Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Year in Review, Part One

It's that time! Time for me to present you with the surely highly-anticipated lists of my favorite books of the year! As before, I'm going to break the list down into three parts: picture books, middle grade, and young adult. Also, most of the books on these lists will be 2012 releases, though older titles may sneak in. Links will go to my reviews where applicable. And, of course, if you find a title you haven't read it, get your butt in gear and pick it up!

Without further ado, Librarian of Snark's Best Picture Books of 2012!

I'm Bored by Michael Ian Black - this is, by far, the best book written about a potato, not just of this year but of any year. A simple but extremely fun story, I can't wait to test this one out in storytime. The illustrations are fantastic and this book will have you laughing out loud.

Olivia and the Fairy Princesses by Ian Falconer - Olivia is a pig after my own heart. After not enjoying the last couple Olivia adventures as much as her first, this newest title is a return to her former glory, showcasing the truly unique Olivia doing what she does best.

My First Ghost by Maggie Miller - I love the old school vibe of the text and the illustrations in this one and its blend of spooky and fun. I feel like this is a book made for me.

Chloe and the Lion by Mac Barnett - really, this is probably my favorite picture book of the year, despite my intentions to not rank them. I absolutely love everything about this book - I think it's fun and vibrant and able to be enjoyed by children and adults alike. Please more, Mac and Adam?

Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger - yes, it's a book about a color. Not all colors, just one. But it is more than that - it's inventive and striking and I love the attention to detail. This is another book that I think has appeal across all age ranges.

Baby Bear Sees Blue by Ashley Wolff - another book about colors, but this one introduces the whole rainbow. I love the presentation of this and the illustrations are just gorgeous. I hope to see more and more of the incredibly striking concept books we've seen this year.

There Goes Ted Williams by Matt Tavares - it's not secret I'm a sucker for a baseball book, and how could I resist one about the greatest hitter of all time? This book made me teary-eyed, thinking about what a truly wonderful player Williams was. Definitely a must for fans of the game.

Here Come the Girl Scouts! by Shana Corey - another thing near and dear to my heart is scouting, even though it's been a decade since I was actively involved. This picture book biography of the Girl Scouts' founder hits all the right notes and warmed my heart.

Balloons Over Broadway by Melissa Sweet - here's one published at the tail end of 2011 that made its way onto my list. The more I read and see by Sweet, the more I become convinced that the woman can do anything. This is a beautiful biography of the man behind the Macy's Parade that could not fail to inspire all its readers to dream big and create.

The Christmas Quiet Book by Deborah Underwood - there is just something so magical and beautiful about this book. It perfectly captures the holiday season (at least for me) and manages to sneak in some jokes for the observant reader as well. I completely love the quietness of this book.

Of course, this is only a small sampling of the picture books I've read and enjoyed through the year. Looking through my Goodreads account (which is not always as up-to-date as it should be), I've read approximately 245 picture books this year. To see some of the other titles I've enjoyed, look for my Picture Book Saturday posts. Do any of my top titles make your list, too?

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