Back in January, we heard word that several of our favorite books were selected as finalists for the 2012 Cybils Awards, literary awards given to children's and young adult books from literary bloggers! We were assured that the final cut list of winners would go up on Valentine's Day and we checked first thing this morning!
by R.J. Palacio
Nominated by: Flowering Minds
Auggie has always been home-schooled to accommodate for multiple surgeries and illnesses. Now that he is stronger, he must join the world of his peers and learn to deal with their perceptions of his extreme disfigurement. Wonder is his story, and it is at turns funny, heartbreaking, and illuminating, and always, always compelling. Palacio tells it from multiple points of view, a choice that allows readers to consider the feelings and reactions of many characters.
Auggie is a character endearing, brave, and normal enough to challenge readers to wonder about some really big questions: What would it be like to be Auggie? Would I have the courage to be friends with him? How difficult is it to "choose kind"? This remarkable and surprisingly humorous first novel grips its middle-grade audience in such a profound and meaningful way, and it is a book we believe could make readers out of nonreaders--making Wonder our runaway top choice for this year's Cybils Middle Grade Fiction Award.
by Rachel Hartman
Nominated by: Ana @ things mean a lot
Seraphina is a genre-blending fantasy that dazzled us all. Dragons, a murder mystery, family secrets, and a love story--there is something here for everyone, even those who aren't regular high fantasy readers. We were hooked by the mystery and intrigue of dragons and conspiracies as well as the fascinating and intricate world building.
Seraphina is a complex and appealing heroine. She's fiery and vulnerable and gifted and brave. Her love of music is a refreshing thread throughout the story as is a fairly surprising mystery. Seraphina's transformation throughout the novel was inspiring and wonderful to follow. With beautiful writing and tight pacing, Seraphina kept us turning the pages, eager to follow the heroine and learn more about the strong ensemble cast. We're sure readers will find a lot to love in this highly original dragon story.