Monday, January 10, 2011
A Big Year for Children's Historical Fiction and the Newbery
But lo and behold, I couldn't help but notice that both the Newbery winner, Moon Over Manifest (congratulations to author Clare Vanderpool--and it's her first novel, no less!) and three of the four Newbery Honor picks this year are historical fiction (and not surprisingly, given the focus of this blog, I had read all of them, although I didn't get to Moon Over Manifest until the end of 2010 and was still trying to decide whether to review more 2010 titles or not). The three honor books, Margi Preus' Heart of a Samurai, Rita Williams' Garcia's One Crazy Summer, and Jennifer Holm's Turtle in Paradise, were all reviewed here on my blog around the time of their release (titles link to my reviews).
I was also delighted to see that A Sick Day for Amos McGee won the Caldecott; sometimes I find that the Caldecott winners, while always beautiful to look at, don't always have strong kid appeal. Definitely not the case with Amos McGee, a great read-aloud for preschoolers and lower elementary school age kids, full of kid-pleasing zoo animal characters and a storyline that is touching and funny, but not sentimental and maudlin.
Congratulations to all the winners, and especially to all the committee members who spend so many hours in meetings and reading all the nominated titles!