The Michael L. Printz award is given to a book that “exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature.” Are you thinking so what? A book that wins THAT kind of award must be totally boring, right? Not so, my friend. I picked up my first Printz a few years ago and learned that literary excellence doesn’t necessarily mean boring.
Past Printzes I have known and loved include:
Looking for Alaska by John Green
Miles (whose hobby is memorizing famous last words) learns about friendship and love during his first year at prep school. It’s not as lame as I make it sound–this book made me laugh and cry at the same time…not a pretty sight. 🙂
The first part last by Angela Johnson
Bobby steps up when he gets his girlfriend pregnant. This book is a heartrending portrait of Bobby as he reflects on life before and after the birth of his daughter.
As I was putting this list together I realized that all of these books had me bawling by the end! I guess that’s my measure of a really good book.
If you’ve read any of these books or even any other Printz winners, what do you think? As you were reading that book did you think, “Gee, this book really exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature?” Or, did you think, “That book was awesome. Everyone should read it.” What makes a good book a REALLY good book in you book? 🙂 Leave a comment to let us know!