Blogger Kary Henry

Looking back and looking ahead…library-style.

I saw a social media post about a yard decorated for Halloween with simply the numbers 2020; the homeowners said that was the scariest thing they could imagine. 2020 has been a year….sometimes feeling like a century! For this reason and so many, many others, I’m looking ahead to 2021. The coming year also holds the promise of some great Coming Soon titles. However, I couldn’t resist looking back and sharing a few favorites from this year as well. The bright spotlight they deserve may have been dimmed by this year’s events.

2020 spotlight shines on…

  • Class Act by Jerry Craft. I couldn’t imagine loving a graphic novel more than New Kid. And then I read its sequel.
  • Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You by Jason Reynolds and Dr. Ibram X. Kendi. Two brilliant minds; one powerful book.
  • The Button Book by Sally Nicholls and Bethann Woollvin. A perfect storytime book: colors, shapes, humor, interaction…yes, please!
  • Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohmann. I was crying at the end of this book. About a bee.

Looking ahead to…

  • The Comeback by E.L. Shen and The Sea in Winter by Christine Day. Both were sooooo good and featured strong female characters in different competitive fields (figure skating and ballet, respectively), facing and overcoming struggles (racism and injury, respectively).
  • Legacy: Women Poets of the Harlem Renaissance by Nikki Grimes. One Last Word: Wisdom from the Harlem Renaissance is an incredible body of work, so I was thrilled to read this latest masterpiece from Grimes. I am fascinated by the Golden Shovel form of poetry and wowed by Grimes’ mastery of it.
  • Ancestor Approved: Intertribal Stories for Kids, edited by Cynthia Leitich Smith. In the introduction, Smith writes that this anthology is a fulfillment of her wish that books would feature more characters like the real kids she encountered at a powwow. We are the lucky recipients of that wish, and that work, come true.
  • With the February, 2021 landing of the newest Mars rover, Perseverance, The Lion of Mars by Jennifer L. Holms is sure to grab the attention of any reader craving timely sci-fi…or just a compelling middle grade novel.

My lists, of course, are not at all complete. There are and will be so many more good books! Looking back, what titles have you loved this year? Looking ahead, what can’t you wait to read?


This post addresses the following ALSC Core Competency: I. Commitment to Client Group

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