Hiya everyone, it’s Sarah!
Here is this month’s selection for Mock Newbery 2020. It is a book that I feel should be considered for the Newbery Award. In case you’re not familiar with the award it is an award given out annually by the American Library Association for the most distinguished contribution for children’s literature. Book considered for this award must be aimed at an audience from birth to 14 years of age.
Title: When Stars are Scattered
Author: Victoria Jamieson & Omar Mohamed
Omar and his younger brother Hassan fled their home when they were extremely young. They quickly lost their mother and have been desperately searching for her ever since. The two pass days playing with other refugees in their not-so-temporary home, a refugee camp in Kenya. Omar has never attended school because he doesn’t have an adult pushing him to it and it doesn’t seem that fun anyway. When a local school teacher takes an interest in Omar, he begins attending and excelling at school. Hassan has developmental challenges, but by spending the days away from Omar, he is able to gain his own independence. The brothers are given a chance to move to America, but the process is long and difficult. They will need to rely on each other to emotionally make it through.
This work is getting serious buzz for both Newbery and Caldecott. It is a memoir, which would make it a unique Newbery honor/winner. Jameison is awesome in the graphic novel arena. I love that this popular creator made a graphic novel that addresses social issues, through a personal story. This is not typical of the popular graphic novel section. I don’t necessarily know if the writing is going to push this work to winner status, but I know it will be part of the discussion. New Kid, last year’s winner, paved the way for more graphic novels that are socially conscious.
What are you reading this month that you think should be part of the Newbery discussion?