Sunday, January 9, 2011

Looking for Newbery: The Predictions

It's funny what a difference a year makes in this whole book awards game. Last year at this time pretty much everybody was in love with When You Reach Me for the Newbery and The Lion and the Mouse for the Caldecott. After looking over a few of the blogs recently it's pretty clear that nothing is very clear! The predictions are all over the place. With that being said, today is the day we take our shot and name our picks for the Newbery.

Bill's picks:

Since I don't have any idea what the winner will be and really don't have a strong feeling for a book this year, I'm going to follow Franki's example and list books that I would love to win something this year. I'm really just hoping I've read the winner and it doesn't come totally out of left field.

Countdown by Deborah Wiles

Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer Holm

A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park

Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine

Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes

Touch Blue by Cynthia Lord


Chalk by Bill Thomson

City Dog, Country Frog by Mo Willems Illustrated by Jon J. Muth

Tiny Little Fly by Michael Rosen Illustrated by Kevin Waldron

A Pirate's Guide to First Grade by James Preller Illustrated by Greg Ruth

Here Comes the Garbage Barge by Jonah Winter Illustrated by Red Nose Studios

Boss Baby by Marla Frazee

Karen's Picks -

Much like Bill, I have no idea what will win this year. There are many outstanding books that I have read this past year, and even these past two weeks. But I still truly have no idea which one will win the Newbery or be one of the Honor books.

That being said, there are several books that have truly spoken to me for a variety of reasons. Those are the books that will be my picks today (in no particular order).
  • Touch Blue by Cynthia Lord (a huge crowd favorite at our GREat Discussion - a parent/child book group)
  • The Dark Emperor by Joyce Sidman (not my idea of a typical Newbery winner, but it has a stunning text)
  • Ninth Ward by Jewell Parker Rhodes (literally just finished this one!)
I don't read as many picture books as Bill does, so I will take a pass on even guessing what might win the Caldecott award, and defer to his predictions. Looking at both of our Newbery prediction lists, though, I'm pretty amazed at how much we agree on this year. Can't wait for the announcements to be made nice and early Monday morning to see if being one of my favorites has anything to do with winning the Newbery. :)

We have had a fun two weeks reading books, reviewing them, and writing our Looking for Newbery series. Thanks so much for joining us for the fun!


  1. It seems to me that I've been hearing COUNTDOWN a lot lately. Personally, I'm not even trying to guess this year!

  2. Nice list. I still haven't gotten to The Red Umbrella.

    I'm sorry I guess A Long Walk to Water isn't eligible as it was published in another form before the book. Pretty breathtaking story however.

  3. I'm anxious to see what will be announced but of course, i like many of your picks!

  4. I'll have the ALA twitter feed live on my SmartBoard today! Can't wait to see what's picked!

  5. Our class is humming with excitement this morning! We will be watching the webcast and keeping our finger crossed for Out of Mind and Touch Blue!

  6. I often have mixed feelings about these awards, since the emphasis on "the winner" seems a little off the mark. But in the end I do like the conversations, the recommendations and passionate suggestions that help lead readers to new titles.

    I guess if they did away with the actual "winner" thing, I'd be just as happy. The true function of these awards is to bring attention to a lot of deserving books. And, I should add, I think this blog does that as well as anybody out there.


  7. I am surprised that A Long Walk to Water didn't really make much of a splash (ha ha, didn't mean to make a pun) on many mock Newbery lists or on actual Newbery list. Too bad. I just met a Lost Boy and the story is so moving that it's a shame it didn't get more recognition!