Book Chat


I love children’s literature but it can be hard to choose new books to read from among the hundreds of new titles that come out each year… so I decided it would be a fun challenge to read the new winners of the Newbery Medal to keep up to date with the world of children’s lit.  While I was Googling around for a checklist, I stumbled upon the Mr. Schu Reads blog and his Nerdbery Challenge.  No point in reinventing the wheel, so I’m joining in with his challenge to read every Newbery Medal winner… stress-free!  Which means there’s no time limit, no pressure to read every single book, and no need to re-read books I’ve read before.
The Amateur Librarian // Newbery Medal Challenge
In case you didn’t know… per the ALA website, “the Newbery Medal was named for eighteenth-century British bookseller John Newbery. It is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children.”
The Newbery medal is announced in January each year… I haven’t paid attention in the last few years since I was a school librarian, but I’m excited to catch up on the latest winners.  And until the 2015 winner is announced next January, it will be fun to read through the previous winners since 1922.  Maybe one day I’ll read them all… but remember, this challenge is stress-free!
I went through the list (if you want a handy checklist, I found a great freebie on TPT at this link) and crossed off the ones I’ve read in the past.  Kudos to my 4th grade teacher Mrs. Yarbrough, because most of the books I remember reading are from that school year: Shiloh, Number the Stars, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, The Giver, Maniac Magee, Bridge to Terabithia.  I’ve read a few more in the past couple years but I want to re-read all the books that I read a long time ago.  (Although I can’t find Caddie Woodlawn or A Wrinkle in Time in my reading logs but I KNOW I read them while I was a librarian in 2009-2011… hmm…)
I’m excited to get started!  Here’s the official list, with a link to the book review if I’ve crossed it off already and blue titles for the ones I’ve read before.  I plan on posting periodic updates as I go and using the #nerdbery hashtag to join in on the social media fun.  First up to re-read: The Giver, by Lois Lowry.  Jumping on the movie bandwagon!
2014: Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures by Kate DiCamillo
2013: The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
2012: Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos
2011: Moon over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool
2010: When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
2009: The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman, illus. by Dave McKean
2008: Good Masters! Sweet Ladies! Voices from a Medieval Village by Laura Amy Schlitz
2007: The Higher Power of Lucky by Susan Patron, illus. by Matt Phelan
2006: Criss Cross by Lynne Rae Perkins
2005: Kira-Kira by Cynthia Kadohata
2004: The Tale of Despereaux: Being the Story of a Mouse, a Princess, Some Soup, and a Spool of Thread by Kate DiCamillo 
2003: Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi
2002: A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park
2001: A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck
2000: Bud, Not Buddy by Christopher Paul Curtis
1999: Holes by Louis Sachar
1998: Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse
1997: The View from Saturday by E.L. Konigsburg
1996: The Midwife’s Apprentice by Karen Cushman 
1995: Walk Two Moons by Sharon Creech
1994: The Giver by Lois Lowry
1993: Missing May by Cynthia Rylant
1992: Shiloh by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor 
1991: Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli 
1990: Number the Stars by Lois Lowry 
1989: Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices by Paul Fleischman
1988: Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freedman
1987: The Whipping Boy by Sid Fleischman
1986: Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan 
1985: The Hero and the Crown by Robin McKinley
1984: Dear Mr. Henshaw by Beverly Cleary
1983: Dicey’s Song by Cynthia Voigt
1982: A Visit to William Blake’s Inn: Poems for Innocent and Experienced Travelers by Nancy Willard
1981: Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson 
1980: A Gathering of Days: A New England Girl’s Journal, 1830-1832 by Joan W. Blos 
1979: The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin
1978: Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson 
1977: Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor
1976: The Grey King by Susan Cooper
1975: M. C. Higgins, the Great by Virginia Hamilton
1974: The Slave Dancer by Paula Fox
1973: Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
1972: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH by Robert C. O’Brien 
1971: Summer of the Swans by Betsy Byars 
1970: Sounder by William H. Armstrong 
1969: The High King by Lloyd Alexander
1968: From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg
1967: Up a Road Slowly by Irene Hunt
1966: I, Juan de Pareja by Elizabeth Borton de Trevino
1965: Shadow of a Bull by Maia Wojciechowska
1964: It’s Like This, Cat by Emily Neville 
1963: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle 
1962: The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare
1961: Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell
1960: Onion John by Joseph Krumgold
1959: The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare 
1958: Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith
1957: Miracles on Maple Hill by Virginia Sorensen
1956: Carry On, Mr. Bowditch by Jean Lee Latham
1955: The Wheel on the School by Meindert DeJong 
1954: …And Now Miguel by Joseph Krumgold
1953: Secret of the Andes by Ann Nolan Clark
1952: Ginger Pye by Eleanor Estes
1951: Amos Fortune, Free Man by Elizabeth Yates
1950: The Door in the Wall by Marguerite de Angeli
1949: King of the Wind by Marguerite Henry
1948: The Twenty-One Balloons by William Pène du Bois
1947: Miss Hickory by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey
1946: Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski
1945: Rabbit Hill by Robert Lawson
1944: Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes
1943: Adam of the Road by Elizabeth Janet Gray
1942: The Matchlock Gun by Walter Edmonds
1941: Call It Courage by Armstrong Sperry
1940: Daniel Boone by James Daugherty
1939: Thimble Summer by Elizabeth Enright
1938: The White Stag by Kate Seredy
1937: Roller Skates by Ruth Sawyer
1936: Caddie Woodlawn by Carol Ryrie Brink 
1935: Dobry by Monica Shannon
1934: Invincible Louisa: The Story of the Author of Little Women by Cornelia Meigs
1933: Young Fu of the Upper Yangtze by Elizabeth Lewis
1932: Waterless Mountain by Laura Adams Armer
1931: The Cat Who Went to Heaven by Elizabeth Coatsworth 
1930: Hitty, Her First Hundred Years by Rachel Field 
1929: The Trumpeter of Krakow by Eric P. Kelly
1928: Gay Neck, the Story of a Pigeon by Dhan Gopal Mukerji
1927: Smoky, the Cowhorse by Will James
1926: Shen of the Sea by Arthur Bowie Chrisman
1925: Tales from Silver Lands by Charles Finger
1924: The Dark Frigate by Charles Hawes
1923: The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle by Hugh Lofting 
1922: The Story of Mankind by Hendrik Willem van Loon
Fun reading ahead!

4 thoughts on “#Nerdbery

  1. I’m going to join in this with you! What a fun challenge! I recently picked up a few of these books at a used book store because I’d remembered loving them in school and wanted to reread them!


  2. I’ve been doing this for a while (years!), since I teach children’s lit. I still haven’t finished the entire list–other books keep edging their way into my reading. 🙂 It’s a good way to add some structure to reading books–go for it! There are four books in The Giver series, now (see what I mean about others edging their way in?). 🙂


  3. Awesome. Thanks for the entire list! The most intriguing title is the 1922 The story of mankind. Such a great idea to read them all!


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