Fantasy/sci fi has had pretty good luck with the Newbery Award recently, what with When You Reach Me and The Graveyard Book. Will it do it again?
The top contenders are Ninth Ward, by Jewell Parker Rhodes, and Keeper, by Kathi Appelt, both of which are books in which the fantasy elements are more "magical realism" -- the fantastical is important in each of them, but it's subtle; not dragony at all!
I'd be happy if Ninth Ward won--I love that book!
And we'll find out in just a few hours....
Edited to add:
It was very hard not being able to blog while at work today!!!! But I'm home again.
As most of you probably know, speculative fiction didn't do so well this year. No love from the Newbery committee. No love from the Batchelder committee (translated books), although Departure Time, by Matti is almost fantasy...And no love from Pura Belpre (best author and illustrator of Latina descent). Neither of the two sff books from the Morris list (YA debut) won.
There were a few little bright spots, though--The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex won the Odyssey Award (audiobook), and Ninth Ward won a Coretta Scott King author honor for Jewell Parker Rhodes.
And there were two very bright spots indeed. Terry Pratchet won the Margaret A. Edwards Award for his contribution to YA literature, and the winner of the Printz Award (YA) was Shipbreaker, by Paolo Bacigalupi.
You can find a very tidy complete set of lists over at Kids Lit (each award in its own post, so work your way down).