Tuesday, December 06, 2011

My Next-Read Stack-Winding Up 2011 Newbery Possibilities

At NCTE, I picked up some great 2012 books that I can't wait to read.  I am tempted to move to my 2012 stack. And blog posts such as the one at READ, WRITE, REFLECT about Jo Knowles' new book don't help:-) But I know that if I dig into those, I will most likely never come back to the 20 or so 2011 middle grade novels I had hoped to get to this year.This year, I have read more than any other year.  I have read nearly 300 books and have enjoyed almost 100 percent of those books. I give full credit for this to my friends, both local and online and the fact that Goodreads, Twitter and Facebook have all allowed me to find the best books out there. But, with the number of amazing books out there, it is easy to miss some great ones every year.

So, 2012 is only a few weeks away. I still have many, many book from 2011 that I hope to read before I move into the 2012 books. But in reality, I know I can't get to all of them.

There is really no good way to decide how to prioritize my next read stack when it is packed with so many great books. My favorite strategy was the one that John Schumacher used to prioritize his next read stack. It was quite brilliant and I would highly recommend it!

I have decided to use Anderson's Bookshop Mock Newbery List to help me prioritize. From what I hear, Anderson's ALWAYS has the winner on their short list. I've also payed close attention to Betsy Bird at  Fuse #8 and the Heavy Medal blog.

I am looking forward to Holiday #bookaday to help me catch up again. I had my own Thanksgiving #bookaday this year and was able to read WORDS IN THE DUST by Trent Reedy,  THE GREAT WALL OF LUCY WU by Wendy Wan-Long Shang, THE UNWANTEDS by Lisa McMann and GHETTO COWBOY by G. Neri.  I'm glad I spent so much time reading over Thanksgiving as I would have hated to miss any of these amazing titles.

I just finished SPARROW ROAD by Sheila O'Connor last night and loved it. I found this one on the Anderson's list and again, so glad I didn't miss this title. This is for sure one of my favorite middle grade reads of the year.

Below is the rest of my stack and how I have prioritized. I am sure it will change often before January 1, but for now, it gives me a bit of direction.

Must Reads Because I Want to Have Read the Newbery Before It is Announced (There are five from the Anderson's list that I haven't read and would like to.)

THE EMERALD ATLAS by John Stephens
 THE AVIARY by Kathleen O'Dell
DRAGON CASTLE by Joseph Bruchac

Books I Must Read Because I Have Kids Who Would Love Them
13 GIFTS by Wendy Mass
ICEFALL by Matthew Kirby

Books I Don't Want to Forget About if I Don't Get to Them by 2011
PIE by Sarah Weeks
THE THIRD GIFT by Linda Su Park
BIRD IN A BOX by Andrea Pinkney

Early Chapter Books that Will Be Great for Transitional Readers That I Can't Believe I Haven't Read

2011 YA Books I'd Like to Read
THE FUTURE OF US by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

Books From Past Years that I Only Recently Learned About
THE CHAOS WALKING series by Patrick Ness

I guess overall, this is a good problem to have-so many great books to read! I will keep you posted and hopefully get through a good bunch of these in the next few weeks.


  1. Franki - great list! I think I need to compile my own must read list before the end of the year, it will help me focus my reading efforts. I have so much to read that I'm looking forward to holiday #bookaday too.

    And thanks for the blog shout out. :)

  2. This is OUTSTANDING! Since leaving my job at Harper, I've been trying to catch up on all the non-HarperCollins books I never had a chance to read...but it's hard to know where to start. Your list is the perfect jumping-off point for me! Thanks, Franki!


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