By the Numbers
Picture Books: 38
Writing: The Queen of France by Tim Wadham, illustrated by Kady MacDonald Denton
A testament to a little girl's imagination (she wakes up feeling royal) and her parents' indulgent playing-along. The sequences between Rose and the Queen of France "just missing each other" as the girl changes from one persona to another especially made me smile.
Illustration: Hopper and Wilson by Maria van Lieshout
Oh, those soft watercolors! With the big, big sea and the little boat and the splotch of red that is the balloon which turns out to be the elephant's saving grace. It's just a pretty, pretty book.
Overall: Little White Rabbit by Kevin Henkes
Another one about imagination. A baby rabbit wonders how it would feel to be a butterfly, a rock, or any number of other things as he hops around in his springtime world. The ending is a little sweet for me, but overall I loved this book, and its signature illustration style.
Because I Want To Awards
Where Have You Been Every Time I Had to Do a Fourth of July Storytime?: America, My Land, Your Land, Our Land by W. Nikola-Lisa, illustrated by various artists
That Must Have Been One Well-Built Boat: Jonathan and the Big Blue Boat by Philip C. Stead (If you recognize the author's name, it's because he was also behind the perfectly lovely Caldecott winner A Sick Day for Amos McGee.)
Tongue-Twister of a Readaloud: Scapegoat by Dean Hale, illustrated by Michael H. Slack