Kirkus Reviews has been an authoritative voice in book discovery for almost 80 years. Kirkus Reviews magazine gives industry professionals a sneak peek at the most notable books being published weeks before they’re released. Now they have released their best books of 2012 for children.
Each year Kirkus rolls out its best book choices over the next month. First up are the children’s book selections. There are some great choices for both picture books and chapter books. Check out a sample of the list below!
‘THE ONE AND ONLY IVAN’ by Katherine Applegate
Ivan is an easygoing gorilla. Living at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade, he has grown accustomed to humans watching him through the glass walls of his domain. He rarely misses his life in the jungle. In fact, he hardly ever thinks about it at all.
Instead, Ivan thinks about TV shows he’s seen and about his friends Stella, an elderly elephant, and Bob, a stray dog. But mostly Ivan thinks about art and how to capture the taste of a mango or the sound of leaves with color and a well-placed line.
Then he meets Ruby, a baby elephant taken from her family, and she makes Ivan see their home — and his own art — through new eyes. When Ruby arrives, change comes with her, and it’s up to Ivan to make it a change for the better.
‘THE VENGEKEEP PROPHECIES’ by Brian Farrey
Enk vessara, enk talmin.
You can’t convict what you can’t confirm.
Jaxter Grimjinx is a born thief. At least, he’s supposed to be. For generations, the Grimjinx clan has produced the swiftest, cleverest thieves in Vengekeep.
The problem is, Jaxter is clumsy. So clumsy that in his first solo heist, he sets the Castellan’s house on fire and lands his family in the gaol. Even Jaxter’s skill for breaking magical locks can’t get them out of this bind.
Then a suspiciously convenient prophecy emerges naming the Grimjinx clan as the soon-to-be heroes of Vengekeep. It’s good enough to get his family out of the gaol, but with a firestorm, a flood, and a host of skeletal beasts among the dangers listed in the prophecy, Jaxter is pretty sure a life in the gaol would be a better fate.
Now — like it or not — Jaxter Grimjinx will have to become the hero he was truly born to be.
‘IN A GLASS GRIMMLY’ by Adam Gidwitz
More Grimm tales await in the harrowing, hilarious companion to a beloved new classic
Take caution ahead–
Oversize plant life, eerie amphibious royalty, and fear-inducing creatures abound.
Lest you enter with dread.
Follow Jack and Jill as they enter startling new landscapes that may (or may not) be scary, bloody, terrifying, and altogether true.
Step lively, dear reader . . .
Happily ever after isn’t cutting it anymore.
In this companion novel to Adam Gidwitz’s widely acclaimed, award-winning debut, A Tale Dark & Grimm, Jack and Jill explore a new set of tales from the Brothers Grimm and others, including Jack and the Beanstalk and The Frog Prince.
‘COLD SNAP’ by Eileen Spinelli
It’s snowy cold in the town of Toby Mills. The thermometer is sinking toward zero, and the icicle hanging from the nose of General Toby’s statue is growing closer to the ground. The newspaper headline reads “COLD SNAP!” The people of the town are losing hope — and the feeling in their toes — until the mayor’s wife saves the day with a toasty treat.
To see the all of the 2012 Best Children’s books check out KirkusReview.com.
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