Check out this annotated list of Newbery winners – arranged “not by year – but by how much a totally biased group of readers enjoyed them.” First of all, I’m impressed that a group of people actually managed to do this – read them all and rank them – even if I disagree with a few placements.
- The Hero and the Crown at 46?
- Holes at 27?
- Walk Two Moons at 52?
- From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler at 20?
- The Tale of Despereaux at 13?
But on the other hand, who can argue with The Giver at Number One? I certainly can’t. The most fascinating aspect of the list, though, is how poorly ranked some of my childhood favorites are. Granted, I haven’t read them in ages, but I have fond memories of a bunch that they hit hard:
- Up a Road Slowly – 71
- The Grey King – 65 (although, granted, not the best in the series)
- Caddie Woodlawn – 58
- The High King – 55
- The Witch of Blackbird Pond – 44
- Jacob Have I Loved – 41
- Johnny Tremain – 37 (I had an inexplicable love of Johnny Tremain in 5th grade. Read it numerous times.)
So maybe it’s time to do some rereading.
The best part of the list? Criss Cross at 54. “The group gave it an audible, exasperated gasp.”