Children’s and Young Adult Book Guides

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For Grown-Ups

Anita Silvey’s Children’s Book-A-Day Almanac: “Daily children’s book recommendations from Anita Silvey. Discover the stories behind children’s book classics and the new books good enough to become classics.”

Bringing Mysteries AlilveBRINGING MYSTERIES ALIVE FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS by Jeanette Larson (Linworth, 2004). First-rate guidebook to mysteries for young readers. Topics include: an introduction, definition, mystery appreciation, series mysteries, curriculum connections, programming, and extensive additional resources (awards, URLs, bibliography, etc.). More on this title from Cynsations.

BOOKS TO GROW WITH: A GUIDE TO USING THE BEST CHILDREN’S FICTION FOR EVERYDAY ISSUES AND TOUGH CHALLENGES by Cheryl Coon (Lutra Press, 2004). Into bibliotherapy? From adoption to working parents, Coon’s guidebook provides recommended tie-in titles organized by subject, including of the more obscure like “gifted kids,” “schizophrenia,” and “sleepovers.” The real strength of this guidebook is the emphasis on “best,” on literary trade books, that both address the relevant issue and also meet the quality test as stories. Nicely inclusive, multicultural approach. Helpful to child-care givers and librarians building collections along themes.

EXPLODING THE MYTHS: THE TRUTH ABOUT TEENS AND READING by Marc Aronson (with a forward by Bruce Brooks)(The Scarecrow Press, 2001). Essentially a collection of Aronson’s articles about the state of YA lit with particular attention to the status and future of YA, multiculturalism, realism, myths, awards, and a dialogue with Jacqueline Woodson.

FROM ROMANCE TO REALISM: 50 YEARS OF GROWTH AND CHANGE IN YOUNG ADULT LITERATURE by Michael Cart (HarperCollins, 1996). The definitive overview takes readers from YA literature’s earliest inklings to (almost) present day. See also WIT AND HUMOR IN AMERICAN CHILDREN’S LITERATURE by Michael Cart (HarperCollins, 1995).

GETTING GRAPHIC! USING GRAPHIC NOVELS TO PROMOTE LITERACY WITH PRETEENS AND TEENS by Michele Gorman (Linworth, 2003). An information guide for librarians, teachers, and anyone who works with young people who want to learn more about graphic novels. For librarians and school library media specialists, this is a tool to help you develop, manage, and promote a collection of graphic novels in addition to the developing corresponding programs and special events. This book is designed to meet the needs of both school and public librarians who have little or no knowledge about graphic novels. Topics addressed in the book include a brief history of comic books and graphic novels, the value of graphic novels for developing readers, the role of graphic novels in public libraries, school libraries, and classrooms, issues and information relevant to collection development and bibliographic control of graphic novels, programming and promotion ideas, and core collections for middle school libraries, high school libraries, and public libraries serving youth populations.

Great Books for Boys by Kathleen OdeanGREAT BOOKS FOR BOYS: MORE THAN 600 BOOKS FOR BOYS 2 TO 14 by Kathleen Odean (Ballatine, 1998). Annotated listings for raising strong, sensitive sons with a love of quality literature.

GREAT BOOKS FOR GIRLS: MORE THAN 600 RECOMMENDED BOOKS FOR GIRLS AGES 3-14 by Kathleen Odean, Chair of the 2002 Newbery Award Committee (Ballantine, 2002). Annotated listings for raising strong, thoughtful daughters with a love of quality literature.

HOW TO GET YOUR CHILD TO LOVE READING by Esme Raji Codell (Algonquin, 2003).

HUMOR IN YOUNG ADULT LITERATURE: A TIME TO LAUGH by Walter Hogan (Scarecrow, 2005). A professional resource book that features chapters on YA humor with regard to: family; friends; bullies; authorities and adversaries; what’s wrong with me?; could this be love?; the ironic perspective; and coming of age: who am I, and what am I going to do about it? More on this title from Cynsations.

The Journal of Bibliotherapy and Reading is the journal of the International Reading Association’s Special Interest Group on Bibliotherapy. It is published once a year. Yearly subscription rates are $7 for individuals and institutions in the U.S. Two-year susbscriptions are $10. Individual copies may be purchased for $7 a copy. Mail to: JOBAR, HC 68, Box 2570, Mimbres, NM 88049.

MULTICULTURAL LITERATURE FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS by Ginny Moore Kruse and Kathleen T. Horning from the Cooperative Children’s Book Center of the University of Wisconsin-Madison (two volumes). Excellent listings of multicultural books, and the introductions are must-reads for anyone serious about children’s literature. Visit the Cooperative Children’s Book Center of the School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

THE READ-ALOUD HANDBOOK (4th Ed) by Jim Trelease (Penguin, 1995). Highlights picture books to novels that are great for reading aloud and discusses the importance of reading aloud to children. Visit “site offers a complete guide to Jim Trelease’s work . . .” Features chapter excerpts, author interviews, quiz, bibliographies, Harry Potter news, and more.

RECOMMENDED BOOKS IN SPANISH FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS: 1996 THROUGH 1999 by Isabel Schon, director of the Center for the Study of Books in Spanish for Children and Adolescents at California State University, San Marcos (Scarecrow Press, 2000).

Valerie and Walter's Best Books for ChildrenVALERIE & WALTER’S BEST BOOKS FOR CHILDREN: A LIVELY, OPINIONATED GUIDE by Valerie V. Lewis and Walter M. Mayes (Avon, 1998). Seven-hundred-plus pages of recommendations, featuring more than 2,000 books.

THE WAND IN THE WORLD: Conversations with Writers of Fantasy compiled and edited by Leonard S. Marcus (Candlewick, 2006). Features in-depth interviews with thirteen acclaimed fantasy authors: Lloyd Alexander; Franny Billingsley; Susan Cooper; Nancy Farmer; Brian Jacques; Diana Wynne Jones; Ursula K. Le Guin; Madeleine L’Engle; Garth Nix; Tamora Pierce; Terry Pratchett; Philip Pullman; and Jane Yolen. Offers author photos, including childhood photos, copies of marked manuscripts, etc. Ages 12-up.

Carol Hurst’s Children’s Literature Web Site: “a collection of reviews of great books for kids, ideas of ways to use them in the classroom and collections of books and activities about particular subjects, curriculum areas, themes and professional topics.”

Judy Freeman: Children’s Literature Consultant: “a well-known consultant on children’s literature, storytelling, booktalking, and all aspects of school librarianship.” Freeman is the author of MORE BOOKS KIDS WILL SIT STILL FOR: A READ-ALOUD GUIDE (Bowker/Greenwood, 1995) and HI HO LIBRARIO: SONGS, CHANTS, AND STORIES TO KEEP KIDS HUMMING (Rock Hill Press, 1997).

Teen Week

Teen Read Week and Teen Tech Week: Tips and Resources for YALSA’s Initiatives by Megan Fink. (YALSA, 2010). PEEK: “Each year, the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) sponsors two national literacy initiatives: Teen Read Week™, which encourages teens to read for fun and become regular library users, and Teen Tech Week™, which encourages teens to take advantage of the free technology available at libraries. Since 2003, YALSA’s award-winning quarterly journal, Young Adult Library Services has offered guidance for librarians planning Teen Read Week and Teen Tech Week events.”

WILD THINGS! ACTS OF MISCHIEF IN CHILDREN’S LITERATURE by Betsy Bird, Julie Danielson, and Peter D. Sieruta (Candlewick, 2014). Secret lives, scandalous turns, and some very funny surprises — these essays by leading kids’ lit bloggers take us behind the scenes of many much-loved children’s books. Told in lively and affectionate prose, this treasure trove of information for a student, librarian, parent, or anyone wondering about the post–Harry Potter children’s book biz brings contemporary illumination to the warm-and-fuzzy bunny world we think we know. More on this title from Cynsations.