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Little Willow [userpic]

Booklist: American Children's Books Written in the Last 25 Years

June 9th, 2006 (05:03 pm)

Current Mood: creative
Current Song: The Choice by Jonatha Brooke

A Fuse #8 Production is working on a Top 25 American Children's Books Written In the Last 25 Years list. (Thanks to Kelly at Big A little a for the link.)

Some of my favorite books were disqualified because they came out more than 25 years ago. For example, I couldn't include The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin because it was published in 1978. Sorry, Ellen. Sorry, Turtle. My classics were eliminated by both the timeline and the nationality requirements. Sorry, Charles*, but you're British; Michael Ende, you're German. (* = See comments on this post.)

I have selected books written by an American between 1981 and 2006 that I have read countless times. I listed my selection from easiest read/youngest audience to most difficult content/oldest audience. Without further ado, here are my picks:

The Little Mouse, The Red Ripe Strawberry, and The Big Hungry Bear by Don and Audrey Wood
Judy Moody by Megan McDonald
The Doll Hospital by James Duffy
The Ghost Wore Gray by Bruce Coville
The Dancing Cats of Applesap by Janet Taylor Lisle
The Doll in the Garden by Mary Downing Hahn
The Baby-Sitters Club series by Ann M. Martin
The Penderwicks series by Jeanne Birdsall
Number the Stars by Lois Lowry
Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli
The Agony of Alice by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
Behind the Attic Wall by Sylvia Cassedy - I can't find a biography/point of origin. Anyone?
The Young Wizards series by Diane Duane


Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 12:05 am (UTC)

* That's right, I distinguish between Lewis Carroll (a pen name, not a nickname) and Charles Dodgson (the real person). When I have to list the author for Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass, I will say Lewis Carroll, because that is the name under which they were published. However, when talking about the author's life, when telling people how much I love his Alice works (and when defending his completely innocent relationship with Alice Liddell), I refer to him as Charles.

Posted by: Nicole (bliccy)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 01:11 am (UTC)
$ good kids

Apparently I can't type simple html tonight! Yeesh!

My favorite is still Mandy - Julie Andrews Edwards. :)

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 01:12 am (UTC)

It's all right.

I have not read her novels. I have read some of her picture books, including Little Bo, which is about a cat. :)

Listening to Chris' new songs on MySpace. . .

Posted by: Nicole (bliccy)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 01:14 am (UTC)
$ tea leaves

Hee hee, I did that today! They're much...peppier than I would have anticipated considering his divorce and how emo he tends to get.

I'm hoping to make his concert at the Crystal at the end of the month! I feel so special he decided to play here first, yay! :)

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 01:25 am (UTC)

Does the album title have its roots (pun intended) in folktales, folk songs, something? I was almost disturbed by it until I considered that it could be a saying or a reference with which I am unfamiliar.

Posted by: Nicole (bliccy)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 02:10 am (UTC)
O hello tomorrow

I'm not familiar with the term, but Google did give me a lot of results for Tom Brosseau, who has a song by that title. He's also ticketing his new "band" as How to Grow a Band...and all of the info on that site is like if Chris was on shrooms, which considering he's already hyperactive, is scary. :)

Yeah the title does have a weird, derogatory ring to it...hopefully he'll talk about the meaning behind it eventually.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 02:10 am (UTC)

There are gimmicks, and then there are bad ideas. :)

Posted by: capri pants. leather sandals. pregnancy. (37piecesflair)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 02:38 am (UTC)

But, Pullman's British.

Posted by: Miss Momoko (missmomoko)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 05:46 am (UTC)
Grin // Ichigo // Phone

yeah that's what I thought too!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: June 10th, 2006 07:19 am (UTC)

Drat. I thought I edited that out. (I combined the lists of all of my favorite juvenile books first, then had to take out folks/titles that didn't qualify.)

Posted by: dianoraek (dianoraek)
Posted at: June 21st, 2006 12:15 am (UTC)

Catching up on your blog after being on vacation, and oh my gosh does this stir up memories! I totally forgot about The Westing Game. I used to love that book. And Mary Downing Hahn's Wait 'Til Helen Comes was another favorite of mine. I'm pretty sure I read The Doll In The Garden, but I can't remember it very well. I see from Amazon that MDH has been writing up until the present; are her newer books the great ghost stories like she used to tell?

This entry has made me remember a book that I read in the 4th grade that I loved, and I can't remember who it's by, although it seems like it's in the vein of MDH's books. The main character was a girl named Zoe, and she could go back in time by going down a certain set of stairs in her house, where she encountered another young girl. I'm shaky on the details, since it's been so long. Do you recognize it?

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: June 22nd, 2006 04:58 am (UTC)

Welcome back. I hope you enjoyed your vacation.

I aspire to write something as smart and well-conceived as The Westing Game.

I can think of another story with a similar concept: Three Lives to Live by Anne Lindberg.

Have you read books by Zilpha Keatley Snyder?

Posted by: A Deserving Porcupine (rockinlibrarian)
Posted at: December 19th, 2009 09:21 pm (UTC)

Just exploring after your last post there, and I have to comment on this one just to say I am SO EXCITED someone else knows and loves "Behind the Attic Wall"! I did a "top books of my childhood" post a couple months ago and I have that on it, and I thought at that time "there's one of the ones nobody else has on their list..."!

I also adore the Young Wizards series too (it goes on my "favorites I didn't get to until I was an adult" list). And Number the Stars and Maniac Magee, but those show up on Other People's Lists more often!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: December 20th, 2009 07:45 am (UTC)

I love Behind the Attic Wall! I too am glad to hear that someone else knows of this splendid story. Oh, the cane and the bowler hat!

Young Wizards books are captivating, imaginative, and evocative. Have you read all of them thus far?

Number the Stars is extremely emotional, educational, and heartstirring.

Maniac Magee is amazing. What wonderful morals, instincts, and truths. It can be an eye-opening story for both kids and adults.

Posted by: A Deserving Porcupine (rockinlibrarian)
Posted at: December 20th, 2009 01:14 pm (UTC)

I have read the Young Wizards books up through Wizard's Holiday, which I think might be the last my libraries (the two I frequent regularly, if "frequent regularly" isn't redundant) have. I will get around to ILLing the rest when I run out of new books to read hastily-before-the-end-of-the-year-just-to-say-that-I-read-them-the-year-they-came-out. They remind me a lot of Madeleine L'Engle's fantasy, which I adore so much I named my daughter Madeleine-- so I was happy to make that connection.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: December 21st, 2009 05:39 pm (UTC)

Beg them to put Wizards at War in circulation - then, next year, A Wizard of Mars.

Namesake: That's so sweet!

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