A couple of coworkers and I have set a goal to read all the Gateway Award nominees for 2013-2014. We just finished reading Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetus. It is an amazing historical fiction book. It is set in Lithuania in the early 1940s and it follows 15-year-old Lina as she and her family are taken by Soviets and forced into labor camps.
Painter and Ugly is a children’s book about two champion sled dogs that are best friends. This book was written and illustrated by Robert J. Blake. Painter and Ugly was selected as a nominee for the 2013-2014 Show Me Readers Award. This award is designed to recognize authors of books for children in first through third grade.
It's Time to Vote for Your Favorite Building Block Award Nominee
On September 1st, voting started for the ten Building Block Award nominees. The Building Block Award is administered by the Youth Services Community of Interest from the Missouri Library Association. Each year, they present an award to the author and illustrator of the picture book voted most popular by preschool children in Missouri's public libraries. The award, established in 1966, is designed to encourage reading aloud to children, birth through kindergarten.
I had just started reading James McBride’s The Good Lord Bird when I heard it had won The National Book Award. I was pleasantly surprised to hear this because I had enjoyed the book from the beginning. The story centers on Henry, a child slave who is sort of “abducted” by abolitionist John Brown when Henry’s father is killed in a skirmish between Brown and Henry’s owner. Brown thinks Henry is a girl, partly due to the sackcloth he’s wearing, and nicknames him Onion. The boy pretty much just goes along for the ride, but finds he’s become fond of this incredibly strange man.