The New York Times - Notable Children's Books of 2012

This year’s notable children’s books — the best illustrated children's books, middle grade and young adult fiction and nonfiction, and picture books — selected by the children’s book editor of The New York Times Book Review.



Brothers at Bat: The True Story of an Amazing All-Brother Baseball Team (2012)

Written by Audrey Vernick

Illustrated by Steven Salerno

The Acerra family had sixteen children, including twelve ball-playing boys. It was the 1930s, and many families had lots of kids. But only one had enough to field a baseball team . . . with three on the bench! The Acerras were the longest-playing all-brother team in baseball history. They loved the game, but more important, they cared for and supported each other and stayed together as a team. Nothing life threw their way could stop them.

Full of action, drama, and excitement, this never-before-told true story is vividly brought to life by Audrey Vernick’s expert storytelling and Steven Salerno’s stunning vintage-style art. This book is recommended for children ages 4 and up. (Copyright © Clarion Books/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.)

Source:  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

Steven Salerno creates illustrations ranging from the simple and whimsical to more realistically stylized, textured imagery with some having a retro feel. His illustrations are firmly anchored in traditional drawing skills, reflective of his admiration of select artists and illustrators from past eras.

Over his long independent graphics career, he has created thousands of published illustrations for nearly 600 national and international clients, for use in print & web advertising, editorial magazines and newspapers, product packaging, corporate publications, retail graphics, and publishing. Salerno's illustrations have been recognized for excellence by Communication Arts, Print, Society for News Design, Society of Publication Designers, The Art Director's Club, Society of Illustrators, and the Junior Library Guild.

Salerno has already illustrated twenty-four popular picture books for children, with five of these titles as both author & illustrator. Over the next three years, 5 more of his illustrated picture books will be released, including his next author/illustrator title, Tim's Goodbye, published by Farrar Straus & Giroux (2018). His picture books have received industry starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, School Library Journal, Children's Literature, The New York Times Review of Books, and have been displayed by the Society of Illustrators (NYC) in their annual children's picture book art exhibition, The Original Art.

Originally from Vermont, Salerno was an honors graduate of the Illustration Department at Parsons School of Design in New York City, where he studied art history, printmaking, animation, and illustration under top industry professionals including famed author/illustrator Maurice Sendak. Since 1999, his time has been engaged predominantly with picture book projects, though he still creates illustrations for magazine, newspaper, corporate publications, packaging, and advertising clients. He lives and works in Manhattan, New York City.



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