Article Alert: Graphic Nonfiction for Kids

Here’s a quick post to share that I had an article published in Booklist‘s third annual Guide to Graphic Novels in Libraries (July 2021). The piece, “Creating a Graphic Nonfiction Collection for Kids,” is mostly aimed at collection development librarians, but there is a small bibliography of recommended titles that could be useful for anyone.

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Caldecott 2021 Wrap-Up

With the 2021 Newbery-Caldecott-Legacy Banquet come and gone, my term on the Caldecott committee is officially over. What a rollercoaster these last two years have been. But, when I look back on it all, I feel nothing but pride. I’m proud of my fellow committee members (and feel so lucky to have served with them). I’m proud our choices. I’m proud of the process, which went on alongside one of the most difficult years for the whole world.

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2020 LGBTQIA+ Starred Review Roundup

It’s time for the 3rd annual roundup of star-studded LGBTQIA+ titles for kids and teens. While stars aren’t everything (especially not to youth), I think it’s interesting to see the types of books that receive praise. Once I have five years of information, I may even write something a bit more in depth. Until then, here is a list!

(Previous lists: 2018, 2019)

A quick comparison from last year’s list shows a decrease in the number of starred reviews: 105 titles received at least 1 star (89 in 2018, 152 in 2019) and 16 titles received 3+ stars (26 in 2018, 38 in 2019). Due to the pandemic, it could be that fewer titles were reviewed or that publication dates were pushed back. Or it could be that, after the boom of LGBTQIA+ publishing in recent years, journals are more reluctant to give stars. For more statistics fun beyond stars and LGBTQIA+ identities, check out the CCBC findings.

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Debrief: ALA Midwinter Virtual 2021

Since the ALA Youth Media Award announcement on Monday, January 25, I’ve seen Michaela Goade’s name and her beautiful, defiant cover art for We Are Water Protectors (written by Carole Lindstrom) everywhere. Each time, it fills me with joy. Goade—the first Indigenous (Tlingit) woman and BIPOC woman to win—deserves every bit of this moment. I’m proud to have been part of the 2021 Caldecott committee that chose her book. I also acknowledge there’s still work to be done, since it took a committee 84 years to award a BIPOC woman its highest honor.

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2019 LBGTQIA+ Starred Review Roundup

I stepped away from Medal on My Mind last year and am continuing to do so again this year. But I had a draft of this list and wanted to get it out there, even though it’s old news. A quick comparison from last year’s list shows nearly double the number of starred reviews: 152 titles received at least 1 star (89 in 2018) and 38 titles received 3+ stars (26 in 2018). Also worth noting, one starred, #ownvoices book by an LGBTQIA+ author was withdrawn from publicationnot for its LGBTQIA+ content, but for “problematic representation of the Kosovo War, genocide, and Muslim characters.”

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