In honor of Women’s History Month, here are 20 picture book biographies about awesome women! Enjoy!
Here Come the Girl Scouts!: The Amazing All-True Story of Juliette ‘Daisy’ Gordon Low and Her Great Adventure by Shana Corey, illustrated by Hadley Hooper
Frida by Jonah Winter, illustrated by Ana Juan
Mermaid Queen: The Spectacular True Story Of Annette Kellerman, Who Swam Her Way To Fame, Fortune & Swimsuit History! by Shana Corey, illustrated by Edwin Fotheringham
Miss Moore Thought Otherwise: How Anne Carroll Moore Created Libraries for Children by Jan Pinborough, illustrated by Debby Atwell
Little Melba and Her Big Trombone by Katheryn Russell-Brown, illustrated by Frank Morrison
The Tree Lady: The True Story of How One Tree-Loving Woman Changed a City Forever by H. Joseph Hopkins, illustrated by Jill McElmurry
Nurse, Soldier, Spy: The Story of Sarah Edmonds, a Civil War Hero by Marissa Moss, illustrated by John Hendrix
Nadia: The Girl Who Couldn’t Sit Still by Karlin Gray, illustrated by Christine Davenier
Sonia Sotomayor: A Judge Grows in the Bronx/La juez que creció en el Bronx by Jonah Winter, illustrated by Edel Rodriquez
Amelia and Eleanor Go for a Ride by Pam Muñoz Ryan, illustrated by Brian Selznick
Summer Birds: The Butterflies of Maria Merian by Margarita Engle, illustrated by Julie Paschkis
Life in the Ocean: The Story of Oceanographer Sylvia Earle by Claire A. Nivola
Daredevil: The Daring Life of Betty Skelton by Meghan McCarthy
She Loved Baseball: The Effa Manley Story by Audrey Vernick, illustrated by Don Tate
Wilma Unlimited: How Wilma Rudolph Became the World’s Fastest Woman by Kathleen Krull, illustrated by David Díaz
Who Says Women Can’t Be Doctors?: The Story of Elizabeth Blackwell by Tanya Lee Stone, illustrated by Marjorie Priceman
You Forgot Your Skirt, Amelia Bloomer by Shana Corey, illustrated by Chesley McLaren
Mama Miti: Wangari Maathai and the Trees of Kenya by Donna Jo Napoli, illustrated by Kadir Nelson
- The Watcher: Jane Goodall’s Life with the Chimps by Jeanette Winter
- Brave Girl: Clara and the Shirtwaist Makers’ Strike of 1909 by Michelle Markel, illustrated by Melissa Sweet
Grab your favorite leprechaun and pick up a book about St. Patrick, Ireland and the color green to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day!
- Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger
- A Fine St. Patrick’s Day by Susan Wojciechowski, illustrated by Tom Curry
- The Luckiest St. Patrick’s Day Ever by Teddy Slater, illustrated by Ethan Long
- Fiona’s Luck by Teresa Bateman, illustrated by Kelly Murphy
- Tim O’Toole and the Wee Folk: An Irish Tale by Gerald McDermott
- The Night Before St. Patrick’s Day by Natasha Wing, illustrated by Amy Wummer
- The Last Snake in Ireland: A Story About St. Patrick by Sheila MacGill-Callahan, illustrated by Will Hillenbrand
- That’s What Leprechauns Do by Eve Bunting, illustrated by Emily Arnold McCully
- O’Sullivan Stew by Hudson Talbott
- Patrick: Patron Saint of Ireland by Tome DePaola
I was given the first three board books and the first picture book in the series by Abrams Appleseed to review and these darling books are going to be very popular! The board book series focuses on community helpers – I’m a Librarian, I’m a Firefighter and I’m a Veterinarian. Each of which follows a day in the life of a community member of Tinyville Town. I also received Tinyville Town Gets to Work! which is about the whole town coming together to work on a project. In this first picture book, there is a traffic jam on the old bridge and the mayor decides that a larger bridge needs to be built because the town is growing. I love how the story introduces a number of familiar characters, but also new community members like the township planner and architect, a journalist and construction worker.
I think what I liked most about these books is that Brian Biggs, the author/illustrator truly makes the characters diverse in gender, race and even sexual orientation (depending on who the librarian’s partner is – all we see is a short hair cut in bed when the librarian wakes up and goes to sleep). I love that you can look at any page and see a truly diverse group of people and that throughout the series the characters overlap as the firefighter takes the firehouse dog to the veterinarian. Some have compared this series to Richard Scarry’s world and Sesame Street’s small town feel, but I like that Brian Biggs uses actual people rather than anthropomorphic animals. I think these board books are going to great for kids and for preschool classrooms when discussing community helpers! Abrams also has a great teacher guide with vocabulary, questions about the stories and even a few activity pages for kids to use! The first few books were published last fall with a few more planned throughout this year and I know a bunch of little kids who will be getting this series for birthdays and holidays!
I was shocked just a week ago after reading “You May Want to Marry My Husband” that Amy Krouse Rosenthal was diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer and again today, although not surprised, saddened to find that she passed away.
It was interesting to see her article go viral as it swept through the kidlit community – that was no shock. But, to see so many of my friends have it posted on their Facebook feeds was really interesting because I know, they have never read any of her children’s literature. I feel as though I know her just a little bit through her work, she seemed a king and gentle spirit who valued the everyday moments as much as the important ones.
Amy Krouse Rosenthal was a writer who could take big problems and bring them down to a child’s level and find a way to make everything seem right. She had a quick sense of humor that could be seen in much of her work and I have loved everything she’s ever written. If you don’t read any of her other books, read just one – I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld, a beautiful and touching story about appreciating the little things in life with the ones you loved. A touching tribute about the fragility of life by someone who understood the sentiment only too well.
If you don’t mind balling your eyes out and ugly crying at your desk, check out the Twitter hashtag – as wishes are shared.
To Amy’s family – I wish you more comfort and peace.
The 2017 Children’ & Teen Choice Book Awards are ready to be voted on from March 3 – May 7. This is the only national book award that is voted on only by kids and teens. A number of schools and states have their own awards, but this is the only national award. To vote, head over to the Every Child A Reader website, where kids can vote or teachers and librarians and place a group ballot for classes and schools. The website also has printable ballots, I voted stickers and more!
The Awards are broken down into four categories with seven finalists in each category. The finalist are:
K – 2nd Grade BOOK OF THE YEAR FINALISTS
- DON’T WAKE UP THE TIGER, by Britta Teckentrup (Candlewick/Nosy Crow)
- FRANKENCRAYON, by Michael Hall (HarperCollins/Greenwillow)
- KING BABY, by Kate Beaton (Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine Books)
- MADELINE FINN AND THE LIBRARY DOG, by Lisa Papp (Peachtree Publishers)
- NANOBOTS, by Chris Gall (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)
- PEEP AND EGG: I’M NOT HATCHING, by Laura Gehl; illus. by Joyce Wan (Macmillan/Farrar Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers)
- THE THANK YOU BOOK, by Mo Willems (Disney-Hyperion)
3rd – 4th Grade BOOK OF THE YEAR FINALISTS
- THE ANT AND THE GRASSHOPPER, by Carl Sommer; illus. by Ignacio Noe (Advance Publishing)
- DUCK ON A TRACTOR, by David Shannon (Scholastic/Blue Sky)
- THE HOLE STORY OF THE DOUGHNUT, by Pat Miller; illus. by Vincent Kirsch (HMH Books for Young Readers)
- NOODLEHEAD NIGHTMARES, by Tedd Arnold, Martha Hamilton, and Mitch Weiss; illus. by Tedd Arnold (Holiday House)
- ONCE UPON AN ELEPHANT by Linda Stanek; illus. by Shennen Bersani (Arbordale Publishing)
- WHOOSH!: Lonnie Johnson’s Super-Soaking Stream Of Inventions, by Chris Barton; illus. by Don Tate (Charlesbridge)
- WOLF CAMP, by Andrea Zuill (Random House/ Schwartz & Wade)
5th – 6th Grade BOOK OF THE YEAR FINALISTS
- BOOKED, by Kwame Alexander (HMH Books for Young Readers)
- FUZZY, by Tom Angleberger and Paul Dellinger (ABRAMS/Amulet)
- GARVEY’S CHOICE, by Nikki Grimes (Boyds Mills Press/WordSong)
- HILO BOOK 2: Saving the Whole Wide World, by Judd Winick (Random House/Random House Books for Young Readers)
- MAKER LAB, by Jack Challoner (DK)
- THE MISADVENTURES OF MAX CRUMBLY 1: Locker Hero, by Rachel Renée Russell (Simon & Schuster/Aladdin)
- WET CEMENT, by Bob Raczka (Macmillan/Roaring Brook Press)
TEEN BOOK OF THE YEAR FINALISTS
- A COURT OF MIST AND FURY, by Sarah J. Maas (Bloomsbury Children’s Books)
- CROOKED KINGDOM, by Leigh Bardugo (Macmillan/Henry Holt Books)
- THE CROWN, by Kiera Cass (HarperCollins)
- HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD, PARTS 1 & 2, Special Rehearsal Edition Script, by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany (Scholastic)
- THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR, by Nicola Yoon (Random House)
- THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS, by Marieke Nijkamp (Sourcebooks Fire)
- A TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT, by Sabaa Tahir (Penguin Young Readers)