Cindy and Lynn's Best of 2012

Cindy: Judging from the towering to-read stack still to be conquered, I feel like I should be making a list of Best Books I Didn’t Get Read in 2012, but I did read plenty of fabulous and fun books. Here are the ones that won my respect or won my heart or that kept me turning the pages through the reading slump I’ve been stuck in. We agreed on 5 books each in each of three categories: picture books, fiction, and nonfiction. As soon as I sat down to finalize my list today, I realized I’d never be able to pick just five fiction titles. I whined to Lynn and she came up with the brilliant idea of splitting fiction into younger and older (I secretly think she was working on her own list and came to the same conclusion). So. Four categories and the astute mathematicians among you will quickly realize that my YA category contains 6 titles. It’s true. I love them all for different reasons and cannot bear to part with one. I tried to let Code Name Verity go, knowing that Lynn would surely have it on her list, but I couldn’t. So there are six. I can live with that.

Picture Books

The Bear in the Book by Kate Banks

Z is for Moose by Kelly Bingham

And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano

 A Home for Bird by Philip Stead

Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson

Younger Fiction

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

Greyhound of a Girl by Roddy Doyle

Mr. & Mrs. Bunny: Detectives Extraordinaire by Polly Horvath

The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen

Wonder by R. J. Palacio

Young Adult Fiction

The Diviners by Libba Bray

The Day I Died by Candace Fleming

Every Day by David Levithan

October Mourning: A Song for Matthew Shepard by Leslea Newman

The Final Four by Paul Volponi

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Nonfiction

Water Sings Blue by Kate Coombs

Moonbird by Phillip Hoose

The Giant and How He Humbugged America by Jim Murphy

The Mighty Mars Rovers by Elizabeth Rusch

The Bomb by Steve Sheinkin

Lynn:  We promised and here it is – our favorites but it was SO hard to do this!  I know, I know, the award committees have no sympathy for my complaints right now as they sprint to the finish line this weekend in Seattle.  Remember, this list is a list of our favorites, not our picks for the shiny medals although we hope there might be some overlap ;-)  We list these alphabetically by author.  And, yes, I just HAD to list six a couple of times.  I just can’t help myself.

Picture Books

Z is for Moose by Kelly Bingham

Small Bunny’s Blue Blanket by Tatyana Feeney

And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano

Lost and Found by Bill Harley

A Home for Bird by Philip C. Stead

Younger Fiction

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

Lulu and the Duck in the Park by Hilary McKay

Twelve Kinds of Ice by Ellen Bryan Obed

Wonder by R.J. Palacio

Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead

Young Adult Fiction

The FitzOsbornes at War by Michelle Cooper

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

A Confusion of Princes by Garth Nix

Dodger by Terry Pratchett

The Final Four by Paul Volponi

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Nonfiction

Ocean Sunlight:  How Tiny Plants Feed the Seas by Molly Bang

A Boy Called Dickens by Deborah Hopkinson

Moonbird by Phillip Hoose

Invincible Microbe by Jim Murphy

The Mighty Mars Rovers by Elizabeth Rusch

Bomb by Stever Sheinkin

 

 

 

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About the Author:

Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan are Booklist reviewers and middle-school librarians who have chaired both ALA’s Best Books for Young Adults and the Michael L. Printz Award for YA Literature committees.

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