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Favorite Books of 2015 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Flannery Fitch   

 

It’s a new year, and rather than doing the usual list of great New Year’s books, I thought it would be fun to recap some of my favorite books from last year. After all, I’m sure everyone has Bookshop Santa Cruz gift cards burning holes in their pockets, so I’ll give you some suggestions for books to spend them on!

 

Finding Winnie

by Lindsay Mattick

This charming picture book tells the true story of Winnie the Pooh. Winnie was a female Canadian bear cub who was adopted by a solider during World War I. When his platoon ships off to England, she comes with them and becomes their mascot. When they have to go to battle, they leave Winnie in a safe place—a London zoo—where she becomes friends with a young boy named Christopher Robin. This is a wonderful book that any Winnie the Pooh lover—young or old—will treasure.

 

Lenny & Lucy

by Philip Stead

Moving is hard, especially when you move out to the scary woods. To protect his new house, Peter builds a pillow man named Lenny to stand guard. But Lenny looks lonely, so Peter builds him a pillow friend, Lucy, and Lenny and Lucy guard the house. This is a simple, sweet book about how scary moving can be, and how helpful it is to have a friend watching your back.

 

I Really Like Slop

by Mo Willems

Mo Willems is one of my absolute favorite children’s authors writing today, and his newest Elephant and Piggy book is a delightful reminder of why he’s so great. Piggy really likes slop, which Gerald is (understandably) horrified by. But Gerald is a good friend, and is willing to try Piggy’s slop because that’s what friends do. Written and illustrated with the humor and warmth that infuses all of Willem’s books, this will make anyone laugh.

 

Ketzel, the Cat who Composed

by Lesléa Newman

Based on a true story, this is an utterly heartwarming, adorable tale. Moshe Cotel is a composer who hears music in the city noises around him. One day he hears a new noise, and finds a tiny kitten, who he calls by the Yiddish word for cat, Ketzel. He brings her home and decides she loves music. Then he gets a letter about a contest to compose a piece of music less than 60 seconds long. Moshe cannot compose something that short, but Ketzel can! What happens next will bring a smile to anyone’s face. This book honestly made me tear up, it’s so sweet.

 

Pip Bartlett’s Guide to Magical Creatures

by Maggie Stiefvater & Jackson Pierce

Pip Bartlett has a secret: She can speak to magical creatures of all kinds, but no one believes her! After an incident with the unicorns (totally not her fault), she’s sent off to spend the summer with her aunt, a veterinarian specializing in magical creatures. When the town is overrun with exploding Fuzzles, Pip must save the day before it’s too late. This is a clever, funny story made even better by Maggie Stiefvater’s delightful illustrations. It’s a book that any animal lover (or mischief maker) will adore.

 

Six of Crows

by Leigh Bardugo

This was my favorite Young Adult novel of 2015. Dark, gripping, and refreshingly unique, it blew me away. Complex characters from all walks of life inhabit this rich, fully imagined world, and their relationships give the story heart and soul. Filled with romance, intrigue, and magic, the book revolves around a thrilling heist and boasts an ending that will leave you begging for book two.

 

Most Dangerous

by Steve Sheinkin

If your teen prefers nonfiction, you are in luck. YA nonfiction is a growing field, and this is one of the best YA nonfiction books of 2015. The history of Daniel Ellsberg and the release of the Pentagon Papers, it reads like the best of thrillers, and provides a full picture of the Vietnam War era and Watergate scandal, and is incredibly relevant today. It’s a stunning read.

 

Flannery Fitch is a bookseller at Bookshop Santa Cruz. Her life has been about books since before she could read.

 
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