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May 30, 2015

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Signing off

Signing off

Thanks so much for continuing to add your thoughts on this year’s winners to yesterday’s post, and your ideas for next year to the 2016 Newbery Watchlist post. I want to add to my thoughts to yesterday to say that while ethnic diversity was only one facet of the statement this year’s awards make…they make […]

And the Winners Are….

And the Winners Are….

Yeah, no, not yet. We will update this post later this morning. This year, I’m double-booked during the press conference, so as soon as the awards are announced I will be off and running to arrive very late at my meeting (they actually schedule other meetings at the same time? Yep.  Not everyone’s a youth […]

Under Wraps

Under Wraps

I am sitting on the shuttle bus to the convention center in a snowstorm, and on this bus are THE results of the Newbery! Committee Chair Randall Enos is on his way to deliver the results to the ALA Press Office, two seats behind me. Shortly, a few select people beyond the committee will know, […]

90-Second Newbery Film Festival & Battle of the Kids Books

90-Second Newbery Film Festival & Battle of the Kids Books

Today we are all arriving in Chicago for the ALA Midwinter Meeting, soon to listen in to the Notable Book discussions, browse the exhibits for next year’s contenders, and await the announcement of the awards on Monday morning.  We will wrap up our discussion on that final post next week, and then go into hibernation […]

Three Longshots?

Three Longshots?

I’m scanning my shelves for books we’ve not done justice to this season.  Has anyone mentioned FIVE, SIX, SEVEN, NATE by Tim Federle, LORD AND LADY BUNNY by Polly Horvath, or THE UNSTOPPABLE OCTOBIA MAY by Sharon Flake?  Barely a mention of Freedman’s ANGEL ISLAND, Nye’s THE TURTLE OF OMAN, Yelchin’s ARCADY’S GOAL or Pinkney’s […]

Results from the Mocks, and ALA Midwinter!

Thank you all for starting to post your mock results!  If you haven’t yet please contribute your comments here. We’ve heard from: Cincinnati and friends (BROWN GIRL DREAMING) Rhode Island Public and School Librarians (CROSSOVER) Masschussetts Library System (NIGHT GARDENER) Emerson School in Berkeley CA (read synoposes of the kids discussions at http://greatkidbooks.blogspot.com/) And we are in […]

Short and Graphic?

Short and Graphic?

We haven’t given quite as much play to “outlier” formats this year as others, with exception for EL DEAFO.  I posted briefly on Picture Books back in November (and am still wildly emphatic about IVAN; check it out if you have not yet), and Jonathan on Transitional Chapter Books in December.   Given that we’ve […]

El Deafo

El Deafo

As Jonathan tallies up your Online Mock votes, I’d love to give some more discussion to EL DEAFO, since it didn’t make our shortlist this year but deserves more exploration. Many of you are stumping for it, Anderson’s Bookshop has it on their Mock Newbery list, and For Those About to Mock hopes it gets a fair shot. […]

The Night Gardener and Rain Reign

The Night Gardener and Rain Reign

As you all vote, and as we await the results of Jonathan’s San Diego Mock Newbery, I wanted to invite discussion on two contenders that did not make our shortlist, but did many others, and which I expect to see (yup, there they are!) in your online Mock Ballots.  Neither Jonathan nor I could quite […]

Results for the Oakland Mock Newbery

Results for the Oakland Mock Newbery

Our Winner:  THE FAMILY ROMANOV  (11 1st place votes; 1 2nd; 2 3rd) Our  Two Honor Books:  THE CROSSOVER (4 1st; 4 2nd; 2 3rd) and BROWN GIRL DREAMING (2 1st; 6 2nd; 4 3rd). I’m posting our whiteboard so that you can see (sort of) the three ballots that it took to get to […]

West of the Moon

West of the Moon

There is a myth that spring books don’t win awards, and several theories about the myth…that it is a  self-fulfilling prophecy because publishers save their better books for the fall, or is because committee members have time to get disillusioned with early books and don’t with late ones.  I find the reverse of the latter however: […]

Getting ready, whether real or mock

Getting ready, whether real or mock

We are nearly done with our “redux” posts of our shortlisted titles, and as you each finish your reading, I encourage you to go back to those posts and add your thoughts. The ALA youth media awards this year are happening a little later than usual, and that gives us the whole month of January […]

The Family Romanov Redux

The Family Romanov Redux

In the original post on this title, Jonathan and Leonard Kim got into a little back and forth comparing it to REVOLUTION, so it seems apt to take this one up next.   How does it compare in prose, in structure and context setting?  Each book of course has a different ultimate goal:  Wiles’s is […]

Off the radar?

Off the radar?

We’ll continue over the next few weeks to review books from our shortlist and talk about the Newbery process as we ramp up to our Mock Newberies on January 11th (Oakland) and 15th (San Diego), but I wanted to take a moment to address Rosanne’s recent comment about whether we’ve noticed small/indie press Newbery contenders […]

Port Chicago 50 Redux

Port Chicago 50 Redux

As Jonathan and I start revisiting each of the titles on our mock discussion shortlist (and please do keep commenting on JOEY PIGZA), it seems time to jump back to one of the first titles we introduced this season, Steve Sheinkin’s THE PORT CHICAGO 50: DISASTER, MUTINY, AND THE FIGHT FOR CIVIL RIGHTS, which has since made […]

How we think we read

Over the course of last week, my mind was mostly occupied with the Ferguson decision, and some of the resulting protests here in Oakland. Between that and Tamir Rice, I purposefully limited my exposure to the fallout over Handler’s remarks at the National Book Award, but I took some time over this weekend to catch […]

Our Shortlist!

The genesis of this blog was as a discussion platform to build a shortlist for the Mock Newbery discussion I’ve held in Oakland CA for the past (gulp) 11 years.This year we will get together on Sunday January 11th, from 12:30-5pm.  Email me if you’d like further details. (Jonathan will hold a Mock Discussion in […]

Our Shortlist!

Our Shortlist!

The genesis of this blog was as a discussion platform to build a shortlist for the Mock Newbery discussion I’ve held in Oakland CA for the past (gulp) 11 years.This year we will get together on Sunday January 11th, from 12:30-5pm.  Email me if you’d like further details. (Jonathan will hold a Mock Discussion in […]

The Witch’s Boy

The Witch’s Boy

Several of you have mentioned Barnhill’s THE WITCH’S BOY, and our library copies finally hit the shelves recently.  I wasn’t a fan of Barnhill’s starred debut THE MOSTLY TRUE STORY OF JACK, and was underwhelmed by IRON HEARTED VIOLET….so I’m having a hard time parsing my appreciation of THE WITCH’S BOY.  Did it simply exceed […]

Picture Books

Picture Books

There is no stipulation that the Newbery be fiction, nor that it be long, though it tends to happen that way. Some exceptions from the lengthy category include a 1973 Honor for FROG AND TOAD TOGETHER, a 1983 Honor for DOCTOR DE SOTO, the 1989 winner for JOYFUL NOISE, and the 1982 Medal for A VISIT […]