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Maria Salvadore

Reading Rockets' children's literature expert, Maria Salvadore, brings you into her world as she explores the best ways to use kids' books both inside — and outside — of the classroom.

Winning books

January 28, 2013

Once again at the midwinter meeting of the American Library Association, the winners of the Newbery and Caldecott Medals have been announced. Some of my favorites of the year are among the 2013 winners.

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate (HarperCollins) won the Newbery. It's the touching story of a gentle, artistic gorilla who lives confined in the failing Exit 8 Big Top Mall. Language and evocative illustrations (done by Patricia Castelao) combine to present a touching, hopeful, and memorable story.

Another, very different narrator is the voice of this year's Caldecott Medal winner. This Is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen (Candlewick) is the very funny, fishy tale of a small guy with gills who snitches a hat from a much larger critter — and gets his comeuppance — or not.

In addition to the Newbery and Caldecott announcements, a number of other awards were announced including the Pura Belpre Award, the Coretta Scott King Awards, and the Sibert Award.

The most distinguished book by a Latina/Latino artist to receive the Belpre Award for illustration was David Diaz for Martin de Porres: the Rose in the Desert written by Gary Schmidt (Clarion).

Bryan Collier won the Coretta Scott King award for his stunning visual interpretation of Langston Hughes' poem I, Too Am America (Simon & Schuster).

The Sibert goes to the most distinguished informational book; this year to a sophisticated look at the atomic bomb: Bomb: The Race to Build — and Steal — the World's Most Dangerous Weapon by Steve Sheinkin.

The ALA Youth Media Awards press conference went on for more than an hour. You can find out more about all of the awards from the American Library Association.

These books have a chance to become tomorrow's classics. So take a look and share them with children. But new books are always being published, so remember, it's time to start looking for potential 2014 winners!

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"Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read." — Groucho Marx