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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Picture Books

Oh. We made it, readers. We made it. That was 31 days, all right. 31 days that covered loads of books. Good ones and weird ones, but all of them worth reading in some way. Not a bad book in sight. Nothing to yawn at. And so, as a reward, here are the best beloved. The picture books. The titles closest to the heart of the children’s book community.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Middle Grade Novels

The penultimate list! I’m so excited! This year I did a bit better than in 2017 in terms of reading middle grade fiction. Thanks to a system of following starred reviews, the recommendations of readers I trust, blogs, Twitter, Mock Newbery lists, the whole kerschmozzle, here are the 2018 books that I think are great.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Nonfiction Chapter Books

I should clarify before we begin that calling these “Chapter Books” is a bit misleading. Think of them, instead, as works of Nonfiction for slightly older children in the 9-12 year-old range. Or, in the case of books like The Faithful Spy, 10 and up. A beautiful bevy of facts.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Nonfiction Picture Books

At last! It’s finally time to list the last Top Five lists of the year. This is the first of the biggies, my friends. These are the picture book nonfiction titles that truly stole my heart in 2018. The cream of the crop. The apples of my eye. The metaphors in my aphorisms.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Fictionalized Nonfiction

I like my nonfiction to adhere as closely to the truth as possible, but at the same time I love the creative ways people have come up with to present factual information. What to do? Why a list dedicated to those works of nonfiction with fictional elements (or are they fictional tales with nonfiction elements?). Because creativity deserves to be honored one way or another. This is my way.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Comics for Kids

This year, ALA established the first Graphic Novels & Comics Round Table (GNCRT). Long gone are the days when we would pooh-pooh anything with a panel or a little sequential art. And so, in celebration of their status, I cast aside the “graphic novel” moniker. Long live, comics! Long live, panels! And long live speech balloons!

31 Days, 31 Books: 2018 Early Chapter Books

Older than easy but not yet novels. The fact of the matter is that while Easy Books are hard to write, Early Chapter Books are hard to categorize. They’re also ideal bedtime books for older children, which means that with the European imports you get a lot of experimentation. American early chapter books are pretty much just written to please. Here then are the books written with 6-9 year olds in mind.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Easy Books

I think you’ve heard me say before that in many ways easy books are the most difficult titles to write. They are most perfect when they are most simple. And they are most simple, when they limit their text complexity. Can you make complex characters and plots with such small words? You can. These did.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Poetry Books

Poems used to be the sole property of April a.k.a. Poetry Month. Now that’s changing. Publishers are rapidly putting more faith into the poetry books they produce. So let’s take a look at what we saw this year, and the wide range of topics that were touched.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Translated Picture Books

They come and they go into our bookstores and libraries and out again without a whisper of awards or significant praise. Yet the true mark of whether or not you are opening up your child to the world is to show them books made internationally. Today we celebrate translations. Even the weird ones. I take that back. ESPECIALLY the weird ones!

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Funny Picture Books

This might be my favorite picture book list of the 31 Days, 31 Books countdown. How could it not be? Get ready for titles that’ll have the small fry howling in the aisles.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Alphabet Books

Every year we see alphabet books that inform, instruct, and entertain. For today’s list, these are the 2018 titles that really took the ball and ran with it.

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Rhyming Picture Books

Oh, Dr. Seuss, what hath thou wrought? Up and coming children’s authors everywhere should be taught one very important lesson before they set fingers to keyboards: Rhyming is a privilege. Not a right. And, quite frankly, not everyone is good at it. There is no pain quite like the pain a librarian feels when they […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Picture Book Readalouds

Until today the lists that I’ve produced this month haven’t been all that subjective. No one can argue that a pop-up is a pop-up or a board book a board book. A book has no words? Then it’s wordless. Pretty cut and dried. Readalouds are a different kettle of fish altogether. What works for me […]

31 Days, 31 Lists: 2018 Great Board Books & Pop-Up Books

I love that we always kick off the 31 lists with board books. What could be cheerier or more inspiring? This year, I’m adding in a selection of pop-up books for spice. And, since board books don’t always skew young, I split this list into two separate categories; one for babies and one for toddler. […]