I wouldn’t dream of making predictions for this year’s awards. I would, however, be happy to list my wish-they-would-wins.
I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen
All the Way to America by Dan Yaccarino
Queen of the Falls by the brilliant Chris Van Allsburg
Stars by Mary Lyn Ray, illustrations by the amazingly fabulous Marla Frazee
Balloons Over Broadway by the great Melissa Sweet
All the Water in the World by George Ella Lyon, illustrated by Katherine Tillotson
Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick
Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu
Amelia Lost by Candace Fleming
Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt
Junonia by the fabulous Kevin Henkes
I would like to add The Trouble With May Amelia by Jennifer Holm to the Newbery list but I loved its predecessor so very much that this one, despite being quite amazing, didn’t quite match up to the wonderful first one. And yet I will be absolutely ecstatic if May Amelia wins.
And while I’m listing the I-love-them-buts, I’ve got to add the enchanting Me…Jane by Patrick McDonnell to the Caldecott list. I have seen it mentioned a few places that this book will be considered ineligible because a few of the illustrations were done by Jane Goodall herself. I really hope that this isn’t true and that this book will kick the butt it deserves to in the awards discussion. As for including Wonderstruck on the Newbery instead of the Caldecott list, this is strictly a personal issue. I thought that Hugo Cabret was certainly a deserving winner a few years back for Selznick, but my heart would rather a picture book win this award. Not very forward-thinking, I know. So I liked Hugo, but I adore Wonderstruck, and want to see this amazing book get the love it so truly deserves. Newbery love, that is.
In the I-almost-think-it-should-win category is Grandpa Green by Lane Smith. I appreciate this book, I do, and recognize the greatness therein. But…there is just something about it that leaves me a little cold, which as this book clearly intends to appeal on an emotional level, is quite unfortunate and means I can’t include it on my faves list.
So excited to see who wins!
UPDATE: Good thing I wasn’t making predictions, because I wasn’t even close. The winners are listed here.