Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Graveyard Book

The Graveyard Book
Neil Gaiman
Newbery Medal 2009
Possibly the spookiest Newbery winner ever? Maybe I could tell you if I didn't try to read it while covering my eyes...
Okay, I finished it. Great book, on the different side from most Newberry winners, but definitely deserving. With all the interesting characters and subplots I wished at times it was a thicker book, but the focus rightfully stayed on the main character.
update: haven't listened to this yet, and will make sure all the lights in the house are blazing brightly when I do, but here Neil Gaiman reads his Newbery winner!

Johnny Tremain

Johnny Tremain

by Esther Forbes

Newbery Medal 1944

Coming-of-age during the American Revolution, a poor but selfish/arrogant boy finds himself and a greater purpose during the birth of our nation.

I heard a lot of negative comments about this one on LibraryThing, mostly within the "books kids are forced to read" threads, but I enjoyed it; as a 6th grader I* may have felt it was long and therefore boring. Who has time in a classroom to have kids read novels anyway? There is some awkward prose, choppy almost fragmented sentences, possibly due to when it was written (?)...

I think there are several movie versions, anyone recommend a particular one?

connections: Paul Revere, colonial/revolutionary America, My Brother Sam is Dead , the Dear America series

*"I" as in a broad, generalized assumption of 6th graders-- I personally probably would have loved it, and I'm surprised I'd missed it way back then...