Friday, January 30, 2015

Poetry Friday: Awards Season!

Blue on Blue by Dianne White, illustrations by Beth Krommes

Next Monday morning the ALA will make its Youth Media Awards announcement and I, for one, will be listening when they do. I love following the Mock Caldecotts and Mock Newberys right up to the day the winners and honor books are revealed. And I'm just as excited to hear about the Sibert (non-fiction); the Batchelder (translations); the Pura Belpre (Latino); the Geisel (beginning reader); and the Coretta Scott King (African-American.)  Now if only the ALA would make the announcements in the evening, I'd have an ALA Pizza-and-Popcorn party where we sit around, just like it's the Oscars, and bet on who will win.  

Let's hear it for the wonderful books of poetry being mentioned as possibilities for the Caldecott - the stunning illustrations by Rick Allen for Joyce Sidman's Winter Bees; ditto the artwork by Melissa Sweet for Paul Janeczko's Firefly July; Jon Muth for both text and illustrations for Hi, Koo; Becca Stadtlander's illustrations for On the Wing by David Elliot, and the illustrations by Gary Kelley for J. Patrick Lewis's Harlem Hellfighters. This year I'm going with a dark horse, hoping that Blue on Blue by Dianne White, with wonderful illustrations by Beth Krommes, will get some of the love it deserves from the Caldecott committee.

Having looked at the Mock Caldecotts and Mock Newberys, I think Marla Frazee is likely to get the picture book medal for The Farmer and the Clown, and it looks like both the Newbery and the CS King are headed the direction of Jackie Woodson for her verse novel, Brown Girl Dreaming (which also won the National Book Award.) Maybe The Family Romanov will get the Sibert? and Frida by Yuyi Morales for the Belpre?  I have no idea what book will win the Batchelder, though I do love the fact that books originally published in another language are finally getting translated into English in the U.S. 

Well, I can't have a Pizza-and-Popcorn party, but I can ask which books you would like to see get the medals. Any of the poetry titles mentioned above? Other favorites? I'd love to hear about them in the comments below.

The Poetry Friday round-up is being hosted today by Paul at These 4 Corners. Head over there to see what other people have posted.


  1. How exciting. Thanks for posting. I will look up these books and order them from the library. I am currently reading BROWN GIRL DREAMING. Wow!

  2. Thanks for mentioning Blue on Blue which looks stunning! Must look for it soon.

    Would love to see a female illustrator win the Caldecott, whether it's Marla or Melissa or Beth. And for the Newbery, brown girl dreaming!

  3. I love the idea of watching the ALA awards presentations with friends and snacks. Maybe someday!

    I'm for Brown Girl Dreaming! Verse is such a fitting way to tell memories, and Jacqueline Woodson did it so beautifully. I loved the interweaving of her personal memories and the times they were set in.

  4. Blue on Blue looks beautiful! I like your party idea :-)

  5. Julie,
    I was blown away by CROSSOVER. It hit all my buttons. It does what I like to see poetry do. It has great characters and a plot that had a surprise ending for me. I felt like I'd been hit by a speeding rhino when I finished the book.

  6. I'm looking forward to the ALA's - I'm hoping for a big win for Brown Girl Dreaming. Loved that book!

  7. Julie, thank you for alerting me to the fact that I have not been spending my time wisely. I have not thoroughly read one single book of those you list. (Wasn't it just NCTE like, last week, when I made my list? What have I been doing since then?)
    Virtual Monday Night Awards Hangout? I have no idea how we'd set that up, but I bet it's possible!

  8. Hi there Julie, I love reading your predictions here and noting how close they mostly are to the announced winners. :) Sad though about The Farmer and the Clown - that one is beautiful.Brown Girl Dreaming is love. This is the first I'm hearing Blue on Blue, will definitely try to find it.