Exciting News! I'm Going to Be a CYBILS Judge!


Since 2006, the Cybils have been the Newbery and Caldecott Awards of cyberspace, with potential winners being nominated by  blog readers.  Organized and judged by  kidlit bloggers, (whereas the Newbery and Caldecott awards are organized and judged by Children's Librarians) the Cybils have divisions of categories, titles and age groups bundled under one award title whereas the ALA breaks it up into many different awards and names.  I am honored to be part of this amazing community and to participate in the process of handing out their highest honors.  Looking over the winners from the past four years I was pleased to see not only books I have reviewed, but books I feel passionate about.  It has been said before, but I'll say it again.  Sometimes it seems like the librarians, who's work, knowledge and opinions I have the utmost respect for, choose winners that, while worthy, are also somewhat obscure and sometimes quickly fade from memory.  What I like about the Cybils is that books that I am reading, loving and seeing on the shelves at the bookstore where I work are winning, which means that you, the reader, are also reading them and loving them, as are the people who blog about them.  It feels a bit more cozy than the lofty, but valuable, ALA awards...

I am totally thrilled to be a judge on the Science Fiction and Fantasy Panel, which gives awards to SFF books written at the Teen/YA reading level AND Elementary/Middle School.  I will be a Second Round Judge for the Elementary/Middle School SFF award.  From October 1 - 15, ANYONE (even me!) can nominate books in any or all categories.  You can nominate a book that was published between judging periods which means - from October 16, 2009 through October 15 2010.


After October 15, the first round judges begin the hard work of sorting through all the nominees and winnowing them down to a short list of titles that move on to ROUND 2.  That's where I come in!  Starting on January 1, 2011, I read and read and read and comment and discuss with my fellow judges and then vote.  The winners are announced on FEBRUARY 14, 2011.  

I could have requested an easier gig, like judging picture books, but I went with my passion and was fortunate enough to be asked to join the judging panel for longer, bigger books.  Not sure what to expect, but you all may be seeing some re-posts during the month of January....

Some past CYBILS winners I know and love:


Graphic Novel:  Secret Science Alliance by Eleanor Davis

Middle Grade Fiction:  Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson

Non-Fiction: Frog Scientist by Pamela S Turner


Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Fantasy and Science Fiction - Young Adult:  The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins.  Tore through this one when it first came out and passed it on.  Can't bring myself to read Mockingjay, the third and final book in the trilogy.  Just don't want it to be over.  But, my husband and daughter have read it and it keeps staring at me, so, I will cave in  - BEFORE I have to read, read, read my CYBIL'S nominees.

Graphic NovelRapunzel's Revenge by Shannon Hale

Middle Grade Fiction:  The London Eye Mystery by Sioban Dowd

Young Adult Fiction:  The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau Banks by E. Lockhart


Fantasy and Science Fiction - Elementary/Middle Grade: The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex


Middle Grade Fiction: A Drowned Maiden's Hair by Laura Amy Schlitz

Young Adult Fiction: Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan.  Haven't reviewed this one YET - but read it and loved it.

Fantasy and Science Fiction:  Ptolemy's Gate (The Bartimaeus Trilogy, Part 3).  Haven't reviewed this one either, but I read them when they first came out and they left a deep impression on me.  When I have time to read all three again, I will review them.

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