Wednesday, April 9, 2014

But You Knew That Already

I interrupt this reading of Dreams of Gods and Monsters for an important announcement.  Well, it was important a month ago.  The results of the 2014 Monarch, Bluestem and Caudill have been released!  Now, let's see how I stacked up.

The 2014 Monarch Award Winner:  The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School by Laura Murray
My Pick:  I Wanna A New Room by Karen Orloff Kaufman
The Verdict:  I didn't do so hot.  I gave Gingerbread Man 10-1 odds and 12 place in my bracket.  The rhyme didn't work correctly for me, and that's a major deal breaker.  New Room took the number 9 spot, which I find a little surprising.  I would say that mostly the books fell in the range that I thought they would as far as Top, Middle, and Bottom, with the big exception being the winner.

The 2014 Bluestem Award Winner:  Wonder by R. J. Palacio
My Pick:  Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo
The Verdict:  As far as the real winner and my pick, I wasn't that far off, but holy cow, I was dead wrong on almost everything else!  I thought the Bluestem would skew younger, which is why I had Wonder at number 3.  But Wonder benefited from what I deem The Older Sibling Effect--the older sibling is reading the book, so the younger reader wants to read it too!  But really all the great non-fiction or quicker chapter books that I thought would own the top half fell to the bottom.  That's something to remember for next year:  Bluestem readers are a savvy bunch.

The 2014 Caudill Award Winner:  Wonder by R. J. Palacio
My Pick:  Wonder by R. J. Palacio
The Verdict:  I didn't have to read all 20 books to know that Wonder was going to win (in fact, I only read three).  Wonder is the book of the moment, for very good reason too.  And seeing it win the Bluestem and Caudill, and countless other regional awards means that this is a book that is here to stay. Like I've said in the past, if students are reading it for fun anyway, it's a guaranteed win.

With the 2014 award season behind me, I need to start thinking about 2015.  I already did a little recap of my 2015 reading progress here, but just in case you want to jump to the master lists, check out the 2015 Monarch, Bluestem, and Caudill lists.

Happy Reading!

(I will now return you to your regularly scheduled reading of Dreams of Gods and Monsters)

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