100 Medals, 100 Meals

The Newbery Medal is an award given every year, chosen by the American Library Association, to one American book that represents the most distinguished contribution to children’s literature.  The award was named for John Newbery, a British bookseller who promoted children’s literature in the 18th century.  Starting in 1922, the Newbery Medal has been awarded to 100 books, most recently in 2021 to When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller – a Korean(ish) story by a Korean(ish) writer!

In my capacity as a director of Tongbang Books (see website), I am attempting to read all 100 Newbery Medal winners with the aim of gaining insight on how better to curate and market the books, as well as other children’s books, to our customers.  Aside from pecuniary motives, they’re also extremely fun to read.

Having finished several books, I’ve noticed that food plays a strong role in many of the stories; not surprising as the characters in most of the books are faced with adversity of some sort, including poverty, so they’re often very hungry and thus grateful whenever they get a bite to eat – as we all should be, every meal – literally, give us this day our daily bread.

In parallel to the reading, I will also attempt to create one dish for every Newbery Medal winner, a dish that is directly referenced in or indirectly inspired by the events of the book.  The dishes will be featured as posts on Give Me This Day.

Listed below in order of personal preference (preference of the books, not the dishes):

  1. Holes (1999) (11.349 Soupe à L’Oignon for IV)
  2. Flora & Ulysses (2014) (11.331 Eggs Sunny-Side Up, Holy Bagumba!)
  3. The Tale of Despereaux (12.072 Gor! A Delicate Mingling of Chicken, Minari, and Garlic)
  4. Out of the Dust (1997) (12.027 Billie Jo’s Apple Sauce)
  5. The One and Only Ivan (2013) (11.265 French Fries and a Strawberry Shake for Ivan)
  6. A Single Shard (2002) (11.278 Truly a Felicitous Combination for Crane-Man)
  7. The Crossover (2015) (11.285 Filthy McNasty’s Orange Creamy Dip with Brown Specks in It)
  8. Hello, Universe (2018) (11.282 Kaori’s Crustless Ham, Lettuce, and Tomato Sandwich)
  9. From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs Basil E Frankweiler (1968) (11.255 A Plain Lady’s Nouilles et Fromage en Casserole)
  10. When You Reach Me (2010) (12.066 Miranda’s Setup Tray Sandwich)
  11. Maniac Magee (1991) (11.263 Maniac’s Zep, a Large)
  12. When You Trap a Tiger (2021) (12.075 Bibim Naeng Myeon for Tae)
  13. Bud, Not Buddy (2000) (12.042 Meatloaf for Bud Caldwell)
  14. A Year Down Yonder (2001) (12.038 Grandma Dowdel’s Burgoo)
  15. Ginger Pye (1952) (11.335 A Certain Lady’s Mincemeat)
  16. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry (1977) (11.316 Cassie’s Morsels of Golden Squirrel and Rabbit)
  17. New Kid (2019) (11.301 General Tso’s Chicken for Jordan)
  18. Dear Mr Henshaw (1984) (12.081 Katy’s Deviled Eggs)
  19. The Higher Power of Lucky (2007) (11.347 Lucky’z Eggz & Beanz)
  20. The Giver (1994) (11.272 An Apple for the Receiver of Memory)
  21. Shadow of a Bull (1965) (11.360 Manolo’s Jamón Serrano)
  22. Sounder (1970) (12.019 Jailbreak Cake for the Father)
  23. Mrs Frisby and the Rats of NIMH (1972) (11.321 Nicodemus’s Clam Chowder, Delicious)
  24. The Whipping Boy (1987) (11.252 Captain Nips’ Hot-Hot Potatoes!)
  25. Merci Suárez Changes Gears (2019) (11.288 Merci’s Picadillo and Rice)
  26. Julie of the Wolves (1973) (12.064 Miyax’s Eighty Furred Young)
  27. Thimble Summer (1939) (12.018 A Nice Roasted Elephant with Onions and Brown Gravy for Mr Freebody)
  28. Call It Courage (1941) (11.293 Mafatu’s Umu Puaa)
  29. The White Stag (1938) (12.065 Attila’s Beef Goulash)
  30. A Visit to William Blake’s Inn (1982) (11.309 Brisket of Basilisk Treat for the King of Cats)
  31. The Twenty-One Balloons (1948) (11.322 Mrs D’s Stampot von Zuurkool met Rookworst)
  32. Lincoln: A Photobiography (1988) (11.326 16’s Corn Cakes)
  33. Missing May (1993) (11.297 May’s Vegetable Soup (plus Chicken plus Cream plus Noodles))
  34. Good Masters!  Sweet Ladies!  Voices from a Medieval Village (2008) (12.006 The Plowboy’s Three Herrings and a Loaf of Bread)
  35. Strawberry Girl (1948) (11.259 Birdie’s Chicken Pilau)
  36. The Bronze Bow (1962) (11.330 The Holy Roller (A Sandwich for Jesus))
  37. Young Fu on the Upper Yangtze (1933) (11.348 Beggars’ Food for Yuin Fa)
  38. The Matchlock Gun (1942) (11.350 The Big Loaf of Bread with the Big Ham for Teunis)
  39. The Cat Who Went to Heaven (1931) (11.359 A Bowl of Fish Soup for the Artist)
  40. Sarah, Plain and Tall (1986) (11.310 Sarah’s Ayuh)
  41. Miracles on Maple Hill (1957) (12.016 Pancakes à la Marly)
  42. Roller Skates (1937) (11.308 Tony’s Potatoes Golly Too)

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