Daily Archives: November 6, 2015

The 50 best children’s books of 2015, says PW

I like lists.

When it comes to books, I’m always interested in reading lists of what other people think are the best or worst, or the most highly acclaimed, and so on. Sometimes I make purchase decisions from those lists, usually after I’ve read reviews. (I’ve created a list for you HERE of the books I’ve reviewed.)

This week I read the lists compiled by Publishers Weekly of their opinion of the best children’s books of 2015. They selected fifty books: 17 Picture Books, 15 Middle Grade, and 18 Young Adult. I received permission from them to share those lists with you here, then if you want to read up on any of them yourself you can go THERE and read the full review of each book. Some even have Q & A with the author, or other interesting information.


  1. The Princess and the Pony – by Kate Beaton (Scholastic/Levine)
  2. The Day the Crayons Came Home – by Drew Daywalt, illus. by Oliver Jeffers (Philomel)
  3. Last Stop on Market Street – by Matt de la Peña, illus. by Christian Robinson (Putnam)
  4. This Bridge Will Not Be Gray – by Dave Eggers, illus. by Tucker Nichols (McSweeney’s)
  5. Home – by Carson Ellis (Candlewick)
  6. The Night World – by Mordicai Gerstein (Little, Brown)
  7. The Only Child – by Guojing (Random/Schwartz & Wade)
  8. Waiting – by Kevin Henkes (Greenwillow)
  9. The King and the Sea – by Heinz Janisch, illus. by Wolf Erlbruch (Gecko Press USA)
  10. Toys Meet Snow – by Emily Jenkins, illus. by Paul O. Zelinsky (Random/Schwartz & Wade)
  11. Sidewalk Flowers – by JonArno Lawson, illus. by Sydney Smith (Groundwood)
  12. Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear – by Lindsay Mattick, illus. by Sophie Blackall (Little, Brown)
  13. Thank You and Good Night – by Patrick McDonnell (Little, Brown)
  14. Flutter and Hum: Animal Poems/Aleteo y Zumbido: Poemas de Animales – by Julie Paschkis (Holt)
  15. Lenny & Lucy – by Philip C. Stead, illus. by Erin E. Stead (Roaring Brook/Porter)
  16. The Dog That Nino Didn’t Have – by Edward van de Vendel, illus. by Anton Van Hertbruggen (Eerdmans)
  17. Leo: A Ghost Story – by Mac Barnett, illus. by Christian Robinson (Chronicle)


  1. My Diary from the Edge of the World – by Jodi Lynn Anderson (S&S/Aladdin)
  2. The Thing About Jellyfish – by Ali Benjamin (Little, Brown)
  3. The War That Saved My Life – by Kim Brubaker Bradley (Dial)
  4. George – by Alex Gino (Scholastic Press)
  5. Lost in the Sun – by Lisa Graff (Philomel)
  6. Roller Girl – by Victoria Jamieson (Dial)
  7. Listen, Slowly – by Thanhhà Lai (Harper)
  8. Friends for Life – by Andrew Norriss (Scholastic/Fickling)
  9. The Nest – by Kenneth Oppel, illus. by Jon Klassen (Simon & Schuster)
  10. Echo – by Pam Muñoz Ryan (Scholastic Press)
  11. Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War – by Steve Sheinkin (Roaring Brook)
  12. Orbiting Jupiter – by Gary D. Schmidt (Clarion)
  13. The Marvels – by Brian Selznick (Scholastic Press)
  14. Goodbye Stranger – by Rebecca Stead (Random/Lamb)
  15. Harriet the Invincible – by Ursula Vernon (Dial)


  1. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda – by Becky Albertalli (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray)
  2. Becky Albertalli (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray)
  3. A Song for Ella Grey- by David Almond (Delacorte)
  4. Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege of Leningrad -byM.T. Anderson (Candlewick)
  5. The Game of Love and Death – by Martha Brockenbrough (Scholastic/Levine)
  6. Drowned City: Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans – by Don Brown (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
  7. Saint Anything – by Sarah Dessen (Viking)
  8. Magonia – by Maria Dahvana Headley (Harper)
  9. All the Bright Places – by Jennifer Niven (Knopf)
  10. Shadowshaper – by Daniel José Older (Scholastic/Levine)
  11. The Shepherd’s Crown – by Terry Pratchett (Harper)
  12. All American Boys – by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely (S&S/Atheneum/Dlouhy)
  13. Bone Gap – by Laura Ruby (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray)
  14. The Hired Girl – by Laura Amy Schlitz (Candlewick)
  15. X: A Novel – by Ilyasah Shabazz, with Kekla Magoon (Candlewick)
  16. Challenger Deep – by Neal Shusterman (HarperTeen)
  17. Nimona – by Noelle Stevenson (HarperTeen)
  18. Trouble Is a Friend of Mine – by Stephanie Tromly (Penguin/Dawson)
  19. MARTians – by Blythe Woolston (Candlewick)

I hope these lists help make your book buying a little easier … or, if you’re anything like me, they’ll just make you aware of even more books you simply must have!

Thanks to Publishers Weekly for permission to share their lists for you to see.

I almost am embarrassed to admit I’ve not read any of the above books yet. How about you? Which ones have you read? Which ones do you now want to read, or gift to someone?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  🙂