Kevin Henkes

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Kevin Henkes
Kevin Henkes.jpg
Henkes at the Mazza Museum, 2011
Born (1960-11-27) November 27, 1960 (age 53)
Racine, Wisconsin, USA
Occupation Illustrator, writer
Nationality American
Period 1981–present
Genres Children's picture books
Notable work(s) Kitten's First Full Moon
Notable award(s) Caldecott Medal
2005

Kevin Henkes (born November 27, 1960) is an American writer and illustrator of children's books. As an illustrator he won the Caldecott Medal for Kitten's First Full Moon (2004). As a writer he has twice been a runner-up for the companion Newbery Medal.[1]

Career[edit]

Kevin Henkes (pronounced HANK-us) thought he would be an artist until his junior year of high school, when one of his teachers encouraged him in his writing efforts. He discovered that children's books combined both his literary and artistic interests.

Henkes writes and illustrates of children's picture books, many of which feature mice as their main characters. He also writes young-adult fiction. Henkes wrote his first book during his freshman year in college. The book's theme deals with how a child describes the pleasures of occasional solitude. This theme is common in many of Henkes' later books. Henkes, one of five children, says that many of his storylines are inspired by his family and the neighborhood where he grew up in Racine, Wisconsin.

Henkes' first book, All Alone, was published in 1981 by Greenwillow Books. More than 30 books followed, including Chrysanthemum and Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse. In 1994 Henkes was a runner-up for both of the premier American Library Association children's book awards, the Newbery Medal for Olive's Ocean and the Caldecott Medal for Owen, one of his mouse books. Next year he won the Caldecott Medal for Kitten's First Full Moon, recognizing that as the year's best children's picture book published in the U.S. All of his books to date have been published by Greenwillow Books.

Henkes won the inaugural Phoenix Picture Book Award in 2013 for Owen. The Phoenix Awards from the Children's Literature Association recognize the best books that did not win major awards when they were first published twenty years earlier.[2][3] In 2014, he received a Newbery Honor for his book, The Year of Billy Miller.[4]

Personal life[edit]

Henkes was born in Racine, Wisconsin. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He lives in Madison with his wife, artist Laura Dronzek, and their two children max and ruby. He has four other siblings.

Works[edit]

  • All Alone (1981)
  • Clean Enough (1982)
  • "Return to Sender" (1984)
  • Bailey Goes Camping (1985)
  • Grandpa & Bo (1986) — Council of Wisconsin Writers Picture Book Award
  • Once Around the Block (1987) — Library of Congress Best Books of the Year
  • "Two Under Par" (1987)
  • "The Zebra Wall" (1988)
  • Jessica (1989)
  • Shhhh (1989)
  • "Words of Stone" (1992)
  • The Biggest Boy (1995)
  • Good-Bye Curtis (1995)
  • "Sun & Spoon" (1997)
  • Circle Dogs (1998) — Charlotte Zolotow Award: Highly Commended 1999
  • "The Birthday Room" (1999)
  • Oh! (2000)
  • Olive's Ocean (2004) — Newbery Honor Book
  • Kitten's First Full Moon (2004)
  • A Good Day (2007)
  • Bird Lake Moon (2008)
  • Birds (2009)
  • Old Bear (2009)
  • My Garden (2010)
  • Little White Rabbit (2011)
  • Junonia (2011)
  • The Year of Billy Miller (2013) — Newbery Honor Book

Mouse books[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Handy, Bruce (May 13, 2007). "Getting Better All the Time". The New York Times. Retrieved 2010-11-17. 
  2. ^ "Phoenix Picture Book Award". Children's Literature Association. 2013. Retrieved 2013-12-10.
  3. ^ "Children's Literature Association 2013 Phoenix Award panel". Call for Papers, 40th Annual Children's Literature Association Conference, University of Southern Mississippi, Biloxi, Mississippi, June 13–15, 2013. Call for Papers (call-for-papers.sas.upenn.edu). Retrieved 2013-12-10.
  4. ^ And the Newbery, Caldecott award winners are..., Ashley Strickland, CNN, January 27, 2014

External links[edit]