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Welcome to The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books

We are one of the nation’s leading children’s book review journals for school and public librarians. We provide concise summaries and critical evaluations to help you find the books you need for your library’s collection.


January’s Big Picture

Katie the CatSitter cover imageKatie the Catsitter

by Colleen AF Venable
illustrated by Stephanie Yue; colors by Braden Lamb

Cat lovers and fans of caped crusaders alike will delight in this month’s Big Picture, Katie the Catsitter by colleen AF Venable, the opener to a sparkling graphic novel series. The adventure begins when twelve-year-old Katie lands a gig caring for her neighbor’s 217 feisty felines and soon discovers that her new charges may have powers far beyond a endearing purr or a menacing hiss. Charming art, plenty o diversity, and an empowering pro-girl tone, this is an easy book to snuggle up to.


2020 Blue Ribbons

Book images of Blue RibbonsYes, even in the chaos of 2020, there were still plenty of amazing books that crossed our (home) desks. Of course, we had to make some changes and revamped the procedure to share titles digitally but it was gratifying to find our enthusiasm undiminished, and in fact we’ve consciously chosen to go with a generous list this year. Whether for Zoom sharing or private escapism, books matter intensely right now, and it’s stirring to see how many stellar titles appeared this year despite the obstacles.


Editor’s note

Like many organizations, the Bulletin has had to adjust its workflow to accommodate our new remote situation as a result of COVID-19 restrictions. Unfortunately, that means that some of usual projects have had to be pushed back to 2021, and that includes the annual Guide Book to Gift Books. We know the Guide Book is a favorite of many people, and we apologize for not being able to produce it this year. We do urge you to take a look at the current 2019-2020 version, as that still has plenty of recent titles and recommendations.


Gryphon Award

This Is MY Fort! and What Is Inside THIS Box?, written by Drew Daywalt and illustrated by Olivier Tallec, and published by Scholastic Press, are the winners of the 2020 Gryphon Award for Children’s Literature. The prize is awarded to the author of an outstanding English language work of fiction or non-fiction that is exemplary in its bridging of the gap in difficulty between books for reading aloud to children and books for practiced readers.


ALA Awards

The American Association has announced its Youth Media Awards. You can check out the full list on our awards page or at the ALA website.


The Center for Children’s Books

The Bulletin is partnered with the Center for Children’s Books, a research center whose mission is to facilitate the creation and dissemination of exemplary and progressive research and scholarship related to youth-focused resources, literature, and librarianship.


Image from Katie the Catsitter © 2021 by Colleen AF Venable, reproduced by permission of Random House.