Newbery Award Winner, Neil Gaiman

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It’s the World Cup of children’s literature, the equivalent of the combined Best Picture, Best Director and Best Screenplay Oscars. Since 1922 the American Library Association has handed out their Newbery Medal to only one book from each previous year. And it has just been announced that Neil’s “The Graveyard Book” has won the 2009 medal. I’m SO impressed, delighted and proud. Newbery Award books are always worth reading, and Neil joins some of my other favorites in this long tradition, like:

“The Voyages of Dr. Dolittle” by Hugh Lofting (1923)

“Thimble Summer” by Elizabeth Enright (1939)

“Rabbit Hill” by Robert Lawson (1945)

“The Twenty-One Balloons” by William Pène du Bois (1948)

“The Wheel on the School” by Meindert DeJong (1955)

“Carry On, Mr. Bowditch” by Jean Lee Latham (1956)

“Island of the Blue Dolphins” by Scott O’Dell (1961)

“A Wrinkle in Time” by Madeleine L’Engle (1963)

“From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler” by E. L. Konigsburg (1968)

“The High King” by Lloyd Alexander (1969)

“Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH” by Robert C. O’Brien (1972)

“Julie of the Wolves” by Jean Craighead George (1973)

“The Grey King” by Susan Cooper (1976)

“The Giver” by Lois Lowry (1994)

And many others I liked quite a bit, too. Fine company, indeed. And, after being a reader and fan of novels written for children all my life, I can now say I know a Newbery author. Way to go, Neil!

Oh, and the cover at the top is not real, it’s been Photoshopped by me, but you can bet HarperCollins is working on it.

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