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Someday My Printz Will Come
Inside Someday My Printz Will Come

Watching the Awards…

The following stream of consciousness reflects my real time responses while watching the YMAs; I liveblogged through the YALSA portion of the morning. For those seeking actual information, the ALA Press Release is the place to go.

Trying to liveblog here. This might be an Epic Fail, but doing my best!

Lots of good stuff on the Alex list, including Mr. Penumbra, which I started last night on the rec of a teen and am adoring.

Schneider skewed young this year, so I have zero intelligent commentary.

Yay Drama!

Gone, Gone, Gone: already on my to-read list, jumping up right now.

October Mourning: couldn’t handle it emotionally.

Sparks has a great subtitle! But I’ve never heard of it.

AND ARISTOTLE AND DANTE for the win! Despite having been a little cool on the book, I am super delighted by this! So delighted that I suspect I liked the book better than I realized.


I love Kadir Nelson. I think that might be a professional requirement at this point, actually.

And Bryan Collier!

And Jackie Woodson!

Oh! Yay for No Crystal Stair — a beautiful and unexpected piece of writing.

Hand in Hand is another one I missed. Anyone have thoughts on it?

The MAE surprises me in the best ways every year. Waiting with baited breath…

So perfect! I grew up (well, at least I was still young when I read Alanna the first time…) on Tamora Pierce’s work — and based on the cheers, so did many others! And those are two series I particularly loved. Super cheers!

Morris. I maybe can’t breathe I want this for Seraphina so much.


(edited to add: In case you couldn’t tell, Seraphina did indeed win, and it was the highlight of the YMAs for me)

Nonfiction. Joy is biting her nails… (She’s totally pulling for Titanic.)

I totally called that one — this is THE nonfiction book this year, the one everyone loves as a reader (even Joy).

YAY BETH! I am delighted to see Monstrous Beauty listed for the Odyssey. Ooh, and now I want to see how Fault plays on audio. Oh. This would not have been the audio for me.


The moment we’ve all been waiting for, the Printz! It’s here! Will it be my Printz??


Aristotle and Dante — I did say this was a serious contenda, right?

An honor for CNV.  I am… troubled. But I can get over it. At least it got something!

Dodger, making Sophie’s day, and I am always happy with any recognition for Sir Terry.

And hey, there’s the dark horse! The White Bicycle, what?

And… In Darkness. Wow. Well, I’m awfully glad we got to it in time!

Huge kudos to the committee, and super congrats to all of these books! I’m delighted that at least one of my faves, and one of our predictions, medaled!

Comments are open, so comment away!

About Karyn Silverman

Karyn Silverman is the High School Librarian and Educational Technology Department Chair at LREI, Little Red School House & Elisabeth Irwin High School (say that ten times fast!). Karyn has served on YALSA’s Quick Picks and Best Books committees and was a member of the 2009 Printz committee. She has reviewed for Kirkus and School Library Journal. She has a lot of opinions about almost everything, as long as all the things are books. Said opinions do not reflect the attitudes or opinions of SLJ, LREI, YALSA or any other institutions with which she is affiliated. Find her on Twitter @InfoWitch or e-mail her at karynsilverman at gmail dot com.


  1. My library system doesn’t even HAVE The White Bicycle in its catalog! WHAT MADNESS IS THIS.

  2. My system doesn’t own The White Bicycle either and doesn’t look like i can get it for the Kindle.

    But, I absolutely adored Aristotle and Dante, so I’m ecstatic it did quite well today!

  3. I was not impressed with Aristotle & Dante although it may have been partly that I read it around the same time as Ask the Passengers, which blew me away. And DC Public Library has neither In Darkness nor The White Bicycle. Grrr….

    • *puts on DCPL hat*

      Actually, DCPL _does_ have multiple copies of In Darkness. Our catalog search can be a little, er. _quirky_, so make sure to do an author search for Nick Lake.

  4. I’m from the same Canadian city (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) as The White Bicycle author, Beverley Brenna, and years ago read the first book the White Orchid series (TWB is the third). Going by a quick search on WorldCat, I think a lot of libraries across North America will need to order the book in now! So nice to see a writer from home be recognized at the ALA YMA.

    I am secretly sad Code Name Verity didn’t win the medal. But hurray for Seraphina and its Morris Award!

  5. Sarah Couri says:

    Yay, a liveblog! I was teaching during the majority of the announcements, although was able to stop in and see the Caldecott and Newbery announcements happen over the live stream.

    It’s nice to know for sure now! I am feeling a great sense of relief…and am sure the RealCommittee members are multiiplying that feeling times 1000. Nice work, you guys!

  6. Very happy about the In Darkness win! Thanks to Karyn, Sarah, et al for your work and keeping up an engaging blog. Looking forward to next year.

  7. TeenReader says:

    1 for 5 on reading and predictions: didn’t read much past the short list. Curious to read In Darkness now. Would have liked to see Bomb, but three stickers isn’t half bad. :)

  8. Some surprises all around and I feel like a terrible librarian for only having read CNV from the Printz award honors and winner. Must remedy this stat!

  9. Barbara Moon says:

    Thanks Karyn for the LiveBlog. I have thoroughly enjoyed the discussion on this blog- thanks Karyn, Sarah & guest bloggers. Now to find White Bicycle… That’s one thing I enjoy- introductions to stuff that I have not noticed. Thanks to the RealCommittees for their work. Reading Adventures await – must go in search of the award books that I yet to read.

  10. Sophie Brookover says:

    Can I be forgiven for doing a little Smuggy McSmugpants dance of smuggitude for DODGER? Way to go, Sir Terry! Was I just particularly attuned to the variety & number of small press titles in the YMAs overall? White Bicycle, the self-pubbed ALEX, the Flux title, a handful of others. That felt like something fresh, and to my mind, very positive trend. Assuming it IS a trend, not just a serendipitous one-off.

  11. I really, really loved Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, but still, I was shocked that it managed to pick up a Stonewall award, a Pura Belpre award, and a Printz honor all in one go — I’d really not heard much buzz for it till today!

    I read Aristotle and Dante right after reading The Fault In Our Stars, and so I was really impressed by how much Saenz could give you insight into someone’s inner world and emotional reality when he wasn’t dealing with hyperintelligent and hyperliterate characters like Hazel and Gus. (Don’t get me wrong, I loved their banter too!). I loved his descriptions of the Texas landscape, I loved the small ways by which Ari gradually becomes a man, I loved the way it deals with class and race and cultural heritage in a way that felt very real. I loved how both Dante and Ari had loving, supportive families, but families that expressed their love in different ways.

    I was really glad to see it recognized.

  12. It is so funny to read a liveblog post by someone you were watching the awards with. It’s like deja vu! (awww).

    I was especially gratified to see MR PENUMBRA win an Alex, but the list overall seems wonderful and I have lots of titles to add to my “to-read” list on goodreads. JUVENILE IN JUSTICE sounds amazing.

    EACH KINDNESS is so gorgeous in so many ways; what a well-deserved win. I had the pleasure of seeing Jacqueline Woodson read this book at a Penguin preview, and it was just breathtaking, there were lots of tears.

    I was hoping for TITANIC to win the YALSA ENYA, but BOMB is an extraordinary accomplishment (my personal gripes aside) in YA nonfiction, so I’m a happy camper.

    When they announced the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award I had briefly stepped away to help a student and screamed out when I heard Katherine Paterson’s name. No joke, I think I read JACOB HAVE I LOVED like a million times when I was a tween.

    I’m over the moon that CNV won a Printz honor and am racing to finish the book I’m reading now so I can start ARISTOTLE AND DANTE (which cleaned up, no?) and IN DARKNESS.

    It’s been less than 24-hours and I already can’t wait for next year!

  13. A couple non-Printz thoughts/questions/things…

    1) No Pura Belpre honors for illustrations!??! Is that as weird as it seems?

    2) Nonfiction overlap of overlappitude! Not only did BOMB win both YALSA nonfic and Sibert, the honor/finalist lists were also really overlapping, with MOONBIRD and TITANIC on both. That’s a 3/4 overlap on the Sibert side and 3/5 on the YALSA side. It seemed like a great year for nonfiction, and not just because of these three (six) titles, so I was a little disappointed to not see the greater range honored.

  14. Footnote: THE WHITE BICYCLE breaks the statistical streak of Printz awards always going to books that have received at least one star from the six major review journals.

    From Jen J’s spreadsheet:
    IN DARKNESS–3 stars
    CNV–6 stars
    DODGER–5 stars

    • Oops, I hit “enter” too soon.
      And here’s a link to Jen J’s starred-reviews spreadsheet that actually works.

      • Karyn Silverman says:

        Well, this gives us a good excuse to rethink how we compile the contender list!

        I think it received no stars because no reviewer had their hands on it. I can’t get a copy from any of my vendors and it’s not in any bookstores, nor are there e-copies; it seems to beg the question of what “in print” actually means.

      • Looks like nobody even reviewed The White Bicycle though – Booklist was the only one with a review and even theirs was online, not in the print journal. Assuming the rest of the journals go ahead and review it now, it will be interesting to see the response – will it pick up some stars now that it has the reviewing community’s attention?

    • TeenReader says:

      I wonder how the comitee thought to read The White Bycicle. It is obviously not from trade journals or even most public libraries.

      • Well, looking in Baker and Taylor, it looks like Booklist has reviewed most of Brenna’s books. This is the third in a series and it looks like the first and second were more widely reviewed – other journals besides Booklist looked at them as well. Since the committee has a Booklist consultant, my guess would be there was some combination of the Booklist consultant mentioning it and/or a committee member who had read previous titles and been impressed. Someone might even be a fan of the specific series this is a part of.

        Also, assuming I’m reading things right, anyone who knows about it can nominate a title (except that publishers, authors, agents and editors cannot nominate their own titles). So really all it takes is one dedicated fan with the knowledge to nominate out there to get the committee’s attention to begin with.

      • Karyn Silverman says:

        Based on personal experience, the Canadian publishers were almost as good as the Big 6 about sending review copies to committee members, so that might well be how it got to them. I know I received several times the number of books I actually read in a year when I was on committees, so it’s more a question of how anyone thought to pick it up — the smaller press, less polished packages often get overlooked even when they are sent, since it’s impossible to read everything.

  15. I’m pleased to see Aristotle and Dante receive recognition. And I picked it as an honor in the Pyrite! I know a lot people were routing for CNV, but once it was named as an honor, I thought it was actually quite exciting. All of the sudden, it was wild card time–anything could win the gold. And sure enough, we have In Darkness for the win and a nowhere-near-the-radar title, The White Bicycle.

    And I just visited Steve Sheinkin’s website. Bomb is going to have FOUR stickers on it because it was also a National Book Award Finalist.

  16. C. Preston says:

    Silly me, I didn’t even realize a Canadian book, such as “The White Bicycle” was eligible. I thought it had to be American or there at least has to be an American edition?

    • No geographic criteria for the Printz from what I understand.

      • Karyn Silverman says:

        There must be a US edition in the eligibility year; Canadian books with Canadian and US distribution were usually considered eligible when I was on BBYA and I imagine the same would apply for Printz, although this one is unavailable through any vendors that I’ve checked and is only held in 7 libraries in the country per WorldCat, which makes me want a stronger statement of eligibility. Or maybe I’m just miffed that I can’t get my hands on it to see what all the fuss is about?

  17. Baker and Taylor sells it although it is currently out of stock.

  18. C. Preston says:

    From the Printz award criterion: “Books previously published in another country are eligible (presuming an American edition has been published during the period of eligibility).”

    I guess I would define “American edition” as picked up for publication by a publishing house located in the United States. The only edition of this book available was published by Red Deer Press, located- from what I can find- exclusively in Canada. I wouldn’t imagine a book published in another country and simply distributed wholesale through Ingram or B&T would meet that criteria, otherwise all kinds of fabulous literature would be up for the award, provided they were sold here. I’m not against an award that encompasses literature on an international scale, I just didn’t think that was what the Printz award did. I too would like to see a more clearly defined statement of eligibility.

  19. Jonathan Hunt Jonathan Hunt says:

    I believe this happened once before when CHANDRA’S SECRETS (Annick Press) won a Printz Honor. ALSC has a very strict series of guidelines for what constitutes an American edition and/or publisher and the small Canadian presses whether they have an office in the States or not, invariably fail that test. YALSA, at least in these two instances, seems to take a much broader view than ALSC. But I agree that it does lead to confusion and it would be nice to see it clearly stated somewhere that Canadian editions that are widely available in the US are eligible.

    • Karyn Silverman says:

      I would also love to see a definition of “widely available”!

      • Jonathan Hunt Jonathan Hunt says:

        Oh, I don’t think THE WHITE BICYCLE is widely available, but it didn’t publiish until October 30, 2012. Is it any less widely available than any mid-list title from a Big Six publisher–or an independent? I don’t think so, but I could be wrong.

  20. Karyn, Sarah, and Sophie,

    I am now going back and reading all the posts I missed (and comments). Thanks so much for doing this! I missed White Bicycle too (but have one coming through a friend in Canada).

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