Tag Archives: Newbery

Read of the Day


I adored this book, in fact, I have adored everything I have ever read by Pam Munoz Ryan. She is one of my all-time favorite children’s authors.   If you are a fan of Pam Munoz Ryan’s previous books, this book does not disappoint, in fact, it is right up there with my all-time favorite, Riding Freedom.  Like most of her fiction, this book also has a historical fiction element, but unlike her previous books, this book begins as a traditional fantasy story. This book is thick, it is over 500 pages in length, but it is really,  four stories in one. Every story is a page-turner.  I couldn’t wait to get to the end to see how the fantasy and the three separate tales of three children living in three different places and time periods would be woven together.  I am rooting for this book to receive a Newbery Medal this year.  Read it and see if you think it is worthy of a Newbery Medal!

4T Book Talks – October 28, 2014


Puss in Boots translated by Malcolm Arthur and illustrated by Fred Marcellino

A retelling of the French fairy tale in which a clever cat wins his master a fortune and the hand of a princess.




OPQ GrandfathersJourney1
Grandfather’s Journey written and illustrated by Allen Say

A Japanese American man recounts his grandfather’s journey to America which he later also undertakes, and the feelings of being torn by a love for two different countries.



RST lon po po
Lon Po Po : a Red-Riding Hood Story from China translated and illustrated by Ed Young

Three sisters staying home alone are endangered by a hungry wolf who is disguised as their grandmother.






LMN my father's dragon

My Father’s Dragon by Ruth Gannett

A young boy determines to rescue a poor baby dragon who is being used by a group of lazy wild animals to ferry them accross the river on Wild Island. (Note: This is the first book in a series of three.

       elemer and the dragon                 the dragon's of blueland


OPQ the year of billy miller

The Year of Billy Miller by Kevin Henkes

Billy Miller starts second grade with a bump on his head and a lot of worries, but by the end of the year he has developed good relationships with his teacher, his little sister, and his parents and learned many important lessons.



whipping boy

The Whipping Boy by Sid Fleischman

A bratty prince and his whipping boy have many adventures when they inadvertently trade places after becoming involved with dangerous outlaws.

And the Winners Are…Newbery Award

Gold Medal Winner

flora and ulysses

  Newbery Honor Books

billy miller one came home doll bonespaperboyFour of the five winners were in my First Round of Newbery Contenders….I absolutely loved the books on my First Round List.  My favorite character of the year was Georgia Burkhardt in the book One Came Home.   I adored this book and had my fingers crossed, but wasn’t sure the judges would vote for it.  Had I been on the committee, I would have fought hard for One Came Home.  This was an historical/murder mystery that I couldn’t put down.   The most creative book of the year was a toss up for me…I couldn’t decide between Flora and Ulysses and A Tangle of Knots.  The Year of Billy Miller will keep fans of last year’s book Wonder with a good read in their hands.  This book will appeal to a wide range of readers, and I can see it becoming a mentor text or read aloud in many classrooms for years to come.  Just like Splendors and Glooms (2012), Doll Bones was one of those books that I appreciated for the writing, and felt it was a strong contender for a Newbery, but would have probably steered away from as a child because this genre would have kept me up at night.  On another note, Doll Bones is probably the most creative coming-of-age book I have ever read.  I thought that the historical context  Paperboy might be a reach for most elementary students;  I would recommend this book to students who have some background knowledge of the summer of 1959, the beginning of the civil rights movement and the segregated south.  The only book that I’m saddened to see didn’t make the final cut was A Tangle of Knots, although it didn’t receive a Newbery, I feel it is going to be a sure hit with readers who love quirky characters and have the patience to untangle a good plot.