Friday, November 18, 2005

Wholesome National Book Award winner begs the question..

What the heck are we awarding?

The Penderwicks is "an enjoyable tale," according to the Amazon review, but I had not heard any child or adult talk about it as a book of exceptional.. well.. anything.

Michael Schuab over at Book Slut asks the same question. He quotes Colleen Mondor, who calls the book "a throwback" and declares that more unsentimental and thoughtful novels were being overlooked. Compared with past winners, it just seems like a tame choice.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This book doesn't "grab" me in any way. I wonder if the children who will be actually reading it feel the same way about the book that adults do.

1:33 PM  
Anonymous libby koponen said...

Me, either.To me the book is like a superficial, pop-culture version of of E.Nesbit or Arthur Ransome, books which have more going for them than coziness and Englishness.

My novel Blow Out the Moon is set in England in the late 1950s--it's based on a true story, has that kind of appeal, BUT is loved -- at least by the girls who email me about it -- because of the main character, the story, and the writing. Nostalgia for English classics has nothing to do with it for them, though adult reviewers compare it to Anne of Green Gables, a book I always hated!

The hardcover has been out for 2 years, the paperback came out this summer, and the book has won 2 awards and has been praised by some reviewers and panned by others. It's not for everyone!

Blow Out the Moon is now out in paperback!
"Destined to become a classroom classic," Education Oasis.
* "Delightful..." Booklist (starred review)
"Koponen is a gifted writer," School Library Journal
"Libby's joyous times at Sibton Park make you laugh out loud," 6th grader in Just Books

8:11 AM  

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