Okay, here's the recap. In my last post I began the excruciating task of picking my 5 favorite books of 2011. I had to leave for a meeting before I finished, so here are my last two choices. (If you want to know what the other three are, you'll need to check out my last post!)
Can We Save the Tiger, written by Martin Jenkins and illustrated by Vicky White - No surprises here. Did you honestly think I'd make a favorite book list and leave out science? I loved a lot of nonfiction picture books this year, but I was especially impressed with Jenkins take on endangered species. The language is compelling, yet easy enough for children' to understand. Jenkins does a fine job emphasizing the importance of conservation efforts and recognizing this complicated work. Good science and fabulous illustrations make for a terrific read.
The House Baba Built: An Artist's Childhood in China by Ed Young - This is a moving memoir provides a unique look at Young's early years in Shanghai. Not a straightforward narrative, but rather an episodic look at growing up in a fantastical house (where kids roller-skated on the roof and rode bikes in an empty swimming pool) during years of depression, occupation, and war. Young's illustrations are beautiful collages constructed of sketches, painting, paper, and photographs.