Awesome Nonfiction: The 2015 Charlotte Huck and Orbis Pictus Awards

Did you see which book won the 2015 Orbis Pictis this year?

What is Orbis Pictus? Each year the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) recognize an outstanding children’s nonfiction book.

This year the winner is:

The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, and the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candace Fleming, which also was a finalist for this year’s YALSA awards, as well as a 2015 Sibert Honor book. It is definitely a book to look for if you haven’t seen it yet.

The awards committees picked some excellent honors and recommended books, as well.


The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus 
by Jen Bryant and illustrated by Melissa Sweet is a Charlotte Huck honor book. It was also the 2015 Sibert medal winner.


To give you a feel for The Right Word, here’s the book trailer:

  • Publisher: Eerdmans Books for Young Readers (September 15, 2014)
  • ISBN-10: 0802853854
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802853851

Star Stuff: Carl Sagan and the Mysteries of the Cosmos by Stephanie Roth Sisson is an absolutely extraordinary picture book.

  • Age Range: 4 – 8 years
  • Publisher: Roaring Brook Press (October 14, 2014)
  • ISBN-10: 1596439602
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596439603

Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez and Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation 
by Duncan Tonatiuh, is also a 2015 Pura Belpré Illustrator Honor Book and a 2015 Robert F. Sibert Honor Book. It is a great choice for both Black History Month and Women’s History Month.

  • Age Range: 6 – 9 years
  • Publisher: Harry N. Abrams (May 6, 2014)
  • ISBN-10: 1419710540
  • ISBN-13: 978-1419710544


We previously reviewed this recommended title from the Scientists in the Field series: Chasing Cheetahs: The Race to Save Africa’s Fastest Cat (Scientists in the Field Series), by Sy Montgomery and Nic Bishop, which follows Dr. Lauren Marker and her colleagues and students as they work with cheetahs in Namibia.

Neighborhood Sharks: Hunting with the Great Whites of California’s Farallon Islands by Katherine Roy also received a 2015 Sibert Honor recognition.

  • Age Range: 7 – 11 years
  • Publisher: David Macaulay Studio (September 30, 2014)
  • ISBN-10: 1596438746
  • ISBN-13: 978-1596438743

The Scraps Book: Notes from a Colorful Life 
by Lois Ehlert

  • Age Range: 5 – 10 years
  • Publisher: Beach Lane Books (March 4, 2014)
  • ISBN-10: 1442435712
  • ISBN-13: 978-1442435711

The Orbis Pictus website has more recommended books.

Have you read any of these titles yet?

If you are interested in some of the background about how these books came about and have a few minutes, check out some of the honored authors and illustrators talking about their books.


Disclosures: I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title link and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at no extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.


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