Oh, this list. 15 of my favourite fiction titles. I started putting this together in early December and have changed it numerous times. Reading new books shifted things. Revisiting favourites and loving them even more shifted things. I was switching books on and off until moments before I hit publish.
The 15 books that made the final cut? They spoke to my heart. Sometimes happy. Sometimes hopeful. Sometimes with sorrow. But they all spoke deeply.
15 books and no more than 15 words of raving. This was my challenge last year with my 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!
These picture books are both beautiful and in need of many rereads. I love each of them more each time I read them and read to children? Well . . . they certainly do their picture book magic thing.
Lenny & Lucy written by Philip C. Stead and illustrated by Erin E. Stead
Moody. Measured. Heavy but secure. Vulnerable but playful. Oh, this book.
My Pen by Christopher Myers
Celebrating the creativity on the page and endless possibility.
The Skunk written by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Patrick McDonnell
Quirky. Charming. This title sings to my philosophical heart.
The Little Gardener by Emily Hughes
Lush and moody. Sweet and hopeful. Every shade of green gorgeous.
Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña and illustrated by Christian Robinson
A wise nana. A regular bus ride. The importance of neighbourhood and noticing.
The Bear Report by Thyra Heder
Beautiful, playful and imaginative illustrations. Olafur is a transformative Arctic tour guide.
Boats for Papa by Jessixa Bagley
Missing and connecting. Believing and making it so. Lots of love here.
Special Delivery written by Phllip C. Stead and illustrated by Matthew Cordell
A big heart. A big elephant. A big journey. Large doses of joy.
This is Sadie written by Sara O’Leary and illustrated by Julie Morstad
Sadie is enchanting. She embraces life – both the real and the imagined parts with gusto.
These six titles are my most favourite of many truly fantastic titles I read this year. Something about the characters in these books made them unforgettable.
Wish Girl by Nikki Loftin
The magic suggested in the story floats off the page and whispers quietly, “Immerse yourself.”
Listen, Slowly by Thanhhà Lai
The pull of home, the strength of family, the importance of culture: all rich & complex.
Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt
Family is about who is in your corner. Beautiful. Hopeful. Heartbreaking.
The War That Saved my Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
This novel twists from the ugly cruelty of abuse to the powerful healing of connection.
The Honest Truth by Dan Gemeinhart
Dog as hero. Boy with the weight of the world. Honest truths are the hardest.
The Boy in the Black Suit by Jason Reynolds
So much grief and challenge but the humanity shines bright.
Please share your own favourites of the year . . .
Wishing everyone a 2016 full of new favourites and lots of reading!