And the Winners Are

Y’all know that I am a complete nerd about book awards and so it was rather heartbreaking to leave Dallas before the big youth media awards were announced.

Still, I made Ella sit at the computer with me first thing Monday morning and watch the webcast with me (she was not as enthusiastic as she might have been. . . ).

There are many many awards given and some of them I just really can’t get myself to be excited about. But the big categories? I feel sick with anticipation about. And because I KNOW you want to know what won and what I think about the winners, let me share with you WAY too many thoughts (for instance, did you notice that each of the four Caldecott winners are written and illustrated by one person, rather than a separate writer and illustrator?)

2012 book awards

2012 Winner:
A Ball for Daisy illustrated and written by Chris Raschka – I checked this one out months ago and read it to Ella. It was cute, but not one that I just absolutely loved.

2012 Honors:
Blackout illustrated and written by John Rocco – I’ve heard a lot about this one, but not actually read it myself. Time to remedy that.
Grandpa Green illustrated and written by Lane Smith – I picked up an early copy of this at TLA in the spring and thought it was sweet. I didn’t absolutely adore it, but since then I’ve heard so much buzz about it, that I wasn’t really shocked when it got an honor.
Me . . . Jane illustrated and written by Patrick McDonnell  – I adore this book. I’m so happy, but not a bit surprised, to see it get a Caldecott sticker.

2012 Winner:
Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos – I listened to this a couple of months ago and I enjoyed it, but it was no match for Okay for Now in my book. And, as you might have guessed, that was the book I was holding out for.

2012 Honors:
Breaking Stalin’s Nose written and illustrated by Eugene Yelchin – I’ve never even heard of this, but I am really excited about reading it. Doesn’t it just have a GREAT title?
Inside Out & Back Again written by Thanhha Lai  – I meant to read this one back when it was nominated for a National Book Award (and then went on to win), but I did not. At least now, when I finally do get around to it, I can check it off TWO lists in my mega-nerdy spreadsheet.

2012 Winner:
Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley – I have had this sitting, unopened in my library bin for many weeks now. Of course, now that it won both the Printz AND the Morris award, I will need to finish it quickly, as there is no way it’ll be available for renewal.

2012 Honors:
Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey – Never even heard of it. Embarrassing.
The Returning by Christine Hinwood – Also never heard of it. Double embarrassment.
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater – I’ve had a copy of this since BEA, but I’ve been holding out for an audio version. And now that the audio version got an Odyssey nod, I feel especially justified in doing so.
Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler and art by Maira Kalman – This was one of the first books I read after BEA and I thought it was quite remarkable. It’s not quite clean enough for me to recommend it across the board, but I personally found it really engaging.

So? What did YOU think about the winners? Read any of them? Wish something else had won? Make me feel like less of a nerd here!

And if you’d like a printable copy of this list that you can take to your library or screenshot on your phone for easy access, just pop in your email address below and it’ll come right to your inbox!

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  1. The audio for Scorpio Races is quite amazing. It's offered through our library's overdrive program and I loved every minute of it. The narrators really made the book for me.

  2. As far as the Caldecotts, I was very pleased that Me…Jane received an Honor, but personally, I was SOOOOOOO disappointed that Swirl by Swirl, illustrated by Beth Krommes, received nothing. I guess that would have broken up the theme of a single author/illustrator per book. 🙂

  3. I just finished The Scorpio Races and loved every page. And while I checked out Inside Out & Back Again after it won the NBA, I never got around to it. (I kind of love that you have a spreadsheet.)
    I started Where Things Come Back last night and I'm enjoying it so far, but I'm not outright loving it. We'll see. Why We Broke Up is on my list. And like you, I haven't heard of the rest.

  4. So I haven't read any of them (yet!), but have The Scorpio Races in the queue. Yippee! I can't wait to read the others as well.

  5. I had nearly the same reaction you did (haven't even HEARD of so many of them), except I didn't even manage to read a single Printz or Newbery. And I wanted Okay For Now to get some love 🙂

  6. I, too, was hoping for OKay for Now to get something!!! ARGH! I recently read Breaking Stalin's Nose, which I was really looking forward to….let's just say I will comment when I see your review. Inside Out and Back Again is amazing and wonderful and everything I wanted in a Newbery book. As for the Caldecotts, I love Blackout, need to rean Me…Jane, and am neutral on the other two.
    Am I wrong in feeling like the Newbery Committee was a bit stingy with only two honor books?
    I have two of the Printz books in my TBR stack already…I love having too many books to read.

  7. So I just glanced at A ball for Daisy at the library today. Completely unimpressed. Not something I would even really bring home to read to Finn. Grandpa Green was sweet but again, didn't really think Finn would appreciate it at this stage.

    And all the other books, I haven't even read or heard much about. Will appreciate reading your reviews to see what is worth my time. 😉

  8. I was told once by a writing professor that books written and illustrated by the same person sell better over the long term. I have no idea if it's an actual cause or just correlation, but still something interesting to consider.

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