Annal: 1983 Newbery Medal

Results of the Newbery Medal in the year 1983.

Book:Dicey's Song

Dicey's Song

Cynthia Voigt

At the beginning of summer, Momma had abandoned them and them later been traced to an asylum where she lay unrecognizing, unknowing. So Dicey Tillerman, her brothers James and Sammy, and her sister Maybeth had spent the summer on their own on a long and difficult journey to find a home with the grandmother they’d never met before. Now that they’d moved in with Gram, their troubles, Dicey hoped, would be over.

Dicey had watched over the younger kids and brought them through—now she wanted to be just a little bit selfish, to refinish the old sailboat she’d found in Gram’s barn, to earn a little spending money, to adjust to Gram and to her new life in the Chesapeake Bay country that had once been her momma’s childhood home.

Yet even with the building of new ties and a new life, old problems and sorrows did not go away by themselves. None of…[more]

Book:The Blue Sword

The Blue Sword

Robin McKinley

Harry Crewe is an orphan girl who comes to live in Damar, the desert country shared by the Homelanders and the secretive, magical Hillfolk. Her life is quiet and ordinary-until the night she is kidnapped by Corlath, the Hillfolk King, who takes her deep into the desert. She does not know the Hillfolk language; she does not know why she has been chosen. But Corlath does. Harry is to be trained in the arts of war until she is a match for any of his men. Does she have the courage to accept her true fate?

Book:Doctor De Soto

Doctor De Soto

William Steig

“Doctor De Soto, the dentist, did very good work.” With the aid of his able assistant, Mrs. De Soto, he copes with the toothaches of animals large and small. His expertise is so great that his fortunate patients never feel any pain.

Since he’s a mouse, Doctor De Soto refuses to treat “dangerous” animals—that is, animals who have a taste for mice. But one day a fox shows up and begs for relief from the tooth that’s killing him. How can the kindhearted De Sotos turn him away? But how can they make sure that the fox doesn’t give in to his baser instincts once his tooth is fixed? Those clever De Sotos will find a way.

Book:Graven Images

Graven Images

Paul Fleischman

In “The Binnacle Boy,” a ship returns to port with its entire crew inexplicably dead. The only witness to the tragedy is the ship’s life-sized carving of a sailor boy. Can a wooden statue unmask the killer? In “St. Crispin’s Follower,” set in Charleston, a weather vane defies the wind: when all others point east, this one, fashioned in the likeness of Saint Crispin, faces west. What will become of the love-struck lad who looks to it for guidance? In “The Man of Influence,” Zorelli, a sculptor who immortalizes the great in monuments of stone, is hired by a ghostly figure to create a statue in its likeness. What terrifying secrets will be revealed?

These stories feature Paul Fleischman’s trademark evocative prose and each one ends with a startling surprise.

Book:Homesick

Homesick: My Own Story

Jean Fritz

Jean Fritz was born in China and lived there until 1927, when she was twelve. Young Jean had spent her entire life in China, but her parents’ memories of home and letters from relatives in Pennsylvania made her feel that she was American—and homesick for a place she’d never seen!

Family photographs and illustrations by Margot Tomes show us the real people behind Jean’s vivid and unforgettable stories—memories of picnics on the Great Wall, pranks, holidays in the foreign compound, rebellious moments at her British school. close ties to Chinese friends, and how it felt to be called a “foreign devil” and spat upon in the streets of a turbulent China on the eve of revolution. When her family embarks upon its long journey home, Jean is thrilled, but she wonders: When she arrives in America at last, will she fit in after growing up on “the wrong side of the world?”

Book:Sweet Whispers, Brother Rush

Sweet Whispers, Brother Rush

Virginia Hamilton

Why had he come to her, with his dark secrets from a long-ago past? What was the purpose of their strange, haunting journeys back into her own childhood? Was it to help Dab, her retarded older brother, wracked with mysterious pain who sometimes took more care and love than Tree had to give? Was it for her mother, Vy, who loved them the best she knew how, but wasn’t home enough to ease the terrible longing?

Whatever secrets his whispered message held, Tree knew she must follow. She must follow Brother Rush through the magic mirror, and find out the truth. About all of them.

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