2016 Notable Children's Recordings

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The Notable Children’s Recordings list includes recordings for children 14 years of age and younger of especially commendable quality that demonstrate respect for young people’s intelligence and imagination; exhibit venturesome creativity; and reflect and encourage the interests of children and young adolescents in exemplary ways.

Appleblossom the Possum. Listening Library. 1-800-733-3000.  Ages 6-10

Be ready to laugh out loud as you listen to Dustin Hoffman read Holly Goldberg Sloan's story of Appleblossom and her family of possums.  Ages 6-10

The Boys in the Boat (Young Readers Adaptation): The True Story of an American Team's Epic Journey to Win Gold at the 1936 Olympics. Listening Library. Ages 12 and up

Mark Bramhall both breaks and warms the listener's heart as he narrates the story of working class boys on a university rowing team that makes it to the 1936 Olympics. 

Bugs in My Hair. Weston Woods. 800-724-6527. Ages 3-8

Upbeat music and accompanying sound effects will have you bopping your head as well as scratching it as Jesse Bernstein narrates this tale of head lice. 

Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms. Recorded Books. 877-732-2898. Ages 11-14

Narrator Bianca Amato captures the intense emotion of Will, a young girl forced to leave her home in Zimbabwe for a boarding school in London. 

Echo. Scholastic Audio. 800-724-6527. Ages 10 and up

Four narrators tell the stories of characters unexpectedly connected by the magic and music of a harmonica as it winds its way from Germany to the US. 

Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs. Weston Woods. Ages 3-8

Mo Willems narrates his own hilarious version of this familiar tale. 

Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins. Dreamscape. 877-983-7326. All Ages

Gildart Jackson richly portrays Hershel and a multitude of goblins in this tale filled with the music and sounds of Hanukkah. 

The Hired Girl. Recorded Books. Ages 10 -14

Rachel Botchan gives voice to 14-year-old Joan, who runs away from a hard life on a farm to become a hired girl in the home of a wealthy Jewish family in 1911. 

Infinity and Me. Live Oak Media. 800-788-1121. Ages 4 -9

Through expressive narration, sound effects, and music, this production explores the concept of infinity.

Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla. Weston Woods. Ages 3-7

Xe Sands quietly narrates the story of this famous gorilla. 

Jazz for Lil' Jumpers! Independent release. 781-254-8574. Ages 4 - 8

The ten songs in this CD will have young children jumping and dancing to different types of jazz..

The Jumbies. Recorded Books. Ages 9-14

Using authentic Haitian accents and song, Robin Miles creates an atmosphere of supernatural menace as a girl fights to save her father and her island home.

Jump Back, Paul: The Life and Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar.  Brilliance Audio. 800-648-2312. Ages 9 -14

The poet Paul Laurence Dunbar is warmly introduced by Bahni Turpin while Dion Graham deftly brings the poems to life. 

The Lightning Queen. Scholastic Audio. Ages 10-14

Christian Barillas and Thom Rivera narrate this rich cultural story shared between a Mixteco healer and his  grandson. 

Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War. Listening Library. Ages 12 and up

Ray Porter engages the listener in the true story of Daniel Ellsberg’s decision to release top-secret documents related to America’s role in the Vietnam War.  

Ms. Rapscott’s Girls. Listening Library. Ages 8-12

With humor and lots of energy, Katherine Kellgren gives voice to indomitable headmistress Ms. Rapscott and the five wayward students.  

Nursery Rhyme Parade! Furious Rose Productions. www.lisaloeb.com. Ages 0-5

Traditional nursery rhymes and songs performed by Lisa Loeb invite young children to sing along.

Nuts to You. Recorded Books. Ages 6 -11

Jessica Almasy uses tones, cadences, and accents to personify three squirrels and other animals during an exciting rescue mission. 

The Odds of Getting Even. Listening Library. Ages 9-12

Mo and Dale don't see eye to eye in their latest case full of eccentric Southern characters humorously voiced by Lauren Fortgang. 

Papa Is a Poet : A Story about Robert Frost. Weston Woods. Ages 5-10

Ammi-Joan Paquette gives a youthful voice to 15-year-old Lesley, who narrates this picture book biography of her father, the notable American poet, Robert Frost. 

Stella by Starlight. Simon & Schuster Audio. 212-698-7126. Ages 9-14

Heather Alicia Simms' warm voice and gospel singing make the conflict believable between AfricanAmericans and their white neighbors in the 1930's South. 

That Is NOT a Good Idea! Weston Woods. Ages 4–8 

Young listeners will root for the heroine and boo the villain in Mo and Cher Willems' campy take on a silent movie enhanced by music and sound effects. 

Trollhunters. Recorded Books. Ages 12–14

Kirby Heyborne does a masterful job with humans of various ages, wicked trolls, and many utterly gross situations. 

The War That Saved My Life. Listening Library. Ages 9-14

Jayne Entwistle's moving narration and expertise with a variety of British accents make this story of Ada in World War II a riveting listen. 

The Worst Class Trip Ever. Brilliance Audio. Ages 10-13

When humorist Dave Barry is paired with narrator Todd Haberkorn in a story about a class trip, the result is hilarious.

Members of the 2016 Notable Children's Recordings Committee are:
Barbara Scotto (Chair), Children's Literature New England, Brookline, Mass. 
Carolyn Angus, Mountain View, Calif.
Suzzanne Fuchs, Bismark, N.D.
Allison Gray, Goleta Library, Santa Barbara Library System, Santa Barbara, Calif.
Cecily Ruth Pilzer, Takoma Park, Md.
David M. Self, McWhirter Elementary School PDLS, Webster Texas
Ellen Spring, RSU#13 Schools, Thomaston, Maine
Janet Thompson, Chicago Public Library, Chicago, Ill.
Heather Warren Smith,  Eastern Lancaster County Library, New Holland, Pa.