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Heavy Medal: A Mock Newbery Blog
Inside Heavy Medal


I still haven’t read A TALE DARK AND GRIMM (waiting for it at the bookstore) so am refraining from chiming in at this point, but am finding the discussion fascinating.  I browsed back through past Newbery winners and honors to see what other recognized titles had references to other (noneligible) texts.  I didn’t have to […]

A Tale Dark and Grimm

“Once upon a time, fairy tales were awesome.” So begins the delightfully intrusive narrator of A TALE DARK AND GRIMM.  I actually wish the narrator intruded even more as I not only greatly enjoyed those bits, but also the contrast between the story narration.  Since we’re discussing the arch and instrusive narrator of THE KNEEBONE […]

The Kneebone Boy…now, with Spoilers!

I’ve been calling this my “dark horse” because I suspected that the style of the writing in The Kneebone Boy would turn some readers off from the get-go, making this a “love it or hate it” book.  I’ve got to thank Peter Sieruta for posting his cringing review, and for going in to more detail […]

In Search of a Young Newbery

Now we turn our attention from picture books and easy readers to those transitional chapter books that not only prepare children for longer, more sophisticated novels, but which also often turn them onto the joy of reading.  We’re looking at those books typically marketed for and read by readers in 2nd, 3rd, and 4th grades.  By the way, the Center […]

What is this thing called Newbery?

In my earlier post, Mocking, I outlined in the roughest terms the process for the Newbery committee.  In many of the comments on the recent post Shortlist and Discussion Details Announced!, and from some of the questions from new participants who have RSVPed for Dec 12th, I’ve realized we should talk a little more about how […]


As we consider whether FORGE by Laurie Halse Anderson is the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children, here are some interesting subplots to debate. 1.  We’ve got some strong historical fiction this year, namely ONE CRAZY SUMMER, COUNTDOWN, TURTLE IN PARADISE, ALCHEMY AND MEGGY SWANN, and THE WATER SEEKER.  How do you think these compare […]

Shortlist and Discussion Details Announced!

The Oakland “Heavy Medal” Mock Newbery Sunday December 12th, 2010, 12noon-5pm To participiate: RSVP to me  for details/location. Read the Newbery Criteria. (Optional for Newbery Nerds: read the whole manual!) Read the 8 books for discussion.  You really have to read all 8!  If you’re having trouble getting your hands on a particular title, just […]

Shortlist Tomorrow!

I’ll be posting the 8 title shortlist for our Sunday, Dec 12th discussion (and giving details for how to participate) first thing Tuesday morning. So stayed tuned, and don’t fail to put in your 2 cents now!