Marking its 97th anniversary, this year’s Children’s Book Week will offer a number of initiatives for booksellers across the country. The 2016 event, which will run from May 2–8, kicks off with three major launch parties in New York City, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, along with book signings and other events. Here is an overview of this year’s highlights:
Bi-Coastal Kickoff: New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco will lead the nation with local events for children’s book fans of all ages. At New York’s Jefferson Market Library on May 1, kids ages 5–12 will be invited to participate in age-appropriate crafts and trivia games and meet featured authors and illustrators, including Nick Bruel, Sarah Beth Durst, and Nancy Krulik. Over on the West Coast on May 1, the Children’s Book Council will host an “Authors as Fans” panel at Santa Monica High School in Santa Monica, Calif. Panelists include young adult authors Margaret Stohl and Melissa de la Cruz, among others. And on May 7, the San Francisco Public Library will hold a “Graphic Novel Conversation” with Gene Luen Yang and Raina Telgemeier.
Meet and Greet: Children’s book authors will be in full force at bookstores nationwide for book signings. Among the featured authors: young adult novelist Amy Tintera will be at BookPeople in Austin, Tex.; author-illustrator Mike Curato will visit Green Bean Books in Portland, Ore.; and author-illustrator Teddy Swecker will make an appearance at Sundance Bookstore in Reno, Nev.
Let the Voting Begin: The polls are open and kids can vote for their favorite authors for the ninth annual Children’s Choice Book Awards from now until April 25. Winners will be announced during Children’s Book Week, although no formal awards ceremony will take place this year.
Digital Toolkit: An online resource for children’s booksellers and librarians, this updated tool provides printable voting ballots, voting banners, stickers, and reading badges that can be used on bookstore websites and blogs. Sample tweets and Facebook posts can be accessed for helping to promote Children’s Book Week.
Latest Literary Landmark: In conjunction with United for Libraries, the ALA-CBC has added a new Literary Landmark to Children’s Book Week 2016: the Society of Illustrators, in recognition of their annual exhibit “The Original Art” that honors children’s book artists. The presentation will take place on May 5 in New York.
2016 CBW Poster, Bookmark Illustrators: This year’s official Children’s Book Week poster was designed by Brian Won, author-illustrator of the 2014 picture book Hooray for Hat! (HMH). His poster features characters from the book reading together. This year’s bookmark, created by 2015 Children’s Choice Debut Author finalist Cece Bell, depicts characters from her graphic novel El Deafo (Abrams/Amulet, 2014). Posters and bookmarks will be distributed at more than 100 literary clubs and events in all 50 states, including the Los Angeles Times Book Festival, Tucson Festival of Books and USO of North Carolina.