Judges Diary: Oh the anticipation!

Imagine my surprise when I came back from a couple of days away to find 3 big boxes of books waiting for me.  Ever since the announcement that I’m going to be a judge for the 2014 New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards, I’ve been wondering which books will be chosen to be considered for the awards.  There have been so many wonderful New Zealand books published in the last year and I’ve had quite a few favourites.

NZ Post books 1

When I couldn’t wait any longer I opened the boxes to find 104 beauties (only the first lot of submissions) waiting for me to open their covers and discover the stories and information that await inside.  I was glad to find my favourites, those stories that have stuck in my mind, as well as some I had really wanted to read but hadn’t got around to, and some books that I hadn’t even heard of.  There are some whose covers and design jump right out at you and beg to be read, and others whose poor design and production will be barriers for some readers discovering the story within the pages.

NZ post books 2

I sorted the books into those that I have read and those that I haven’t, and as you can see by the photo there is quite a difference.  My first goal is to go back through those I have read so far this year and remind myself what it was that I liked/didn’t like about them, then start some serious reading of my ‘to-be-read pile.’

My mountain of books awaits me so I must get started.  I’ll report back soon on how the reading is going and what gems I have discovered.

6 thoughts on “Judges Diary: Oh the anticipation!

  1. Just found your blog from mucking around on twitter. I love to have my students hooked into books and so I read some of them as well. Interesting to see all those books for the NZ Post awards. A huge amount. Will be following you to see what you eventually have to say about them. Each year on the Kapiti Coast they run a mastermind challenge based on the books in the finals. For Years 5 and 6 and Years 7 & 8. Our school always enters.

    I have found Donalyn Miller who wrote The Book Whisperer very inspirational when it comes to children’s lit. I have just sent away for her new book.

    I have just been reading your post on some of your top books. I have been very grateful to the Lemony Snickett books this year as some not very keen readers hooked into those and I was so relieved. I read Wonder to my class and have read The One and Only Ivan myself and have it in my class library. My class are also hooked of course on Percy Jackson and Heroes series that follows. Today some of them were “cross’ with me because I had read Allegiant and had said nothing and not brought it to school. I will take it but hope they aren’t too disappointed. In truth it is a little old for 13 year olds but ….


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