Last year the Top 100 Picture Book Poll was such a rousing success that I’ve been inspired to go one step further. Buckle down your britches, ladies and gentlemen, and hold onto your hats!
Announcing . . .
The Top 100 Children’s Fictional Chapter Books Poll
Here are the rules:
Vote for your top ten middle grade books of all time (not just this year or last year) by 11:59 Eastern on January 31, 2010. This will NOT include young adult books (for kids 13 and up) or early readers (like Mr. Putter and Tabby or Frog and Toad Are Friends). How do you determine if a book is middle grade? Well, I’m very fond of Powell’s, so why don’t you use their site if you’re uncertain. These are books for kids who can read full chapters on their own and who are under the age of 13. You may, of course, write a justification for a book if you feel it really does belong on your list. I have the final right of refusal, however.
List these books in your order of preference. I cannot stress this enough. Your #1 chapter book would be the one you feel is the most important, so I will give it 10 points. Your #2 choice will be only 9 points. And so on and such. So be very careful how you order your books. During the picture book poll people would just list their ten willy-nilly, but that haphazard order led to a more creative final result than some would have liked.
Submit these books to me at Fusenumber8@gmail.com. Write "Chapter Book Poll" in the subject line. I’d rather you didn’t leave your votes in my comment feature on this site since it’s finicky and difficult to use (plus I want everyone’s votes to be a surprise).
If you like, you can submit what you like about each title. At the beginning of February I will tally up the totals and I will pull from the submitted pieces why one reader or another liked a particular book (naming the reader, of course). That way we’ll be able to hear from a whole mess of people why they love one book or another. I will then count down from 100 to 1 the top choices of what folks feel the best children’s chapter books of all time are.
In the event that a class of kids votes, I will count the votes and tally them. However, for a classroom child’s vote to count (and I’m sorry to do this guys, but I can’t see any way around it) two adults must have voted for the same book for it to appear on the Top 100 poll. Individual votes from kids will count as the same as adult votes. The reason for this is that often teachers will make this poll an assignment in class and not all the kids want to participate. To avoid vote swaying, we have had to institute this rule.
Unlike the Picture Book Poll, I have no idea where the final votes will lie. It seemed pretty certain in the picture book polling that The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Where the Wild Things Are, and Goodnight Moon would grab the top slots. It is not AT ALL clear what will shake out in this poll.
Finally, full credit to the Top 100 Comic Book Runs poll over at Comics Should Be Good for giving me the idea. Vote early or late in the month, howsoever you choose. Results will begin to appear in February.