Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Children's Picture Book Bestsellers, Including Credits for the Illustrators, Which I am Sometimes Too Lazy to Research.

Perhaps my sadness about the lack of hardcover picture books was premature. I think the real story is that we don't have Barack Obama's picture book, which was selling as something well beyond a hardcover picture book. . Now we're chasing stock on Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site and seeing some nice pop on books from current and former Milwaukeeans.

Once you decide to include illustrators with the authors, there are complications. What about when a middle grade book has illustrations? That doesn't seem quite as much of a collaboration as a children's picture book. Fortunately most of the entries on the list were writer/illustrators, but The Flint Heart was complicated to sort out.

Hardcover Books for Kids

1. Astrojammies, by Stacey Williams-Ng
2. Wildwood, by Colin Meloy/Carson Ellis
3. Cabin Fever, by Jeff Kinney
4. I am a Bunny, by Ole Rissom/Richard Scarry
5. Wonderstruck, by Brian Selznick
6. Every Thing on It, by Shel Silverstein
7. Mouse and Lion, by Rand Burkert/Nancy Burkert
8. The Invention of Hugo Cabret, by Brian Selznick
9. Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site, by Sherri Duskey Rinker/Tom Lichtenheld
10. You Will be my Friend, by Peter Brown
11. I Want my Hat Back, by Jon Klassen
12. Bear Stays Up for Christmas board book, by Karma Wilson/Jane Chapman
13. The Lego Ideas Book, by Daniel Litkowitz
14. The Flint Heart, by Katherine Patterson/John Rocco, abridged from Edith Philpott
15. Mockingjay, by Suzanne Collins

It's nice to see Peter Brown's newest book has some staying power, but I think Jon Klassen's I Want My Hat Back is this year's Children Make Terrible Pets. Like Brown, Klassen writes a funny book that uses old-fashioned art techniques, but manipulates them in high-tech ways to make, to quote Shelf Awareness, "a droll statement about morality." Come to think of it, that's what Stacey Williams-Ng is doing in Astrojammies. Despite the book being inspired by a book app, all her spreads are old-fashioned paintings.

Paperback Books for Kids:
1. The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins
2. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory pop up, by Roald Dahl/Quentin Blake
3. War Hourse, by Michael Marpurgo
4. Ivy and Bean, by Annie Barrows
5. Nerds V01, by Michael Buckley

I consolidate the juvenile bestseller lists a lot because unlike the adult lists, the binding code differentiation is meaningless and the true differentiation, for age range, would be too complicated for me to put together on a weekly basis. We'd wind up with six lists, each with just a few on each, except at Christmas. 

And there's a lot more arguing about book type. For some reason, the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory pop up was coded as paperback, because to publishers, that's what paper over board is. But to us, it's a hardcover. So now I've moved the book to hardcover, but I'm leaving it on this list for now. But can I mention that I hand-sold Nerds onto the list? I think that's a first for me.

Does anyone's book inventory system have a second author field? I've always wondered about that. It would useful for both collaborators and illustrators.

No comments: