Which books stand out from a year of reading? It’s a difficult list to make. The turmoil is sweet though as I get to revisit favourite books and the memories I have attached to them. I made this list quickly this year. No second guessing. Quick and determined. These books are especially wonderful from the list of many that I loved this year.
The 16 books that made the final cut? They showcased beautiful words and imagery. I got lost in the sounds, in the text, in the beauty of the language and in the wonder of the illustrations. These titles also spoke to my heart. All of the emotions are here. Especially hope. Hope feels particularly important this year.
16 books and no more than 16 words of raving. This was my challenge last year with my Favourites of 2015 (15 books, 15 words) In 2014, it was Favourites of 2014 (14 books, 14 words) In 2013, it was Favourites of 2013 (13 books, 13 words) and in 2012 (12 books, 12 words) with my 2012 Favourites. Each year, I get one more book and one more word to play with!
This year I chose 8 picture books and 8 novels. (Nonfiction favourites will be in another post)
First the picture books!
Grandad’s Island by Benji Davies
A sweet, colourful adventure that allows us to talk about loss in a gentle, imaginative way.
Ida, Always written by Caron Levis and illustrated by Charles Santoso
Full of love. This book honours relationships and reveals all of the emotions in letting go.
Maybe Something Beautiful: How Art Transformed a Neighborhood by F. Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell with illustrations by Rafael López
Art can change a neighbourhood and pull together community in some beautiful ways.
Daniel Finds a Poem by Micha Archer
What is poetry? Open your eyes to the world and you will find it.
Worm Loves Worm by J.J. Austrian and illustrated by Mike Curato
Love is love. Love is love. Love is love.
When Green Becomes Tomatoes Poems for All Seasons by Julie Fogliano and illustrated by Julie Morstad
Poetry that lets us meander across the page picking words and images to celebrate. Perfection.
The Sound of Silence written by Katrina Goldsaito and illustrated by Julia Kuo
The search for silence. Be in awe of the calm and simplicity.
Penguin Problems by Jory John and Lane Smith
Follow a little penguin through a largely pessimistic day. Then some perspective happens (mostly) . . .
These novels completely absorbed me.
Hour of the Bees by Lindsay Eagar
A lone bee buzzing in your ear. A story wrapped up in history and magic. Believe.
All Rise for the Honorable Perry T Cook by Leslie Connor
A title that celebrates family, community, resilience and strength of character. And one very amazing boy.
Ghost by Jason Reynolds
Captivating. Root for a kid that has much against him and can run like the wind.
Counting Thyme by Melanie Conklin
Hope wins. An emotional story of a family coping with cancer treatment and holding it together.
The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner
A 9/11 story. In the midst of loss, shock and pain is connection, hope and love.
When Friendship Followed me Home by Paul Griffin
There will be tears. Sadness. Bits of your heart will break. Worth it. So worth it.
Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
Full of adventure, wartime atrocities, human kindness and connection. Incredible historical fiction.
Pax by Sara Pennypacker
Beautiful, emotional and raw. I had to keep reminding myself to breathe.
Please share your own favourites of the year . . .
Wishing everyone a 2017 full of new favourites and lots of reading!