Voting for the Great Berryville Read starts today!
Welcome to Bracket #1 – Great Berryville Read Who Am I? Edition. Next week on Tuesday, September 18th, the Great American Read episode “Who am I?” will air. This episode will explore some of the books on the list that examine themes of identity and personal growth. We’ve assembled a bracket that requires you, gentle reader, to pick your favorites and decide which of these 16 books should advance to the next round of the Great Berryville Read voting.
To vote, you need to complete a bracket and drop it off at the library or at Berryville High School or vote on our Facebook page. You have until this Saturday, September 15, to vote on this bracket.
Scoring of the brackets is explained here. If you need more of a reminder about any of these books than I include below, we have brief card catalog reviews of the books at the library and on our Great Berryville Read Facebook page for you to use.
Now (drum roll, please), let’s look at this week’s contenders.
Our first match-up pits two tales of mid-20th century adolescents’ coming-of-age stories: A Prayer for Owen Meany and The Catcher in the Rye.
The winner of that will face off against whoever wins between A Separate Peace and The Count of Monte Cristo, two very different novels that, nevertheless, explore the same theme of unhealthy friendships and their consequences.
Another one of the match-ups pits two coming-of-age tales rooted very much in the protagonists’ impoverished surroundings: The Outsiders vs. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.
The winner of that round will face off against the winner of Their Eyes Were Watching God vs The Color Purple, both coming-of-age stories that focus on African American female protagonists.
You’ll also have to choose which precocious girl in historical fiction is your favorite: Scout from To Kill A Mockingbird or Liesel from The Book Thief.
Whoever wins that round goes on to face off against the winner of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer vs Ghost match-up, which pits two novels about boys growing up against each other.
The next round is Jane Eyre against Tales of the City, two very different books about single women navigating life on their own.
The winner of that round will face off against the winner of Pillars of the Earth vs Siddhartha, one the story of a community’s spiritual journey while the other focuses on a more personal individual spiritual awakening.
What are your picks? Which match-up was the hardest to vote for? Which one was the easiest? Tell us in the comments!