The Miss USA pageant completely passed by my notice.
But I couldn’t let May end without a pageant more to my taste. Yes, it’s time for the super prestigious event where I take all the books I read the previous year off their shelves, dress them up, spruce up the dust jackets, and parade them around. They love it. I promise.
Ladies and gentlemen, may I present the 4th Annual Miss Bookshelf USA…
According to my Goodreads, I read 10 adult books, 5 YA, 9 middle grade, 4 anthologies, and 3 picture books (which is super way off because the kiddos and I read at minimum one book a night at bedtime.) It was difficult to pick my TOP TEN DELEGATES as there were so many great books to choose from.
Cassie Beasley’s TUMBLE & BLUE
Emily Blejwas’ ONCE YOU KNOW THIS
Shannon & Dean Hale’s THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL: SQUIRREL MEETS WORLD
Darby Karchut’s DEL TORO MOON
Watt Key’s TERROR AT BOTTLE CREEK
Jaclyn Moriarty’s THE EXTREMELY INCONVENIENT ADVENTURES OF BRONTE METTLESTONE
Jewel Parker Rhodes’ BAYOU MAGIC
Ruta Sepetys’ SALT TO THE SEA
Jeff Zentner’s THE SERPENT KING
Miss Amity goes to… BAYOU MAGIC! Maddy is such an earnest, caring protagonist. I love how she grew to care so much about Grandmere, Bear, the Bon Temps bayou, and Mami Wata.
Miss Style is awarded to… THE UNBEATABLE SQUIRREL GIRL! I mean, it has footnotes, how cool is that. I enjoyed Doreen’s story so much that I actually dressed up as Squirrel Girl for Halloween, chikkt! (Yes, I am awesome, thanks for noticing ;))
Most Photogenic Cover goes to… TUMBLE & BLUE. Look at those woodcuts! The dreamy colors! Alligators! I like to pet it, it’s so pretty.
Second Runner Up goes to… DEL TORO MOON! The war stallions took me back to my childhood love of horse stories. This middle grade had the perfect blend of heart and legend. Of creepiness and bravery.
For First Runner Up, I dithered. I waffled. I couldn’t make up my mind. Then I thought, hey! This is MY bookish pageant! I can pick both SALT TO THE SEA and THE SERPENT KING to tie. They’re so different. SALT is a YA historical fiction set in 1945 about the Wilhelm Gustloff maritime tragedy, and SERPENT is a YA contemporary with Pentecostal tendencies. But both have a super strong cast of characters which is why they’re my 1st Runner Up picks, and interestingly, both authors live in Nashville. How cool is that?
And now, the moment you all have been waiting for…
Miss Bookshelf USA is…
ONCE YOU KNOW THIS
Absolutely gorgeous and important book. It hit me right in the feels. You’ll want to hang out with Brittany and observe the world through her eyes just like I did.
I hope y’all enjoyed my little pageant! If you have recommendations for next year’s contestants, let me know.
(Thanks to Mermaid Girl for letting me borrow her Rapunzel tiara once more!)