Match: The Cardturner v Countdown
Judge: Laura Amy Schlitz
Let us be clear about something: all the books in contention for SLJ BoB are good books, or they wouldn’t be here on this list. One may say that a book is not a perfect book, but how often are books perfect? One may say other books are just as good or better.
SLJs BoB is about these books before the judges. Why? It gives the books some extra attention, true, as Amy pointed out in the comments to Mitali Perkin’s Trash decision.
But, it also shows us what people think about books. Not just people; authors, who readers think they “know” because they read their books or blogs or Twitter. Judge Schlitz rightly observes, “It’s likely that what I choose will say more about me than about the books I judged.” Pushing a person to make a decision pushes them to reveal more of themselves.
And what has Schlitz revealed? This amazing definition of what Comedy is: “Comedy is a celebration of human resilience. At its best, it takes the tensions and failures and tragedies of life, and transmutes them. It pulls the threads taut, mending the rift in the cloth. It draws the toxins out. And of course this is tremendously refreshing, because we are surrounded by tensions and failures and tragedies.”