Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Newbery books will win new readers

The four titles in Houghton/Sandpiper's welcome Newbery Collection boxed set (September) seem to belong together: Lois Lowry’s Number the Stars, Scott O’Dell’s Island of the Blue Dolphins, Linda Sue Park’s A Single Shard, and Elizabeth Speare’s The Witch of Blackbird Pond.

The publisher may have grouped these winners together simply because they’re all historical fiction. But their affinities go beyond that: they each contain sustained adventure or intrigue, moments of heroism, and an unusual depth of feeling, all channeled through a singularly relatable, empathetic main character. Can’t you just picture the avid readers, the introspective ten- and eleven-year-old girls eager to experience the wider world, who will gobble these books up? This collection may have been produced to spur sales, but it should also win hearts.

—Martha Parravano

1 comment:

  1. What a terrific idea. I really want to give that set to a reader I know. So glad to see "my" book "A Single Shard" is one of the set.