105 Ways to Give a Book

Best Books of 2007 (So Far)

Oh, hi. There you are. It’s been a quiet summer statistics-wise, and I’ve been wondering when you’d show up again. Not that I blame you for taking it easy on your blog reading and commenting over the summer. I mean, we’ve all got to get in our time lying by the pool/ocean/lake/pond/spigot. But now summer is officially over, and it’s time to get down to business.

Last year I listed my best books of the year before the year was technically over. Then I invited anyone who wanted to participate to make a list of their own, which I incorporated into one big list of the kidlitosphere choices. It was fun, in a busy, obsessive way.

So, want to do it again? We can consider it a public service toward next summer’s reading lists, and school librarians’ fall ordering, and just plain reading choices for people everywhere. If you want to join in, post your “Best Books of 2007 (So Far)” in any or all of the categories: Picture Books, Early Elementary, Elementary, Middle School, High School. Mix in your nonfiction or graphic novels by the age categories. Narrow it down to five choices per category (I know it will be tough). Let me make it clear that you don’t have to cover every age. Also, you can combine categories and make, say, one YA list. But if so, be a pal and indicate if you think it’s more High School level or Middle School level. My ultimate plan is to pull together the posts into one big list by the middle(ish) of September. Oh, and the books don’t have to be the most literary choices or the Caldecott contenders. They can be on your list because they made you laugh or cry (or were better than Cats) or proud to be an American, or whatever.

Some of you have already let me know that you plan on participating, and to you I say, “Rock on.” For those of you just waking up from your lazy summer days in the hammock or just back from vacation, let’s see what you’ve got. Comment on this post when you’ve got something to share, and I’ll put your choices in the master mix.


Anonymous said...

Hi, My name is Kirsten. I have some suggestions for your 2007 list.

Kleven, Elisa, The Apple Doll, Farrar Straus Giroux, 2007 pb
Judge, Lita, One Thousand Tracings: Healing the Wounds of World War II, Hyperion Books for Children, 2007 pb
Kirk, Daniel, Library Mouse, Abrams Book for Young Readers, 2007 pb
Harrington, Janice N. The Chicken-chasing Queen of Lamar County, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007. pb

Barakat, Ibtisam, Tasting the sky: A Palestinian Childhood, FSG, 2007 memoir/fiction

Bibliovore said...

Hey MotherReader

I'm posting one category a day over at my blog. Yesterday was High School Day: Sara Zarr's Story of a Girl and runner-up Catherine Gilbert Murdock's The Off Season.


Anonymous said...

I hope you will put Alabama Moon by Watt Key on your list. I, and all the kids I have pushed it on, have loved it. The main character feels like a friend by the end of the book. --J.D. a librarian in MD.

Anonymous said...

I'm in. Do I post here, or at my blog and letyou know about it?

EM said...

I'll play!

YA: THE WEDNESDAY WARS by Gary D. Schmidt (Clarion); THE OFF SEASON by Catherine Gilbert Murdock (HMCo).

MG: THE INVENTION OF HUGE CABRET by Brian Selznick (Scholastic); THE THING ABOUT GEORGIE by Lisa Graff (Harper).

MotherReader said...

You can post at your blog, certainly, but if you just want to throw out a title or two than the comments will do just fine.

Anonymous said...

MotherReader, I'm so totally in for Picture Books, the only category I feel qualified enough (as in, have read enough titles this year to fairly say) to comment upon.

I'll see if Eisha wants to do it all "co-" with me, but for now I know that at least one-half of 7-Imp is in.

Maybe I can even post it this week during our Picture Book Week, but I dunno. We'll see. It'll happen soonish, though.

Sarah Miller said...

Count me in!


Vivian Mahoney said...

I started listing off books, then realized that most were from last year. I'll check the published dates before giving you my list.

This is an awesome idea!

Anonymous said...

Since I can give titles here (thanks, btw!):

A Good Day by Kevin Henkes, PB

the bunnies are not in their beds by Marisabina Russo, PB

Henry's Freedom Box by Ellen Levine, illus by Kadir Nelson, PB

Wolf! Wolf! by John Rocco, PB

A Crooked Kind of Perfect by Linda Urban, MG

The Secret History of Tom Trueheart by Ian Beck, MG

Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landry, MG (I think)

The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick, MG (although I've also seen it on YA lists?)

Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr YA

Tips on Having a Gay (ex)Boyfriend by Carrie Jones, YA

Your Own, Sylvia: A Verse Portrait of Sylvia Plath by Stephenie Hemphill, YA

How to Get Suspended and Influence People by Adam Selzer, YA

Animal Poems by Valarie Worth, PB poetry collection

Here's a Little Poem, ed. by Jane Yolen, poetry anthology

Tricia said...

Okay, I'm in. I'm starting with poetry and moving on to nonfiction. My first post is here.
I'll let you know when the nonfiction post is up.
Thanks for giving me yet another way to procrastinate!

Megan Germano said...

My suggestion is Elijah of Buxton by Christopher Paul Curtis. LOVED IT!
Thanks for the cool post! :D

Barbara O'Connor said...

I'm in!


Tricia said...

Okay, MR, I'm in with some nonfiction. You can find them at

Anonymous said...

It was hard, but I've done it:


It's already interesting seeing what other people are coming up with.

Franki said...

Hi--We're in. I'll post a new category every day all week! A great idea.

Lady S. said...

Just caught up with back posts and hope I'm not too late to join in! I've gone through my reading notebook and have my 15 books all chosen. Only problem is they're almost all YA with a couple of younger-but-not-sure-how-much younger thrown in. I'll think hard today and post asap.

This is a nice end of summer activity - thanks!

Becky said...

Here's my list:


Dadblamed Union Army Cow by Susan Fletcher. Illustrated by Kimberly Bulcken Root.
The Chicken Chasing Queen of Lamar County by Janice N. Harrington. Illustrated by Shelley Jackson.
My Cat Copies Me written and illustrated by Yoon D. Kwan.
Go To Bed, Monster! by Natasha Wing. Illustrated by Sylvie Kantorovitz.
Jazz Baby by Lisa Wheeler. Illustrated by R. Gregory Christie.

Cupid by Julius Lester (YA)
Leepike Ridge by N.D. Wilson (middle)
The Off Season by Catherine Gilbert Murdock (YA)
The Wednesday Wars by Gary Schmidt (middle)
Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson (YA)
Miss Spitfire by Sarah Miller (middle)
In Search of Mockingbird by Loretta Ellsworth (YA)
Book of A Thousand Days by Shannon Hale (middle)
What My Girlfriend Doesn't Know by Sonya Sones (YA)
Princess and the Hound by Mette Ivie Harrison (middle)

Anonymous said...

Hello there! My own answers are here:

Can't wait to see the finished list!

Lady S. said...

Okay, I've done mine now. Here's YA/High School. I'll post a comment with my entry for Middle School (maybe) and Elementary School (possibly) once I've added links to my write-ups.

Anonymous said...

Here's my Best in Poetry of 2007 (so far) list: http://propernoun.net/?p=380

Lady S. said...

Finally got my other two lists updated in the post. It's a non-US-resident's best guess at (upper) Elementary and Middle School books. With maybe a tiny bit of cheating.

Tricia said...

Hi MR,
Okay, I can't sleep, so I'm blogging. I decided to try a different category and focused this time solely on artwork. And yes, Mo is on the list. You can read about all my favorites at:

Little Willow said...

Best Books of 2007 (So Far)


Reaching for Sun by Tracie Vaughn Zimmer

Juvenile Fiction - Ages 8 and up - Heartwarming verse novel

Runaround by Helen Hemphill

Juvenile Fiction - Ages 8 and up - Coming-of-age in the 1960s

The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick

Juvenile Fiction - Ages 8 and up - Illustrated and inventive

Louisiana's Song by Kerry Madden

Juvenile Fiction - Ages 8 and up - Sequel to Gentle's Holler

Miss Spitfire: Reaching Helen Keller by Sarah Miller

Juvenile Fiction - Ages 8 and up - A chronicle of Annie Sullivan's determination to communicate with Helen Keller

A Crooked Kind of Perfect by Linda Urban

Juvenile Fiction - 8 and up - Absolutely adorable

Billy Hooten: Owlboy by Tom Sniegoski

Juvenile Fiction - Ages 8 and up - Comics come to life, and a little boy becomes a superhero!

The Friskative Dog by Susan Straight

Juvenile Fiction - Ages 8 and up - Family drama

Beauty Shop for Rent: . . . fully equipped, inquire within by Laura Bowers

Teen Fiction - Ages 13 and up - Sweet and charming

Girl at Sea by Maureen Johnson

Teen Fiction - Ages 13 and up - Realistic and believable, with a unique setting

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin

Teen Fiction - Ages 13 and up - Reclaiming her life after losing two years of memories

The Nature of Jade by Deb Caletti

Teen Fiction - Ages 15 and Up - Realistic and dramatic contemporary fiction - Highly recommended

Cupcake by Rachel Cohn

Teen Fiction - Ages 15 and up - Conclusion to the Cyd Charisse trilogy

Story of a Girl by Sara Zarr

Teen Fiction - Ages 15 and up - A middle-class Californian family struggles with reputations and redemption

Such a Pretty Girl by Laura Wiess

Teen Fiction - Ages 15 and up - Surviving parental abuse

Dramarama by E. Lockhart

Teen Fiction - Ages 15 and up - Fun and fresh

Lessons from a Dead Girl by Jo Knowles

Teen Fiction - Ages 15 and up - A tragic and abusive friendship

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Teen Fiction - Ages 15 and up - Powerful and gripping

Baltimore, or, The Steadfast Tin Soldier and the Vampire by Christopher Golden and Mike Mignola

Adult Fiction - An illustrated novel you'll want to sink your teeth into

Crashing Paradise by Christopher Golden and Thomas E. Sniegoski

Adult Fiction - Fourth in The Menagerie dark fantasy series

Unknown said...

This is a great idea! My picture book list is over hyar:


Unknown said...

Phew! Just got my list in under the wire! Here are the links:

Picture Books: http://pinotandprose.blogspot.com/2007/09/best-of-picture-books-2007-so-far.html



Lisa Yee said...

GRIEF GIRL by Erin Vincent should be on that list.

Katie Dicesare said...

Hi! I am katied at creative literacy.
My favs for picture books and poetry are :
Taking a Bath with the Dog and other things that make me happy by Scott Menchin

Ruthie and the (not so) teenie tiny lie by Laura Rankin

Here's a little poem by Jane Yolen

Anonymous said...

I apologize if they are repeats, but I didn't see mentioned:
Feathers by Jaqueline Woodson
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie.

I have so many others but these stick out in my mind this year.

Stephanie J. Blake said...

Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Stuart Little by Peggy Gifford

Blood Brothers by S.A. Harazin

Anonymous said...

My favorite middle school fiction so far.

Wednesday Wars is outstanding but I also like Lynne Jonell's Emily and the Incredible Shrinking Rat and Ruth White's Way Down Deep.

Andromeda Jazmon said...

I'll put in a plug for Green as a Bean by Karla Kuskin. I posted about it today.

Kristen - 2ndgenlibrarian said...

I've started posting my lists over at 2ndgenlibrarian.
My YA list
My Picture Book list

Gina Ruiz said...

The Book Thief
Hattie Big Sky

Jennie said...

My list is a bit small-- turns out most of my books were 2006.

YA- Un Lun Dun China Mieville
Cupcake Rachel Cohn
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows JK Rowling (is this the one everyone's missed?)

MG- Invention of Hugo Cabret Brian Selznick
Diary of a Wimpy Kid Jeff Kinney
Clarice Bean, Don't Look Now Lauren Child

Becky said...

I have updated my list to add some new titles (new categories):


Here are the additions:

Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Stuart Little by Peggy Gifford (elementary chapter book)
Middle School Is Worse Than Meatloaf by Jennifer L. Holm (somewhat "graphic" novel--it's told through 'stuff' after all)
Here's A Little Poem: A Very First Book of Poetry compiled by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Polly Dunbar (poetry)
Little Scholastic: Petting Farm book and dvd (board book set) by Beth Bryan and Ken Karp

Out of curiousity, is Eclipse the big "YA" that no one is mentioning???

Melissa said...

I thought I'd participate, even though I'm in no way a thorough reader of the new stuff.

The best that I've read:


The Adventures of Hugo Cabret, Brian Selznick

The Titan's Curse, Rick Riordan

Middle School is Worse than Meatloaf, Jennifer Holm

(and, yeah, I liked Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.)

Easy Readers:
The Elephant and Piggie series by Mo Willems. Love them.

Picture books:
I know there's good stuff out there; we check it out all the time, but I CAN'T REMEMBER!

Ones I can remember:
Fancy Nancy and the Posh Puppy (Jane O'Connor)
The Wizard (Jack Pretlusky and Brandon Dorman)
A Good Day (Kevin Henkes)

Anonymous said...

Best Books of 2007 (MG/YA).....in no particular order!

-Eclipse: I loved this book. I love the series. I love that my more mature middle grade readers can pick these up without worrying about graphic violence or sex. Stephenie Meyer continues to do an amazing job on this series! I can't wait for the 4th installment.

-Into the Wild by Sarah Beth Durst: Another great book. I'm not always fond of fairy tale retellings, but this is such a fresh and original take.

-Emma Jean Lazarus Fell Out of a Tree: My number one book of the year (so far). In fact, I am already reading it aloud to my 6th graders and have gone so far as to say I think it will be a Newbery winner or honor.

-Deathly Hallows: I can't leave this out! Epilogue and all, I loved it.

-The Invention of Hugo Cabret: Great concept, beautiful illustrations and wonderful story.

-A Crooked Kind of Perfect: Recommended by Cynthia Lord and she was right!