I was really excited to hear that Kate DiCamillo won her second Newbery Medal yesterday. She is one of my favorite authors writing for children today. I reviewed Flora and Ulysses, the winning novel, back in November. Both the sweet girl and I really enjoyed this unusual tale about a girl and a superhero squirrel!
I just finished reading Kevin Henkes' The Year of Billy Miller, which won a Newbery honor. A review of that is forthcoming. Henkes, if you're not familiar with him, is both a fine author and a delightful illustrator (he's won a Caldecott in addition to Newbery honors). He also plows picture book and early reader ground in addition to writing stories for middle-grade readers. One of my favorite Henkes picture books is Old Bear, which I reviewed back in 2009.
Brian Floca won the Caldecott for Locomotive. It looks like a lovely book. While I didn't know any of the Caldecott books this year (proof positive that I'm just not spending enough time in picture book land these days) I did recently review Kadir Nelson's beautifully illustrated book Nelson Mandela, which won a Coretta Scott King Illustrator Honor yesterday.
For a full round-up of yesterday's awards, see the article at Publisher's Weekly. You can click through to some fun interviews of DiCamillo and Floca from that page as well.
By the way, all of my review links here go to reviews I've written at Epinions. I make a (very) modest amount of income from these reviews...so modest that the amount I've earned on most of them, even those that have been up for years, might buy a cup of tea, depending on where I buy it. Basically I write book reviews for the joy of writing book reviews, and because I love recommending good books for fellow readers. If you enjoy any of these reviews and think you know someone else who might benefit from them, please pass them on. And if there's a book (especially a children's book) that you'd enjoy seeing me review, let me know, and I'll see what I can do!