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Winners of the 2016 Comstock-Gág Read Aloud Books Awards Announced

For the twelfth year, children have chosen the best books when read out loud to them in the Minnesota State University Moorhead’s (MSUM) Comstock-Gág Read Aloud Book Awards program.

The 2016 winner of the Wanda Gág Read Aloud Book Award for the preschool to eight year old category is Please, Open This Book! written by Adam Lehrhaupt, illustrated by Matthew Forsythe, and published by Simon & Schuster. This humorous book filled with “trapped” animals inside the pages will have you questioning your motive for continuing reading this book.   The Wanda Gág Honor Books for 2016 are If You Ever Want to Bring an Alligator to School, Don’t! written and illustrated by Elise Parsley, A Tale of Two Beasts written and illustrated by Fiona Roberton, and Those Pesky Rabbits written and illustrated by Ciara Flood.

The 2016 winner of the Comstock Read Aloud Book Award for the nine to twelve year old category is Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear written by Lindsay Mattick, illustrated by Sophie Blackall, and published by Little, Brown & Company. This tells the remarkable true story of the bear who inspired Winnie the Pooh. The Comstock Honor Books for 2016 are Jars of Hope: How One Woman Helped Save 2,500 Children During the Holocaust written by Jennifer Roy and illustrated by Meg Owenson and Tucky Jo and Little Heart written and illustrated by Patricia Polacco.

Twenty-two regional teachers and librarians, along with 196 MSUM students read aloud 218 picture books to 21,638 children during the year. The winners and honor books are determined after the Read Aloud Book Awards Committee examines feedback from readers, which includes responses from children to each of the books. The purpose of the program is to increase literacy and promote reading aloud to children and to recognize outstanding authors and illustrators each year. A total of 239,579 children have participated in the Comstock-Gág Read Aloud Book Awards program in the past twelve years. Each year after the award winners are selected, the Livingston Lord Library’s Curriculum Materials Center (CMC) donates a large portion of the picture books to area libraries, schools, and nonprofits. To date, over 7,500 picture books have been donated.

The awards program is administered by the staff of the MSUM Livingston Lord Library’s CMC, which holds a large collection of children’s books and resource materials for in-service teachers. The book award project is partially funded by the Solomon G. Comstock Memorial Fund of the Minneapolis Foundation and the Wanda Gág Book Award Fund of the MSUM Alumni Foundation.


Pam Werre, CMC Librarian/Comstock-Gág Read Aloud Book Awards Committee Chair
Livingston Lord Library
Minnesota State University Moorhead
1104 Seventh Avenue South
Moorhead, MN 56563

Phone: 218.477.5818
FAX: 218.477.5924



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