The Picture Book Medium: Horoscopes via Children’s Literature
The other day a kindly person I spoke with at ALA sent me a beautiful little packet of information they picked up in Tokyo. If I told you that there was an International Library of Children’s Literature in Japan would you be surprised? I’ve not heard much about it myself, but it looks just lovely (thanks, J!).
In one of the packets was a section entitled “The 20th Century Picture Books: Picture books published in the year you were born.” It got me to thinking. Picture books published the year you were born . . . what if someone invented a whole new form of personality test based on the picture books that came out in the year of their birth? Heck, it’s no crazier than basing it on the way the stars move in the sky, is it?
And so I am pleased to announce the Picture Book Medium.
Here’s how it works. First, you locate the books published in the same year that you appeared. I was born in 1978, so the books I had to pick through might include The Snowman by Raymond Briggs, The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses by Paul Goble, or Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg.
How do you find your own books? Well, there’s always the method of searching the Caldecott winners from the year of your birth. Remember that you’ll need to look at the winners of the year after your birth, since those would be the ones that were published in your year. So from the 1979 winners I add Freight Train by Donald Crews.
Finally, you construct a personal prediction from the books. Lemme see, lemme see. Well, just off the top of my head for Thursday, July 15th I give myself the following combination:
The Snowman + The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses + Freight Train = On a colorful rail line you will meet a tall, cold individual. Beware his company and find comfort instead with the animals you best identify with, or you may find yourself with a broken heart and a very large puddle.
I’m on vacation, so clearly I just want to read yours. Okay . . . go.
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About Betsy Bird
Betsy Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.
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