Highlights From the Salt Lake Newbery Award Party

I had the incredible honor of attending tonight’s Newbery Award Party in Salt Lake City. We got to hear from a panel of industry professionals, including local author Ally Condie, associate professor in education psychology at the University of Utah Lauren Liang, and director of the Provo City Library Gene Nelson.

We got to learn all about how the committee chooses the winners, how many books they had to read in the past year (over 300!), and how heated the debate over the top books can get. It was incredibly enlightening and so much fun to learn about.

This year’s winner was The Girl Who Drank the Moon, which sounds PHENOMENAL. Check out the details below and be sure to add it to your TBR list if you haven’t read it already!

The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill

28110852.jpgEvery year, the people of the Protectorate leave a baby as an offering to the witch who lives in the forest. They hope this sacrifice will keep her from terrorizing their town. But the witch in the forest, Xan, is kind and gentle. She shares her home with a wise Swamp Monster named Glerk and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon, Fyrian. Xan rescues the abandoned children and deliver them to welcoming families on the other side of the forest, nourishing the babies with starlight on the journey.

One year, Xan accidentally feeds a baby moonlight instead of starlight, filling the ordinary child with extraordinary magic. Xan decides she must raise this enmagicked girl, whom she calls Luna, as her own. To keep young Luna safe from her own unwieldy power, Xan locks her magic deep inside her. When Luna approaches her thirteenth birthday, her magic begins to emerge on schedule–but Xan is far away. Meanwhile, a young man from the Protectorate is determined to free his people by killing the witch. Soon, it is up to Luna to protect those who have protected her–even if it means the end of the loving, safe world she’s always known.

The acclaimed author of The Witch’s Boy has created another epic coming-of-age fairy tale destined to become a modern classic.


Let’s Talk Local

If you’ve read very many of my blog posts, you know I’m a huge supporter of my local authors, and my local indie bookshop, The King’s English. This is because of the incredible book community we have here, which happens to include some of the best YA authors in the business. Ally Condie commented on just why she believes that is, so I wanted to share her thoughts with you.



Don’t Forget the Cake!

Can’t have a Newbery party without a giant bookstack-shaped cake! Check this thing out!

Why YA and Children’s Books

If you’re an adult reader, or aspiring writer, of YA or children’s books, you probably get asked quite frequently why YA? Why children’s books? Why not adult fiction? I could go on and on about my feelings on that subject, but I think Ally Condie sums it up much more eloquently than I ever could here.



How Do You Top Off a Great Book Event?

With a glass of wine, some FAB new books, your book  bestie, and your SUPER supportive hubby! Cheers!

What Newbery Award winning books have you read? Do you have a favorite Newbery winner or honoree?


11 thoughts on “Highlights From the Salt Lake Newbery Award Party

  1. The Hermit Librarian says:

    That is such a well done cake, how do you even cut into that! Did it taste as good as it looks? 🙂

    I’ve got The Girl Who Drank the Moon on my table right now! I love Xan the Witch, especially her reaction to those crazy people leaving babies everywhere. *lol* I hope to finish it soon after I get more obligation reading done.

    • YAandWine says:

      I actually didn’t eat it TBH. I just admired it. It was too pretty! I can’t wait to hear your thoughts on The Girl Who Drank the Moon when you finish it. I used to be on top of the Newbery winners when I was younger, but now with a YA blog it’s harder, since most of them are children’s or middle grade.

  2. Jackie B @ Death by Tsundoku says:

    !!! This is the sort of party I’d love to attend! I read The Girl Who Drank the Moon earlier this year; it is a wonderful book. This is the first time I’ve read a Newbery before it was announced! I feel so special.
    Wow– that cake! I hope you guys got to try it. 😀 If so, what flavor?

    • YAandWine says:

      That’s awesome that you read it before it was announced! You’re a Newbery hipster. 😉 And yeah, that cake! I couldn’t eat it. Too pretty. We just took lots of pictures.

  3. sophiethestark says:

    That cake! I would probably kidnap it when no one was looking, take it home and protect it from being eaten LOL That’s what I would do to that cake because it’s honestly so pretty <3 (Ok maybe I'd take a small bite out of it. Just a taste, I swear)
    I'm glad you had so much fun, Krysti, and it's so nice that your husband tags along for these! Hahaha he's a keeper girl! XD

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