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Welcome back to Picture Book March Madness! We've sorted the ballots and tallied the votes from Round Three's Elite Eight pairings. Who made the Final Four, you ask?

It was a brutal contest. Max and his Wild Things trounced The Snowy Day with 90% of the vote, seizing the title of Favorite Caldecott Medalist. For once, though, it's fair to say that the contenders in this category are all winners. The Day the Crayons Quit, meanwhile, has assumed the mantle of Most Enchanting Newcomer after garnering 82% of the vote in its matchup against Rosie Revere, Engineer. Could last week's enthusiastic endorsement of Oliver Jeffers' illustrations have tipped the scales? Maybe, but we never promised equal time.

Despite a strong showing when the polls opened, Corduroy was ultimately overtaken by The Hungry Little Caterpillar, who captured 61% of the vote to win the Animal Tales pennant. But the closest match by far was the clash for the Colorful Classics crown. The Giving Tree and The Lorax duked it out in a botanical battle for the ages, a green guerre d'escadre among devotees of Seuss and Silverstein. In the end, though no trees were left standing, The Lorax pulled ahead with 55% of the vote.

Now it's time for the Final Four to face off! Will it be a storied Medalist or a stalwart Animal tale? A debonair Newcomer or a dependable Classic? Examine the matchups in the bracket below, and cast your votes in the embedded form.

Caldecott Medalist   Enchanting Newcomer

Where the Wild Things Are




The Day The Crayons Quit

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

The Lorax

Animal Tale Colorful Classic

Will those sassy crayons scribble all over Where the Wild Things Are? Will The Lorax's message trump the Caterpillar's metamorphosis? Share this Final Four bracket with all the passionate readers in your life, and tune in again next week, when we'll announce the two final opponents. The Championship draws near!
And then there were eight. The results from the second round of voting are in, and it was a nail-biter. Instead of making way for ducklings, we should probably have made them some tiny flipper-shaped snowboots! The Snowy Day was just too much for them. The Giving Tree managed to erase Harold and the Purple Crayon from the running—a waxy chore—but The Day the Crayons Quit made up for it with their colorful victory over Elephant and Piggie. Meanwhile, The Very Hungry Caterpillar gobbled up the mouse and his cookie, and The Lorax out-witted The Tale of Peter Rabbit. That, or bunnies are allergic to Grickle-grass.

Lilaia Kairis, our Director of Digital Services, sat down with her five-year-old son, Nico, to find out which Round Two winner he'll be rooting for in Round Three.


Nico smiles while reading The Day the Crayons Quit
Ready for bed in his rocketship pajamas, Nico reads aloud from his March Madness pick, The Day the Crayons Quit.
"I like all the books that I have," he said, feigning impartiality. Despite having read The Very Hungry Caterpillar "a hundred times" and chuckling with amusement at the memory of Corduroy's escalator-ride, his favorite seems to be The Day the Crayons Quit. "It's funny, and I love it!" he exclaimed, before giggle-reading the whole thing using distinct voices for each crayon. Nico also heartily recommends its sequel, The Day the Crayons Came Home

"Even though we've read it countless times now, it still makes him laugh out loud," says Lilaia. "What's better than that?" Of Oliver Jeffers' illustrations, Lilaia extols their ability to support the story and convey character. "They really make you feel like you're seeing Duncan's artwork and getting to know him a little bit." Sentient crayons aside, it's also a relatable story. "In our house, some crayons are definitely more overworked than others, so a lot of the humor rings true for us!"

Are you ready for the third round of voting? We're down to the Elite Eight—it's time to declare a winner in each conference. Which Caldecott Medalist will shine brightest? Which Animal Tale will roar loudest? Which is the most Colorful Classic? And which Enchanting Newcomer will bind us in its spell? Examine the matchups in the bracket below, and cast your votes in the embedded form.


Caldecott Medalists   Enchanting Newcomers

The Snowy Day




The Day The Crayons Quit

Where the Wild Things Are

Rosie Revere, Engineer




The Lorax

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

The Giving Tree

Animal Tales Colorful Classics

Cast your vote and share the bracket far and wide. By this time next week, we'll know the identities of the Final Four! See you then.
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