The idea for this post came from Kelly Butcher’s The Lemme Library. I recommend Kelly’s blog for Book Talk Tuesday, a weekly event where different positive children’s book reviews/talks are posted. It’s a great way to find new reads.
I turned 30 last week (the biggest excitement of turning 30 was taking friends to see Maggie Stiefvater). I’m going to look at what books won the Newbery or Newbery Honor at different points in my life and marking which I have read. I may do a similar thing with the Caldecott books later in the week. It’s the last week of summer school, so that might be a bit delayed.
Have you read any of these titles? Which ones? Why did you pick them up to read? Are any of these to be on your to read list? Have a favorite you wish had won instead?
I was born in 1981:
Newbery Medal Winner: Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson (unread)
One of my favorite high school reads of all time won the Newbery Honor in 1981. That is The Ring of Endless Light by Madeleine L’Engle. I will admit to having quite the literary crush on one Adam Eddington. This book has science, dolphins, faith, a stable filled with books and a magic all its own. My copy is rather battered.
I started kindergarten in 1986:
Newbery Medal Winner: Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan
I remember reading this in third grade. The big thing about this year was that I met my elementary school librarian for the first time. She was phenomenal and I loved that open library in the center of my school. I can blame (in a good way) my discovery of fantasy on her as she led me to Lloyd Alexander’s Westmark. I can also blame my first job as being inspired by her – library pagedom!
I was in my first year of middle school in 1994:
Newbery Medal Winner: The Giver by Lois Lowry
This had to be one of the more fascinating class reads I did in high school. I love how Jonas’ whole world turns upside down. On my first read, the open ending drove me batty.
My freshman year of high school was 1996:
Newbery Medal Winner: The Midwife’s Apprentice by Karen Cushman
I read this title as part of my wonderful undergraduate children’s literature class. I like Karen Cushman’s style with historical fiction and the feisty nature of her characters. I had the opportunity to see her speak at a small children’s conference in Milwaukee during college.
I graduated from high school in the spring of 1999:
Newbery Medal Winner: Holes by Louis Sachar
I really need to remedy that I have not read this book. I have read and adored the Honor Book from this year: Richard Peck’s A Long Way From Chicago. That book begs to be read aloud.
I pretend graduated in 2003 (I chose to walk with the class I came in with even though I had student teaching left. My college at that point did not have a midyear graduation):
Newbery Medal Winner: Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi
I’ve never been sure whether to class this one as fantasy or historical fiction. I found this first book to be an interesting read, but I have not read the subsequent books. I think my favorite Avi book is The Secret School, though when I was younger I preferred The Blue Heron.
My diploma is actually dated 2004:
Newbery Medal Winner: The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread by Kate DiCamillo (unread)
I need to fix my lack of reading of this as well (nor have I seen the movie).
I started library school in 2006:
Newbery Medal Winner: Criss Cross by Lynne Rae Perkins (unread)
I really enjoyed one of the Honor Winners that year: Shannon Hale’s The Princess Academy. I used a scene from this book for a book talk in Young Adult Literature in library school. I had a box with different trinkets I used to go along with it.
I finished my master’s at the end of 2010:
Newbery Medal Winner: When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
I read this book as part of my first Mock Newbery reading club. This book had a touch of science fiction, a touch of mystery, friendship issues and Wrinkle in Time references. I thoroughly enjoyed it (and yes, Wrinkle in Time references were a big bonus)
I started working as a school librarian and turned 30 in 2011:
Newbery Award Winner: Moon over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool (unread)
I have only read one of the honor books from this year and that was Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night by Joyce Sidman. I’m hoping to do better with the set for 2012!