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RSFARMERI hope I can say how much I love the 2015 Boston Globe-Horn Book winners without anyone inferring my opinions about previous years. While under my strict don’t-ask-don’t-tell relationship with the judges I have no idea why they chose what they did, their choices for the top prizes illustrate three great things about this particular awards program. In selecting The Family Romanov, the judges added a confirming sticker (and yes we now have stickers, see pic!) to a book that had been handsomely rewarded last year. In The Farmer and the Clown, they Made Things Right for a book [UNACCOUNTABLY–ed.note] left off ALA’s prize roster (there’s a funny crack about this in the July issue). And in Cartwheeling in Thunderstorms, they make us look twice at a book that everyone liked well enough but let slip off the radar. Good job all around!

Katrina Hedeen and I traveled down on Tuesday to New York, where on Wednesday I announced the winners with 2010 BGHB Fiction winner Rebecca Stead at the close of SLJ’s Day of Dialog, for which Betsy Bird has provided an excellent recap. It was a wonderful day, capped in great style when Katrina, Rebecca, Al Berman (our ad guy) and I were joined by Richard Peck for dinner. So terrific to see him again, and fascinating to hear him and Rebecca swap tips about how to bring modern technology into fiction for young people without either quickly dating your book or revealing that you cribbed most of the information. PLUS Rebecca taught us how to totally pwn Snapchat. If that’s still a thing. Is it?

Roger Sutton About Roger Sutton

Roger Sutton has been the editor in chief of The Horn Book, Inc, since 1996. He was previously editor of The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books and a children's and young adult librarian. He received his M.A. in library science from the University of Chicago in 1982 and a B.A. from Pitzer College in 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @RogerReads.



  1. Wonderful to hear your endorsement! I heart C.F.

  2. Jonathan Hunt says:

    Sorry for the late response, but I was out of town this past weekend . . .

    Roger, your enthusiasm for the recent crop of Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards is matched by my own! Great choices all around, but especially THE FARMER AND THE CLOWN. While it gained nearly unanimous praise from the review journals, it hadn’t had much success in terms of awards and honors–not just the Caldecott, for example, but also, say, the inaugural Kirkus Prize or the NYT Best Illustrated. It *was* an honor book for both NCTE’s inaugural Charlotte Huck Award (which otherwise featured novels) and for SCBWI’s Golden Kite, but this is its first outright win–and for an award that has much more stature and prestige. The Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards has a long and proud history of Making Things Right for a book and THE FARMER AND THE CLOWN and MR. TIGER GOES WILD last year are just the most recent examples.

    I would also argue that the judges Made Things Right for THE FAMILY ROMANOV. Yes, it got Sibert and ENYA Honors from ALA, but was otherwise “snubbed” by the Newbery and Printz committees just as surely as THE FARMER AND THE CLOWN was “snubbed” by the Caldecott. If I was crushed for one book at the YMAs, I was doubly crushed for the other one. Now THE FAMILY ROMANOV did pick up some additional nonfiction prizes, namely NCTE’s Orbis Pictus and SCBWI’s Golden Kite, not to mention the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, a fact which simultaneously illustrates (a) just how good THE FAMILY ROMANOV really is, but also (b) how few awards by comparison are open to the entire field of fictional picture books. There are relatively few beyond the Caldecott and Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards.

  3. Jonathan Hunt says:

    P.S. Can we get a close-up of the new BG-HB sticker?

  4. Roger Sutton Roger Sutton says:

    Here’s the sticker, and there’s a version in silver for the Honor Books. Publishers interested in acquiring stickers for their winning titles should contact me and I’ll put you in touch with the people charged with giving them out.

  5. Jonathan Hunt says:

    Oooh, I like it! The irregular shape of the sticker is quite striking, but I wish the definition of the words and the horn were a bit sharper. Perhaps a contrasting matte finish a la the Printz awards?

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