The New York Times Sunday Book Review has published their list of “Notable Children’s Books of 2012.” Looking through the list, which is broken into YA, MG, and picture books, I find I’ve read (and reviewed) only two of them — though I have put several others on my TBR list. The False Prince and The Last Dragonslayer were both wonderful, and certainly deserve inclusion on the NYT list. On my Goodreads TBR shelf are Code Name Verity, The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom, Liar & Spy, and Splendors and Glooms. All six of these books attracted my attention through other bloggers’ reviews.
I value “year’s best” lists like the one produced by the NYT, with books chosen by professional reviewers. Yet I find that increasingly, I’m encountering and choosing new books and authors based on not on professional reviewers’ opinions but on the recommendation of ordinary readers like me: bloggers or fellow Goodreads members mainly, although Amazon reviewers sometimes play a part as well. To my mind, it’s one of the best things about the Internet — this ability to connect with, learn from, and discuss books (and knitting) with people I’ve never met, but with whom I share similar interests.
So with that in mind, let me ask: where are you discovering new books these days? And if you read children’s or YA books, how many of the NYT Notable Children’s Books list have you read? Are there titles you think should — or should not — have been included in the list?
Let me get things started with one of my favorite YA/MG books of the year, which definitely should have been on the list: Rachel Hartman’s beautiful, moving, and original Seraphina. I can’t believe the NYT reviewers left it out.
Your turn! Please leave your thoughts and comments below.
Note: Book title links on this page go to my reviews of those titles.