Award season is officially in full swing and we can’t help thinking about all the amazing award winning books we’ve published over the years. With Oscar nominations coming out, we thought today would be the perfect day to reflect on our version of Oscar winners.
Lost and alone in the forbidden Black Forest, Otto meets three mysterious sisters and suddenly finds himself entwined in a puzzling quest involving a prophecy, a promise, and a harmonica.
Decades later, Friedrich in Germany, Mike in Pennsylvania, and Ivy in California each become interwoven when the very same harmonica lands in their lives, binding them by an invisible thread of destiny. All the children face daunting challenges: rescuing a father, protecting a brother, holding a family together. How their suspenseful solo stories converge in an orchestral crescendo will resound in your heart long after the last note has been struck.
Master storyteller Christopher Paul Curtis lends his trademark humor and vibrant narrative style to the gripping tale of eleven-year-old Elijah Freeman. The first child born into freedom in Buxton, Canada, a settlement of runaway slaves just over the border from Detroit, Elijah is best known in his hometown as the boy who threw up on Frederick Douglass. (Not on purpose, of course — he was just a baby then!) But things change when a former slave calling himself the Right Reverend Zephariah W. Connerly the Third steals money from Elijah's friend Mr. Leroy, who has been saving to buy his family out of captivity in the south. Elijah joins Mr. Leroy on a dangerous journey to America in pursuit of the disreputable preacher, and he discovers firsthand the unimaginable horrors of the life his parents fled — a life from which he'll always be free, if he can find the courage to go back home.
Twelve-year-old Catherine just wants a normal life. Which is near impossible when you have a brother with autism and a family that revolves around his disability. She's spent years trying to teach David the rules, from "a peach is not a funny-looking apple" to "keep your pants on in public," in order to stop his embarrassing behaviors. But the summer Catherine meets Jason, a paraplegic boy, and Kristi, the next-door friend she's always wished for, it's her own shocking behavior that turns everything upside down and forces her to ask: What is normal?
By the time Hitler became Chancellor of Germany in 1933, 3.5 million children belonged to the Hitler Youth. It would become the largest youth group in history. Susan Campbell Bartoletti explores how Hitler gained the loyalty, trust, and passion of so many of Germany's young people. Her research includes telling interviews with surviving Hitler Youth members.
The summer Hattie turns 12, her predictable smalltown life is turned on end when her uncle Adam returns home for the first time in over ten years. Hattie has never met him, never known about him. He's been institutionalized; his condition invovles schizophrenia and autism.Hattie, a shy girl who prefers the company of adults, takes immediately to her excitable uncle, even when the rest of the family — her parents and grandparents — have trouble dealing with his intense way of seeing the world. And Adam, too, sees that Hattie is special, and that her quiet, shy ways are not a disability.
A Girl Named Disaster is the humorous and heart wrenching story of a young girl who discovers her own courage and strength when she makes the dangerous journey from Mozambique to Zimbabwe. Nhamo is an 11-year-old Shona girl living in Mozambique in 1981. After the death of her mother, Nhamo is left a virtual slave in her small African village. Upon learning that before her 12th birthday she must marry a cruel man with three other wives, Nhamo desperately decides to run away. What was supposed to have been a short boat trip across the border into Zimbabwe, where she hoped to find her father, turns into an adventure filled with challenges and danger that lasts a year.
The Great Fire of 1871 was one of the most colossal disasters in American history. Overnight, the flourishing city of Chicago was transformed into a smoldering wasteland. The damage was so profound that few people believed the city could ever rise again.
It all began one Sunday evening when a small fire broke out inside the O'Learys' barn. The panic was slow to build at first. People ignored the danger signals, and even the fire department was unable to locate the fire. This city, built of wood, was connected by hundreds of miles of wooden sidewalks and roads. In time, wild flames, fueled by a steady wind, engulfed everything in their path. As people took to the crowded streets, hours of mounting chaos, fear, and panic followed before the relentless flames were halted. When at last they were, a new kind of drama was only just beginning. Nearly 100,000 people were homeless and searching through the burnt rubble for their families.
By weaving personal accounts of actual survivors together with the carefully researched history of Chicago and the disaster, Jim Murphy constructs a riveting narrative that recreates the event with drama and immediacy. And finally, he reveals how, even in a time of deepest despair, the human spirit triumphed, as the people of Chicago found the courage and strength to build their city once again.
The year is 2194, and Tendai, Rita, and Kuda are the children of Zimbabwe's wealthy and powerful chief of security. They've escaped from their father's estate to explore the dangerous city of Harare, and promptly disappear. Their parents call in the Ear, the Eye, and the Arm, detectives whose exposure to nuclear waste has given them special powers. Together they must save the children from the evils of the past, the technology of the future, and criminals with plans much more sinister than anyone could have imagined.
Somewhere in the Darkness by Walter Dean Myers
Jimmy hasn't seen his father in nine years. But one day he comes back -- on the run from the law. Together, the two of them travel across the country -- where Jimmy's dad will find the man who can exonerate him of the crime for which he was convicted. Along the way, Jimmy discovers a lot about his father and himself -- and that while things can't always be fixed, sometimes they can be understood and forgiven.
In this thought-provoking examination of freedom, patriotism, and respect, ninth-grader Philip Malloy is kept from joining the track team by his failing grades in English class. Convinced that the teacher just doesn't like him, Philip concocts a plan to get transferred out of her class. Breaking the school's policy of silence during the national anthem, he hums along, and ends up in a crisis at the center of the nation's attention.
Afternoon of the Elves by Janet Taylor Lisle
As Hillary works in the miniature village, allegedly built by elves, in Sara-Kate's backyard, she becomes more and more curious about Sara-Kate's real life inside her big, gloomy house with her mysterious, silent mother.
Following the turn of the seasons, eleven year old Eldon traces the daily routines of his life on a farm and his relationship with his older brother Wayne. During the winter, with little work to be done on the farm, Eldon and Wayne spend the quiet hours with their family, listening to their Uncle David's stories. But Eldon soon learns that, although he has lived on the same farm, in the same house with his uncle for eleven springs, summers, and winters, he hardly knows him. When Uncle David tells the story of "The Woodcutter," Eldon immediately understands that this story is different from any other. It is a powerful and terrible story that changes everything for the brothers.
This young adult novel, which successfully captures the pain of the Revolutionary War, is a fine example of historical fiction. The American Revolution was a war that divided families (English loyalists versus eager Patriots) and one of the families being torn apart is the Meeker family. Young Tim sees his 16-year-old brother join the militia to fight the British, while his father tries to remain loyal to the crown. Their hometown of Redding Ridge, Connecticut is a Tory town, and it is a constant struggle for the family to remain neutral. As the war progresses, Tim has to learn some very hard lessons: Life does not always follow the easiest and happiest course.
A poem cycle that reads as a novel, Out of the Dust tells the story of a girl named Billie Jo, who struggles to help her family survive the dust-bowl years of the Depression. Fighting against the elements on her Oklahoma farm, Billie Jo takes on even more responsibilities when her mother dies in a tragic accident. A testament to the American spirit, this novel is an instant classic.This gripping story, written in sparse first-person, free-verse poems, tells of Billie Jo's stoic courage, as she learns to cope with the loss of her mother and her grieving father's slow deterioration. There is hope at the end when Billie Jo's badly burned hands are healed, and she is able to play her beloved piano again.
When May dies suddenly while gardening, Summer assumes she'll never see her beloved aunt again. But then Summer's Uncle Ob claims that May is on her way back — she has sent a sign from the spirit world. Summer isn't sure she believes in the spirit world, but her quirky classmate Cletus Underwood — who befriends Ob during his time of mourning — does. So at Cletus' suggestion, Ob and Summer (with Cletus in tow) set off in search of Miriam B. Young, Small Medium at Large, whom they hope will explain May's departure and confirm her possible return.
A stirring, dramatic story of a slave who mails himself to freedom by a Jane Addams Peace Award-winning author and a Coretta Scott King Award-winning artist.Henry "Box" Brown doesn't know how old he is. Nobody keeps records of slaves' birthdays. All the time he dreams about freedom, but that dream seems farther away than ever when he is torn from his family and put to work in a warehouse. Henry grows up and marries, but he is again devastated when his family is sold at the slave market. Then one day, as he lifts a crate at the warehouse, he knows exactly what he must do: He will mail himself to the North. After an arduous journey in the crate, Henry finally has a birthday, his first day of freedom.
"Michael," says Karl, "there's a really big bear in the backyard." This is how three children meet Stillwater, a giant panda who moves into the neighborhood and tells amazing tales. To Addy he tells a story about the value of material goods. To Michael he pushes the boundaries of good and bad. And to Karl he demonstrates what it means to hold on to frustration.
With graceful art and simple stories that are filled with love and enlightenment, Jon Muth (and Stillwater the bear) present three ancient Zen tales that are sure to strike a chord in everyone they touch.
With impeccable attention to detail, Barbara Kerley unearths a story of consuming passion, triumph, loss, and courage — and ultimately, of an extraordinary legacy that lives on today. Caldecott Medalist Brian Selznick celebrates this complex and fascinating individual through luminous, soul-stirring paintings that form a visual masterpiece. Not until the mid 1800s were dinosaurs heard of in Victorian England. But when artist Waterhouse Hawkins built the first life-size models of dinosaurs in his native England, and later in America, he dazzled the world with his awe-inspiring creations. The author and illustrator present a story of consuming passion, triumph, loss, and a remarkable legacy that lives on today.
Everybody gets angry sometimes. And for children, anger can be very upsetting. In this Caldecott-honor book, children will see what Sophie does when she gets angry. Parents, teachers, and children can talk about it. People do lots of different things when they get angry. What do you do?
No, David! remains a perennial household favorite, delighting children, parents, and teachers alike. David is a beloved character, whose unabashed good humor, mischievous smile, and laughter-inducing antics underline the love parents have for their children — even when they misbehave. Children will find his outrageously bad behavior both funny and liberating as they see themselves in him.
Father and son celebrate a rich and vibrant neighborhood that has been a historic center of African-American culture in New York City. Walter Dean Myers gives poetry a jazz backbeat to tell Harlem's story.
This endearing book contains a Thai lullaby which asks animals such as a lizard, monkey, and water buffalo to be quiet and not disturb the sleeping baby.
Expanding on traditional alphabet forms for children, the author uses graphic illustrations that retain the natural shape of the letter as well as represent the meaning of the word.
In the still before dawn, while the rest of the world is sleeping, a boy and his dog leave the comfort of their warm bed to deliver newspapers. As the boy pedals his bike along a route he knows by heart, his dog runs by his side, both enjoying a world that, before sunrise, belongs only to them.Acclaimed author and artist Dav Pilkey celebrates the beauty found in silence and the peace that comes from being with a beloved friend in this newly remastered edition of his timeless, Caldecott Honor-winning picture book.
Two lonely boys who don't know each other meet on a city street. Brought together with a simple "Yo!" answered by the other one's "Yes?" and the bounce of a basketball, this modern classic will strike a chord with every child who's ever longed for a friend.
ORPHAN, CLOCK KEEPER, AND THIEF, Hugo lives in the walls of a busy Paris train station, where his survival depends on secrets and anonymity. But when his world suddenly interlocks with an eccentric, bookish girl and a bitter old man who runs a toy booth in the station, Hugo's undercover life, and his most precious secret, are put in jeopardy. A cryptic drawing, a treasured notebook, a stolen key, a mechanical man, and a hidden message from Hugo's dead father form the backbone of this intricate, tender, and spellbinding mystery.
Stolen by Lucy Christopher
A girl: Gemma, 16, at the airport, on her way to a family vacation.
A guy: Ty, rugged, tan, too old, oddly familiar, eyes blue as ice.
She steps away. For just a second. He pays for her drink. And drugs it. They talk. Their hands touch. And before Gemma knows what's happening, Ty takes her. Steals her away. To sand and heat. To emptiness and isolation. To nowhere. And expects her to love him.
Written as a letter from a victim to her captor, STOLEN is Gemma's desperate story of survival; of how she has to come to terms with her living nightmare--or die trying to fight it.
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line.
Some riders live.
At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.
Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn't given her much of a choice. So she enters the competition - the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.
As she did in her bestselling Shiver trilogy, author Maggie Stiefvater takes us to the breaking point, where both love and life meet their greatest obstacles, and only the strong of heart can survive.