Feb 082015

Every year at it's mid-Winter Conference the American Library Association presents the Caldecott Award "to the artist of the most distinguished American picturebook for children." In addition to the Medal award, several Honor awards are presented to the runner-ups in the category. The awards were announced this past Monday, Feb. 2, 2015.

The day of the announcement the first edition Caldecott Medal and Honor books become instantly collectible, and copies are quickly bought up by both collectors and booksellers, the latter buying them for resale.

2015 Caldecott Medal Winner

Adventures Of Beekle First Edition Caldecott Medal

The 2015 Caldecott Medal winner is The Adventures Of Beekle illustrated and written by Dan Santat  (Little Brown).

From the American Library Association's website:

" In four delightful “visual chapters,” Beekle, an imaginary friend, undergoes an emotional journey looking for his human. Santat uses fine details, kaleidoscopic saturated colors, and exquisite curved and angular lines to masterfully convey the emotional essence of this special childhood relationship.

“Santat makes the unimaginable, imaginable,” said Caldecott Medal Committee Chair Junko Yokota.

Now that Santat has won a Caldecott Medal, look for his earlier first edition children’s picturebooks to have higher collector interest. I was fortunate to acquire a couple of first edition copies of The Adventures of Beekle at a neighborhood independent bookstore.

2015 Caldecott Honor Books

Six books were awarded the Caldecott Honor by the ALA’s Selection Committee. The first edition for each of these will have increased book collector interest, as will the other books for each of the award winning illustrators.

Nana In The City First Edition Caldecott Medal

Nana In The City, written and illustrated by Lauren Castillo published by Clarion Books.

“Castillo’s evocative watercolor illustrations tell the story of a young boy’s visit to his grandmother, and the reassuring way she helps him to lose his fear and experience the busy, loud city in a new way.”

From Clarion’s promotional page:

In this magical picture book, a young boy spends an overnight visit with his nana and is frightened to find that the city where she lives is filled with noise and crowds and scary things. But then Nana makes him a special cape to help him be brave, and soon the everyday sights, sounds, and smells of the city are not scary—but wonderful. The succinct text is paired with watercolor illustrations that capture all the vitality, energy, and beauty of the city.

Noisy Paint Box First Edition Caldecott Medal

The Noisy Paint Box: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art (Alfred A. Knopf), illustrated by Mary GrandPré and written by Barb Rosenstock.

Abstract artist Vasily Kandinsky experienced colors as sounds and sounds as colors; he created work that was bold and groundbreaking using colors from his “noisy paint box.” His process is reflected beautifully by GrandPré, whose paint flows across the page in ethereal ribbons of color.

Many people know Mary GrandPré’s artwork from the covers of the Harry Potter books published by Scholastic – before the movies she imagined Harry for the US reading public. It’s nice to see her honored by the ALA.

Sam & Dave Dig A Hole First Edition Caldecott Medal

Sam & Dave Dig a Hole (Candlewick Press), illustrated by Jon Klassen and written by Mac Barnett.

Klassen’s use of texture, shape and earth tones in this deceptively simple book invite readers into the experience of two boys, who, accompanied by their dog, set out to dig a hole. Readers will find an unexpected treasure and be challenged to ponder the meaning of “spectacular.”

Jon Klassen won the Caldecott Medal award in 2013 for This Is Not My Hat, and he has won a Caldecott Honor award for his illustrations in Extra Yarn.

Viva Frida First Edition Caldecott Medal

Viva Frida (Roaring Brook Press), illustrated and written by Yuyi Morales.

Using a unique variety of media – puppetry, printmaking, painting and photography – combined with an intoxicating use of color and unfailing sense of composition, Morales celebrates the artistic process.

This is a beautiful mixed media book, see Macmillan’s promotional page

The Right Word First Edition Caldecott Medal

The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus (Eerdmans Books for Young Readers) illustrated by Melissa Sweet and written by Jen Bryant.

Sweet’s inspired mixed media illustrations illuminate the personality and work of a man passionately interested in many things. Her collages combine disparate elements to create a cohesive whole, echoing the ways in which Roget ordered the world into lists that evolved into his groundbreaking thesaurus.

This book also won this year’s Robert F. Silbert Medal for the “most distinguished informational book for children”, from the ALA Silbert Award announcement:

The Right Word is about Peter Mark Roget, whose boyhood passion for list-making and finding the right word for every situation led him to create his “treasure house” of a book, the thesaurus. Bryant’s engaging, accessible narrative and Sweet’s delightfully detailed mixed media illustrations meld together to create “a marvel, a wonder, a surprise,” of a book.

With both lovely storytelling and intricate illustrations, this picture book biography of a life that had such a far reaching impact takes the format to another level,” said Sibert Medal Committee Chair Deborah Taylor.

Melissa Sweet’s illustrations were awarded a 2008 Caldecott Honor for A River Of Words.

This One Summer First Edition Caldecott Medal

This One Summer (First Second), illustrated by Jillian Tamaki and written by Mariko Tamaki.

Intricately detailed illustrations in shades of indigo are masterfully layered with the text in this graphic novel. The pacing and strong imagery evoke myriad emotions and ground this poignant and painfully realistic coming-of-age story.

Beautiful illustrations notwithstanding this is an odd choice by the Caldecott Selection Committee, as This One Summer is more a graphic novel than a children’s picturebook. See Macmillan’s promotional page .

The Newbery and Caldecott Medals and Honor Book seals are property of the American Library Association and cannot be used in any form or reproduced without permission of the ALA Office of Rights and Permissions.

Members of the 2015 Caldecott Medal Selection Committee are: Chair Junko Yokota, Center for Teaching through Children’s Books, Skokie, Ill.; Lucia Acosta, Princeton (N.J.) Public Library; Tali Balas Kaplan, Success Academy Charter School, Bronx, N.Y.; Bradley Debrick, Johnson County Library, Overland Park, Kan.; Alison Ernst, University Liggett School, Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich.; Adrienne Furness, Henrietta Public Library, Rochester, N.Y.; Jonathan Hunt, San Diego (Calif.) County Office of Education; Rebecca Jackman, New Providence Middle School, Clarksville, Tenn.; Roger Kelly, Santa Monica (Calif.) Public Library; Barbara Klipper, Stamford, Conn.; Susan Kusel, Temple Rodef Shalom Library, Falls Church, Va.; Amy Lilien-Harper, Ferguson Library Harry Bennett Branch, Stamford, Conn.; Sharon McKellar, Oakland (Calif.) Public Library; Shilo Pearson, Chicago Public Library; and Angela Reynolds, Annapolis Valley Regional Library, Nova Scotia, Canada.

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