Arts and Entertainment

Pa. Center for the Book announces 2017 list of best books for family literacy

'A Baker’s Dozen' compilation has recommended 13 books each year since 2004

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Committed to providing an annual list of the best books to support family literacy, the Pennsylvania Center for the Book has announced its 13 books for the 2017 edition. "A Baker's Dozen: The Best Children's Books for Family Literacy for 2017" was compiled by a panel of children's literature experts from the many children's books published last year.

The titles for the 2017 list include:

  • "123 Dream" by Kim Kranz (published by Random);
  • "ABCs on Wheels” by Ramon Olivera (Little Simon);
  • “D Is for Dress-Up: The ABC’s of What We Wear” by Maria Carluccio (Chronicle);
  • “Ella and Penguin Stick Together” by Megan Maynor, illustrated by Rosalinde Bonnet (HarperCollins);
  • “Faraway Fox” by Jolene Thompson, illustrated by Justin K. Thompson (Houghton);
  • “Lion Lessons” by Jon Agee (Dial);
  • “Owl Sees Owl” by Laura Godwin, illustrated by Rob Dunlavey (Random/Schwartz & Wade);
  • “The Saddest Toilet in the World” by Sam Apple, illustrated by Sam Ricks (Simon/Aladdin);
  • “They All Saw A Cat” by Brendan Wenzel (Chronicle);
  • “Walter’s Wonderful Web” by Tim Hopgood (Farrar);
  • “We Found A Hat” by Jon Klassen (Candlewick);
  • “A Well-Mannered Young Wolf” by Jean Leroy, illustrated by Matthieu Maudet (Eerdmans); and
  • “When Spring Comes” by Kevin Henkes, illustrated by Laura Dronzek (Greenwillow)

The Pennsylvania Center for the Book, assessing hundreds of new children’s books each year, prepares book lists, activities and curriculum materials. Working with its youngest audience, preschool children, the Baker’s Dozen list complements the center’s family literacy activities to help parents and caregivers to create and nurture lifelong readers. Tips for using the books with children and families, previous years' selections, annotations, selection criterial and more are available through the "A Baker's Dozen" website.

The Pennsylvania Center for the Book, sponsored by Penn State’s University Libraries and Barbara I. Dewey, dean of University Libraries and Scholarly Communications, is one of 51 similar organizations nationwide established by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. Its mission is to study, honor, celebrate and promote books, reading, libraries and literacy to the citizens and residents of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

For more information, visit or contact Caroline Wermuth, outreach coordinator, Pennsylvania Center for the Book, at or 814-863-5472.