Fuse #8

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Not Velveteen or China, But Something Far More Precious

You are all well and truly familiar with the CBC or Children's Book Council, yes? I don't mention them very often on this site as they are a gigantic organization of such depth and learning that merely looking at their website causes me to quake in my sensible librarian shoes. The CBC, for the uninitiated, is "the nonprofit trade association of publishers and packagers of trade books and related materials for children and young adults." They do a great deal of good work with promoting National Children's Book Week and Young People's Poetry Week.

You might think a group of such importance would be lacking in a sense of humor.
You would be wrong.

Yes, it seems that for the third year now there is to be a "Know-It-All" competition/party called the CBC Trivia Challenge, where staff of various publishers, "compete for bragging rights and, quite possibly, the tackiest trophies you'll ever come across which have been dubbed The Golden Bunnies." This year they will be hosted by none other than Mo Willems, everyone's favorite MC.

Think you know your kidlit trivia? Think again. Here are the 2005 questions and the 2004 ones as well. As you can see, 2005 displayed a definite uptick in difficulty. I didn't do too badly with the 04' list, but once you get to the final challenges of 05' you can just write me off as an ignorant goober. If any of you have ever played Literary Trivial Pursuit and found, to your shock and horror, that the children's book category was really really hard, prepare to relive that shock here.


At 12:05 AM , Blogger Elaine Magliaro said...

Somebody had better start checking their questions. I found an error in the CBC Extreme Trivia Challenge 2005, Round 1, Question #2:
"Name the one book of poetry that has been awarded the Newbery." (Is that a question?)
Their answer was JOYFUL NOISE. Yes, it was awarded a Newbery in 1989. But in 1982, Nancy Willard won the Newbery Medal for her book of poetry, A VISIT TO WILLIAM BLAKE'S INN: POEMS FOR INNOCENT AND EXPERIENCED TRAVELERS. And Alice and Martin Provensen received a Caldecott Honor Award for illustrating this book.

At 10:28 AM , Blogger fusenumber8 said...

I saw that as well, but I thought it was more a crime of wording than anything else. The question should have read, "Name the one book of poetry that has been awarded the Newbery Medal". Willard's book, as I recall, only won the Honor that year alongside the Caldecott proper.

At 11:10 AM , Blogger Elaine Magliaro said...

It wasn't just a crime of wording. A VISIT TO WILLIAM BLAKE'S INN received the Newbery Medal in 1982--not a Newbery Honor. I just double checked in CHARLOTTE'S HUCK'S CHILDREN'S LITERATURE (Ninth Edition), the required text I use in the course I teach at BU. (See Appendixes A-4.)

Children's poetry is my life! I keep track of Newbery Medals awarded to children's poetry books--just two in more than 80 years!
I wonder when the next book of poems will get a Newbery? 2050? I'll be dead and gone by then.

At 3:27 PM , Blogger fusenumber8 said...

Consider me corrected. Sorry about that. Don't know how I came under the impression that it was an Honor. You are indeed right, then.
Do you know of any real poetic contenders this year?

At 4:26 PM , Anonymous Pooja said...

You should bring the question cards for The Book Lover's TP to kidlit bloggers' night. It'd be fun to see how badly (or how well) folks do when they are drunk.

At 4:40 PM , Blogger Elaine Magliaro said...

But of course! Do you remember SONG OF THE WATER BOATMAN by Joyce Sidman? It received a Caldecott Honor Award this year--deservedly so. (I should note the name of the illustrator: Beckie Prange.) I had been hoping that the book might also be awarded a Newbery Honor.
(Keep dreamin', lady!)

Well...Sidman's newest book, BUTTERFLY EYES AND OTHER SECRETS OF THE MEADOW, was just released. It thinks it's a terrific package of fine poetry, well-written prose, and scientific information. The illustrations by Beth Krommes are also striking.

From the perspective of someone who is passionate about children's poetry--especially poetry written by a master of the genre--I think this is the best poetry book I have read so far this year.

By the way, I have been working on a piece about Sidman's poetry books. I hope to post it next week on Poetry Friday, Novemer 3rd.

At 5:15 PM , Anonymous MaryP said...

They should give gold bunny droppings for the person with the worst score. That would be me.

At 5:20 PM , Blogger fusenumber8 said...

"Butterfly Eyes" was recently put on the New York Public Library's 100 Books For Reading and Sharing List. It's a good one. I liked Calef Brown's newest too. But the picking are in the slim area.

At 5:27 PM , Blogger Nancy said...

maryp, I bet I did worse!

At 10:54 PM , Blogger Elaine Magliaro said...

YELLOW ELEPHANT, written by Julie Larios, is an attractive book of poetry. The illustrations done by Julie Paschkis are gorgeous!

J. Patrick Lewis's ONCE UPON A TOMB: GRAVELY HUMOROUS VERSES is a riot! I'm not talking Newbery--I'm just talking funny.

At 11:10 PM , Blogger Little Willow said...

I just had to play. I love trivia. I love books. Bring it on, I declared, and I went forth. I was pleased to see old friends Miss Nelson and Turtle Wexler, among others. Meanwhile, my cat wondered why I was shouting, "TRUE!" "Ramona!" "False!" at the computer screen.


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