Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Bof(K)B - first three matches

In an alphabetical accident, I have read only one book featured in most of the first round of matches of School Library Journal's Battle of the (Kids') Books, making voting a breeze - if I read it, it gets my vote!

The first match was difficult, as I read and liked both The Cardturner and As Easy as Falling Off the Face of the Earth.  Although The Cardturner was masterful, the cartoony portrayal of Alton's parents sounded a minor false note to me, whereas I just loved the warmhearted humor and quirkiness of As Easy...  Both books are not exactly realistic, yet both books do a great job at portraying real teen-aged boys.

Appropriately, the judge was Francisco X. Stork, author of the fabulous The Last Summer of the Death Warriors, also about teen-aged boys.  He chose The Cardturner, and who can blame him?

In the 2nd round, Dana Reinhardt chose Deborah Wiles' Countdown over Megan Whalen Turner's A Conspiracy of Kings.  Ridiculously, I haven't read the latter yet (I know!  but I was waiting to re-read the first three in the series.  It's on my shelf at home, just awaitin' the right time) - so really, I should vote for Countdown, which  I respect without absolutely loving it.  But my heart belongs to Conspiracy without having read a word.

In today's match, Barry Lyga, in a hilarious discussion between Barry A and Barry B, chose The Good, The Bad, and the Barbie over Pam Munoz Ryan's The Dreamer.  You go on with your crazy self, Barry!  I read The Dreamer but only flitted through Barbie, so I voted for the former.

But it's Thursday's match that I'm awaiting eagerly - Susan Patron deciding between Hereville: How Mirka Got Her Sword (just finished it but haven't reviewed it on this blog) and Keeper.  Plucky heroines, quirky plots, unusual settings - wow!  One's a comic book, the other a novel.  It's a toughie.  I'll go with Keeper, because it has stayed with me in the months since I've read it, while Hereville was immensely entertaining while I read it but seems likely to fade with time, detail-wise.   However, I'd be happy to see either Keeper or Mirka going up against Barbie in the second round!

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