Caldecott Challenge Update, #11

This is my latest check-in for the Caldecott Challenge, where I am reading all the Caldecott Medal and Honor books from 1938 to the present. This book stack has books from award year 1955 and includes one that couldn’t be renewed because it was needed to fulfill another hold. Clearly one that kids are still enjoying today.  I’ve now read 145 of the Caldecott award books.



By Marcia Brown, with text adapted from Charles Perrault

1955 Caldecott Medal

I was slow in getting to my pile of Caldecott’s this time and was unable to renew this one (hooray for overdue fines!) as it was needed to fulfill a hold in our large library system, which has 43 copies. Clearly, the story of Cinderalla has a broad and enduring appeal and this retelling is nice. My own Caldecott side-kick, Small, saw it come out of the library book bag and said, “Oh, yeah, I’ve read that one at the school.” I must admint that I’m not the biggest fan of Marcia Brown’s looser illustration style as seen here and in her The Steadfast Tin Soldier but they do suit the magical feel of the story.


The Thanksgiving Story

Illustrated by Helen Sewell and written by Alice Dalgliesh

1955 Caldecott Honor

As the title suggests this is the story of the first Thanksgiving. The tale actually begins in England and focuses on one Pilgrim family as they board their ship, cross the Atlantic and endure their challenging settlement days. This would be a good tale to reinforce the background story for the holiday in a classroom setting, though it’s not exactly a riveting story and feels a bit too wordy. I liked the illustrations, though many pages are rather dreary with their brown and grey tones.


Wheel on the Chimney

Illustrated by Tibor Gergely and text by Margaret Wise Brown

1955 Caldecott Honor

Hands down, the illustrations steal the show on this one. There are lots of lovely pastoral scenes and many amazing illustrations of birds in flight. On more than one occasion, I gasped out loud as I turned the page. An interesting story about migratory storks that I suspect many kids might still like today.


Book of Nursery and Mother Goose Rhymes

Illustrated by Marguerite de Angeli

1955 Caldecott Honor

This is a giant volume at close to 200 pages and it is packed with lots of familiar and many lesser known rhymes that will most likely enchant young readers. Each page has lots of illustrations that are either larger sketches or smaller ones interspersed with the text. A few color plates are scattered throughout, but I actually prefer her black and white sketches. I think this would make a lovely gift for a young child.


Until next time, find all these books reviewed over at my Goodreads Caldecott bookshelf. You can also follow along in the Caldecott discussions, fondly called Nerdcott, at Twitter using the hashtag #nerdcott, or join us in the stress-free Challenge! Find out more about the challenge here in Laura’s original post or Anna’s original post.


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