Battle of the Kid’s Books is Almost Here March 4, 2013Posted by ccbooks in Nerd Line.
There are two months each year when I get overly obsessive about children’s literature (I know, my siblings and roommates would say “Only TWO?? Just who do you think you’re fooling?”). The ALA Media Awards in January are like my Oscars. And the SLJ Battle of the Kid’s Books (BOB) is like my Super Bowl/March Madness/World Series or any other sports comparison you’d like to make.
BOB is almost here and this year I’ve done pretty well with the list. The only two books I have not managed to get to read are Moonbird and Titanic, and since Titanic is coming up soonest, that one takes priority. Moonbird I’m hoping I can find before March 20 (maybe it’s at my bookstore! That would be make things easy) and it would be really nice to re-read Seraphina as well. Everything else I have read at least once (some of them multiple times) so here are my predictions/wishes for the Round 1 brackets. I’ll try to make this a list of ACTUAL predictions (based on my oh so scientific observation that the author judges 1. tend to pick books unlike the ones they write themselves and 2. everything is a toss-up) except for a few where really, I just have to go with what I love.
BOMB vs. WONDER: BOMB. It won a Newbery Honor and was probably the most widely praised non-fiction book of the year.
CODE NAME VERITY vs. TITANIC: CODE NAME VERITY. This is a love one. I know, I haven’t read TITANIC, but there’s really no way it can knock CNV off its pedestal. At least, I think it’s unlikely.
ENDANGERED vs. THREE TIMES LUCKY: Oh so hard to say. I think I’m going to predict ENDANGERED, because THREE TIMES LUCKY is similar in some ways to what Ms. Appelt writes herself. See scientific observation #1.
THE FAULT IN OUR STARS vs. TEMPLE GRANDIN: Another incredibly hard one. I enjoyed both these books, while feeling that they weren’t quite my favorite titles by their respective authors. I have to confess, I’ve only read one of Deb Caletti’s books, so I have no real idea what she might pick. Let’s toss a coin and go with TEMPLE GRANDIN.
JEPP WHO DEFIED THE STARS vs. STARRY RIVER OF THE SKY: Cannot WAIT for this one. I have high expectations for Gidwitz’s comments based on his books, interviews and my own (brief) conversation with him at our Story Festival back in the fall. I’m going to go with STARRY RIVER OF THE SKY.
LIAR AND SPY vs. SPLENDORS AND GLOOMS: SPLENDORS AND GLOOMS. Another love one. Also another judge I’m excited to hear from.
MOONBIRD vs. SERAPHINA: Another author I really don’t know at all, two books I either haven’t read or that didn’t make a huge impression on me and that adds up to another coin toss. I’ll say SERAPHINA.
NO CRYSTAL STAIR vs. THE ONE AND ONLY IVAN: THE ONE AND ONLY IVAN. I’m lobbying for Katherine Applegate to break the Newbery Curse (that says the Newbery winner always gets knocked out in Round 1).
UNDEAD POLL: We’ve been told by the Battle Commander to go with what we love, since there are no guarantees. Such a hard decision: CODE NAME VERITY or SPLENDORS AND GLOOMS? I know that CNV has many fans, so I think I’m going to pull puppet strings for this one…