Wednesday, January 13, 2016

YA Wednesday: 2016 Printz Awards



2016BoneGap2002015 was another great year for Young Adult books, so when the Printz awards were announced this week I expected to see a handful of titles on the list again.  But somehow it was not to be. 

This year, there are only three YA books total (the winner and two honor titles) that the judges found deserving of a 2016 Michael L. Printz award. I can't even begin to guess what that process must have looked like...

2016GhostsHeaven2002016OutDarkness200What I do know is that the medal winner, Bone Gap, was also a National Book Award finalist; that this is not The Ghosts of Heaven author Marcus Sedgwick's first Printz rodeo; and that the other honor award winner, a historical novel called Out of Darkness, has received much praise from reviewers and readers alike. 

Kudos to all three authors for excellent, deserving books and a job well done, but I'm still a little shocked that a year which brought us a wealth of riches in YA resulted in so few recognitions...

What book would I have added to this list?  How about Teresa Toten's The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B Or maybe David Arnold's Mosquitoland

The award is to be given to a book that "exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature" -- I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that I think there is some subjectivity around that criteria. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate all the hard work that goes into judging the Printz awards--seems like a tough gig if you ask me, since none of us has any too short a "too be read" pile as it is.  But I have to say it makes me very happy when a book I absolutely loved--like I'll Give You the Sun--takes home a prize (I remember being so surprised when The Fault in Our Stars was absent from the winners list). If you had the chance, what book from 2015 would you award a Printz Honor?

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Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

Out of Darkness by Ashley Hope Pérez

The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick

 


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