Center for Children’s Literature

Children’s Book Committee

The Children’s Book Committee was founded more than 100 years ago to help parents, teachers, and librarians choose the books that children will find captivating and transforming. Every year it produces comprehensive annotated book lists for children aged infant through 16.

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Our Mission

The Committee reviews over 6000 titles each year for accuracy and literary quality and considers their emotional impact on children. It chooses the best 600 books, both fiction and nonfiction, which it lists with annotations according to age and category.
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Children's Book Committee April Pick

Hector: A Boy, a Protest, and the Photograph that Changed Apartheid
Author & Illustrator: Adrienne Wright
Photographs: Sam Nzima

Hector Pieterson’s story describes how a peaceful protest against inequality in the schools contributed to the end of South Africa’s apartheid system. Pastel and collage illustrations. Biographical back matter. (10-13)

I liked the book. I like how the author went into Hector’s background and showed what kind of person Hector was and didn’t just dive into the march. I like how the author showed other perspectives and introduced secondary characters. It gave different views of the story.

I wish the author would have gone into what happened after the protest and what happened with his family.

The illustrations show how uncomfortable it was learning Afrikaans. How Hector was a normal kid. The illustrations and comic book format let the author teach and explain about life in South Africa. I recommend this book.

–Liam, 12 years old, Bronx, NY.

Past Monthly Picks