Mari Lowe explores themes of family, friendship, and grief in her debut novel, AVIVA VS. THE DYBBUK. Could she be one of the rare first-time authors to win a Newbery Medal?
Previous Newbery winner Lynne Rae Perkins is back with an animal adventure story about VIOLET AND JOBIE IN THE WILD.
Kwame Alexander won the 2015 Newbery Medal and a Newbery Honor in 2020. Today we discuss the Newbery potential of his powerful new book, THE DOOR OF NO RETURN,
A poetical duo looks at figures of speech in Marshmallow Clouds in this years poetry potential Newbery winner.
Kelly Barnhill's THE OGRESS AND THE ORPHANS is a "delightful and thought-provoking read," says Heavy Medal Award Committee member Kerrie Lattari in her introduction. Barnhill won the 2017 Newbery Medal; will her latest book match that accomplishment?
Caldecott powerhouse Sophie Blackall made another show stopper, one that might even be Newbery worthy? Let us know your take on this intergenerational read about an abandoned farmhouse.
Will the 2023 Newbery winner be a science book? Pamela S. Turner's HOW TO BUILD A HUMAN is "an outstanding work of narrative nonfiction," according to Heavy Medal Award Committee member Amanda Bishop. How will it measure up to the rest of our Mock Newbery titles?
In this years science/ realistic fiction read, Peter Blenski introduced A ROVER'S STORY by Jasmine Warga as a "not only a crowd favorite but a mock favorite."
Today our Mock Newbery discussion shifts to the graphic novel getting the most love this year: SWIM TEAM by Johnnie Christmas.
Ruta Sepetys' I MUST BETRAY YOU has been on our Mock Newbery radar since it came out last February. Heavy Medal Award Committee member Courtney Hague highlights the author's "masterful use of both setting and theme and her thorough descriptions and details" in her introduction. Will this historical fiction novel be a strong contender for the Newbery Medal?
The 2023 Youth Media Award announcements took place at 8 a.m. CST Monday morning in New Orleans during LibLearnX. Emily and Steven watched the live webcast and live blogged their reactions, take a look here:
Nearly 150 participants weighed in on our annual Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Readers' Poll. In a very close race, Kelly Barnhill's THE OGRESS AND THE ORPHAN is our winner. See the full list of results here.
About 300 people attended the webcast where the 16 Heavy Medal Award Committee members discussed the final five titles and voted on a Mock Newbery winner.
s we narrow down our Heavy Medal Mock list and prepare for our Zoom conversation, the 2023 Newbery committee is also rereading titles before their big discussions. Steven and Emily touched base to determine their predictions and would love to hear yours.
The Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Reader's Poll is now open! Choose your top 3 titles from the 16 books on our Heavy Medal Book List. Submit your picks by January 27th at noon EST; results will be annouced on January 28th.
It took more than one vote, but the Heavy Medal Award Committee made it to a final five list. They are all middle grade, which is definitely a common Newbery occurrence (although less in years past). We will discuss the final five titles in our live Zoom session this Friday January 27th at 1:00 p.m. […]
In 2021 Chirstina Soontornvat won Newbery Honor for two different books. Her latest novel, THE LAST MAPMAKER, could be a contender for the 2023 award. Join our discussion of the last of the 16 titles on our Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Book List.
BERRY SONG, the newest picture book from Michaela Goade, is "a symphony of words," according to Heavy Medal Award Committee member Gabrielle Stoller. Does the winner of the 2021 Caldecott Medal have a chance to win the 2023 Newbery?
Young adult author A. S. King won the 2020 Printz Medal. Could ATTACK OF THE BLACK RECTANGLES make her a Newbery Medalist as well? Join the discussion on our Heavy Medal Mock Newbery blog.
Not only is there a one-sentence Newbery potential for 2023, but a three-sentence one two. A double Jason heavily illustrated tag-team effort, AIN'T BURNED ALL THE BRIGHT, is definitely a unique Newbery contender.
Nana Ekua Brew Hammond's BLUE is a "valuable history of a beautiful color with a 'complicated history'" according to Heavy Medal Award Committee member Jenny Arch. How will this unique informational picture book fare in our Mock Newbery discussion?
A September publication that made the Early Six, Black Bird, Blue Road by Sofiya Pasternack features Jewish lore, angels, demons and sibling love. Heavy Medal committee member Aryssa Damron kicks off our official discussions.
With the Newbery Medal announcement just a month away, bloggers Emily and Steven share some of their memories of what the last month of a Newbery year is like for the 15 committee members.
The official Heavy Medal book discussions start next week. Today we feature a practice discussion about Maizy Chen's Last Chance, a 2023 Newbery contender that received five Heavy Medal nominations but did not make our final list.
Of all of the literary elements named in the Newbery Criteria, "style" may be the most difficult to evaluate. Emily and Steven share thoughts on how important an author's style can be when trying to determine the winner of the Newbery Medal.
We are happy to introduce this year’s Heavy Medal Award Committee (HMAC). Our 17 members will introduce and discuss the 16 titles on our Heavy Medal Book List (HMBL) here on Heavy Medal, beginning January 2nd (with a practice discussion on Monday December 26th).
Our official Heavy Medal Mock Newbery discussions begin in January, with an intense 2+ weeks of in-depth book evaluation and debate. The Heavy Medal Award Committee members will lead the process, but all readers are welcome to join in. Here's our full schedule of book titles and discussion dates.
85 titles were suggested on Heavy Medal this year, then 68 titles were nominated. We narrowed it down to 6 for an “Early 6 Booklist” and then 16 for our final Heavy Booklist. Getting it down to 16 was not easy and we wanted to share some of the titles that sadly “didn’t make the […]
It was a long phone call, there was a lot of debate and changes and negogiations, Steven may have cried (just kidding he didn’t cry), but we made a 2023 Heavy Medal Book List! A few points: AIN’T BURNED ALL THE BRIGHT- Jason Reynolds ATTACK OF THE BLACK RECTANGLES- A.S. King AVIVIA VS. THE DYBBUK– […]
It's the season for Best Books of the Year lists! How does our Heavy Medal nominations list compare to the children's books selected by journals, libraries, newspapers, and bloggers as their top titles of the year?
Do you love children’s literature? Is Heavy Medal bookmarked on your computer Do you dream of being on the Newbery Committee one day? If you answered yes to any of those questions, consider joining the 2023 Heavy Medal Award Committee! After nearly a year of reading, months of discussion, and 68 strong nominations, it’s time to […]
With 68 titles on our Heavy Medal nominations list, we need to narrow it down to 12-15 for our final book list. Please fill out our poll by Monday December 12 at 5:00 pm to help us determine which titles we should discuss.
Check out the final list of nominations from Heavy Medal readers. Nearly 70 books were identified as possible contenders for the 2023 Newbery Medal. Will one of these wind up the winner?
In the fifth of a six part series where we look at Newbery 2023 potentials and the Newbery criteria, today we focus on delineation of setting. This includes time period, location, any world building and beyond.
"What will the Newbery winner be?" is the subject of conversation all year in the children's book world: in articles, blogs, and countless conversations. How much does this award book "buzz" impact the members of the actual Newbery Committee? Our bloggers share thoughts from their own committee experiences.
It's your final opportunity to nominate titles for the Heavy Medal Mock Newbery Award. After selecting a total of five books previously, readers may now select two more, for a total of seven. Share your titles and the reason why you chose them, and we'll reveal the final totals soon.
As the year nears its end, Heavy Medal readers (and real Newbery Committee members) select two final books to add to the official list of nominated titles. Do you pick your personal favorite? The most likely winners? Take a chance with a long shot? We offer some possible strategies for this final choice and invite readers to share their own.
Readers are invited to take part in our “Compare/ Contrast” exercise. Select two titles from this year’s Newbery Medal contenders, and compare them using the Newbery criteria. We'll see which title stands up against the other.
Its a fantasy face-off; who would win: OGRESS AND THE ORPHANS by Kelly Barnhill or THE LAST MAPMAKER by Christina Soontornvat. Read the arguments and cast your ballot and opinions in the comments.
Easy Readers are a tough sell for the Newbery Medal, but you never know maybe one can break through.
It's been 33 years since a collection of poems for children has won the Newbery Medal. Could 2023 be the year that poetry breaks through again?
The final list of 15 (or so) titles for our Heavy Medal Book List isn't ready yet, but today we reveal the "Early Six." Find out what we chose and get an early start on your Mock Newbery reading...
It’s not often that a beginning chapter book wins the Newbery (or even the Geisel award for that matter), but they deserve the spotlight too! Today we take a look at four books that have been receiving a mild amount of buzz this year and see if they can stand up against the Newbery criteria. […]
The results are in! Our Heavy Medal Mock Newbery list now includes 58 books, and at least one reader feels that each one of them could wind up winning the 2023 Newbery Medal as the most distinguished children's book of the year.
In the fourth segment of our Newbery Criteria Deep Dive we look at interpretation of theme in 2023 Newbery potentials.
Graphic novels have earned Newbery recognition three times in the past eight years. Will they break through again in 2023? We take a look at five possible Newbery contenders in the graphic novel format, all of which take place during the middle school years.
It's time for the second round of nominations. Pick two titles you think are deserving of the Newbery.
Today is the second post in our series of Inside Insights from our experiences on the Newbery Committee. The idea is to give an inside view of some of the nuts and bolts of being on the Newbery Committee. We’re glad to answer questions and would also love to hear from others about their own […]
The Newbery Medal announcement is just three months away. Here's a preview of Heavy Medal activities between now and then, which will include more reader nominations, a mock award committee, a final booklist, high-level book discussion, and two separate Mock Newbery elections.
With only one picture book nominated for the Heavy Medal mock Newbery, let's see what options are out there for 32 page titles to win the Newbery medal.
What does excellence in the area of "Presentation of Information" look like in a children's book? Today we take a deep dive at how "accuracy, clarity, and organization" can play a role in the selection of the Newbery Medal.
Today we look at the best historical fiction of the year including AFRICA TOWN and I MUST BETRAY YOU.
In what looks like a strong year for children's fantasy fiction, we look at three excellent titles, each written by an author that has had Newbery recognition in prior years.
In a continuation of our Newbery Criteria deep dive, today Steven and I take a look at plot in 2023 Newbery Contenders. Last time was characterization and we'll make it to the rest of the Criteria throughout the year. For today, let's talk plot!
A graphic novel and a historical picture book were among the surprise leaders from our first round of Mock Newbery nominations. Here's a closer look at SWIM TEAM by Johnnie Christmas and LOVE IN THE LIBRARY by Maggie Tokuda-Hall, illustrated by Yas Imamura.
Our first round of nominations is over. 32 people submitted three titles for October. The early leaders are THE LAST MAPMAKER and I MUST BETRAY YOU...but we've got two more rounds to go in November and December.
As we move into nomination season, it is easy to get excited about the big titles. As always, I’m worried about missing something and even that a suggested title may slip through the cracks. Today we’ll look at one suggestion contenders- of the 85 suggested titles, 42 only have one suggestion. I’ll start with three […]
From a solo canoe journey to the 1989 Romanian Revolution, this year's best children's historical fiction titles represent a wide range of styles, settings, and time periods. Will one or more wind up with a Newbery Medal?
It's time to nominate! Select your top three children's books of the year and add them to our October nominations list. The nominations list will reveal which books Heavy Medal readers support most strongly as Newbery Medal contenders. We'll add to the list in November and December, but for now, submit your October three by October 8th.
Newbery Committee members receive several hundred books every year. How do they keep track of them all as they try to find the single most distinguished title of the year?
Now that the suggestion period is closed, let's take a look if there are any gaps or areas that are missing in our 2023 Newbery contenders.
Readers are invited to take part in our “One Plus / One Minus” exercise. Select a title from this year’s Newbery Medal contenders, highlight the book’s biggest strength, then identify a single flaw or concern you see in the book. We’ll see how the year’s most highly rated books so far hold up to these quick critiques from Heavy Medal readers.
Today we look deeper at one of the six Newbery criteria pieces: delineation of characters and which 2023 contenders stand out most in this category.
Arriving at a new place can be challenging for kids, whether it's moving from Oman to Michigan or leaving Hong Kong for California just ahead of a virus. Several of the best books of 2022 show how that "new kid" element can lead to insightful explorations of culture, language, racism, inclusion, and other powerful topics. Will any of them be contenders for the Newbery Medal?
The National Book Foundation announced the longlist for the 2022 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature (YPL) last week. The Award works a bit differently than the Newbery. Publishers pay to submit titles, and a longlist, shortlist and winner is announced. There are separate panel committees for the different age groups. In 2021, 1,892 […]
Take a look at the results of our Heavy Medal beginning of the year check-in to see readers top titles for the 2023 Newbery so far this year.
It looks like a strong year for fiction, but Steven's top 2 children's books of the year so far are a picture book and a science book. Heavy Medal readers are invited to share their own top 2 and let us know why they might fare well in a Newbery Medal discussion.
Bloggers Emily and Steven share their early Mock Newbery favorites and look ahead to intriguing titles that will be released soon. Readers are invited to join the discussion and vote for their own current front runners in our online survey.
Learn a little about Emily and Steven, this year's Heavy Medal Bloggers, and tell them about yourself!
For the next five months, Heavy Medal will be taking an in-depth look at the best children's books of the year as part of our 2023 Mock Newbery process. Here's a preview of what's in store....
Here's our updated list of possible contenders for the 2023 Newbery Medal, compiled from monthly suggestions from Heavy Medal readers. In the coming weeks and months we'll look closer at many of these titles, along with the best fall releases, during out Heavy Medal Mock Newbery process.
It's the final round of Heavy Medal suggestions. Submit up to five titles already published in 2022 to add to our list.
Seven new titles were suggested in August. The top three titles are very different genres (dual voices/verse, fantasy, historical) which doesn't happen very often.
Read any great children's book lately? If so, and if they're eligible for the 2023 Newbery Medal, now is the time to add them to our Heavy Medal Mock Newbery list. August suggestions are open through Saturday, Augusts 6th, and we'll share the updated list right after that.
We're still a couple months away from starting our Heavy Medal Mock Newbery book discussions, and our list of possible contending titles continues to grow. Share your favorite Newbery-eligible titles as we gather another round of suggestions through July 9th.
Here’s our newly updated list of suggestions. These are the children’s books that Heavy Medal readers have put forward as potential contenders for the 2023 Newbery Medal. Since we only include books that have been officially published, there’s still six months worth of forthcoming titles that we haven’t seen, but the list already looks very […]
2022 is almost halfway through, and Heavy Medal's list of suggested contenders for the 2023 Newbery Medal continues to grow. Add your June recommendations this week!
In a month of 47 titles suggested for the Heavy Medal Mock Newbery- Anybody Here Seen Frenchie? and The Last Mapmaker have made their way up the list.
We’re already in the month of MAY (don’t ask me how that happens!) And it is time for a new month of Heavy Medal suggestions. Details about how suggestions work are in Steven’s March post; but remember: No more than five suggestions, please save the rest for next month! (Less is fine too) Stick to […]
Eighteen new titles were suggested this month, bringing us to a list of 32 total suggestions for the 2023 Heavy Medal Mock Newbery. I’m excited to have quite the expansive reading list. Imagine where the committee is now, with 15 members having no limit of suggested titles. (I may have gone overboard on suggestions some […]