Award-Winning Books

Looking for a great kids' book? From the Newbery Medal to the Coretta Scott King Book Award, the must-read books on this list have all been honored by one of the United States' top book prizes. You'll find picks for all ages -- from early readers to teen bookworms -- in a range of genres. Whether they've won a Caldecott or Printz Award, they're all worth checking out. These excellent award winners are already on their way to becoming classics in children's literature. And for more essential books for kids, try our list of the 50 Books All Kids Should Read Before They're 12.

Browse Award-Winning Books

The Hello, Goodbye Window Book Poster Image
Warm drawings and text make this a must-have book.
By Norton Juster
(2006)
(2006)
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Make Way for Ducklings Book Poster Image
Kids and parents enjoy this story about family.
By Robert McCloskey
(2003)
(1969)
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Noah's Ark Book Poster Image
Bible story told in spectacular panoramas.
By Peter Spier
(2007)
(1992)
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The Snowy Day Book Poster Image
Classic captures a kid's delight in freshly fallen snow.
By Ezra Jack Keats
(2003)
(1962)
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Where the Wild Things Are Book Poster Image
Classic all-ages masterpiece has a wild imagination.
By Maurice Sendak
(2001)
(1969)
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You Are (Not) Small Book Poster Image
Snuggly, fun picture book about sizing the world up.
By Anna Kang
(2014)
(2014)
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The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend Book Poster Image
Cute, fresh take on having an imaginary friend.
By Dan Santat
(2014)
(2014)
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All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah Book Poster Image
Little sister finds way to contribute in warm holiday story.
By Emily Jenkins
(2018)
(2018)
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A Ball for Daisy Book Poster Image
Wordless story of dog's ball loss mirrors kids' emotions.
By Chris Raschka
(2012)
(2011)
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Book Fiesta! Book Poster Image
Beautiful bilingual book may inspire adventures in reading.
By Pat Mora
(2010)
(2009)
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Dona Flor: A Tall Tale About a Giant Woman with a Great Big Heart Book Poster Image
A giant saves the day in muy magical story.
By Pat Mora
(2006)
(2006)
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Kitten's First Full Moon Book Poster Image
Kids will connect with Kitten and her dilemma.
By Kevin Henkes
(2004)
(2004)
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Last Stop on Market Street Book Poster Image
Tender story of Nana showing grandson city beauty via bus.
By Matt de la Peña
(2015)
(2015)
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The Lion & the Mouse Book Poster Image
Retold fable with out-of-this-world art; a true keepsake.
By Jerry Pinkney
(2010)
(2009)
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The Little Island Book Poster Image
Seashore world comes alive in this classic book.
By Margaret Wise Brown
(2007)
(2004)
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My Friend Rabbit Book Poster Image
Award-winning book with great preschool lessons.
By Eric Rohmann
(2007)
(2002)
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This Is Not My Hat Book Poster Image
Little fish tries to outsmart big one in funny thief tale.
By Jon Klassen
(2012)
(2012)
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Benny and Penny in The Big No-No! Book Poster Image
Name-calling and mud-throwing ends in friendship lesson.
By Geoffrey Hayes
(2010)
(2009)
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A Boy and a Jaguar Book Poster Image
Inspiring true story of stutterer and his work with animals.
By Alan Rabinowitz
(2014)
(2014)
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Charlie & Mouse, Book 1 Book Poster Image
Charming early reader about two adorable brothers.
By Laurel Snyder
(2018)
(2017)
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Dreamers Book Poster Image
Gorgeous, joyous book about immigrant mom and child.
By Yuyi Morales
(2018)
(2018)
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Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World's Most Famous Bear Book Poster Image
Moving story of bear that inspired Winnie-the-Pooh.
By Lindsay Mattick
(2016)
(2015)
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Flotsam Book Poster Image
Underwater fantasy world revealed in magical watercolors.
By David Wiesner
(2007)
(2006)
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Hello Lighthouse Book Poster Image
Unique, engaging look at the life of a lighthouse keeper.
By Sophie Blackall
(2019)
(2018)
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Joseph Had a Little Overcoat Book Poster Image
Vibrantly illustrated and simply patterned story.
By Simms Taback
(2004)
(1999)
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Julián Is a Mermaid Book Poster Image
In touching story and art, boy imagines he's a mermaid.
By Jessica Love
(2018)
(2018)
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Jumanji Book Poster Image
The real and surreal blur in award-winning book.
By Chris Van Allsburg
(2003)
(1981)
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Locomotive Book Poster Image
Gorgeous story of train journey is exciting, fact-packed.
By Brian Floca
(2013)
(2013)
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Madeline's Rescue Book Poster Image
An exciting adventure in humorous verse.
By Ludwig Bemelmans
(2003)
(1953)
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The Man Who Walked Between the Towers Book Poster Image
A man's daring stunt atop the World Trade Center towers.
By Mordecai Gerstein
(2004)
(2004)
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Many Moons Book Poster Image
A charming and well-illustrated tale.
By James Thurber
(2004)
(1981)
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Niño Wrestles the World Book Poster Image
Boy plays Mexican wrestler in exuberant bilingual tale.
By Yuyi Morales
(2015)
(2014)
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Officer Buckle and Gloria Book Poster Image
Teaches gentle lessons about safety and teamwork.
By Peggy Rathman
(2003)
(1995)
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The Polar Express Book Poster Image
One of the most beautiful Christmas books.
By Chris Van Allsburg
(2004)
(1985)
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Rapunzel Book Poster Image
Retelling of classic brims with passion and grace.
By Paul O. Zelinsky
(2003)
(1997)
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Rosa Book Poster Image
Spectacular illustrations spotlight Parks' historic protest.
By Nikki Giovanni
(2006)
(2006)
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A Sick Day for Amos McGee Book Poster Image
2011 Caldecott winner celebrates caring for one another.
By Philip C. Stead
(2011)
(2010)
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Snowflake Bentley Book Poster Image
Lyrical prose explores a fascinating life.
By Jacqueline Briggs Martin
(2003)
(1998)
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Song and Dance Man Book Poster Image
Grandpa relives good ol' days in award-winner.
By Karen Ackerman
(2007)
(1992)
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The Stuff of Stars Book Poster Image
Poetic book introduces big cosmic concepts to little humans.
By Marion Dane Bauer
(2018)
(2018)
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Sylvester and the Magic Pebble Book Poster Image
Gently addresses children's fear of abandonment.
By William Steig
(2003)
(2000)
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There Is a Bird on Your Head! Book Poster Image
Tender comedy is great for beginning readers.
By Mo Willems
(2008)
(2007)
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Trombone Shorty Book Poster Image
Fun, upbeat story of a boy, a trombone, and jazz.
By Troy Andrews
(2016)
(2015)
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Uptown Book Poster Image
Harlem is home in this jazzy award-winner.
By Bryan Collier
(2006)
(2000)
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Viva Frida Book Poster Image
Exuberant portrayal of artist's passion for art.
By Yuyi Morales
(2014)
(2014)
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Wabi Sabi Book Poster Image
Cat's extraordinary quest finds beauty in the ordinary.
By Mark Reibstein
(2008)
(2008)
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Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears: A West African Tale Book Poster Image
Jazzy, inventive take on West African folktale.
By Verna Aardema
(2003)
(1975)
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Wolf in the Snow Book Poster Image
Girl rescues lost wolf pup in wordless tale of compassion.
By Matthew Cordell
(2018)
(2018)
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Zelda and Ivy: The Runaways Book Poster Image
Seuss Award winner is great fun for early readers.
By Laura McGee Kvasnosky
(2007)
(2006)
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Firebird Book Poster Image
Soaring, rhythmic story for dancers with big dreams.
By Misty Copeland
(2014)
(2014)
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Just in Case: A Trickster Tale and Spanish Alphabet Book Book Poster Image
Friendly Day of the Dead skeleton knows his ABCs.
By Yuyi Morales
(2009)
(2008)
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Los Gatos Black on Halloween Book Poster Image
Haunting rhymes create ghoulish treat.
By Marisa Montes
(2006)
(2006)
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Moses: When Harriet Tubman Led Her People to Freedom Book Poster Image
Award-winning picture-book treatment of Tubman.
By Carole Boston Weatherford
(2007)
(2006)
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My People Book Poster Image
Photos bring sparkling tone to simple poem of celebration.
By Langston Hughes
(2010)
(2009)
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Dave the Potter: Artist, Poet, Slave Book Poster Image
Amazing award-winning historical story told in free verse.
By Laban Carrick Hill
(2011)
(2010)
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A Different Pond Book Poster Image
Exquisitely tender family story of Vietnamese refugees.
By Bao Phi
(2017)
(2017)
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Goin' Someplace Special Book Poster Image
Gentle story about facing prejudice with pride and strength.
By Patricia McKissack
(2009)
(2008)
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In Daddy's Arms I Am Tall: African Americans Celebrating Fathers Book Poster Image
A joyous collection of poetry about fathers.
By Javaka Steptoe
(2004)
(2000)
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Piano Starts Here Book Poster Image
Masterful illustrations and an inspirational bio.
By Robert Andrew Parker
(2008)
(2008)
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Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat Book Poster Image
Exuberant bio celebrates artist who had success when young.
By Javaka Steptoe
(2017)
(2016)
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Django: World's Greatest Jazz Guitarist Book Poster Image
Moving bio of jazz guitarist can be a little hard to follow.
By Bonnie Christensen
(2010)
(2009)
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Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures Book Poster Image
Funny, poignant tale of cynical girl, superpowered squirrel.
By Kate DiCamillo
(2013)
(2013)
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Golem Book Poster Image
Giant legend too heady and scary for little ones.
By David Wisniewski
(2008)
(2007)
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Gone Crazy in Alabama Book Poster Image
Harrowing tale of Gaither girls' summer in the South.
By Rita Williams-Garcia
(2015)
(2015)
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Handbook for Dragon Slayers Book Poster Image
Exciting medieval adventure with brave teens and dragons.
By Merrie Haskell
(2013)
(2013)
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The Invention of Hugo Cabret Book Poster Image
Spectacular cinematic book has lots of heart.
By Brian Selznick
(2007)
(2007)
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The One and Only Ivan Book Poster Image
Heartwarming story of a heroic, artistic, captive gorilla.
By Katherine Applegate
(2012)
(2012)
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The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread Book Poster Image
Brave mouse adventure a modern classic; great read-aloud.
By Kate DiCamillo
(2003)
(2004)
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The Truth as Told by Mason Buttle Book Poster Image
Riveting, poignant drama explores kindness, friendship.
By Leslie Connor
(2018)
(2018)
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The Whipping Boy Book Poster Image
Prince and pauper find friendship in rollicking tale.
By Sid Fleischman
(2014)
(1986)
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Ashanti to Zulu: African Traditions Book Poster Image
An introduction to 26 African tribes.
By Margaret Musgrove
(2003)
(1977)
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Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves Book Poster Image
Lively profile of a brave man living in a dangerous time.
By Vaunda Micheaux Nelson
(2010)
(2009)
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Becoming Naomi Leon Book Poster Image
A family flees a mean mother in this rich novel.
By Pam Munoz Ryan
(2006)
(2006)
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Bridge to Terabithia Book Poster Image
Honest, moving story of friendship and loss.
By Katherine Paterson
(2006)
(1977)
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Bud, Not Buddy Book Poster Image
Well-crafted tale of an orphan's search for home.
By Christopher Paul Curtis
(2004)
(1999)
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Crispin: The Cross of Lead Book Poster Image
Start of an exciting medieval adventures series.
By Avi
(2005)
(2005)
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The Crossover Book Poster Image
Soaring, poignant, novel in verse hits all the right spots.
By Kwame Alexander
(2014)
(2014)
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Elijah of Buxton Book Poster Image
Humorous, powerful, masterful escaped-slave tale.
By Christopher Paul Curtis
(2007)
(2007)
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From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler Book Poster Image
Attention to detail makes adventure satisfying.
By E. L. Konigsburg
(2004)
(1977)
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Front Desk Book Poster Image
Immigrant kid tackles racism, bullying in powerful tale.
By Kelly Yang
(2019)
(2018)
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Full Cicada Moon Book Poster Image
Girl beats stereotypes in powerful free-verse novel.
By Marilyn Hilton
(2015)
(2015)
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Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village Book Poster Image
Unique, brilliant, award-winning history book.
By Laura Amy Schlitz
(2008)
(2007)
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The Graveyard Book Book Poster Image
Tale of boy raised by ghosts is both creepy and warmhearted.
By Neil Gaiman
(2008)
(2008)
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Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America Book Poster Image
Captivating storytelling makes these heroes relatable.
By Andrea Davis Pinkney
(2013)
(2012)
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Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans Book Poster Image
Beautifully illustrated account of African-American history.
By Kadir Nelson
(2011)
(2011)
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Hello, Universe Book Poster Image
Charming tale of friendship, courage, and self-acceptance.
By Erin Entrada Kelly
(2017)
(2017)
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Her Stories: African American Folktales, Fairy Tales, and True Tales Book Poster Image
A spirited retelling of tales old and new.
By Virginia Hamilton
(2003)
(1995)
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The Higher Power of Lucky Book Poster Image
Newbery winner is delicate, humorous, poignant.
By Susan Patron
(2007)
(2006)
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Maniac Magee Book Poster Image
Exciting, moving story explores racism, myth making.
By Jerry Spinelli
(2003)
(1990)
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Merci Suarez Changes Gears Book Poster Image
Upbeat coming-of-age story explores culture, class, aging.
By Meg Medina
(2018)
(2018)
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Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH Book Poster Image
A compelling mix of fantasy and science fiction.
By Robert C. O'Brien
(2003)
(1971)
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Number the Stars Book Poster Image
Brave girl helps smuggle Jewish friends to safety.
By Lois Lowry
(2003)
(1989)
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Out of the Dust Book Poster Image
A penetrating look at a poor child's life.
By Karen Hesse
(2003)
(1997)
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P.S. Be Eleven Book Poster Image
Tween coming-of-age set amid shifting family, '60s dynamics.
By Rita Williams-Garcia
(2013)
(2013)
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The People Could Fly: American Black Folktales Book Poster Image
Two dozen folktales full of humor and history.
By Virginia Hamilton
(2003)
(1985)
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Rain Reign Book Poster Image
Poignant tale of autistic girl and her dog.
By Ann M. Martin
(2014)
(2014)
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Rules Book Poster Image
Newbery honoree about life with an autistic sib.
By Cynthia Lord
(2007)
(2006)
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Sarah, Plain and Tall Book Poster Image
Warm family story of children's wish for a mother.
By Patricia MacLachlan
(2013)
(1985)
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Shiloh Book Poster Image
In taut, unforgettable drama, nothing is simple.
By Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
(2004)
(1991)
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Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster Book Poster Image
Haunting tale of friendship and magic in Victorian times.
By Jonathan Auxier
(2018)
(2018)
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Waiting for Normal Book Poster Image
Moving portrait of a neglected child.
By Leslie Connor
(2009)
(2008)
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The War That Saved My Life Book Poster Image
Abused girl finds courage, family in compelling WWII story.
By Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
(2015)
(2015)
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We Are the Ship: The Story of Negro League Baseball Book Poster Image
Amazing paintings + compelling history = a grand slam.
By Kadir Nelson
(2009)
(2008)
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When You Reach Me Book Poster Image
Perfectly voiced, mysterious sci-fi coming-of-age tale.
By Rebecca Stead
(2009)
(2009)
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The Witch of Blackbird Pond Book Poster Image
1600s America springs to life for today's kids.
By Elizabeth George Speare
(2003)
(1958)
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Wonderstruck Book Poster Image
Inventive story of runaways in New York, 50 years apart.
By Brian Selznick
(2011)
(2011)
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A Wrinkle in Time Book Poster Image
Classic sci-fi story still inspires and gets kids thinking.
By Madeleine L'Engle
(2003)
(1962)
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Anything But Typical Book Poster Image
Realistic look inside the world of a tween with autism.
By Nora Raleigh Baskin
(2009)
(2009)
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As Brave As You Book Poster Image
Poignant summer adventure brims with family love and hope.
By Jason Reynolds
(2016)
(2016)
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Brown Girl Dreaming Book Poster Image
Captivating poems depict coming-of-age in tumultuous 1960s.
By Jacqueline Woodson
(2014)
(2014)
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Criss Cross Book Poster Image
Lyrical tale of small-town teens in a '60s summer.
By Lynne Rae Perkins
(2006)
(2006)
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The Dark-Thirty: Southern Tales of the Supernatural Book Poster Image
Scary, award-winning African-American stories.
By Patricia McKissack
(2006)
(2006)
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Dead End in Norvelt Book Poster Image
Charming story of a small-town boy's unlikely adventures.
By Jack Gantos
(2011)
(2011)
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Esperanza Rising Book Poster Image
Historical fiction at its best in story of '30s farmworkers.
By Pam Munoz Ryan
(2011)
(2000)
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Fish in a Tree Book Poster Image
Big-hearted book about overcoming dyslexia inspires.
By Lynda Mullaly Hunt
(2015)
(2015)
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George Book Poster Image
Fourth-grader George identifies as a girl in tender tale.
By Alex Gino
(2015)
(2015)
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The Girl Who Drank the Moon Book Poster Image
Entrancing fantasy spun with magic stresses power of love.
By Kelly Barnhill
(2016)
(2016)
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The Hammer of Thor: Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, Book 2 Book Poster Image
Loads of excitement plus intro of gender-fluid character.
By Rick Riordan
(2016)
(2016)
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Heart of a Samurai Book Poster Image
Fish-out-of-water adventure swimming with historical detail.
By Margi Preus
(2011)
(2010)
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Holes Book Poster Image
Humorous and moving story has an edge.
By Louis Sachar
(2004)
(2000)
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I Lived on Butterfly Hill Book Poster Image
Moving story of Chilean girl's escape from a dictatorship.
By Marjorie Agosin
(2014)
(2014)
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Island of the Blue Dolphins Book Poster Image
Smart girl learns to survive alone in compelling adventure.
By Scott O'Dell
(2003)
(1960)
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Julie of the Wolves Book Poster Image
Thought-provoking saga of Inuit girl adopted by wolf pack.
By Jean Craighead George
(2003)
(1972)
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Kira-Kira Book Poster Image
Girl faces racism, sister's cancer in touching tale.
By Cynthia Kadohata
(2005)
(2005)
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The Land of Forgotten Girls Book Poster Image
Sisters search for hope in heartbreaking coming-of-age tale.
By Erin Entrada Kelly
(2016)
(2016)
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Moon Over Manifest Book Poster Image
Girl finds meaning of home in nostalgic, robust tale.
By Clare Vanderpool
(2011)
(2010)
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Return to Sender Book Poster Image
Intense story about illegal immigration and friendship.
By Julia Alvarez
(2009)
(