Monday, November 5, 2012

Children's Book-A-Day Almanac

by Anita Silvey
Roaring Brook Press | 2012


Anita Silvey is a legend. She's a former editor-in-chief of the Horn Book Magazine, former children's publisher, and current writer and professor. She's also a really, really nice woman.

For the two years-plus, she has blogged her recommendations of the best books for children, both classic and new, at Anita Silvey's Children's Book-A-Day Almanac, available here. And now, the blog has been turned into an easy-to-use, affordable reference book that belongs in every library, on every teacher's desk, and in every parent's home.

Beginning on January 1 and containing 366 entries (one for February 29, too!), each page highlights a different book for children in every age-level and every genre from The Very Hungry Catepillar to The Notorious Benedict Arnold: A True Story of Adventure, Heroism, and Treachery. Each entry contains a synopsis of the book and information about it written in the first person, which feels almost like Anita has joined the reader in the classroom or living room to help the reader understand why the book is important. She ends with recommendations about for whom the book might work best and with suggestions on how to use it with students or kids. A sidebar on each page notes important things that took place on that date such as birthdays and historical events.

The book is appended with a guide to major children's book awards, a book and author index, an index of books by type, an index of books by age, an index of major holidays, and photo credits. All this back matter makes the book even more user-friendly. At the fantastic price of $19.99 and with its easy to hold and flip-through paperback format, you may want to buy a few of these as holiday gifts for folks you know!

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