Saturday, February 7, 2009

Neil Gaiman Wears a Tiara

As well as a sash and carries around a scepter too. Figuratively speaking, of course. His book The Graveyard Book is the winner of the Newbery Award and this article likens it to winning the Miss American Pageant in the literary world. Although I'd be hard-pressed to think Gaiman smears his teeth with Vasoline for a better, shinier smile.

Aside from the fact that that article is a great first response from Gaiman about his win (he's such a funny guy), it highlights a major statement, that people, not just Gaiman, are so happy that this particular book won the award. The Newbery is the children's equivalent to the National Book Award. It's not usually the popular books that win but those that are deeper, sometimes darker, usually eloquently written, and carry with it a more deep-seeded message. They're not usually books many kids actively seek out to read but more so books that are usually on some kind of school reading list.

Now The Graveyard Book will boast one of those coveted medals on its cover and kids were flocking to read it long before it won anything. For once educators and students will be on the same page with this one. Not that I don't think the other Newbery winners are any less because of the fact that kids might not want to read them without some coercion, but now teachers will have at least one book that the majority of the kids will be anxious to read (if they haven't read it already) that's Board of Education approved and they won't have to duck around BOE rules to do it.

Hopefully this is another piece to the proof pile that just because something's popular doesn't automatically negate its quality. This one's still in my TBR pile but it will get read. I swear.

2 comments:

Liviania said...

Read it! You'll like it. ^_^

Donna said...

I know! I can't wait! But I have so many to choose from . . .

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