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Book Spotlight: The Girl Who Drank the Moon

The Newbery Award-winning novel The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill was published in 2016 by Algonquin Young Readers. This middle grade novel appeals to both young and old readers with it's important message and compelling fairy tale feel. The Girl Who Drank the Moon is a magical story that's perfect for lovers of magic, fairy tales, and for Newbery collectors. What is it about this book that captures the imagination and has lead to it's massive success and popularity?

     
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Five Books for Children on Memorial Day

While decorating the graves of the deceased is a common and ancient custom, the American practice of decorating the graves of fallen soldiers dates back to the end of the Civil War. The first recorded instance took place in Virginia in 1861. Women in Savannah, Georgia did the same the following year, decorating the graves of Confederate soldiers, and in 1863, a commemoration was held in Gettysburg. Honoring soldiers lost in battle became even more common after the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. While the practice, originally referred to as Decoration Day, became very common in the south, it did not start taking hold in the north until 1868. It soon spread to a national day, celebrated each year on May 30 and always honored by an address at Gettysburg. The shift toward the Memorial Day name did not come about until after World War II and was made official in 1967.

The following year, the date was officially moved to the third Monday in May to create a three day weekend in spite of protests from the VFW and others arguing that the change trivialized the holiday. And indeed, Memorial Day is often celebrated with cook outs, camping trips, swimming, boating, and massive sales at car dealerships and furniture stores; unfortunately, the core meaning of the holiday falls to the wayside for many people. Here are five books you can read with your children this Memorial Day to keep patriotism as your focus. Some will even help teach them the real meaning behind the holiday—honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

     
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Book Spotlight: The Last Stop on Market Street

The Last Stop on Market Street, published in 2015 by Penguin, was written by Matt de la Peña and illustrated by Christian Robinson. The book tells the story of CJ who is taking a bus ride with his grandmother after church, as they do every Sunday. While riding the bus, CJ glimpses one of his friends riding in a car with his family and asks why their family doesn't have a car, thus beginning a series of questions CJ asks his grandma based on the things and people he observes on their ride. Why do we love this book so much? Why should you add it to your collection? Read on.

     
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The History of Children's Literature: 19th Century to Today

In part 1 of this series, we discussed how the history of children's literature can be traced back to the late 16th century. As time passed and more and more writers began to see the merit in writing books specifically for children, children's literature came into its own. The 19th century brought a whole new generation of writers to the field, and soon the golden age of children's literature was in full swing.

     
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The 2018 Caldecott and Newbery Award Winners Are...

By Leah Dobrinska. Feb 12, 2018. 12:45 PM.

Topics: Caldecott Medal, Newbery Award, Book Collecting

Every year, we anxiously await the selection of the Caldecott and Newbery Award-winning books. These titles are the best of the best, and every year, we can't wait to see if they're in our collection already or if we need to run out and grab a copy. The American Library Association announced the 2018 winners this morning. And the awards go to...

     
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The History of Children's Literature: Part 1

By Adrienne Rivera. May 12, 2017. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Children's Books, Newbery Award, History, Book History

Children's literature today is as celebrated and lauded as literature for adult audiences. Entire sections of libraries are dedicated to it. Scholarly publications are dedicated to giving it advanced critical thought. Distinguished panels are put together annually to award the year's best and most important examples of literature for children. In recent years, it has become so popular that entirely separate best seller lists have been established in order to accommodate all of the worthy books being published for children. In short, it is hard to imagine a world in which children's books are not a large part of childhood. However, books written specifically for children are actually a rather new development in the greater history of literature.

     
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William H. Armstrong's Newbery Legacy

By Adrienne Rivera. Sep 14, 2016. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Newbery Award, Children's Books

Along with the Caldecott, the Newbery Medal is the most prestigious children's book award in the United States. Created in 1921 and named after children's writer John Newbery, the award is given every year by the Association for Library Service for Children to a book that exemplifies excellence and is a worthwhile contribution to American children's literature. For some authors, the Newbery Medal is career changing, leading to countless interviews, inclusion in school curriculum and reading lists, and encouraging post-graduate study of the work at author. In 1970, the winner of this prestigious award was William H. Armstrong for his book Sounder.

     
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Walter Dean Myers' Impact on Young Adult Literature

By Adrienne Rivera. Aug 12, 2016. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Newbery Award, Children's Books

Walter Dean Myers wrote over one hundred books for children and young adult readers. The author dedicated his life to writing books that accurately portrayed life in an urban environment, creating realistic portrayals of African American youths in stories that appeal to children of all races and backgrounds.

     
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Six Things You Didn’t Know About Virginia Hamilton

By Nick Ostdick. Mar 12, 2016. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Children's Books, American Literature, Newbery Award

Children’s book author Virginia Hamilton was a writer of firsts. She was the first to win several major awards and distinctions as a children’s book author, woman, and African American. She was the first person in her family to receive a proper post-secondary education. She was the first writer to chronicle the adolescent African American experience. And she is the first in the minds of many when it comes to black, female writers who have ascended to the top of American literary landscape.

     
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Finding Winnie and Market Street: The 2016 Caldecott & Newbery Winners

By Nick Ostdick. Jan 12, 2016. 9:00 AM.

Topics: Caldecott Medal, Newbery Award, Book News

For their outstanding artistic contributions to children’s literature, authors Lindsay Mattick and Matt de la Peña received the honor of having their books named the 2016 Caldecott Medal and Newbery Medal award winners, respectively, yesterday. Mattick’s Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World's Most Famous Bear, illustrated by Sophie Blackall, and de la Peña’s Last Stop on Market Street, illustrated by Christian Robinson, may on the surface appear diametrically opposed in their aim and ambition, but both books hit on a fundamental truth about why we read, write, tell, and consume stories: the quest for a truth greater than ourselves that gives us a sense of who we are and what we value in our lives.

     
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How can I identify a first edition? Where do I learn about caring for books? How should I start collecting? Hear from librarians about amazing collections, learn about historic bindings or printing techniques, get to know other collectors. Whether you are just starting or looking for expert advice, chances are, you'll find something of interest on blogis librorum.

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