Saturday, January 02, 2010

And the Cybils Finalists Are...

The Cybils blog has posted the Cybils Finalists.

A quick reminder about what the Cybils is: "Reward the children’s and young adult authors (and illustrators, let’s not forget them) whose books combine the highest literary merit and "kid appeal."

With a side of "foster a sense of community among bloggers who write about children’s and YA literature, highlight our best reviewers (and shamelessly promote their blogs) and provide a forum for the similarly obsessed."

Back in October, anyone (and that means you) could nominate a title for Cybils consideration. Anyone. Any eligible title. Pretty much, you can only nominate one title per category; it has to be in the "contest year" (which I think runs nomination to nomination, or October to October rather than calendar). One group reads the nominated titles and selects a list of finalist; a second group reads the finalists and selects a winner. You can read more about what judging involves and how one participates at those levels at the Cybils blog.

Here's the thing about the Cybils finalists. I'm always surprised by what is and is not on the lists. Personal favorites don't appear; books I've not quite heard of are on the list.

And while I've been on the second round of judging (twice!) I would not be on the first round. Too many books to read in such a short time!

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© Elizabeth Burns of A Chair, A Fireplace & A Tea Cozy


Michelle said...

Liz, I'd be interested to hear what surprised you. What's missing tha you thought would/should have made it?

I would have loved to have seen Hate List (a personal favorite) on the YA list.

Gwenda said...

Ha--I had the exact same feelings re: first round, but it was really fun. And we didn't have to choose a winner: Even better! :)

You'd be great on the first round committee, because I bet you'd already have read a slew of the books.

Liz B said...

The process of committee & shift from personal favorite to judging criteria is an interesting process, and at times I think it's the best thing about cybils, giving people that opportunity.

I had not quite realized that this years books would overlap with Printz eligible books from my year. So, I'm a bit hesitant to comment as much on the lists as I would have otherwise.

And I'm imagining that some of my personal faves weren't seen as "kid appeal" as required (CHARLES AND EMMA or CALPURNIA TATE).

And I wonder how much access to books plays out. While its great that publishers provide review copies, I really hate the expectation that they do so; and I hate that when such copies aren't provided, a book suffers from not being read or not being read as closely; or that people get annoyed at the publisher for not providing copies.