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Heavy Medal: A Mock Newbery Blog
Inside Heavy Medal

Newbery Suggestions: Prairie Lotus is Early Leader

Our latest round of suggestions closed Sunday, and here’s where we stand: 44 titles have been suggested as possible Newbery contenders by Heavy Medal readers. PRAIRIE LOTUS by 2002 Medalist Linda Sue Park leads with 11, and five books are tied for second place with 7 suggestions each. Last year at this time we had a similar number of titles (42), but more total votes, as well as more clear early leaders: five books had 10 or more suggestions by last May.

We’re still in the early stages, though, when it comes to identifying Newbery contenders. For now, the list below works as a reading list of the children’s books that are capturing the interest of readers so far this year. Keep reading, and look for our next call for suggestions on June 1st…

Prairie LotusPark11
From the Desk of Zoe WashingtonMarks7
King and the DragonfliesCallender7
Show Me a SignLezotte7
When You Trap a TigerKeller7
List of Things That Will Not ChangeStead6
Efrén DividedCisneros5
Rise and Fall of Charles LindberghFleming4
When Stars are ScatteredJamieson4
Black Brother Black BrotherRhodes3
Echo MountainWolk3
All the Days Past, All the Days to ComeTaylor2
Almost American Girl: A MemoirHa2
Here in the Real WorldPennypacker2
Stand Up, Yumi Chung!Kim2
Thief KnotMilford2
Village of ScoundrelsPreus2
Wish in the DarkSoontornvat2
Black is a Rainbow ColorJoy1
Dragon HoopsYang1
Great UpendingKephart1
Home for Godesses and DogsConnor1
How to Make Friends with the SeaGuerrero1
Kent StateWiles1
Leaving LymonCline-Ransome1
Many Feathered ThingGerlits1
Nonsense! The Curious Story of Edward GoreyMortensen1
On the HorizonLowry1
One Last ShotAnderson1
Only Black Girls in TownColbert1
Ordinary DayArnold1
Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and YouReynold & Kendi1
Things You Can’t SayBishop1
Voice Named ArethaRussell-Brown1
Ways to Make SunshineWatson1
Wayside School Beneath the Cloud of DoomSachar1
We are Water ProtectorsLindstrom1
What Stars are Made ofAllen1
Steven Engelfried About Steven Engelfried

Steven Engelfried is the Library Services Manager at the Wilsonville Public Library in Oregon. He served on the 2010 Newbery committee, chaired the 2013 Newbery Committee, and also served on the 2002 Caldecott committee. You can reach him at


  1. Roberta L Meyer says:

    I have been unable to find Prairie Lotus as an AR quiz. Is it just me?

  2. Marcy L says:

    Things Seen From Above by Shelley Pearsall

  3. Anne Lambert says:

    We recommend What Stars Are Made Of by Sarah Allen

    • Steven Engelfried Steven Engelfried says:

      Thanks for the recommendations, Marcy and Anne. For those to count as official Suggestions, though, you’ll have to post them again in early June. We open Suggestions for a week on the first Monday of each month, but then they’re closed for the rest of the month. Next open period will be June 1 – 7.


  1. […] 40 titles have been suggested as possible Newbery contenders. Linda Sue Park’s PRAIRIE LOTUS leads with 11 nominations. Park won the Newbery in 2002 with A […]

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