List, that is.
The Horn Book Best of 2011 list posted today.
This means that all of our pre Jan 1 lists are out: BCCB and Booklist should release their lists right around the New Year (so much for a winter break!)
Here’s how it all shakes out:
4 out of 4:
3 out of 4:
Those of us pulling for a banner fantasy year, take heart—I don’t know if we’ll see a fantasy take the gold, but with this kind of genre presence on the year-end lists, I think we have a shot at an honor or two at least, especially since two of the three that are four for four (say that five times fast!) are clearly fantasy, and play with conventions (especially in the setting) enough to (maybe) bypass a possible genre bias.
The Horn Book list also netted another best shoutout for one of my picks and one of my pans, and another nod for crossover middle grade/YA titles Dead End in Norvelt, Drawing from Memory, and Amelia Lost. And—because no list is complete without a few outliers—two fiction outliers join the dark horse candidates pile: Bluefish, which hasn’t been on our radar at all and The Watch that Ends the Night, which I wasn’t impressed with but have not read in any genuine or attentive way, so now might be a good time to take a closer look. (Nonfiction outlier Feynman was, according to our sources, officially pubbed as adult, and is thus ineligible for the Printz, but the fact that it’s here has us digging a little deeper.)
I’m still pulling for The Returning, which has no list presence thus far. I am also surprised at no Piper’s Son, Imaginary Girls (despite the flaws!), Everybody Sees the Ants, or Steampunk. Reader favorite Where Things Come Back made the PW list but nothing else, and another reader fave, What Can’t Wait, made no lists.
Looking back at the contendas list, there’s a handful of titles that received three or more stars as of September but didn’t make any year-end lists. We’re going to open it up to a vote (of sorts): Are they dark horses but still in the running, or were they flashes in the pan early in the year that have been solidly eclipsed by a stronger end of year? Comments are open: let us know if any of these still strike you as contendas, or if they should be forgotten.
Every You, Every Me
Across the Universe
The Berlin Boxing Club