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A Chair, A Fireplace & a Tea Cozy
Inside A Chair, A Fireplace & a Tea Cozy

Round One: Earth v Cardturner

And the games have begun!

The School Library Journal Battle of the Books game, that is.

Match:  As Easy as Falling Off the Face of the Earth by Lynn Rae Perkins v The Cardturner by Louis Sachar

Judge: Francisco X. Stork

Stork judges the way I blog, starting out with just how many things he likes about both Earth and the Cardturner. Since I am the person whose Favorite Books Read in a year list just go on and on, getting added to and never subtracted from, I can sympathize with liking both books and seeing value in both books.

I loved the elements Stork used in analyzing these books. A blogger could do well to look at these things and think about them when reading and reviewing books; there is one, already, that I plan on adopting.

In order, Stork read for: fun; plot; style; and courage. He asked the following questions: which book is more complete? Which book did I learn from? Which book touched me? And, which book will be around in five years?

Stork then made his decision, picking a winner for it’s “elegant, readable complexity.”

So, what do you think of Stork’s review elements?

About Elizabeth Burns

Looking for a place to talk about young adult books? Pull up a chair, have a cup of tea, and let's chat. I am a New Jersey librarian. My opinions do not reflect those of my employer, SLJ, YALSA, or anyone else. On Twitter I'm @LizB; my email is


  1. If I wasn’t so honest, I’d steal elegant, readable complexity. I love Stork’s review elements. He hits upon all the important things. It’s also fair when comparing very different books.

  2. Totally worth adopting! It gives a really well rounded and postive focus to the review. This isn’t to say that there won’t be points made to the negative but even so his perspective seems to look at strength vs. weakness as opposed to good vs. bad.

  3. My favorite may be the “what about five years from now.” And courage! To think of courage! Of course, I am now thinking of these things when I read his books.