Here’s the deal: I have this compulsion to be in the know. Wendy at Six Boxes of Books was just talking about this, and while she talks about buzz, I think that extends to awards, too. I want to have read all the Morris Award finalists so that I am ready to express an opinion when the winner is announced. As soon as the Newbery and Printz are announced, I want to get my hands on any titles I haven’t already read. So unless I’m oddly psychic, January 18 will mean my reading list gets longer.
Also, I’d like to expand my reading to more of the less-buzzed awards, because that only seems fair. Lots of them fall outside my area for ordering, but it’s always good to be up on these things, to have a familiarity with at least a few fantastic titles in each category. And a lot of those awards, embarassingly, often go to books I’d never pick up for fun. Just from ALSC, check out this list of awards (other awards are mentioned at the bottom of the page – CSK, Printz, Schneider, Alex, Morris…) You see the problem? THERE ARE SO MANY. No wonder most people (and the non-librarian public) mostly focuses on the Newbery and Caldecott. I’d like to get my hands on at least the winners of each award, but even that is a tall order. I’m not committing to it, but I’d feel like a good, well-rounded librarian if I did.
In the meantime, though – yikes! I’d better clear some space on my library shelf. It’s manageable right now, but some things have been there for an embarrasing length of time. At the moment, I’m reading Maggie Stiefvater’s Ballad (sequel to Lament) and enjoying her snarktastic yet spooky take on fairies. This puppy has holds on it, so I can’t let it sit too long. Then, my next priority is the Mock Printz list, since the workshop is the 16th. I’ve still got to read The Eternal Smile and All the Broken Pieces, both of which should be fairly quick reads (graphic novel and novel in verse, respectively).
THEN, there are heaps of finalists for the Morris Award and YALSA’s non-fiction award (which really needs a one-word name). The only Morris finalist I’ve read is The Everafter, but I’ve got Flash Burnout and Hold Still on my shelf – the other two are still on hold. For the non-fiction award, I’ve read three – Almost Astronauts (also a Mock Newbery), Charles and Emma (also a NBA finalist), and Claudette Colvin (NBA winner). Written in Bone and The Great and Only Barnum are both on my shelf. Chances of me starting and finishing 6 books in a week? Slim, but crazier things have happened. Probably more likely than me being up and on the awards announcement webcast at 4:45 am next Monday.