Top Ten Picture Books for the First Half of 2013

We have just moved beyond the half-way mark in the year and I thought it would be fun to list my favorite picture books for the first half of the year.   Books selected had to be released by June 30, 2013.  Last year, two of my 10 went on to win Caldecott Honors.  Will there by any award winners in this group?! Not sure, but certainly hope so.

Bluebird by Bob Staake (Schwartz & Wade)

Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle (Chronicle Books)

Exclamation Mark! by Amy Krouse Rosenthal; Illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld (Scholastic Press)

The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt; Illustrated by Oliver Jeffers (Philomel)

Miss Maple's Seeds by Eliza Wheeler (Nancy Paulsen Books)

No Fits, Nilson! by Zachariah Ohora (Dial)

The Story of Fish and Snail by Deborah Freedman (Viking Juvenile)

The Mighty Lalouche by Matthew Olshan; Illustrated by Sophie Blackall (Schwartz & Wade)

The Beatles Were Fab (and They Were Funny) by Kathleen Krull, Paul Brewer; 
Illustrated by Stacy Innerst (HMH Books for Young Readers)

Illustrated by Melissa Sweet (Balzer & Bray)

Top Ten Picture Books for the First Half of 2012

I was inspired by Hannah of My 100 Adventures Blog to come up with my current top 10 picture books for 2012.  We have just moved beyond the half-way mark in the year and here are my favorite picture books so far.

Squid and Octopus Friends for Always by Tao Nyeu (Penguin)

No Bears by Meg McKinlay; Illustrated by Leila Rudge (Candlewick)

Green by Laura Vaccaro Seeger (Roaring Brook Press)

Chloe and the Lion by Mac Barnett; Illustrated by Adam Rex (Hyperion)

Scribbles & Ink by Ethan Long (Blue Apple Books)

Little Bird by Germano Zullo; Illustrated by Albertine (Enchanted Lion Books)

The Cloud Spinner by Michael Catchpool; Illustrated by Alison Jay (Random House)

Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett; Illustrated by Jon Klassen (Balzer & Bray)

And Then It's Spring by Julie Fogliano; Illustrated by Erin Stead (Roaring Brook Press)

When Blue Met Egg by Lindsay Ward (Penguin)

So what is in your top 10 picture books for the first half of 2012?

End of the Year: Favorite Picture Books Part II - My Top 10

Yesterday, I posted 15 picture books that were special to me.  Standouts in many ways.  Today, I take it one step further.  Out of all the picture books I read, here are my top ten.

#10 Blackout by John Rocco - I fell in love with the book trailer, the illustrations and the story. This had it all for me.  

#9 Can We Save the Tiger? by Martin Jenkins, Illustrated by Vicky White - Incredible illustrations paired with facts about endangered animals.  A must have book for any library collection.

#8 Won-Ton: A Cat Tale Told in Haiku by Lee Wardlaw, Illustrated by Eugene Yelchin - I am not a big fan of poetry of any kind.  But I am growing in my appreciation the more that I read.  When a book of haiku sticks with me for the whole year, it deserves to be on my top 10 list.

#7 Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans by Kadir Nelson - Anyone who knows me knows that I love Kadir Nelson's work.  This is a beautiful story of history and people.  And the audiobook is a must listen.

#6 Perfect Square by Michael Hall - Some books are simple but incredibly executed.  A square of paper is transformed over the course of the week.  Filled with great concepts and a favorite of young students at my school.

#5 Balloons Over Broadway by Melissa Sweet - Illustrations and text that work together to tell the story of the Puppeteer of Macy's Parade.  A non-fiction picture book at it's best.  This one has affected so many and needs to be shared.

#4 Me...Jane by Patrick McDonnell - Combination of beautiful illustrations and solid text that simply tells the story of the life of Jane Goodall for young children. This one is a winner for me.

#3  Little Chicken's Big Day by Jerry Davis, Illustrated by Katie Davis - I fell in love with the book trailer and then the book.  I want to give this book to every parent with a toddler.  I wonder if I can talk Katie Davis into a print of Little Chicken fussing in his car seat.  "I hear you cluckin' Big Chicken.." will bring a smile to my face every time.

#2 Wonderstruck by Brian Selznik - Brilliant.  Truly one of the most amazing books that I have read this year.  One character's story is told in pictures and the other one in words.  Let me say it again "brilliant". 

#1 Stars by Mary Lyn Ray, Illustrated by Marla Frazee - Last year, I picked up CHALK by Bill Thomson and it was really my book.  The one that touched me more than all others.  This year when I opened up STARS, I knew without a doubt that I had found my picture book of 2011.

So what picture book touched you this year?

*Thank you Alethea (@frootjoos) for the picture book image at the top.