of the Center for Children's Books
|The Bulletin Dozen is a monthly
theme-based booklist available as an online-only Bulletin
feature. Since we're awfully fond of bakers here at the Bulletin,
we thought we'd adopt their philosophy of generosity and throw in an
extra one or two when we have them to offer--so don't expect an even
dozen. Please feel free to copy, download, or link to these lists. We
ask only that you cite the source. See the archive
from previous months.
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A Dirty Dozen
waste—however you say it, it’s all pretty gross and usually a bit
as the old saying goes, it can also be quite the treasure and that is
the case in this instance, as this month’s dozen takes its inspiration
stinky, the rotten, and the downright dirty.
Albee, Sarah Poop Happened!: A History of the World from
the Bottom Up; illus. by Robert Leighton. Walker, 2010. Gr. 5-9
Albee traces the social history of the ultimate waste product through the development of sanitation practices and the consequences and benefits thereof in this breezy text and appealingly designed book.
Almond, David. Slog’s Dad; illus. by Dave McKean.
Candlewick, 2011. Gr. 5-8
After Slog’s dad, the beloved hymn-singing garbage collector of their small English village, finally loses his battle with cancer, Slog spends the spring awaiting his father’s promised return in this wondrous and captivating tale. (BCCB 5/11)
Burns, Loree Griffin. Tracking Trash: Flotsam, Jetsam,
and the Science of Ocean Motion. Houghton, 2007. Gr. 5-9
Accessible, informative text accompanied by colorful photos make this scientific investigation into the oceanic drifts – and the refuse that sometimes hops a ride –fascinating read. (BCCB 5/09)
Darrow, Sharon. Trash. Candlewick, 2006. Gr. 7-12
Sixteen-year-old Sissy is familiar with trash – not only does she often sift through it to make ends meet on the street, but she’s pretty certain that she is trash – why else would her mother abandon her and her brother? Heartbreaking and honest, this is a story of loss and reinvention. (BCCB 10/06)
Kelsey, Elin. Not Your Typical Book about the
Environment. Owl Kids/Maple Tree Press, 2010. Gr. 4-8
There’s more to be done about our environmental problems than just recycling and reducing waste; this upbeat, kid-friendly text offers plenty of accessible, everyday solutions. (BCCB 6/10)
Kirk, Ellen. Human Footprint: Everything You Will Eat,
Use, Wear, Buy, and Throw Out in Your Lifetime. National Geographic,
2011. Gr. 4-8
Images of towering piles of diapers and mountains of milk cartons make for some arresting visuals in this exploration of mass consumption and its effects on the environment. (BCCB 4/11)
McMullan, Kate and Jim. I Stink! Cotler/HarperCollins,
2002. 3-7 yrs
A garbage truck fragrantly describes the raw, rubbish-crunching details of its early-morning duties; illustrations pack the protagonist with personality as well as refuse. (BCCB 6/02)
Omololu, C.J. Dirty Little Secrets. Walker, 2010. Gr.
Sixteen-year-old Lucy has managed to keep her mother’s compulsive hoarding a secret for years now and she is desperate for it to remain so, even after her mother dies unexpectedly. (BCCB 3/10)
Ward, Helen. The Tin Forest; illus. by Wayne Anderson.
Dutton, 2001. 5-8 yrs
An old man living in a wasteland of "other people's garbage and bad weather" decides to turn the trash into a treasured forest in this visually lush and contemplative tale. (BCCB 9/01)
Winter, Jonah. Here Comes the Garbage Barge!; illus. by
Red Nose Studio. Schwartz & Wade, 2010. 5-9 yrs
Uniquely illustrated with photos of clay models and found objects, this fictionalized account of a New York barge charged with the task of hauling one town’s massive garbage heap cleverly blends humor and environmentalism. (BCCB 4/10)
Wong, Janet. The Dumpster Diver; illus. by David
Roberts. Candlewick, 2007.
With the help of is young neighbor, Steve the electrician dives for trashed goodies (like lava lamps and blenders) in this creative and colorful take on the old adage “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”
Yezerski, Thomas F. Meadowlands: A Wetlands Survival
Story. Farrar, 2011. Gr. 3-5
Detailed ink-and-watercolor illustrations and a sparse but informative text documents the reclamation of the New Jersey Meadowlands after decades of waste dumping and pollution left it a toxic mess. (BCCB 5/09
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This page was last updated on July 1, 2011.