The Almost-But-Not-Quite-Final Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Book List
The final nominations from Heavy Medal readers are completed. The Newbery Medal will be announced in seven weeks. So now is a good time to announce our final Heavy Medal Book List (HMBL). But…we’re not quite there yet. We’ve got twelve so far, and will eventually get to fifteen. Here’s the path we’ve taken and what comes next:
The Early 6: We chose six books in November to get our list started
- ECHO MOUNTAIN
- EVERYTHING SAD IS UNTRUE
- FIGHTING WORDS
- THE LIST OF THINGS THAT WILL NOT CHANGE
- SHOW ME A SIGN
- WHEN STARS ARE SCATTERED
3 More from Nominations: Once our final round of nominations was complete, I selected one title that was high up among the leaders, plus two fall releases that received strong support in the last round, with the assumption that folks might have only just been able to read those two. Also, both represent styles that are pretty different from the rest of the list.
- CHANCE (5 nominations; October release)
- SKUNK AND BADGER (5 nominations; September release)
- WHEN YOU TRAP A TIGER (11 nominations)
3 More for Balance: I chose three books to ensure that our list includes more varied formats of children’s books: one nonfiction title, one graphic novel, and one picture book.
- THE RISE AND FALL OF CHARLES LINDBERGH (2 nominations; nonfiction)
- OVERGROUND RAILROAD (2 nominations; picture book)
- SNAPDRAGON (2 nominations; graphic novel)
3 More for a Poll: The remaining three will be selected after a poll of the Heavy Medal Award Committee (HMAC), which will form soon (details coming Wednesday, December 9th). Only the HMAC members will take part in the poll this year. These volunteers will be reading all of the books and then discussing and voting for a winner, so we want the list to include as many member favorites as we can. The HMAC will select three from a list of nine titles. The list of nine consist of the remaining six books that received at least five nominations, plus three more from those underrepresented titles in the “3 for Balance” category:
- ALL THIRTEEN (1 nomination; nonfiction)
- BLACKBIRD GIRLS (6 nominations)
- CLASS ACT (2 nominations; graphic novel)
- A GAME OF FOX AND SQUIRRELS (6 nominations)
- I AM EVERY GOOD THING (1 nomination; picture book)
- KING AND THE DRAGONFLIES (5 nominations)
- PRAIRIE LOTUS (6 nominations)
- WE DREAM OF SPACE (7 nominations)
- A WISH IN THE DARK (5 nominations)
We’re not balloting on these yet. Wednesday I will post the invitation to join the HMAC, with details and dates and all. Once the HMAC is formed, that group will vote to reach the final list of 15. Meanwhile, though, everyone is welcome to share opinions on what the final three books should be. You can also comment on the list of twelve so far. There are certainly a bunch of great books that aren’t there….
About Steven Engelfried
Steven Engelfried was the Library Services Manager at the Wilsonville Public Library in Oregon until he retired in 2022 after 35 years as a full-time librarian. He served on the 2010 Newbery committee, chaired the 2013 Newbery Committee, and also served on the 2002 Caldecott committee. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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