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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Something’s Coming . . . I Don’t Know What It Is But It Is Gonna Be Great!

The title of this post isn’t entirely accurate.  I know perfectly well what’s coming.  Tomorrow starts off a magnificent run of Best Books lists.  Yes, starting December 1st I will begin running the 31 Days, 31 Lists streak.  I even have a catchy visual to go with it!  Check it out:


You’ll be seeing a lot more of it in the coming month.

The premise behind all this is simple.  For each day in December I will run a “Best Of” list of some sort.  The reason for this is that I’ve read so many books this year that it seems a shame that I only review roughly one a month.  This will be a way of celebrating everything I’ve failed to properly praise.  Also, some lists are more useful to folks than others, so why not provide a variety?  Here’s the schedule:

December 1 – Board Books

December 2 – Board Book Adaptations

December 3 – Nursery Rhymes

December 4 – Picture Book Readalouds

December 5 – Rhyming Picture Books

December 6 – Alphabet Books

December 7 – Funny Picture Books

December 8 – Calde-Nots

December 9 – Picture Book Reprints

December 10 – Math Picture Books

December 11 – Bilingual Books

December 12 – International Imports

December 13 – Books with a Message

December 14 – Fabulous Photography

December 15 – Fairy Tales / Folktales

December 16 – Oddest Books of the Year

December 17 – Older Picture Books

December 18 – Easy Books

December 19 – Early Chapter Books

December 20 – Graphic Novels

December 21 – Poetry

December 22 – Fictionalized Nonfiction

December 23 – American History

December 24 – Science & Nature Books

December 25 – Transcendent Holiday Titles

December 26 – Unique Biographies

December 27 – Nonfiction Picture Books

December 28 – Nonfiction Chapter Books

December 29 – Novel Reprints

December 30 – Novels

December 31 – Picture Books

Now the caveat.  I say I’ve read a lot of books for kids this year.  This is not an untrue statement.  However, I am no longer on NYPL’s 100 Books committee and I no longer have travel time to devote to books.  That means that my knowledge of longer nonfiction and novels is very limited.  I will strive to make it clear that those lists are limited only to what I have seen.  And, of course, being only one person I can only vouch for what comes my way.  There are definitely going to be gaps, but I refuse to include any book I haven’t read personally.

So get ready for an interesting test.  How will it go?  Will I be able to keep the pace?  Will be choices be slapdash crazy?

Stay tuned . . .

About Elizabeth Bird

Elizabeth Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.


  1. Hello,
    I read your wonderful review of “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing” on Amazon. Our older sibling is now 11y/o, beyond the level of this book. Is there a book appropriate for her age that handles this topic the same way? Or is it still recommended to read this?
    Also, what do you suggest for the “annoying” younger sibling to read? He is 7y/o, kind heart but quite “annoying” to his elder sister, in her mind.
    Thanks so much! Books are the best!!

    • Elizabeth Bird says:

      Hi Cindy,

      Just send me these questions in an email to Fusenumber8 at gmail dot com. I’ll come up with a list o’ books for you there.

  2. Joanna Reser says:

    Shared a link to this post (below) with my Facebook world in case they need inspiration while gift shopping. I loved checking in every day and reading what you have to say. Thanks for sharing your brain with us!

    Dear fellow book lovers,

    Are you in the market for children’s books for those sweet cherubs in your life this holiday season? Are you unsure of which titles are worthy to live in your home library? I suggest checking out Betsy Bird’s fantastic blog. Each day of December, she is posting a list of top-notch titles. The link below will take you to the schedule; check in on the days/categories that fit your interests. :)

    If you are able to purchase books at full price, might I also recommend visiting or ordering through an independent book seller rather than going to Barnes & Noble or opting for the convenience of two day Amazon Prime shipping? Supporting small and/or local businesses can improve our communities in ways you may not realize. Help keep specialty bookstores alive!

    Type in your zip code on… to find indie bookstores near you. If you, like we Bellefontonians, live a ways away from the larger cities, many offer online ordering.

    <3 Happy reading and happy holidays,
    A word-obsessed, community-conscious, middle school librarian

    • Elizabeth Bird says:

      Thank you! And thank you too for promoting independent bookstores. They are near and dear to my heart as well.

  3. This is a fantastic idea, Betsy! Makes me wish I’d had the idea myself — but I couldn’t keep up, since I’m doing Cybils reading. I will definitely have to check Fuse 8 daily!