So, I finished my grad school English Literature applications, so I started to read a lot of young adult fiction, because hey, while I have the time, right? But still, I'd rather it be a good book, because, well, yeah, that goes without saying. And while being a student of English literature in the modern age has made me aware of reasons why having established lists of "good" or "best" books (i.e. a "canon") might be a fishy idea at best, I don't have time to tackle the whole (or, as I should say with something of a history of reading these books, the rest of a very large portion of) library young adult section, so I wanted a list just this once to make my life easier. So, after reading all of John Green's books, I thought hey, this one book of his won an award called the Printz Award; that might be a good place to start. Because, when you think about it, an award (especially if it highlights more than one book at a time, which the Printz Award does) over time is basically a list compiler, in this case, of (ostensibly) good young adult books.
So, especially in view of this being Oscar night, I was reminded that one of the main things that people can't help loving to do to award lists is to disagree with them. Which is something I've been wanting to do for a while now with this year's Printz winner, <i>Ship Breaker</i>. Don't get me wrong, it's a good book, really well written. But at the end of the day, it seemed to me rather like a formula action movie. Uncommonly well-constructed, no doubt, but lacking the depth or breadth of emotion that I found in <i>Please Ignore Vera Dietz</i>, for one, which only got an honorary mention. It was like a mildly more engaging <i>The Day After Tomorrow</i>. (That movie's seven years old already, which means a good number of you probably haven't heard of it. Hell, am I old? Already?)
Anyway, please say something about Printz books you've read / books that should've or shouldn'tve made the list this year or in years past / awards in general / why I'm a moron for not liking <i>Ship Breaker</i> as much as I should have.