I actually let out several girly screams while awards were being announced. So many wonderful books under each category. But after the excitement, I reflected a bit and I thought I'd share some of that thinking with you.
- I am soooooo excited that I actually read all 4 of the Newbery winners -- the 3 honor books and the winner. This is a first for me, and I'm basking in the success. But I couldn't have done it without recommendations from friends, GoodReads, blogs like Heavy Medal, and our wonderful independent bookseller, Sally Oddi. Thanks to everyone who encouraged me to read these books. I am so grateful for the network of readers to which I belong!
- I thought all the winners were deserving. Each book was an important piece of literature that I'll be delighted to share with my students (if I haven't already -- hello Ivan!!) for years to come.
- On the other hand, there were some books I absolutely loved this year that weren't recognized with an award. Those books will also continue to be shared with my students - I love each of them for a different reason, and I know they are books with which my students really connect.
- I really appreciated the article Monica Edinger posted this weekend at the Nerdy Book Club blog clarifying the daunting task of being part of the committees deciding each honor. I couldn't help but wonder how difficult that must be to read voraciously the year you're on the committee, but not to be able to share your thinking/bias about books outside your committee. I am grateful to all those who willingly take on this task. I noticed the Caldecott and Newbery committees had about 15 people each; building consensus with that size of group would take some serious teamwork. Well done!
- Now that the awards have been announced, I am dying to dive into all the 2013 books and ARCs from NCTE I have been waiting to read. Another year of reading and joy!!
- In the meantime, congratulations to all the winners!! Bravo!