Charlotte Zolotow Highly Commended

Fortune Cookies

December 3, 2016
Subheader: 

Fortune cookies != magic.

It makes it seem like fortune cookies are real, but it doesn't explicitly say that. Instead of saying her fortune came true, it just says, "And guess what?" But the message basically boils down to fortune cookies being real.

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Message: 

Fortune cookies are real, as far as I can tell.

Cool Cat, Hot Dog

November 27, 2016
Subheader: 

Might be better as an art installation.

This is a weird book. It kind of shows opposites and comparisons. It kind of rhymes in parts, but not everywhere. Only sometimes, when it feels like it.

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Message: 

Even if you don't like everything about someone, you can still love them?

Baby Radar

November 17, 2016
Subheader: 

Cute story from toddler's perspective.

It's just fun. There's nothing really to it, and no real point. But it captures the feel, at least as far as an outsider can, of the mind of a young child who is walking but not yet speaking in complete sentences.

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Message: 

None.

Bittle

November 3, 2016
Subheader: 

Mom and Dad get a human baby.

It's a recognition of the important role that pets play in people's lives, understanding that just as it's difficult for children to accept new siblings, it's also difficult for the pets to accept it.

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Message: 

Babies are a big change, but a positive one.

Hot Day on Abbott Avenue

November 14, 2016
Subheader: 

Hot days make everyone grouchy.

It's a prose poem where the repetition is enough to create parallelism but not too much where it becomes annoying. The diction isn't overly simplistic and the pictures are interesting to look at.

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Message: 

People get mad at their friends, but then they get over it.

Auntie Yang's Great Soybean Picnic

September 22, 2016
Subheader: 

Quick review.

Review: 

Wordy. Illustrations are all painted on ceramic plates and then photographed. They look like they're from the 50s for some reason to me. Apparently nobody in Illinois used to eat soybeans? So a farmer was growing some for his pigs, and a Chinese-American family comes and gets some from him and has a picnic that grows larger every year with other Chinese-American families.

Message: 

Cultural traditions are important.

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