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Someday My Printz Will Come
Inside Someday My Printz Will Come

About Sarah Couri

Sarah Couri is a librarian at Grace Church School's High School Division, and has served on a number of YALSA committees, including Quick Picks, Great Graphic Novels, and (most pertinently!) the 2011 Printz Committee. Her opinions do not reflect the attitudes or opinions of SLJ, GCS, YALSA, or any other institutions with which she is affiliated. Find her on Twitter @scouri or e-mail her at scouri35 at gmail dot com.

YMA 2018: Liveblog!

Well, we’re here! After all is said and done (and at this point, we’ve done a LOT of saying), we’ve arrived at the moment we’ve all been waiting for. Lots of books, lots of words, lots of passionate debate later, it all comes down to that conference room in Denver. Are you ready??

We’ll have our — well, my — reactions after the jump here in this blog post. We’re covering the teen section of the YMAs, and will be including reactions (and, let’s be honest) a lot of gushing. Comments will be open for conversation, reactions, and debriefing. As always, let’s remember Karyn’s reminder from the picks/predictions post the other day — RealCommittee does the hard work every year. We’re here to respect their work and the process they’ve gone through. Our choice and our thoughts are the result of our own process, which mimics RealCommittee rules and process, but is not actually the same.

This has been a long blogging season this time around, so let’s get to work! [Read more…]

Pyrite Slate, 2018

Red rose on a white background, Wikipedia

Red rose on a white background, Wikipedia

It’s official! We have done it! We named our winner last week, and now we’ve got our honor books. Votes came in, spreadsheets were made, and many other things happened — and it was all done in the passive voice, I guess.

But who can think about grammar, really, when we have a completely fictional award to give out!? Once again, you’ll have to imagine me with Bachelor-ish roses, and an intense close up on my face — and I guess all the authors’ faces, because OF COURSE they would join a reality TV version of the Pyrite, right? — with striking music playing to really heighten the tension. Click through for our slate! [Read more…]

Morris + Printz?

In our frantic dash to the finish line, we’re taking today to look at the Morris finalists. A Morris nod has nothing really to do with the Printz slate, though there’s been overlap in years past. And a lack of a Morris nod doesn’t rule any author out for the Printz, either. They’re not correlative. But here in our little world, as opposed to RealCommittee, we use every tool at our disposal to make sure we’re not missing a title and have been able to spend at least a little time with any book the RealCommittee might be talking about — and there’s been just enough overlap in the past that it’s plausible, even likely, that the RC makes sure they take a peek at anything on the Morris shortlist.

We’ve already covered The Hate U Give (the most likely to overlap this year!) and Saints + Misfits, so today we have the remaining three titles from the Morris shortlist: Starfish, Devils Within, and Dear Martin. None of these were on our reading list prior to the shortlist announcement, because our other, very general marker is three or more stars — and these three all have under 3 stars. As we’ve said before, stars aren’t really a predictor for Printz — it’s just one of the ways we we whittle the list of all YA books down to a reasonable pile. As usual, we’ll be running through the books alphabetically. Ready? Click through for the fun! [Read more…]

Pyrite 2018: Honor Vote

Red Rose, from Wikipedia

Red Rose, from Wikipedia

We’ve done some of the hard work, in voting for and naming our winner. And what a winner — can you imagine getting to call Angie Thomas and say, “we loved your book and are giving you an award”?! I mean, we are not actually giving an award, let’s be clear. We are a mock committee. But what a great year to be reading YA, huh? As was noted, there are so many directions RealCommittee could go; the YMAs are going to be pretty exciting.

But! Our own Pyrite process  is not over yet! As I said earlier, we have more roses to give out — more tough decisions to make. There are more medals (roses? I’m feeling that Bachelorish metaphor this year, even though it’s really mixing things up, and we’ve tended to medal/sci fic jokes in the past) to award. We’re giving out up to four more spots, to be precise.

So! People! We will need to choose four more books before our work is done! [Read more…]

Pyrite 2018: It’s Official!

SOMETHING HERE CITATION

Pyrite/Fool’s Gold from Wikipedia

Last week, we opened the polls for one of our favorite things to do around here: vote for the Pyrite Winner! (Get it? Pyrite? Like not-quite-gold? Because while we read, discuss, and overall mimic RealCommittee’s work, we aren’t RealCommittee? So our medal is sort of an imitation gold sticker? That is in no way a sticker?) And now, a week later, we have a winner!

And, with great relief, I want to tell you that it went differently from last year; we have a clear-cut, easy to call winner (last year we had to go through…how many rounds of voting because things were so close? Two rounds? There was a lot of voting last year, is what I’m saying.)

But we made it through, and after the jump, we’ll get to, you know, THE TITLE THAT WON, and all the delicious numbers and charts and behind-the-scenes breakdown that (some of us) live for.

*drum roll drum roll/intense close up on me as I prepare to hand out our Pyrite Rose.*  [Read more…]

Another Nonfiction Roundup

NonfictionMonday, we got a graphic novel round up. And earlier this year, we had a nonfiction roundup. Now that we’ve reached the end of the year — and seen the Excellence for NF shortlist, and taken a look at all the year-end lists — we’ve got a second round up, taking a look at all the nonfiction titles we’ve been saving. We’ll go through each title alphabetically. [Read more…]

Daughters

Cover imagesSisters. Parents. Family. Children of immigrants. Starred reviews. National Book Award recognition. These books have quite a bit in common, not least in terms of love and buzz and people talk-talk-talking. Both novels examine generational expectations, both examine daughters who long to be artists, and both novels illustrate how daughters and their parents move around each other in complicated patterns, trying to understand each other. They’re not entirely similar — while Perkins uses different perspectives and voices to tell the story of one family’s experiences, Sánchez focuses on Julia’s voice to give an understanding of her family. Perkins’ You Bring the Distant Near got four stars, and Sánchez’s I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter received two stars. With intense focus from the NBA (YBDN made the longlist; IAMYPMD was a finalist), what will RealCommittee have to say about these two titles?

[Read more…]

When I am Through with You

through with you

When I am Through With You, Stephanie Kuehn
Dutton, August 2017
Reviewed from a final copy

Today I get to talk about one of my favorite authors, Stephanie Kuehn. She has a new title out this year, When I am Through With You, and it got some comment-love earlier in the season as one to definitely include on our longlist. It’s always so fun to dive back in with an author that you like; this time around, we’re looking at a title with one starred review. We have a story that ends up being a somewhat mixed bag, at least for me; it’s a psychological thriller combined with survival fiction — a group of teens working through a lot of trauma and feelings must survive a school camping trip beset by a blizzard. [Read more…]

It’s Not Like It’s a Secret

Secret

It’s Not Like It’s a Secret by Misa Sugiura
HarperTeen, May 2017
Reviewed from a final copy

So today we have a realistic coming of age/first love story, and it’s sweet and especially earnest. With one star review, this isn’t a book that’s making major waves; but it’s important to remember that starred reviews aren’t really a predictor for the Printz award. There’s enough about It’s Not Like It’s a Secret that feels fresh and engaging that I could see a long conversation happening at the RealCommittee table. Will that be enough for a medal at the end of the year? WHO CAN SAY? (I am about to try to say.) [Read more…]

Realistic Roundup

Here on this holiday weekend (for some, but not for others, I know!), I thought we could have a brief whirlwind of a realistic roundup. We’ve already featured a grouping of funny girls, today we have a slightly smaller set of lady-centric fiction. They’re not all funny, but they are all realistic, they are all heartfelt, and they’re all here today. They run the range of zero to one star ratings. As is often the case with our roundups, they may not be titles RealCommittee may agree on, but that doesn’t preclude their inclusion in the conversation — they just might be titles that individual committee members come to the table to argue for. And remember — we’ve still got our Nominations post up, so make sure you speak up there if you have a book you want to champion! [Read more…]