Favourites of 2016

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!

 Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

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.

Grandad's Island Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

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.

Ida, Always  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

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.

Maybe Something Beautiful  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

Daniel Finds a Poem by Micha Archer

What is poetry? Open your eyes to the world and you will find it.

Daniel Finds a Poem  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

Worm Loves Worm by J.J. Austrian and illustrated by Mike Curato

Love is love. Love is love. Love is love.

Worm Loves Worm  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

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.

When Green Becomes Tomatoes  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

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.

The Sound of Silence  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

 Penguin Problems by Jory John and Lane Smith

Follow a little penguin through a largely pessimistic day. Then some perspective happens (mostly) . . .

 A Penguin Problem  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

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.

hour of the Bees  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

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.

All Rise for the Honorable Perry T Cook by Leslie Connor  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

Ghost by Jason Reynolds

Captivating. Root for a kid that has much against him and can run like the wind.

ghost  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

Counting Thyme by Melanie Conklin

Hope wins. An emotional story of a family coping with cancer treatment and holding it together.

Counting Thyme  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner

A 9/11 story. In the midst of loss, shock and pain is connection, hope and love.

 The Memory of Things  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

When Friendship Followed me Home by Paul Griffin

There will be tears. Sadness. Bits of your heart will break. Worth it. So worth it.

when-friendship-followed-me-home  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys

Full of adventure, wartime atrocities, human kindness and connection. Incredible historical fiction.

Salt to the sea  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

Pax by Sara Pennypacker

Beautiful, emotional and raw. I had to keep reminding myself to breathe.

Pax  Favourites of 2016 There's a Book for That

Please share your own favourites of the year . . .

Wishing everyone a 2017 full of new favourites and lots of reading!

Monday December 5th, 2016

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Each week I share a reading photo of the week. These photos are from when our intermediate Resource Teacher, filling in for the K teacher (who didn’t get a substitute) brought the class upstairs and performed Hooray for Hat for my class! Doesn’t get much cuter! Picture book to the rescue!

Monday December 5th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Monday December 5th, 2016 There's a Book for That

We have continued to explore themes for our #classroombookaday titles. We had a week of silly.

Monday December 5th, 2016 There's a Book for That

And then a week of serious.

Monday December 5th, 2016 There's a Book for That

Join Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers and share all of the reading you have done over the week from picture books to young adult novels. Follow the links to read about all of the amazing books the #IMWAYR community has read. It’s the best way to discover what to read next.

IMWAYR 2015

On the blog:

Celebration: And then this happened . . . 

Books I enjoyed:

The Sound of Silence written by Katrina Goldsaito and illustrated by Julia Kuo

Okay, so, wow! This book is just incredibly beautiful in its simplicity – the search for silence. One to own and share and share again. The illustrations completely captivated me.

the-sound-of-silence

Imaginary Fred written by Eoin Colfer and illustrated by Oliver Jeffers

I found this title quite charming. The importance of friendship, of being needed and of spending time doing things you love with someone who matters – whether real, imagined or somewhere in between.

imaginary-fred

Leave Me Alone by Vera Brosgol

Sometimes we really have to go to great lengths to get the peace and quiet we crave. Incredibly amusing.

leavemealone

 A Child of Books by Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston

Those of us who have had a life seeped in literacy will find this love letter to stories very relatable.

a-child-of-books

Du Iz Tak? by Carson Ellis

The illustrations? Oh my! And the invented language – I can’t wait to try this as a read aloud. Such fun.

du-iz-tak

The Day I Became a Bird by Ingrid Chabbert and Guridi

I am utterly enamoured by the illustrations in this book about a boy willing to be a bird to attract the attention of the girl he swoons over.

the-day-i-became-a-bird

Little Man by Elizabeth Mann

Albert is just plain short. After seeing stilt walkers perform on the Caribbean Island where he lives, he longs to be one of them. A lovely little middle grade read.

little-man

CaveBoy Dave: More Scrawny than Brawny by Aaron Reynolds and Phil McAndrew

Oh is this funny. I book talked this title in class and everyone wanted to read it! And . . . it’s a series. Lots of kid appeal here. And poop. There is lots of poop. I did say kid appeal right?

caveboy-dave-2

When Friendship Followed me Home by Paul Griffin

“What are you doing?” my husband asked as I cried out reading this book and threw it down multiple times. And then a few pages later, I was weeping. This book. Oh, this book. It’s beautiful and heartbreaking and a must, must read. I adored these characters and rooted for them all.

when-friendship-followed-me-home

Reading Progress updates:

2016 Chapter Book Challenge: 59/75 complete

Goodreads Challenge: 314/400 books read

Progress on challenge: 56 books behind! Yikes – worse than last week!!

#MustReadin2016: 22/30 complete

Nonfiction Picture Book Challenge: 43/100 titles

Diverse Books in 2016: 45/50 books read

Up next? Reading The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner. Wow, what a book!