ALSC - Great Early Elementary Reads

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) 2011-2012 School-Age Programs and Services Committee recommends these titles for children who are just learning to read and beginning to read on their own. The books included were published between 2009 and 2011. However, many are part of a larger series that young readers also will enjoy.
Source: All rights reserved.

This particular collection only includes some of the notable books of ALSC’s Great Elementary Reads list.


Bink and Gollie (2010)

Written by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee

Illustrated by Tony Fucile

In a brilliant collaboration, best-selling authors Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee, along with acclaimed illustrator Tony Fucile, introduce an outrageously funny pair of friends.

Meet Bink and Gollie, two precocious little girls—one tiny, one tall, and both utterly irrepressible. Setting out from their super-deluxe tree house and powered by plenty of peanut butter (for Bink) and pancakes (for Gollie), they share three comical adventures involving painfully bright socks, an impromptu trek to the Andes, and a most unlikely marvelous companion. No matter where their roller skates take them, at the end of the day they will always be the very best of friends.

Full of quick-witted repartee, this brainchild of Newbery Medalist Kate DiCamillo and award-winning author Alison McGhee is a hilarious ode to exuberance and camaraderie, imagination and adventure, brought to life through the delightfully kinetic images of Tony Fucile. This book is recommended for children ages 6 and up. (Copyright © Candlewick/Random House. All rights reserved.)

Source:  Penguin Random House Company.

Kate DiCamillo is an American writer of children's fiction for all reading levels, usually featuring animals. Her first children's book, Because of Winn-Dixie, was a 2001 Newbery Honor Book and her second book, The Tiger Rising, was a National Book Award finalist. Kate DiCamillo was awarded the the 2004 Newbery Medal, one of the most prestigious awards in children's literature, for her novel The Tale of Despereaux. DiCamillo is also known for the Mercy Watson series of picture books, illustrated by Chris Van Dusen.

For more information on Kate DiCamillo and her works, visit her website at

Alison McGhee was born on July 8, 1960. She is an American author of books for all ages. She has published several picture books, books for children, and adult novels. She is a New York Times bestselling author, the winner of numerous awards, and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for her novel Shadow Baby.

McGhee is an eclectic writer who had published works for all ages, in many forms. Her first novel is Rainlight. It received positive reviews and won both the Great Lakes College Association National Fiction Award and the Minnesota Book Award in 1999. McGhee's sophomore effort, Shadow Baby, is witnessed through the eyes of a young girl who befriends an old man as part of a school project. It was a Pulitzer Prize nominee. She then began writing children's pictures, Countdown to Kindergarten and Mrs. Watson Wants Your Teeth. Turning her hand to young adult novels, McGhee introduced Snap and All Rivers Flow to the Sea.

McGhee is an associate professor of creative writing at Metropolitan State University, where she coordinates the creative writing program. She has taught at many other colleges and universities and was a founding member of Hamline University's MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults.

For more information on Alison McGhee and her works, visit her website at

Tony Fucile has spent over twenty years designing and animating characters for cartoon feature films. During the first fifteen years, he put pencil to paper to help bring life to characters from The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, The Lion King, and The Iron Giant. And in the last six years, he put mouse to mouse pad for the Oscar-winning Finding Nemo and The Incredibles, for which he was a Supervising Animator. Tony's first picture book for children, Let's Do Nothing!, will be released by Candlewick Press in Spring 2009. He's currently working on a chapter book series by Kate DiCamillo and Alison McGhee about two friends named Bink and Gollie. He's also excited to begin work on Mitchell's License, a picture book by Hallie Durand to be published by Candlewick Press.


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