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Battle of the Books

Battle of the Kids’ Books, 2009-2017

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For those eagerly checking this site for this year’s contenders, we need to let you know that last year was the final Battle of the Kids’ Books. We enjoyed tremendously our nine years doing the Battle and hope you enjoyed it too. Thank you to everyone involved over the years — those at SLJ, our wonderful judges, the […]

The Closing Match: The Girl Who Drank the Moon vs March: Book Three vs The Sun Is Also a Star

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JUDGE – KWAME ALEXANDER The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill Algonquian March: Book Three by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin and Nate Powell Top Shelf The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon Random House Once upon a time, School Library Journal held a battle, whereupon sixteen amazing books would be judged by […]

The Winner of the 2017 Undead Poll is….

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This year we watched the Undead Poll with fascination. While every contender was poking his or her head up from the ground, every one had clear love out there, two almost immediately shot into the lead: Ghost and The Girl Who Drank the Moon. And  they stayed pretty much neck and neck until the polls closed. […]

Round 3, Match 2: Some Writer! vs The Sun Is Also a Star

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JUDGE – SABAA TAHIR Some Writer! by Melissa Sweet Houghton Mifflin Harcourt The Sun Is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon Random House Generally I’m one of those people who snorts at the idea of giving trophies to everyone. Losing builds character, I always say. (Ok, I don’t always say that, but it sounds like something I might […]

Round 3, Match 1: Freedom in Congo Square vs March: Book Three

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JUDGE – ELLEN OH Freedom in Congo Square By Carole Boston Weatherford, Illustrated by R. Gregory Christie Little Bee March: Book Three by Congressman John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell Top Shelf Productions   I feel a great and heavy burden on my shoulders as I find myself trying to compare these two brilliant […]

Round 2, Match 4: The Lie Tree vs The Sun Is Also A Star

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    JUDGE – SARA FARIZAN The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge Abrams The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon Random House I was hesitant to take on this task because I’m a bit uncomfortable about pitting books against each other. Sure, it’s all in good fun, but the only winner here really is me for […]

Round 2, Match 3: Some Writer! vs When The Sea Turned to Silver

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JUDGE – CYNTHIA KADOHATA Some Writer! by Melissa Sweet Houghton Mifflin Harcourt When the Sea Turned to Silver by Grace Lin Little Brown   On the surface, Some Writer! and When the Sea Turned to Silver are utterly different books, one nonfiction and filled with details from author E.B. White’s real life, and one a fantastical […]

Round 2, Match 2: Ghost vs March, Book Three

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JUDGE – ELIOT SCHREFER Ghost By Jason Reynolds Simon & Schuster March, Book Three by Congressman John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell Top Shelf Productions     The beauty of reading books is that they don’t have to duke it out afterwards. I can read me some Dragonlance Chronicles: Dragons of Winter Night on Saturday and […]

Round 2 Match 1: Freedom in Congo Square vs When Green Becomes Tomatoes

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JUDGE – JAVAKA STEPTOE Freedom in Congo Square by Carole Boston Weatherford illustrated by R. Gregory Christie Little Bee When Green Becomes Tomatoes by Julie Fogliano illustrated by Julie Morstad Macmillan I like to think of these two books as pieces of music: One is like a work song, the other a classical concerto. In this way they are […]

Round 1, Match 8: The Passion of Dolssa vs The Sun Is Also a Star

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  JUDGE – BRENDAN KIELY The Passion of Dolssa by Julie Berry Penguin The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon Random House What a difficult task! Of all the books to have paired together, here are two uniformly critically acclaimed, wildly successful and popular books, both Printz Honor finalists, one a National Book Award […]