It’s time for another Hub Reading Challenge Check-In, and with less than a month left in the challenge it’s definitely a good time to take stock.
It’s helpful for me to remember that the challenge is intended to encourage all of us to dive deeper into the award winner and honor books and YALSA selected lists with an eye towards discovering new authors and title, exploring new genres, reading outside of our comfort zones, and improving reader’s advisory wherever that happens. For me, I’ve noticed that a lot of my reading this year has already resulted in successfully connecting friends, family, and acquaintances with books that might not have been on my radar without YALSA recognition. I’m especially, stunned and impressed, looking back on it as I write this, by the wide range of reader’s who have benefited from these lists and honors.
For example, I gave Julie Berry’s The Passion of Dolssa as a gift to my beloved (and very well read) mother in law, along with Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys and The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge. Ben Hatke’s Mighty Jack and Noelle Stevenson’s Nimona have been given to my daughter’s friends and classmates and have been recommended to more parent’s of her swim team compatriots than I can count. Every Heart a Doorway, the first of Seanan McGuire’s Wayward Children books, was such a hit with my niece that I have secretly pre-ordered her a signed copy of the next book to celebrate her transition from middle school to high school.
During one of many 13 Reasons Why conversations I’ve had with friends and fellow parents over the past few weeks the subject of other book to movie adaptations came up and I was able to knowledgeably recommend Nicola Yoon’s The Sun is Also a Star by way of her Everything Everything (playing now at a theater near you.) And when a friend who was tangentially involved in that particular discussion came to me later to ask for recommendations for her 11 year old son Jason Reynolds (As Brave As You and Ghost) was right there at my fingertips, the perfect books at the perfect time. In another fortuitous coincidence, I’d been urging (strongly) my oldest niece to read Paper Girls by Brian K. Vaughan for a long time so when she received a signed copy (!) as a gift she was all the more excited, knowing it was a book she was going to love.
The longer I stare at the list of Challenge titles the more encounters spring to mind; it’s amazing just how many exceptional books are out there, and how many readers I’ve connected to using just this one year of Reading Challenge books. What about you? Have you recommended any of the 2017 titles to friends and family? Is there a particular title that you’re having success with in your library? Please share your experiences in the comments!
Let us know how you are doing with the Challenge and don’t forget about the sortable spreadsheet! Here are the guidelines in case you don’t remember:
- Format matters: a title that has been recognized for both the print version and the audiobook version can be both read and listened to and count as two books, but a book that has won multiple awards or appears on multiple lists in the same format only counts as one title.
- Books must be read/listened to (both begun and finished) since the award winners and selected lists have been released and 11:59pm EST on June 22. If you’ve already read/listened to a title, you must re-read/listen to it for it to count.
- Just about everyone who doesn’t work for ALA is eligible to participate. Non-ALA/YALSA members are eligible. Teens are eligible. Non-US residents/citizens are eligible. (More eligibility questions? Leave a comment or email us.)
- Once you finish the challenge, we’ll contact you with details about creating and publishing your response.
- If you have finished the challenge, let us know here! The grand prize winner will be selected by 11:59pm EST on June 23. The winner will be notified via email.
—Julie Bartel, currently reading Frances Hardinge’s The Lie Tree and Princess Cora and the Crocodile written by Laura Amy Schlitz and illustrated by Brian Floca
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