Announcing Evanston Public Library’s 101 Great Books for Kids List of 2021!

October 18, 2021

Evanston Public Library is pleased to announce the results of our incredibly hardworking 101 Great Books for Kids committee! In 2021 we still felt many of the residual effects of 2020 throughout the year. Our library didn’t return to full-time hours until the Summer. Many publishers opted for PDFs rather than physical copies of advanced reading galleys, complicating our reading. Our meetings, for the most part, were kept virtual. Many staff were unable to attend due to scheduling issues as well. Even so we persevered and the end result is a list we can all be proud of. We were even able to work with the staff of our local children’s bookstore Booked to get their perspective and find titles we might not have noticed before!

Please be sure to stop by our library to request any of the titles you would like to see. They represent some of the best books of the year and should not be missed.

All 101 books on this list are appropriate for readers two to twelve.

For your convenience, here are the categories of the list:

 

Picture Books

Folk Tales, Fairy Tales, and Religious Tales

Easy and Early Chapter Books

Poetry and Short Stories

Fiction

Comics and Graphic Novels

Nonfiction Picture Books

Nonfiction for Older Readers


 

Picture Books

1. The Big Bath House by Kyo Maclear, ill. Gracey Zhang

A girl and her Japanese grandmother don’t share a language, but they do share a love of bathing! A gentle story of family and loving all kinds of bodies, big and small. JPicture Macle.K

2. Bodies are Cool by Tyler Feder

One body type is boring. We like bodies in ALL their shapes, sizes, colors, and more. Body positivity gets cranked up to 11 in this fantastic, wild, wonderful title. JPicture Feder.T

3. Bright Star by Yuyi Morales

A visually striking and powerful allegorical work about the young  finding their way in an uncertain world. A companion to the author/illustrator’s award-winning Dreamers. JPicture Moral.Y

4. Ergo by Alexis Deacon, ill. Viviane Schwarz

Ergo the chick only knows the smooth, round world in which she lives, so she very quickly comes to the belief that she IS the world. But when evidence suggests there might be more, this little chicken is unafraid to burst through barriers to discover what is and isn’t real. JPicture Deaco.A

5. I Dream of Popo by Livia Blackburne, ill. Julia Kuo

The distance between Taiwan and America is vast but over time (and Zoom!) a granddaughter and her popo stay in touch with one another. Heartfelt illustrations help bridge the gap between nations. JPicture Black.L

6. The Little Wooden Robot and the Log Princess by Tom Gauld

When a childless king and queen seek kids of their own, they end up with a wooden robot and a girl made from a log. And as tragedy places the siblings in danger, they’ll do anything they can to keep one another from harm. JPicture Gauld.T

7. Magic Candies by Heena Baek, translated by Sophie Bowman

When Tong Tong purchases a bag of strange round candies, he discovers that each one allows him to hear the hidden speech of someone or some thing. Marvelous models bring this kooky story to life. JPicture Baek.H

8. The Me I Choose to Be by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley, ill. Regis and Kahran Bethencourt

“I am a superhero yet unnamed / I am laughter that falls like rain.” Fantastic, surreal Afro-futuristic photography coupled with a life-affirming text helps turn ordinary kids into their extraordinary selves. JPicture Tarpl.N

9. Mel Fell by Corey R. Tabor

Little kingfisher Mel takes her first flight (or is it a plunge?), falling through the air at rapid speed as other animals watch with concern. Be ready for some tricks and laughs that amaze and delight. JPicture Tabor.C

10. Midnight Fair by Gideon Sterer, ill. Mariachiara Di Giorgio

When the fair has closed and the night has come, what happens to the merry-go-rounds, rides, and games? Join a troop of intrepid animal adventurers in this beautifully rendered wordless romp. JPicture Stere.G

11. Milo Imagines the World by Matt de la Peña, ill. Christian Robinson

On a long subway ride, Milo draws and imagines the lives of the people around him. But is there more to their stories than at first glance? Is there more to his own? JPicture Delap.M

12. Mr. Watson’s Chickens by Jarrett Dapier, ill. Andrea Tsurumi

Mr. Watson wants some chickens, so he and his partner Mr. Nelson get three. But what happens when those three turn into 456 or more? JPicture Dapie.J

13. My First Day by Phùng Nguyên Quang and Huynh Kim Liên

A child in Vietnam experiences an eventful journey down the Mekong River. Where is he going? What natural wonders (and dangers) will he encounter next? Visually riveting. JPicture Quang.P

14. On the Trapline by David A. Robertson, ill. Julie Flett

A trip with his grandpa to see the trapline, a place where he once hunted, takes a child into the heart of his family’s history. JPicture Rober.D

15. The Rock From the Sky by Jon Klassen

Five short chapters follow three behatted animals as they avoid death, aliens, and rocks falling from the sky. Not necessarily in that order. JPicture Klass.J

16. Ship in a Bottle by Andrew Prahin

Mouse dreams of a better life so one day she sets sail for distant lands. Peaceful watercolors illustrate her gentle search for a new home. JPicture Prahi.A

17. Someone Builds the Dream by Lisa Wheeler ill. Loren Long

Architects, artists, scientists, and more all dream but . . . someone has to build what they dream up. A clever and respectful celebration of skilled laborers. JPicture Wheel.L

18. Soul Food Sunday by Winsome Bingham, ill. C.G. Esperanza

It’s Sunday at Granny’s and her grandson is old enough to help get that dinner ready. Meat’s got to be primed, greens cleaned, cheese grated. Vibrant eye-popping colors explode off the page in a book so good you can practically smell the food cooking. JPicture Bingh.W

19. We Wait for the Sun by Dovey Johnson Roundtree & Katie McCabe, ill. Raissa Figueroa

Fruit picking as resistance. In a time of terror in the South, a girl accompanies her grandmother and other Black women for an early morning ritual. Warm and sweet, just like a blackberry. xBiog Round.D Round.D

20. Wishes by Mượn Thị Văn, ill. Victo Ngai

This visually striking book chronicles the scary journey by boat made by people fleeing Vietnam to Hong Kong  in 1980. A true story based on the author’s experiences. JPicture Van.M

21. Your Mama by NoNieqa Ramos, ill. Jacqueline Alcántara

Your mama is strong, powerful, friendly, beautiful. A multifaceted Latinx celebration of motherhood takes an old insult, and turns it completely on its head. JPicture Ramos.N


 

Folktales, Fairy Tales, and Religious Tales

22. Blancaflor, The Hero With Secret Powers: A Folktale from Latin America by Nadja Spiegelman, ill. Sergio García Sánchez 

Can true love triumph when your dad’s an ogre? Only daughter Blancaflor can defeat her dad’s tricks and traps as she aids a young prince on his daring quest. JGraphic Spieg.N

23. Boo Stew by Donna L. Washington, ill. Jeffrey Ebbeler

Nobody in Toadsuck Swamp can stomach the food Curly Locks dishes up. But when three Scares invade the Mayor’s home, her oddball cooking comes to the rescue. A twist on the classic Goldilocks tale. x398.2 Washi.D

24. Living Ghosts & Mischievous Monsters: Chilling American Indian Stories by Dan Sasuweh Jones, ill. Weshoyot Alvitre

This collection of 32 ghost stories gathered from American Indians across the U.S. will chill your bones and ignite your paranoia. Deliciously eerie and perfect for fans of Schwartz’s Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark. x398.20897 Jones.D

25. Osnat and Her Dove: The True Story of the World’s First Female Rabbi by Sigal Samuel, ill. Vali Mintzi

Almost five hundred years ago, Osnat defied tradition and became the world’s first female rabbi! This beautifully illustrated book mixes fact with surreal folk tale to tell her story. xBiog Barza.A Samue.S

26. Peacemaker by Joseph Bruchac 

The creation of the Iroquois Confederacy is told through the perspective of a twelve-year-old boy. What happens when a heart set on revenge meets a man dedicated to peace? Mythology and history mix in a resonant tale. J Bruch.J

27. Run, Little Chaski! An Inka Trail Adventure by Mariana Llanos, ill. Mariana Ruiz Johnson

Entrusted with a royal message, Little Chaski longs to be  strong, swift, and sharp. But when different animals need help on his route, will he stop to aid them or continue on his way? JPicture Llano.M

28. The Sea-Ringed World: Sacred Stories of the Americas by María García Esperón, ill. Amanda Mijangos, translated by David Bowles

Fifty stories from Indigenous civilizations across the Americas come together in this single glorious retelling.  x398.2097 Garci.M


 

Easy and Early Chapter Books

29. Burt the Beetle Doesn’t Bite by Ashley Spires

Burt’s just your average ten-lined june beetle so there’s not too much that’s interesting about him. Yet even the most average bug can be a hero if it uses what it’s got. And what Burt has… are hugs. JEasy Spire.A

30. Can You Whistle, Johanna? by Ulf Stark, ill. Anna Höglund, translated by Julia Marshall 

Need a grandfather? Why not hop over to the retirement home to pick one out for yourself? A remarkably sweet story, funny and moving by turns. JChapter Stark.U

31. J.D. and the Great Barber Battle by J. Dillard, ill. Akeem S. Roberts

What would you do if your mom gave you the worst haircut of your life? J.D. turns a personal tragedy into a thriving business when he picks up some clippers and taps into his true talent. That is, until someone tries to shut him down… JChapter Dilla.J

32. Jop and Blip Wanna Know: Can You Hear a Penguin Fart on Mars and Other Excellent Questions by Jim Benton

Just because a question is silly doesn’t mean you shouldn’t ask it. Join two intrepid robots as they give strangely straightforward answers to some seriously silly queries. JChapter Bento.J

33. Jojo Makoons: The Used-To-Be-Best-Friend by Dawn Quigley, ill. Tara Audibert

What do you do when your best friend doesn’t want to sit with you at lunch anymore? Meet Jojo Makoons, an Ojibwe seven-year-old just trying to navigate school and her own kooky inclinations. JChapter Quigl.D

34. Maybe Maybe Marisol Rainey by Erin Entrada Kelly

Introvert Marisol loves her family, best friend, silent movies and cats. But she worries a LOT about things, like learning how to climb the backyard tree. Will she ever learn to rise above her fears? JChapter Kelly.E

35. Too Small Tola by Atinuke, ill. Onyinye Iwu

Tola lives in an apartment in Lagos, Nigeria with her Grandmommy, brother, and sister. Smaller than everyone, Tola soon learns that it isn’t size that makes you mighty, and tiny isn’t bad. JChapter Atinuke

36. Tag Team and Training Day (El Toro and Friends) by Raúl the Third, colors by Elaine Bay

The wrestlers from the hilarious Vamos books star in their very own easy reader spinoffs, mixing Spanish with English words and serving up a lot of hilarious action. JEasy Raul

37. We Have a Play Date by Frank W. Dormer

Three friends must navigate playground equipment and the addition of a fourth friend in this hilarious series of misunderstandings and hijinks. JEasy Dorme.F


 

Poetry

38. Dear Treefrog by Joyce Sidman, ill. Diana Sudyka

Slip into the secret spots of your garden and meet a coy creature unafraid to be silent and stealthy. Contains lovely poems and delicious facts about the tiny treefrog. JPicture Sidma.J

39. Honey for You, Honey for Me: A First Book of Nursery Rhymes collected by Michael Rosen, ill. Chris Riddell

Our youngest readers will bounce with glee when read this array of rhymes both old and new. Big beautiful art is sure to entrance toddlers far and wide. x398.8 Honey

40. Hoop Kings 2: New Royalty by Charles R. Smith Jr. 

“Shimmy, shake, spin, stride / dribble in, step back, dribble out, slide.” Meet 12 of today’s hottest basketball champs as Charles R. Smith Jr. makes their poetry on the court into poetry on the page. x811 Smith.C

41. Legacy: Women Poets of the Harlem Renaissance by Nikki Grimes

Award-winning poet and author Nikki Grimes introduces the poems of women from the Harlem Renaissance then answers them with poems of her own. x811 Grime.N

42. Niños: Poems for the Lost Children of Chile by María José Ferrada, Ill. María Elena Valdez, translated by Lawrence Schimel

Thirty-four poems honor the thirty-four children killed during the dictatorship of General Pinochet. Poignant, loving, beautiful words display each child full of life and hope and wonder. x861.7 Ferra.M

43. The 1619 Project: Born on the Water by Nikole Hannah-Jones and Renée Watson, ill. Nikkolas Smith

A class assignment to “trace your roots” leads one Black child to ask her grandmother about their family history. Grandma tells the story of Black pride, history, and what it means to come from a resilient people that have loved, resisted, and persevered. x973.0496 Hanna.N


 

Fiction

44. Amari and the Night Brothers by B.B. Alston

When Amari Peters discovers that her brother has nominated her to attend the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs she discovers powers she never knew she had. J Alsto.B

45. Amber and Clay by Laura Amy Schlitz

A girl as precious as amber. A boy as common as clay. Two children in ancient Greece dance with bears, play with ghosts, and live in a time of gods and philosophers. J Schli.L

46. Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids edited by Cynthia Leitich Smith

An amazing group of Native writers contribute interconnected short stories about young people (and one cool rez dog) heading to an Intertribal powwow. x808.83 Ancesto

47. The Beatryce Prophecy by Kate DiCamillo, ill. Sophie Blackall 

A young girl, hunted by the king, is found in a monastery where she is nursed back to health by a monk. So begins an epic medieval tale. Lyrical narration is supported by gorgeous black and white illustrations. J Dicam.K

48. Black Boy Joy: 17 Stories Celebrating Black Boyhood, edited by Kwame Mbalia

Seventeen stories by acclaimed Black authors that celebrate joy form a collection that has humor, heart, sci-fi action, a story in verse and even a new comic by Newbery-winner Jerry Craft. x808.83 Black

49. The Comeback: A Figure Skating Novel by E.L. Shen

Competitive ice skater Maxine Chen is determined to be the best. But with anti-Asian racism at school and a new top ice skater in the rink, will she withstand the pressure or crack like ice? J Shen.E

50. Frankie & Bug by Gayle Forman 

Summertime and Bug’s stuck with the neighbor’s odd nephew instead of with her older brother at the beach like she planned. What to do? A poignant coming-of-age novel that addresses social issues and complicated emotions. J Forma.G

51. The Last Cuentista by Donna Barba Higuera

When Petra escaped Earth with her family for a new life, she had no idea what would happen when she awoke from her cryogenic sleep. Now it’s 300 years later and she’s the only person left with memories and stories of the past. What went wrong? And how can she survive? J Higue.D

52. The Losers at the Center of the Galaxy by Mary Winn Heider

Siblings Louise and Winston encounter weird happenings at their school like falling tubas and secretive teachers. A Chicago-based mix of absurd humor and heartbreak. J Heide.M

53. Lotería by Karla Arenas Valenti

Each year Life and Death play the card game Lotería with a single soul held in the balance. Unknowingly, Clara plunges deep into a fantasy world, determined to save her missing cousin. J Valen.K

54. Maya and the Robot by Eve L. Ewing, ill. Christine Almeda

Wanting to show off her serious science prowess, Maya fixes up an old robot and gets more than she bargained for. A sweet, funny STEM story. J Ewing.E

55. Much Ado About Baseball by Rajani LaRocca, ill. Chloe Dijon 

Being the only girl on a baseball team is tough enough, but Trish never expected to be playing alongside rival math prodigy Ben. Can the two become friends in spite of their competition or will it take a bit of magic? J Laroc.R

56. Pity Party by Kathleen Lane

A deft and daring collection of stories, quizzes, advertisements, and more. A book for anyone who has ever wanted a funny, strange, sad book to soothe their anxieties. J Lane.K

57. Playing the Cards You’re Dealt by Varian Johnson

Ant hopes to impress his dad by becoming the next in his family to win a card tournament. However, he must deal with some surprising truths that throw him off his game. J Johns.V

58. The Raconteur’s Commonplace Book by Kate Milford, ill. Nicole Wong

Twelve guests, trapped at the Blue Vein Tavern by floodwaters, tell stories to pass the time.  An infinitely clever tale of the crossover between storytelling and reality. J Milfo.K

59. Root Magic by Eden Royce

An atmospheric and creepy historical novel (set among the Gullah people in 1963 South Carolina) stars twins Jezebel and Jay who want nothing more than to learn how to use potions and powders to save their family…and maybe even get some revenge.  J Royce.E

60. Starfish by Lisa Fipps

Imagine if perfect strangers walked up and insulted you regularly. Imagine if even your own mom was awful! Ellie’s been bullied about her weight since she was five. Now it’s time to fight back and embrace what makes her special. J Fipps.L

61. Thanks a Lot, Universe by Chad Lucas

Music-loving Ezra has developed a crush on his shy, nervous friend Brian and cannot tell anyone. Meanwhile, Brian has to land on his feet after a major family crisis. J Lucas.C

62. Too Bright to See by Kyle Lukoff 

Bug’s house has always been haunted, but it wasn’t until Uncle Rodrick died that things started to get weird. Is Rodrick trying to tell Bug something? And is it something Bug’s ready to hear? J Lukof.K

63. Trouble in the Stars by Sarah Prineas 

Trouble has no memory of his past but he knows one thing: He’s a shapeshifter, the only one in the galaxy, and now he’s just stowed away on a spaceship to who knows where.  J Prine.S

64. The Wild Huntsboys by Martin Stewart

Set in a futuristic England at war, three boys find themselves in danger when they anger the fairies and must battle enemies on every side. J Stewa.M

65. The Year I Flew Away by Marie Arnold 

A girl from Haiti gets a chance to immigrate to Brooklyn to live with her aunt and uncle. Amari desperately wants to fit in and at her new school by becoming “more American,” but should she accept help from a magical witch? A funny, suspenseful look about holding on to your culture. J Arnol.M


 

Comics and Graphic Novels

66. Artie and the Wolf Moon by Olivia Stephens

When Artemis discovers that she and her mom come from a long line of werewolves, she also finds a family she never knew she had. But what’s hunting Artie and her family? And will they be strong enough to survive? JGraphic Steph.O

67. Borders by Thomas King, ill. Natasha Donovan

A boy and his mother end up caught between the American and Canadian border when they refuse to deny their Blackfoot citizenship. A powerful story of identity and standing up for yourself. JGraphic King.T

68. Chunky by Yehudi Mercado

What do you do when your parents push you to try out for sports? If you’re Yehudi, the only Jewish-Mexican kid in your neighborhood, you create Chunky: A personalized mascot. But what happens when Yehudi stops listening to Chunky’s advice? JGraphic Merca.Y

69. Garlic and the Vampire by Bree Paulsen

In Witch Agnes’s village of vegetable people, there’s little to fear. So when a vampire moves into a nearby castle, will timid Garlic have the guts to face him alone? JGraphic Pauls.B

70. The Girl From the Sea by Molly Knox Ostertag

Morgan Kwon should never have kissed that girl. Now she has a lovestruck selkie hanging around when all she wants to do is disappear. But maybe stepping out of her comfort zone is exactly what Morgan needs. JGraphic Oster.M

71. Katie the Catsitter by Colleen AF Venable, ill. Stephanie Yue

Katie needs a job to save up money for summer camp. But can she handle catsitting 200 mysterious, mischievous kitties? A clever and whimsical romp with felines, superheroes, supervillains and lots of laughs. JGraphic Venab.C

72. The Leak by Kate Reed Petty, ill. Andrea Bell

Something’s rotten in Ruth’s town and this young reporter is out to get to the bottom of it. A rollicking kid-friendly examination of corruption and freedom of the press. JGraphic Petty.K

73. Other Boys by Damian Alexander

Why would a kid take a vow of silence upon entering his new school? For Damian, nothing in 7th grade is easy. Can he take a risk and start talking again? A stunning memoir that ends on a note of hope. JGraphic Alexa.D

74. Power Up by Sam Nisson, ill. Darnell Johnson

In a virtual world, Miles and Rhys make up the amazing team of Gryphon and Backslash. In real life though, Miles doesn’t know that Rhys is the quiet, friendless new kid in class. Will they discover their friendship can exist IRL? JGraphic Nisso.S

75. Saving Sorya: Chang and the Sun Bear by Trang Nguyen, ill. Jeet Zdung

Gorgeous art accompanies the story of Chang, a 12-year-old rescue center volunteer in Vietnam. Her mission? To return the sun bear cub Sorya successfully to the wild. A lushly illustrated environmental tale. JGraphic Nguye.T

76. Shark Summer by Ira Marcks 

It’s summer on Martha’s Island and a big Hollywood film crew has come to shoot a blockbuster movie. Meanwhile Gayle and her friends investigate rumors of a creepy cult leader from a century ago. Turns out, some secrets should definitely stay buried. JGraphic Marck.I

77. Simon and Chester: Super Detectives by Cale Atkinson

Simon’s a ghost, Chester’s a human, and they’re both seriously bored. When Simon decides they should open a detective agency, they never expect to encounter a real mystery involving a mysterious, rather cute, pug. JGraphic Atkin.C


 

Nonfiction Picture Books

78. Begin With a Bee by Liza Ketchum, Jacqueline Briggs Martin and Phyllis Root, ill. Claudia McGehee

Every bumblebee colony begins with just a single queen, waking in the spring, doing everything herself. Colored woodcuts highlight one of the more peculiar tales in the insect kingdom. x595.799 Ketch.L

79. How to Find a Fox by Kate Gardner, ill. Ossi Saarinen

Breathtaking photography instructs young readers on where and how one might spot a fox in the wild. x599.775 Gardn.K

80. I Am Smoke by Henry Herz, ill. Merce Lopez 

Water isn’t the only one that gets a cycle. A rhythmically powerful narration of the many uses of smoke, complemented by illustrations of the swirling substance so important to human life and history. JPicture Herz.H

81. Jump at the Sun: The True Life Tale of Unstoppable Storycatcher Zora Neale Hurston by Alicia D. Williams, ill. Jacqueline Alcántara 

There once lived a girl “who was attracted to tales like mosquitoes to skin.” Hear the tale of one of our greatest American writers, and see how it was stories that buoyed her up, even in bleakest of times. xBiog Hurst.Z Willi.A

82. Klezmer! by Kyra Teis

Clap along to this bouncy celebration of this Jewish musical style. A burst of pure joy from start to finish. x781.62 Teis.K

83. Nicky & Vera: A Quiet Hero of the Holocaust and the Children He Rescued by Peter Sís

“I was not a hero… I only saw what needed to be done.” The story of a man who saved 669 children during WWII, beautifully rendered by a picture book master. xBiog Winto.N Sis.P

84. Nina: A Story of Nina Simone by Traci N. Todd, ill. Christian Robinson

When history demands you speak, what happens when you sing? The story of Nina Simone’s life, from child prodigy to voice of multiple generations. xBiog Simon.N Todd.T

85. The People’s Painter: How Ben Shahn Fought for Justice with Art by Cynthia Levinson, ill. Evan Turk

A finely wrought telling of the life of a boy who went from shtetl to tenement apartment to becoming an artist who would always fight for the oppressed. xBiog Shahn.B Levin.C

86. Pura’s Cuentos: How Pura Belpré Reshaped Libraries with Her Stories by Annette Bay Pimentel, ill. Magaly Morales

What do you do when your library contains none of your culture’s stories? Pura Belpré broke the rules to bring the tales of Puerto Rico to life for kids everywhere! xBiog Belpr.P Pimen.A

87. Sharice’s Big Voice: A Native Kid Becomes a Congresswoman by Sharice Davids with Nancy K. Mays, ill. Joshua Mangeshig Pawis-Steckley 

How did a Bruce Lee-obsessed Native American kid grow up to become one of the first Indigenous women in Congress? Sharice Davids tells her inspiring tale. xBiog David.S David.S

88. Song for Jimi: The Story of Guitar Legend Jimi Hendrix by Charles R. Smith Jr., ill. Edel Rodriguez

 

From Jimmy to Jimi. A young motherless boy goes on to become a rock-and-roll legend in this eye-popping deep dive into Jimi Hendrix’s life and legacy.. xBiog Hendr.J Smith.C

89. 13 Ways to Eat a Fly by Sue Heavenrich, ill. David Clark

How do different creatures eat flies? They zap them and wrap them, poke and soak them, and sometimes even turn them into zombies! Silly and strangely informative. x595.77 Heave.S

90. Two Grooms On a Cake: The Story of America’s First Gay Wedding by Rob Sanders, ill. Robbie Cathro

The true story of the first same-sex couple in America to marry legally. A tale of law, love, and what you need to build a strong relationship. x306.848 Sande.R

91. Unbound: The Life and Art of Judith Scott by Joyce Scott with Brie Spangler, ill. Melissa Sweet

The triumphant story of an artist with Down syndrome who went on to conquer the art world, told by her twin sister. Magnificent colorful art brings Judy’s story to vibrant life. x730.92 Scott.J

92. Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre by Carole Boston Weatherford, ill. Floyd Cooper

Once in Tulsa, Oklahoma there was a thriving Black community of successful businesses, churches, libraries, and more. A terrible violence was perpetrated on those residents. This is that story. x976.686 Weath.C

93. When Cloud Became a Cloud by Rob Hodgson

On a hot day a little cloud forms over a lake. What follows is a robust series of adventures backed up with clear science. A marvelous introduction to the water cycle for younger readers. x551.48 Hodgs.R


 

Nonfiction for Older Readers

94. Escape at 10,000 Feet (Unsolved Case Files) by Tom Sullivan / Jailbreak at Alcatraz (Unsolved Case Files) by Tom Sullivan

In 1962 three men made an impossible escape from the notorious island prison Alcatraz. The case remains unsolved. Later in 1971 a man hijacked a plane and stole $200,000 before parachuting out. He was never found. Read their stories and try to solve the mysteries for yourself!  x364.15 Sulli.T & x365.641 Sulli.T

95. The Genius Under the Table: Growing Up Behind the Iron Curtain by Eugene Yelchin 

Poor Yevgeny. Growing up in Cold War Russia, all he wants is to find his talent, the way his figure-skating older brother has. But nothing Yevgeny does ever seems to turn out well. Will he ever find his genius gift? xBiog Yelch.E Yelch.E

96. Gone to the Woods: Surviving a Lost Childhood by Gary Paulsen

The author of Hatchet recounts the true tale of his own survival. A gripping story of formative experiences and, ultimately, hope. xBiog Pauls.G Pauls.G

97. How to Change Everything: The Young Human’s Guide to Protecting the Planet and Each Other by Naomi Klein with Rebecca Stefoff

A terrific, incendiary book that tells it like it is! Complex issues get broken down, showing what young people around the world are doing to protect the environment for future generations to come. x363.73874 Klein.N

98. Planet Ocean: Why We All Need a Healthy Ocean by Patricia Newman, photos by Annie Crawley

From the Coral Triangle near Indonesia and the Salish Sea in the Pacific Northwest to the Arctic Ocean at the top of the world, find out how local people are leading the way to reverse the ways in which humans have harmed the ocean. x551.46 Newma.P

99. Race Against Time: The Untold Story of Scipio Jones and the Battle to Save Twelve Innocent Men by Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace

In 1919, twelve innocent Black men sat on death row, their fate sealed. In this gripping thriller, it took the smarts and resourcefulness of African-American lawyer, Scipio Jones, to free them. A pulse-pounding look at history with a happy ending. x976.788 Walla.S

100. A Shot in the Arm! (Big Ideas That Changed the World) by Don Brown

From smallpox to measles, from polio to COVID-19, we owe vaccines a lot. Take a trip back in time to see where they came from, how they work, and why we need them right now more than ever. JGraphic Brown.D

101. While I Was Away by Waka T. Brown

Waka’s plans for the summer are completely uprooted when her mom sends her off to Japan to live with her grandmother. Worse, can you imagine spending your whole summer in school? A funny, fantastic memoir.J Brown.W

Committee Members

Patricia Alm, Laura Antolin, Sally Battle, Betsy Bird, Chelsea Elward, Kellye Fleming, Jessica Iverson, Katy Jacob, Hannah Johnson, Kennedy Joseph, Leigh Kennelly, Kerry Littel, Grace Menary-Winefield, Martha Meyer, Jennifer Wasilewski Mills, Olivia Mo, Bill Ohms, Bridget Petrites, Livia Pierre, Julie Rand, Rachel Round, Reenie Ruckdaeschel, Mary Kate Schneider, Jonathan Scotese, Robin Sindelar, Amy Louise Tripp, Brian Wilson, and Sarah Jo Zaharako

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