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Old 02-02-2017, 11:52 AM
Dendarii Dame Dendarii Dame is offline
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All-Time Best Newbery Medal Book, In Your Opinion?

Here's a list of all of the books to win the Newbery Medal, except the most recent, which is The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill. (Which I've read and is excellent, by the way.) Which one do you think is the best, out of those you've read? I've read almost all, except for the winners in 2003, 2005-07, 2011-13, 2015.)


http://www.ala.org/alsc/awardsgrants...s/medalwinners

So many wonderful choices, but I'm going to go with Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:00 PM
SaharaTea SaharaTea is offline
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A Wrinkle In Time, hands down.

A lot of the winners from the 70s and 80s were on my bookshelf.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:01 PM
Ukulele Ike Ukulele Ike is offline
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I haven't been following the Newberys since I was of the right age to read them....so, stopping in the mid-1970s.

My favorites as a kid were THE VOYAGES OF DR. DOOLITTLE (1923 -- pretty racist by contemporary standards); THE TWENTY-ONE BALLOONS (1948); IT'S LIKE THIS, CAT (1964); MRS. FRISBY AND THE RATS OF NIMH (1972); and everyone's favorite, A WRINKLE IN TIME (1963).

My daughter read 1994's THE GIVER, which I found excellent, and could be my top pick, even beating out L'Engle. I even enjoyed the movie.

My son read 1999's HOLES, which I didn't really care for.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:06 PM
Ukulele Ike Ukulele Ike is offline
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Sorry! Didn't see that you asked for ONE.

Damn....I'll have to go for THE GIVER, then. Especially for that one amazing moment when the protagonist sees a FLASH of red....and you realize that no one in the dystopian world can SEE COLOR.

Sorry, Madeleine, your crypto-Christianity knocks you from the top slot. You're more subtle than C.S. Lewis, but I can still sniff the hymn-books in your work.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:09 PM
jsgoddess jsgoddess is offline
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I've only read 16 of them. One I didn't like. One I don't really remember.

I'm going to go with Dicey's Song, by Cynthia Voigt.
  #6  
Old 02-02-2017, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ukulele Ike View Post
My daughter read 1994's THE GIVER, which I found excellent, and could be my top pick, even beating out L'Engle. I even enjoyed the movie.
Yes!

The Giver was the first "grown-up" book my daughter read in school, and she asked if I'd read it so we could talk about it. Good times!
  #7  
Old 02-02-2017, 12:25 PM
peedin peedin is offline
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I'm the lone hater of A Wrinkle in Time. IMHO the best is From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. I don't buy many fiction books, but that one has a place of honor on my shelves.

Last edited by peedin; 02-02-2017 at 12:27 PM.
  #8  
Old 02-02-2017, 12:29 PM
Darren Garrison Darren Garrison is offline
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Wow, read only four of them--Island of the Blue Dolphins, Bridge to Terabithia, The Graveyard Book, and Moon Over Manifest. Out of those, I'd have to pick Bridge to Terabithia.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:39 PM
SpoilerVirgin SpoilerVirgin is offline
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From my childhood experience, I have to go with From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, which was my favorite, although there are many others on the list that I enjoyed.

But I also have to put in a word for Sarah, Plain and Tall . Although the book came out long after my childhood, the T.V. movie with Glenn Close (and its sequels) are among my favorites to watch over and over again.
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:46 PM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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Some of the best: The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle, The Grey King, The High King , A Wrinkle in Time...
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Old 02-02-2017, 12:49 PM
SpoilerVirgin SpoilerVirgin is offline
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It's too late to edit, but I have to change my answer. When I first read the thread title, I reflexively thought of The Chronicles of Prydain, but then I couldn't find them on the Newbery list. Now I see that I missed the listing for The High King, which is absolutely the all-time best (and of course someone brought it up while I was editing).
  #12  
Old 02-02-2017, 12:51 PM
cmkeller cmkeller is online now
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Wow, am I really the first poster to say "The Westing Game"? I love that book, and could read it over and over. So many layers to the mystery, such interesting personalities, such unusual story structure...
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Old 02-02-2017, 01:47 PM
Dung Beetle Dung Beetle is offline
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I say A Gathering of Days. I must admit I found it boring when I read it as a kid, but it got better every time I tried it again. I still have my copy, and could easily open it at any page and fall in. It's got a cozy, comforting feel to me.
  #14  
Old 02-02-2017, 02:03 PM
astorian astorian is offline
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I've only read 7 Newbery winning books, and I don't have particularly fond memories of any of them.
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Old 02-02-2017, 02:10 PM
Mahaloth Mahaloth is offline
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The Giver
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Old 02-02-2017, 02:11 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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It's hard to pick one.

One of my personal qualifications to be the all-time best Newbery Medal book is that it should be a stand-alone. I've always felt that some of the books that are parts of series are getting an extra kick from the series overall being good.

So if I have to pick, I'm going to say From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. It's just a great book from start to finish. It's also the kind of book that holds up to repeated readings, and kids at different ages get different things out of it (when I first read it, it was a straight up adventure story, and it was only when I was older that I got some of the more nuanced parts).

My runner-up is Caddie Woodlawn. It came out in 1936, and it is STILL an engaging read. It's so well-written. It's exciting, it's funny, it's a very American story.
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Old 02-02-2017, 02:23 PM
Wednesday Evening Wednesday Evening is offline
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I've read 24 of them. While my personal favorites are The Hero and The Crown and The Westing Game, for all-time best I think I would have to go with A Wrinkle in Time.
  #18  
Old 02-02-2017, 02:39 PM
Rick Kitchen Rick Kitchen is offline
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Johnny Tremain
  #19  
Old 02-02-2017, 02:43 PM
Skara_Brae Skara_Brae is offline
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The Witch of Blackbird Pond is my favorite. It probably helps that I'm from New England.
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Old 02-02-2017, 02:53 PM
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Apparently I haven't read any written after 1969. So The High King it is.
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Old 02-02-2017, 02:55 PM
Soul Brother Number Two Soul Brother Number Two is offline
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Too hard to pick. I also stopped around the mid 70s. I read almost all before that. Johnny Tremain was the one that came to mind, but Mrs. Frisby, Basil E., The High King, The Grey King (part of the very spooky and fantastic The Dark is Rising series), It's Like This, Cat... no way I could pick. Got chills over here remembering those old friends.
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Old 02-02-2017, 02:57 PM
Soul Brother Number Two Soul Brother Number Two is offline
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Aaargh! How could I forget Rabbit Hill?!?!?!
  #23  
Old 02-02-2017, 03:03 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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Of those that I've read, my favorite is definitely A Wrinkle in Time, which probably had a greater influence on me than any other book I've read. But I don't know if that makes it the best overall, or just the best for me.

And I see a lot of folks praising The Giver. While it shows extreme mastery of the craft of writing (seldom have I ever seen such an excellent example of "show don't tell"), there are just too many holes in the world-building for me to rate it that highly. The math just doesn't work out.
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Old 02-02-2017, 03:07 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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I've read all of 4 of them, so A Wrinkle In Time gets the nod.
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Old 02-02-2017, 03:09 PM
Prof. Pepperwinkle Prof. Pepperwinkle is offline
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And another vote for A Wrinkle In Time. "Wild nights are my glory."
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Old 02-02-2017, 03:37 PM
Patx2 Patx2 is offline
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So many good ones to choose from, but my favorites are probably Maniac Magee and Shiloh. Someone also mentioned The Witch of Blackbird Pond. I recall enjoying that one a lot too.
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Old 02-02-2017, 03:49 PM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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I've read 24 of them. While my personal favorites are The Hero and The Crown and The Westing Game, for all-time best I think I would have to go with A Wrinkle in Time.

It is very good, but imho the series didnt hold up, unlike the The Dark is Rising sequence.
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Old 02-02-2017, 04:14 PM
Disheavel Disheavel is offline
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I'm the lone hater of A Wrinkle in Time. IMHO the best is From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. I don't buy many fiction books, but that one has a place of honor on my shelves.
Not the lone hater of it, I just read it aloud to my children a couple of years back. I am convinced that nobody proofread or edited it in any way. It was okay for its time but would have sold 10 copies if written today. Not a good book.

I am going to put forward Holes as being the best- good character development, good appealing to young person angst, distrust of adults, good motivations, and also a fun read!
  #29  
Old 02-02-2017, 04:21 PM
nightshadea nightshadea is offline
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i think this is subjective because everyone has different favorite eras ........ but i loved the westing game and still think dear mr henshaw is one of the worst kids books ever .....

Last edited by nightshadea; 02-02-2017 at 04:25 PM.
  #30  
Old 02-02-2017, 04:30 PM
nightshadea nightshadea is offline
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oh and I just realized i loved johnny Tremaine and rabbit hill i think we still have an original copy around here ....... sad thing is the "reading rots the mind" chapter fit so much of my family .......

Last edited by nightshadea; 02-02-2017 at 04:33 PM.
  #31  
Old 02-02-2017, 04:35 PM
jsgoddess jsgoddess is offline
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I liked A Wrinkle in Time as a child. As an adult, I find it heavy-handed.
  #32  
Old 02-02-2017, 04:50 PM
Wilson Wilson is offline
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I remember loving Carry On, Mr. Bowditch as a child, but haven't revisited it since. It's either that or The Grey King.
  #33  
Old 02-02-2017, 05:05 PM
Sherrerd Sherrerd is offline
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I loved ... Mixed-Up Files ... but also this one, not yet mentioned:

Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George (Harper), 1973

I remember crying at the end (and I've never been that much of a crier).

Last edited by Sherrerd; 02-02-2017 at 05:08 PM.
  #34  
Old 02-02-2017, 05:06 PM
ChockFullOfHeadyGoodness ChockFullOfHeadyGoodness is offline
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Read as a child:
A Wrinkle In Time, followed by The High King. I'd love to see another attempt cinematic attempt at the Prydain books. I wonder if Disney still has the rights, or can someone else (please, please Laika oh please) take a shot.

Read as an adult when my kids had to pick a Newberry Winner for book reports (this was a requirement at least once per semester all the way from 4th-8th grade):
The Graveyard Book, followed by The Giver.

My youngest son loved The Grey King, which inspired him to read the rest of the Dark Is Rising series (out of order). We gave him the boxed set for Christmas that year, and he tracked down Susan Cooper's mailing address and asked us to help him pack it up and mail it with prepaid return postage to be signed. She signed each volume individually with a personalized message and included a very nice personal note on her own stationery. I still haven't gotten around to reading the sequence because my son won't let me touch the books. "Get them from the library! Don't mess up my copies!"

I haven't picked up A Wrinkle In Time in decades. Some of the comments here, along with my older son's lukewarm response (I got the feeling he didn't like it at all, but went with "It's OK" after I had talked it up so much), make me wonder if it's dated.
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Old 02-02-2017, 05:08 PM
DrDeth DrDeth is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChockFullOfHeadyGoodness;19972206

My youngest son loved [I
The Grey King[/I], which inspired him to read the rest of the Dark Is Rising series (out of order). We gave him the boxed set for Christmas that year, and he tracked down Susan Cooper's mailing address and asked us to help him pack it up and mail it with prepaid return postage to be signed. She signed each volume individually with a personalized message and included a very nice personal note on her own stationery. I still haven't gotten around to reading the sequence because my son won't let me touch the books. "Get them from the library! Don't mess up my copies!".
Great series, and Ms Cooper is wonderful. Too bad the film was just "meh".
  #36  
Old 02-02-2017, 05:10 PM
thelurkinghorror thelurkinghorror is online now
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Based on the series, maybe the High King but I think I like one of the previous books in the series better.
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Old 02-02-2017, 05:15 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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I haven't been able to finish The Dark is Rising series. Over Sea, Under Stone was excellent, but The Dark is Rising seemed too "easy" to me: The main character is magical because he just is, and every single aspect of the quest is just handed to him on a silver (or wooden or other metal) platter just for existing. He never had to actually try for anything. Similarly for Greenwitch, which can be summarized as "Give us the MacGuffin" "No." "Pretty please?" "Well, OK then.".
  #38  
Old 02-02-2017, 07:36 PM
Ukulele Ike Ukulele Ike is offline
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...I see a lot of folks praising The Giver. While it shows extreme mastery of the craft of writing (seldom have I ever seen such an excellent example of "show don't tell"), there are just too many holes in the world-building for me to rate it that highly. The math just doesn't work out.
I didn't mind that too much. To properly enjoy fantasy, I skip over the parts that don't make any sense.

Wow...can't believe my eyes zipped right past FROM THE MIXED UP FILES. I devoured all of Konigsburg's novels as a kid. MIXED UP wouldn't replace THE GIVER for me, but it would be in my top five.

I bought THE WESTING GAME for my daughter when she was young, but didn't read it myself. I was already a college boy when it was published.
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Old 02-02-2017, 07:44 PM
Ukulele Ike Ukulele Ike is offline
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Kind of shocking to me that neither THE PHANTOM TOLLBOOTH (1961) nor BLESS THE BEASTS AND CHILDREN (1970) won the award for their years.

Ah, well, awards are awards. Both Sunset Boulevard and All About Eve lost out on the 1950 Best Picture Oscar to Born Yesterday.
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Old 02-02-2017, 07:47 PM
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"The Westing Game" is the type of "clever" book I loved as a kid. I suspect now I'd prefer "Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH".

I absolutely, positively could not stand "I, Juan de Pareja". It was s-o-o-o-o-o boring, but I was forced to read it in elementary school; I think we were each arbitrarily assigned a Newberry book to read and I got stuck with that one. Maybe I'd appreciate it more now that I've developed more tolerance to slow-moving books.
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Old 02-02-2017, 07:53 PM
Left Hand of Dorkness Left Hand of Dorkness is offline
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I think I've read 27 of them. Currently my third graders are finishing up producing films for the 90-second Newbery film festival, based on the three Newberies we've read this year: Bud, Not Buddy; Last Stop on Market Street; and The Tale of Despereaux.

Given that I've done them as read-alouds, I clearly recommend all three. My favorite, though is probably The Tale of Despereaux. It's so funny, and so beautiful, and so full of rich symbolism and pathos. The movie is an abomination, but the book? Just about perfect.

Bud, Not Buddy and Holes both come in a close second, though--if you have any love at all for children's lit, both are well worth reading.
  #42  
Old 02-02-2017, 08:10 PM
Ukulele Ike Ukulele Ike is offline
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Ah, well, awards are awards. Both Sunset Boulevard and All About Eve lost out on the 1950 Best Picture Oscar to Born Yesterday.
Holy Mother of Beelzebub! CHARLOTTE'S WEB lost out to....SECRET OF THE ANDES? What the hell is SECRET OF THE ANDES, and has anyone read it since 1953?

And what parent has not read CHARLOTTE'S WEB aloud to their kids, heaving great racking sobs when Charlotte dies?

Oooops, spoiler alert.
  #43  
Old 02-02-2017, 08:19 PM
Lonehighway Lonehighway is offline
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I agree with skara brae (I actually visited there--fascinating!)

I still re-read The Witch of Blackbird Pond every few years....
  #44  
Old 02-02-2017, 08:30 PM
Fretful Porpentine Fretful Porpentine is offline
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Of the ones I read when I was a kid, Adam of the Road was my favorite. Travel, adventure, and medieval lyric poetry, what's not to love?
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Old 02-02-2017, 09:10 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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I can overlook fantastic things in fantasy, like the people somehow losing the ability to see color and hear music, or the transfer of memories from Giver to Receiver. But it still bugs me when the non-fantastic things don't work, like the population remaining steady despite a sub-replacement birthrate.

It's the same way that I have no problem with talking mice and messianic lions, but the double-counterweighted trebuchets in the Prince Caspian movie took me right out of the story.
  #46  
Old 02-02-2017, 09:17 PM
GuanoLad GuanoLad is online now
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I've only read one of them. The Hero and the Crown.
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Old 02-02-2017, 09:18 PM
delphica delphica is offline
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Holy Mother of Beelzebub! CHARLOTTE'S WEB lost out to....SECRET OF THE ANDES? What the hell is SECRET OF THE ANDES, and has anyone read it since 1953?
I read it for the specific purpose of finding out what literary treasure could possibly have beaten Charlotte's Web ... and it's really a slog. You'd think Incas would make for a more exciting read, but not, it turns out.
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Old 02-02-2017, 09:30 PM
Left Hand of Dorkness Left Hand of Dorkness is offline
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I've only read one of them. The Hero and the Crown.
If I taught an older grade, I might read them The Hero and the Crown every year instead of Despereaux, and then that might be my favorite. It certainly stands up there as among the great fantasy novels.
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Old 02-02-2017, 09:31 PM
Ukulele Ike Ukulele Ike is offline
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I read it for the specific purpose of finding out what literary treasure could possibly have beaten Charlotte's Web ... and it's really a slog. You'd think Incas would make for a more exciting read, but not, it turns out.
I suppose the judges found it to be..."educational." Kiss of death for any great kid lit.
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Old 02-03-2017, 02:29 AM
MrDibble MrDibble is offline
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Of the ones I've read, The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman.

Definitely not A Wrinkle In Time. I have no fucking idea why that book gets so much love.
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