Hell Is Other Parents: Review Haiku

Better than your
av'rage Mommy Confessional.
With bonus Boy Spock!

Hell Is Other Parents: And Other Tales of Maternal Combustion by Deborah Copaken Kogan. Hyperion, 2009, 209 pages.


Carter Finally Gets It: Review Haiku

Some problems with voice;
still, a painfully funny
take on teenagers.

Carter Finally Gets It by Brent Crawford. Hyperion, 2009, 300 pages.


Best Friends Forever: Review Haiku

Another Weiner
winner -- but what does jacket
have to do with book?

Best Friends Forever by Jennifer Weiner. Atria, 2009, 359 pages.


One False Note and The Sword Thief: Review Haiku

The clues fly fast and
furious: a convoluted,
high-stakes muddle.

One False Note: 39 Clues #2 by Gordon Korman. Scholastic, 2008, 174 pages.
The Sword Thief: 39 Clues #3 by Peter Lerangis. Scholastic, 2009, 160 pages.


The Wildwater Walking Club: Review Haiku

Sometimes, "one foot in
front of the other" is a
good philosophy.

The Wildwater Walking Club by Claire Cook. Hyperion, 2009, 239 pages.


Going Bovine: Review Haiku

Dude, this is pretty
f'd up right here. Gnomes, dwarves, cows,
angels, life and death.

Going Bovine by Libba Bray. Delacorte, 2009, 496 pages.


Free: Review Haiku

Makes sense while you're
reading it -- but after, the
hangover. Free? Really?

Free: The Future of a Radical Price by Chris Anderson. Hyperion, 2009, 274 pages.


The Treasure Map of Boys: Review Haiku

If you didn't love
Ruby already, two words:
marshmallow Jesus.

The Treasure Map of Boys by E. Lockhart. Delacorte, 2009, 256 pages.


The Magician's Elephant: Review Haiku

The ending is no
surprise; the journey there,
mannered but well-crafted.

The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo. Candlewick, 2009, 208 pages.


The Storm in the Barn: Review Haiku

Coming of age in
the dust: spooky interplay
of light/dark, dry/wet.

The Storm in the Barn by Matt Phelan. Candlewick, 2009, 204 pages.


I, Lorelei: Review Haiku

Good-hearted kid
navigates divorce, show biz -- plus,
bonus Nelson Muntz!

I, Lorelei by Yeardley Smith. Harper/Geringer, 2009, 339 pages.


Womenomics: Review Haiku

I-Am-Woman facts
and brio: good! Dippy
cheerleader tone: not good!

Womenomics: Write Your Own Rules for Success by Claire Shipman and Katty Kay. HarperBusiness, 2009, 256 pages.


A Season of Gifts: Review Haiku

Grandma Dowdel strikes
again: older, slower, but
every bit as sharp.

A Season of Gifts by Richard Peck. Dial, 2009, 176 pages.


Totally Unscientific and Random N/C Predictions

For your entertainment pleasure, and drawing liberally from various reviews, industry gossip, and bloggy friends, I present my utterly random, probably obvious, and mostly meaningless predictions for the Newbery, Caldecott, Printz, and Sibert awards in 2010. This is not, clearly, a comprehensive list. Or a comprehensible one, for that matter.

Newbery Picks:
  • When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead (Lamb/Random). Duh. It's awesome and has gotten eleventy billion starred reviews. If this doesn't get recognized -- nay, if it doesn't WIN -- I will eat my hat. (Note to self: buy hat.)
  • Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin (Little, Brown). Beautiful storytelling, librarian-friendly hooks (folktale, multicultural, girl power), gorgeous package.
  • A Season of Gifts by Richard Peck (Dial). It's good. And he's Richard Peck.
  • The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly (Holt). Lots of good attention. And did you read this woman's bio? She's a doctor and a lawyer and a writer and probably a rocket scientist to boot.

Caldecott Picks:
  • The Lion and the Mouse by Jerry Pinkney (Little, Brown). Could this be the year?
  • Red Sings from Treetops by Joyce Sidman, illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski (HMCo). Haven't pored over it myself, but lots of folks seem to be talking about it.
  • The Storm in the Barn by Matt Phelan (Candlewick). Graphicy goodness -- would the committee go for it again after Hugo?

Printz Picks:
  • Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco X. Stork (Levine/Scholastic). Really, if you haven't read this by now, what is wrong with you?
  • Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson (Viking). And again I say, duh.
  • Going Bovine by Libba Bray (Delacorte). An acceptance speech made entirely of tweets, maybe?

Sibert Picks:
  • Charles and Emma by Deborah Heiligman (Holt). Surely at least one Darwin book pub'd in 2009 will get attention? (Er, two. Forgot about you, Callie Vee.)
  • The Day-Glo Brothers by Chris Barton (Charlesbridge). Oh please oh please? (And no, it's not mine -- it's just that good.)

Predicted Snubs:

Book Everyone Else Will Love and I Will Just Not Get and Find Annoying (aka the King Dork award):

That is all. Tune in four and a half months from now to compare notes.