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Heavy Medal: A Mock Newbery Blog
Inside Heavy Medal

Newbery Hodgepodge

I’ve had sporadic internet access this past week while traveling during the holidays, which has been unfortunate as there have been many interesting dicussions.  This post collects my response to some of them; I hope to chime in on more of them when I return home this weekend. UNDER THE RADAR We’re running out of time to lobby […]

…and nothing but.

While Jonathan seems very certain, I’m still juggling my choices for my top three Newbery picks for the year. When I posted about Claudette Colvin and Marching for Freedom way back in September, I mentioned that I felt slightly more compelled by one than the other.  I just reread both of them yesterday (ah, Holiday furlough), […]

The Truth

CLAUDETTE COLVIN: TWICE TOWARD JUSTICE by Phillip Hoose is the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children.


Last year, Sharon led a discussion about THE SECRET OF THE ANDES in an attempt to discover why the Newbery committee selected it over CHARLOTTE’S WEB.  Since CHARLOTTE’S WEB did receive a Newbery Honor, it’s hard to argue that the book was truly robbed.  No, what I’m looking for are books that were heavily favored to […]

Comfort Food

I hope many of you are finding the time to wind down a little for the winter holidays. At my library, children’s librarians recently traded lists of titles of  "comfort food books"….children’s books that we turn to, to re-read as adults, to get through challenging times.  Interestingly, the ones that leapt to mind first for me […]

Heart of a Shepherd

Since the Newbery Medal is most closely associated with middle grade novels, I imagine this blog has been frustrating for those who would like to see us discuss one middle grade novel after another.  To be sure, we’ve spent lots of time on WHEN YOU REACH ME, A SEASON OF GIFTS, and THE EVOLUTION OF CALPURNIA TATE, […]

Listmaker, Listmaker, Make Me a List!

Now we turn our attention from starred reviews to best of the year lists.  I’ve included Booklist Editors’ Choice, Horn Book Fanfare, Kirkus Best Children’s Books and Best Young Adult Books, Publishers Weekly Best Books, and School Library Journal Best Books.  When the Bulletin Blue Ribbons come out in a couple of weeks, I’ll update this […]

Checking my list twice, or three times

I’m trying to clean up on my re-reading in time for our Mock Newbery and the actual announcements….  Having now read Years of Dust thoroughly, I’m not sure I have much to add to the debate, except to respond to Jonathan when he says: "I think the incorporation of Florence Owens Means (aka Migrant Mother) shows how […]

The Lakewood Report

With one month to go before The Great Lakewood Newbery Book Club holds its own mock Newbery, I decided we need to focus our time and energy on a narrower segment of books.  Students nominated their top two to three books and the following list represents the titles that we will be discussing next month.  […]

Accuracy or Agenda?

In a couple of posts commenters have raised issues about Almost Astronauts.  The book’s editor, Marc Aronson, challenges readers to bring objections to his blog, but no one has yet.  Though some of our commenters mentioned "inaccuracies" and "questionable sources"…this real gist of the issue seems to be about "slant" or "propoganda" in Stone’s text. One […]