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Bill Martin, Jr. Picture Book Award

The award was established in 1996 by the Kansas Reading Association. The purpose of the award is to promote an appreciation of quality literature in young children across Kansas. The award is named for Bill Martin Jr, an internationally renowned author. We honor the outstanding authors and illustrators who produce outstanding literature for this audience.

The titles are suggested by teachers, parents, communities, and librarians. A committee of KRA members choose nominations from the list of suggested titles. Then the nomination list is presented to the body of KRA members to vote on, the title with the most votes wins the year's award.

Please contact Roger Caswell, BMJ award chairperson, with any questions.

2016 Bill Martin, Jr. Picture Book Award Voting Open

One of the benefits of membership in the Kansas Reading Association is the exposure to top quality picture books through the Bill Martin Jr. Picture Book Awards. The celebrated author of Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?; Chicka, Chicka, Boom, Boom and many others was a leader in the early literacy field. The award named for him honors his work in children’s literature by recognizing outstanding authors/illustrators of children’s picture books.

Now is the time to select the next recipient of the Bill Martin Jr. Picture Book Award. The committee has presented us with an awesome list of books nominated for the award. Many councils have featured the books in their meetings. Voting will be opened February 1-29, 2016.

Each member of the Kansas Reading Association has one vote. CLICK HERE and then select "Register" to cast your vote now through February 29. The link may also be found in the member's only event section of the website member portal at mykra.kansasread.org/events.

PLEASE NOTE: you must be signed in as a KRA member on the member portal before you can vote in the BMJ event. If your membership has expired, you will first need to renew your membership before being allowed to vote. You can renew your membership or join KRA at https://kra.wildapricot.org/join-us.

Exciting news: Bill Martin Jr.’s book Listen To Our World is being published posthumously and is available for pre-order on Amazon and at other book sites. Bill Martin had worked with Michael Sampson to complete the book before his death. Melissa Sweet illustrated the book. Plans are also set to release the book Spunky Little Monkey at a future date.

2016 Award Nominee Information

2015 Winner Bill Martin, Jr. Picture Book Award


Written by Drew Daywalt
Illustrated by Oliver Jeffers