On Wednesday I met one of the judges of the Cybils Fiction Picture Books and handed over five copies of titles from my library for her to use. On Thursday, I mailed my review copies to three other judges to fill in the books they couldn’t find at their libraries. While I’m not done in my overall role as organizer, I’m feeling like I’ve passed the torch to the next set of bloggers.
I could tell you what it’s like being a Cybils Fiction Picture Book panelist, but Stephanie at Children’s Literature Book Club has such a fantastic write-up that I feel safe in directing you there for the description of the process and experience. I’ll add that I love being part of this panel because I enjoy shortlists of awards more than the final winners. Plus I like the challenge of finding and reading so many books.
The Cybils represent a balance of literary quality and kid appeal. I’d say that the shortlists also need a balance of the best representations of that goal and the best shortlist of books are diverse in style, culture, and reading level. I find working under both mandates to be challenging and exciting. I think that we’ve passed along a wonderful list of books for our judges to consider.
My absolute favorite books did make it on the list. I also had some compromises of books I didn’t love, but thought were good additions. In a perfect Cybils world, the three books I would have liked to see included are Little Mouse’s Big Book of Fears, One Hen How One Small Loan Made a Big Difference, and Sourpuss And Sweetie Pie.
I’d love to say more about each, but instead I’m off to work. IOU three reviews. ’kay?