Each year the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) gives out the Orbis Picture Book Award to one book as an example of excellent nonfiction for children.
The winner for 2013 is Monsieur Marceau: Actor without Words by my friend Leda Schubert, illustrated by Gérard DuBois (Roaring Brook Press). Way to go, Leda! This book impressed me in showing how much he was able to express without words. Because he communicated without words, he could “speak” to people from many countries who knew a wide variety of languages.
The committee also named honor books and recommended reading.
- Citizen Scientist: Be a Part of Scientific Discovery from Your Own Backyard by Loree Griffin Burns, photographs by Ellen Harasimonwicz (Henry Holt & Company)
- Electric Ben: The Amazing Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin by Robert Byrd (Dial Books for Young Readers) which is on my “to read” stack.
The Mighty Mars Rovers: The Incredible Adventures of Spirit and Opportunity
by Elizabeth Rusch (Houghton Mifflin Books for Children)
- Those Rebels, John & Tom by Barbara Kerley, illustrated by Edward Fotheringham (Scholastic) which I loved.
We’ve Got a Job: The 1963 Birmingham Children’s March
by Cynthia Levinson (Peachtree Publishers)
- A Black Hole is NOT a Hole by Carolyn Cinami DeCristofano, illustrated by Michael Carroll (Charlesbridge Publishing)
- Abraham Lincoln & Frederick Douglass: The Story Behind an American Friendship by Russell Freedman (Clarion Books)
- The Amazing Harry Kellar: Great American Magician by Gail Jarrow (Calkins Creek)
- Beyond Courage: The Untold Story of Jewish Resistance During the Holocaust by Doreen Rappaport (Candlewick Press)
- The Case of the Vanishing Golden Frogs: A Scientific Mystery by Sandra Markle (Millbrook Press)
- Chuck Close: Face Book by Chuck Close (Abrams Books for Young Readers)
- Hands Around the Library: Protecting Egypt’s Treasured Books by Karen Leggett Abouraya, illustrated by Susan L. Roth (Dial Books for Young Readers)
- Life in the Ocean: The Story of Oceanographer Sylvia Earle by Claire A. Nivola (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
Happy Reading and, again, Congratulations to Leda!