Special Selections from Perrot's Youth Services Staff
The 2007 winners of the Ezra Jack Keats Award have been announced!
The Ezra Jack Keats Award is dedicated to fostering the talent of the new generations of children, artists, and authors who have succeeded Ezra Jack Keats. Keats is the distinguished author/illustrator of the classic Caldecott Award-winning Snowy Day. The award recognizes and encourages developing, talented authors and illustrators of children's books. Many past winners of the Ezra Jack Keats Book Award have gone on to distinguished careers creating many beloved books. The award is given to books that highlight the universal qualities of childhood and the strength of the family, and reflect the multicultural nature of our world.
Here are some of Mrs. Mac's favorite award winners:
For You Are a Kenyan Child
2007 NEW WRITER AWARD WINNER KELLY CUNNANE
by Kelly Cunnane, illustrated by Ana Juan
"Roosters crow, and you wake one morning in the green hills of Africa, sun lemon bright over eucalyptus trees full of doves." In this glimpse into Kenyan daily life, a young boy is asked to watch his grandfather's cows. He is glad to do it, but on his way to the fields, many distractions keep him from his task. There are people to greet, animals to see, sweet milk to taste, and friends to play with. The author smoothly weaves several Swahili words into the rhythmic, poetic text. A gentle story about family, responsibility, and a curious little boy.
2007 NEW ILLUSTRATOR
AWARD WINNER KRISTEN BALOUCH
"A package came for me early in the morning," a young boy relates. It is addressed to him in Brooklyn with the return address in Arabic script, from Tehran, Iran. The mysterious little bottle contains a wind that carries the boy across the sea to the city where his father was born and into his grandfather's arms. Dynamic cut-paper-style illustrations, scattered with cultural details of Brooklyn and Tehran, are overlaid on maps in English and Arabic. This collection of exotic impressions wrapped in an emotionally uplifting story is connected at the end in a note about the experience of the author's Iranian-born husband and his distant grandfather.
The Night Eater
2005 NEW ILLUSTRATOR AWARD WINNER ANA JUAN
written and illustrated by Ana Juan
"At the edge of every day, the Night Eater ran behind the moon. And as he ran, the Night Eater gobbled up the darkness." The roly-poly Night Eater wears footie-pajamas that match his bubblegum-pink skin. He devours "cloudy nights as light and sweet as cotton candy and deep black nights that tasted like bitter chocolate." When his friends tell him that he is getting a bit large, he decides to stop eating up the night, and darkness prevails temporarily until the Night-Eater returns to his job at the radiant dawn.
1995 NEW WRITER AWARD WINNER CARI BEST
by Cari Best, illustrated by Dale Gottlieb
Tina and her mother share an apartment in a bustling, close-knit urban neighborhood where there's always something interesting to watch. Tina especially loves Sundays, the day her father, a taxi driver, comes to visit. Today's outing features a picnic at a farm in the country followed by an "always room for one more'' taxi ride back home, scooping up Tina's neighbors along the way. Best, a fine storyteller, effortlessly weaves Spanish words and phrases into her lively tale.
NOTE: Ms. Best is now the author of 13 books and herself sits on the jury of the Ezra Jack Keats Award!
1993 NEW WRITER AWARD WINNER FAITH RINGGOLD
written and illustrated by Faith Ringgold
Ringgold recounts the dream adventure of eight-year-old Cassie Louise Lightfoot, who flies above her apartment-building rooftop, the "tar beach" of the title, looking down on 1939 Harlem. Part autobiographical, part fictional, this allegorical tale sparkles with symbolic and historical references. The spectacular artwork resonates with color and texture. Children will delight in the universal dream of mastering one's world by flying over it. A stunningly beautiful book.
Click here to see a list of all the Ezra Jack Keats Award-winning books available in the Greenwich library system.
Or view a complete list of winners by year at the Ezra Jack Keats Award website.
Check this page monthly for recommendations from our staff! Each month will focus on a different category of books or other media.
We'll pick our favorites, and tell you all about them! Each book cover is a hyperlink to that item in the catalog, so click there to place a hold.
Have questions about our picks, or need other recommendations? Call us! Our number is 203-637-8802.
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