Do you think they should get rid of BBYA?

I know I’ve been under a rock for the past six week, but I had no idea there were discussions about eliminating the Best Books For Young Adults List. Argh!

Liz B. explains what’s going on and gives her excellent opinion.

A quick bit of noodling came up with the responses of Cindy Dobrez and Lynn Rutan.

They said what I am thinking, only in a more articulate way. Plus, I’m an author with a vested interest in the process. They are Super Librarians and have both served on the committee.

What do you think?

8 Replies to “Do you think they should get rid of BBYA?”

  1. I think this would be a huge mistake. As a teen librarian, I rely heavily on the BBYA list for my collection development and book recommendations. I also like that the BBYA has professional credibility, which affords me the opportunity to buy some of the more controversial materials which appear on the list without hesitation.

    In Colorado we have the Blue Spruce Awards, which are 100% teen recommended and voted on, so it is a true “reader’s choice.” This is great because it gives teens the voice and authority to say THIS is what we like to read. As I recall though, they had to change the rules a bit to avoid a solid ten year streak of Rowling (now the book has to have been published within the last five years). I know many other states have similiar awards or lists. So why get rid of a nationally recognized professional list to go with something that is “just easier?”

    1. “I also like that the BBYA has professional credibility, which affords me the opportunity to buy some of the more controversial materials which appear on the list without hesitation.”

      I was going to embolden only parts of this sentence, but the whole thing is so stinkin’ good. This is HUGE, and I would say that this alone is a reason for keeping the BBYA intact.

      –Brian

    2. I couldn’t have stated the first paragraph from dragon_smoke any better. I feel exactly the same way. BBYA must stay!

  2. I guess I don’t understand what the point is of getting rid of this list. Is the problem that some people feel the effort-to-benefit ratio is out of whack? Or does someone have some nefarious goal that I haven’t even thought of? Because it sounds like the people who are actually doing the work think it’s completely worthwhile. So who would benefit from its elimination?

  3. Count me in the “huge mistake” crowd. I’m a member of a state book award committee for high school students and BBYA is one of the resources we use for coming up with a list of possible titles. The Green Mountain Book Award committee comes up with a list of 15 titles, representing a variety of genres and styles. To be eligible, books must have 2 positive reviews (being a BBYA counts), must have been published in the last 5 years, and must be available in paperback.

    The list covers the range from YA titles to crossovers from the adult market. If high school students have read 3 of the titles, they are eligible to vote for their favorite. The committee includes teachers, public librarians, school librarians, and me, a “library junkie,” teen parent (until August 31), and pre-published writer.

    Bottom line–We need BBYA!

Comments are closed.