Strawberries, Newberies, and Liberries?
Last fall, at the used book sale, I found a copy of The Westing Game (Newbery Medal, 1979). I vividly remembered Ms. Bailey reading it to us in art class in 7th grade. I loved it- I remember checking it out of the library to finish it before she could finish reading it to our class. I loved it.
I bought the book, and re-read it, and loved it again. I “oh-so-casually” left it around for my daughter to read, and she loved it, too.
A few weeks later, my daughter brought home Our Only May Amelia,(Newbery Honor, 2000) and read it in one sitting. I watched her crying on the couch at the sad parts. She “oh-so-casually” left it for me to find, and I read it in one sitting. I cried at the same sad parts, and we talked about it.
So, I got an idea- these Newbery Medal winners, they’re some pretty good books. Maybe those librarians at the ALA are onto something. What if I read all the Newbery winners, in no particular order, as I come across them? Searching them all out seems exhausting, so I have decided to let them find me. I’ll use my school library, used book sales and other people’s book shelves. I’ll read them in no particular order, with no particular deadlines. I hope to “oh-so-casually” involve my children, The Girl, 10, and The Boy, 7. There are almost 90 years of medal winners, and most years the ALA also gives out honor awards, which I guess are kind of a Miss Congeniality of book awards.
I teach middle school, and love reading- confession, I read more adolescent literature than adult literature, and I do plan on reviewing non-medal winners as well. There are a lot of good books out there.
The local Friends of the Library Used book sale is in just a few weeks, so I’ll see what turns up.