I love children's-book-award season. This is the second year for the Cybils (Children's and Young Adult Bloggers' Literary Awards); finalists in four categories were posted on the Cybils blog this morning. Many thanks to the panelists who read and reviewed all of the nominated books and came up with such interesting lists. I was pleasantly surprised by how many of the finalists I had never even heard of (I confess; and I read a lot) and wanted to rectify that right away.
I'd like to read and review at least one new (to me) book from each category before the winners are announced on Valentine's Day. Who knows? Maybe I'll even pick the winners! Anyway, here are the books I've chosen to read from among the first group of finalists:
Science Fiction and Fantasy. There are so many appealing books in this category. I'm starting with Into the Wild by Sarah Beth Durst (Razorbill, 2007), because of the fairy tales. Then Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale (Bloomsbury, 2007). The finalists in the SFF category were split into middle-grade and YA this year, which makes sense to me.
Fiction Picture Books. I think I can manage at least two (very different) picture books: Leaves by David Ezra Stein (Putnam, 2007), and The Incredible Book-Eating Boy by Oliver Jeffers (Philomel, 2007).
Poetry. I want to read everything Laura Amy Schlitz has ever written (including last year's Cybil award-winning middle grade novel, A Drowned Maiden's Hair). Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! : Voices from a Medieval Village (Candlewick, 2007) was already on my list; I was so pleased to see it on this one, too.
Finalists in the remaining categories (nonfiction picture books, graphic novels, young adult novels, and middle grade/young adult nonfiction) will be posted next week. I'll be waiting!