 2020.  (2021 Corretta Scott King Illustrator Award)





JB- Bly            Gurevich, Margaret. Who was Nellie Bly? (a big head book) Illus. Laurie A.

             Conley. NY: Penguin Workshop, 2020. 

JB – Bly          Knudsen, Michelle. She Persisted – Nellie Bly. NY: Philomel Books/ Penguin

             Random House, 2021.

JB -  Paulsen   Paulsen, Gary. Gone to the Woods, Surviving a Lost Childhood. NY: Farrar Straus 

            Giroux, 2021.  (Excellent autobiography – I predict awards for this book soon.)

YB – Paulsen. Paulsen, Gary. Guts, the true stories behind Hatchet and the Brian books.

            NY: Delecort/ Random House, 2001.




J 595.799        Fleming, Candace. Honeybee, the busy life of apis mellifera. Illus. Eric Rohmann.

            NY: Holiday House, Neal Porter Books, 2020.  (2021 Sibert Medal winner)

J 614.49          Messner, Kate. History Smashers, Plagues and Pandemics. NY: Random House,

             2021.  (includes info about COVID-19) 

J 633.74          Stewart, Melissa and Allen Young. Illus. Nicole Wong. No monkeys, no 

            chocolate. Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge, 2013. 

J 811.54          Slade, Suzanne. Exquisite, the poetry and life of Gwendolyn Brooks. Illus Cozbia

             Cabrera. NY: Abrams books, 2020.  (picture book biography) 

            (2021 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor and Robert F. Sibert Informational honor)

J 811.54          Weatherford, Carole Boston. BOX- Henry Brown mails himself to freedom.

            Illus. Michele Wood. Sommerville, MA: Candlewick Press, 2020. 

            (2021 Newbery Honor Book, Coretta Scott King author honor book award) 

J 910.41          Rose, Caroline Starr. Illus. Alexandra Bye. A Race around the world, the true 

            story of Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bishland.  Park Ridge, IL: Albert Whitman & Co., 2019. 


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