A few weeks ago, talk in the office turned to sports. Not all of us are sports fans, but there are a few die-hard basketball fans who were thrilled that the NCAA March Madness games were around the corner. We talked some more and realized that it might be fun to pit some children’s books head to head. If a volume of Harry Potter went up against a John Green novel, which would come out on top? What about Divergent and The Hunger Games? A little more conversation and we decided to try our own KidLit March Madness Tournament.
We reviewed a couple ways to set it up. Should we use bestsellers? A nominations list? Or our own personal bookshelves? We finally decided to use books from awards lists. After selecting some of our favorite books from the Caldecott, Newbery, Pura Belpré, Coretta Scott King, and Printz lists, we realized most books were falling into four categories: animal stories, fantasy and imagination, humor and funny tales, and realistic fiction.
During the month of March, we’ll share one head-to-head matchup every day on Facebook. Whichever book garners the most votes will move on to the next round. From March 1 through March 31, we’ll decide who will win this year’s crown and KidLit March Madness.
Feel free to take a peek at the four divisions and make some early predictions. Which ones do you think will land in the Final Four? Do you think we’ll have a YA novel up against a picture book in the final?
The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey
Dr. De Soto by William Steig
Swimmy by Leo Lionni
Click, Clack, Moo: Cows That Type by Doreen Cronin
Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
Doll Bones by Holly Black
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimginary Friend by Dan Santat
The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo
Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales by John Scieszka and Lane Smith
Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! by Mo Willems
Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos
Frog and Toad Together by Arnold Lobel
Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage
Interrupting Chicken by David Ezra Stein
Holes by Louis Sachar
Officer Buckle and Gloria by Peggy Rathmann
One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia
Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
Esperanza Rising by Pam Muñoz Ryan
Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary
El Deafo by Cece Bell
The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing by M. T. Anderson
Fat Kid Rules the World by K. L. Going
Visit our Facebook page daily to vote and help us choose the winner of Kidlit March Madness!
book.box (bukboks) n. A cardboard receptacle, typically rectangular in shape
with lid, containing words, pictures, ideas and dreams, often
accompanied by excitement, anticipation and the love of reading.