The Butler Children’s Literature Center held their first ever Mock CaldeNott program (applying the Caldecott terms and criteria to outstanding picture books
of 2013 from around the world, ineligible due to their international provenance). Out of all the books considered they determined the following:
Jane, the Fox & Me by Fanny Britt, illustrated by Isabelle Arsenault (Groundwood Books) – Not only did this book appear on the New York Times Best Illustrated list of 2013 but it also showed up on New York Public Library’s 2013 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing! In it, the drab world of sad, bullied Hélène takes on fresh life and color thanks to a new friend, a bright red fox, and Jane Eyre—her favorite book. Sensitive ink and wash illustrations likewise take on color to reflect her rising confidence.
My Father’s Arms Are a Boat by Stein Erik Lunde, illustrated by Øyvind Torseter (Enchanted Lion Books) – Unable to sleep, a young boy climbs into his father’s arms and asks about birds, foxes, and whether his mother will ever awaken, then under a starry sky, the father provides clear answers and assurances. School Library Journal said this, «distinctive look at life, death, and grief is beautiful and thought-provoking.»
The Line by Paula Bossio (Kids Can Press) – Surreal and silly all at once. A little girl stumbles onto a line… and endless possibilities for fun! With a twist and a shake of the line, it becomes a slide, a giant bubble or even a jungle vine. But what—or who—could be at the other end?
Herman and Rosie by Gus Gordon (Roaring Brook Press) – A personal favorite here at NYPL as it appeared on our 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing list this year. City life can be busy, bustling… and lonely. Two musicians find a satisfying friendship in this musical journey set in the always exciting Manhattan, New
Nasreddine by Odile Weulersse, illustrated by Rebecca Dautremer (Eerdmans Books for Young Readers) – Another book on our 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing list! The villagers always find something new to scold Nasreddine and his father about each week on their way to market. How can one boy please everyone, yet still stay true to himself?