1997 Caldecott Medal and Honor Books

Caldecott Medal Winner

Golem - book coverThe 1997 Caldecott Medal winner is Golem, written and illustrated by David Wisniewski (Clarion Books, a division of Houghton Mifflin).

From the shimmeringly powerful hand of God to the life-giving hands of the rabbi and on through the murderously destructive hands of the Golem, the universal themes of power and redemption are reflected. Created to protect Jews in 16th-century Prague, this soulless clay giant comes to find that life is precious. Intricate paper-cuts provide breathless detail to each double-page spread.

"Wisniewski's powerful visual interpretation of this emotionally compelling tale is rendered in a medium that reflects the duality of creation and destruction--coming together only to come apart. The power and fragility of Wisniewski's medium arereflected in the power and mortality of the rabbi's Golem." --1997 Caldecott Committee Chair Linda Ward Callaghan

Audio Speech Cover: 1997 Newbery and Caldecott Acceptance Speeches


Listen to David Wisniewski’s Caldecott Medal Acceptance Speech [Link downloads MP3 audio file/20MB]






Honor Books

  Hush! A Thai Lullaby - book cover Hush! A Thai Lullaby illustrated by Holly Meade
Text: Minfong Ho (Melanie Kroupa/Orchard Books)

A mother warns a crying mosquito, a leaping frog, and a swinging monkey not to wake her sleeping child in this gentle, cumulative bedtime story.

"Changing perspectives and a strong visual narrative move the action forward as the mother quiets each noisy animal in turn. A strong sense of composition and a soft earthy palette help support a vibrant visual text."

  The Graphic Alphabet - book cover The Graphic Alphabet by David Pelletier
Edited by Neal Porter (Orchard Books)

The traditional form of the alphabet book is reinvented using sophisticated computer imagery laced with wit and humor. Each letter is not only represented by a word, image, or concept--it IS the word, image or concept. For example, the letter I is an iceberg, floating in the sea.

"Crisp graphic imagery combined with meticulous layout and design result not in an instructional alphabet book, but in a unique visual experience."

The Paperboy - book cover The Paperboy by Dav Pilkey
(Richard Jackson/Orchard Books)

A boy wakes in the darkness, bundles his newspapers, and accompanied by his faithful dog, delivers the daily papers to the still, dark houses before returning home to his warm bed.

"The movement from dark to dawn is reflected in the play of shadow and light in the subtly evolving imagery of this simple story. Carefully balanced compositions and a remarkably restrained but rich palette give this title tremendous visual appeal, from moonlight to daylight, from beginning to end."

  Starry Messenger - book cover Starry Messenger by Peter Sís (Frances Foster Books/Farrar Straus Giroux)

An insightful, multi-layered picture book biography of astronomer Galileo Galilei, illustrated in a style that evokes Renaissance art, architecture, and cartography.

"No detail is unworthy of attention in the design and layout of this painstakingly intricate picture book as each turn of the page reveals a reluctant world on the very edge of discovery."

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