Oo-de-lally! Sam and I have settled on a final reading list for the Maryland Mock Newbery (to take place on January 6 at the Caroline County Public Library - register at the Maryland Library Association website, email any questions to Rachael, etc., etc.)!
For those who wish to mock with us, please to be seeking these titles:
1. Doll Bones, by Holly Black
2. Zebra Forest, by Adina Rishe Gewirtz
3. The Center of Everything, by Linda Urban
4. The Real Boy, by Anne Ursu
5. P.S. Be Eleven, by Rita Williams-Garcia
6. Penny and Her Marble, by Kevin Henkes
I know. We snuck in a sixth book that wasn't even on the semifinal list.
As always, we hope that these books represent a variety of genres and styles that will make for a lively discussion in January - though not as much variety as we would like, because we didn't feel that any of the nonfiction this year could go toe to toe with the best fiction. And I would have loved to include some poetry - namely, What the Heart Knows, by Joyce Sidman.
Actually, there are a lot of books we would have loved to include but couldn't or didn't. I'm second-guessing my choice not to put Better Nate Than Ever on my semi-final list, and Sam wishes he'd included The Hidden Summer. And then there's Far, Far Away, probably my favorite book of the year, but one I read too late to add it to my list.
Since we are but a mock committee, though, our humble six will have to do, and I think they will do quite nicely. Happy reading!