March is a month which is special to many people for many reasons. For some, it’s because of St. Patrick’s Day, a time to celebrate their Irish heritage. For others, it’s all about the basketball, and March Madness. Some years, Easter falls in March, which brings a bunch of reasons to celebrate. For the past 26 years, though, March is also the month when MYRCA voting starts.
And what is MYRCA? I’m so glad you asked. MYRCA or Manitoba Young Readers Choice Award was founded in 1990 as a way to celebrate the International Year of Literacy. Every year since then, the members of the MYRCA committee read and reflect on Canadian fiction that was written for young people, in order to come up with the annual reading list. This list is available to everyone, and is a great way to promote reading and literacy.
Starting in March, any Manitoba student in grades 5 to 8 who has read at least 3 books on the list is eligible to vote. These votes then determine which author will become the MYRCA winner for the year. The winning author gets the chance to come to Winnipeg to take part in the awards ceremony. Students from all across Manitoba take part, and it’s a momentous opportunity for students to meet the winning author in person, to ask questions and to present the prize. Past winners have included Kenneth Oppel, David Carroll, Susin Nielsen and Norah McClintock.
Check out this year’s list and you’ll be sure to find something for everyone, from laugh out loud hilarity to non stop hockey action and super scary science fiction.
Oh no! The cleaning slimes at Gravelmuck Elementary School have escaped and are leaving destruction in their path! Principal Weaver is sure that Mr. Snag, the beloved school custodian, is to blame. Tank and Fizz, a goblin detective and his troll friend Tank are equally sure that he is innocent and set out to prove it. Don’t forget to read the pictures in this very funny and somewhat slimy mystery.
Bryan ‘Rocket’ Rockwood has been drafted into the OHL for his skills, not his size. He’s the smallest player on the team, and his teammates and coaches don’t ever let him forget it. Rocket has the determination and the skills to make it in the NHL, but can he earn the respect of the coaches and the other players? Or should he give up his dreams for good?
The world has changed. Cities have been destroyed and empires have crumbled. The planet is now ruled by a supercomputer who has dictated that all of the ruling families must provide a child to be held as a hostage until their 18th birthday to ensure that the world will remain at peace. Going to war means the death of a hostage. Duchess Greta thought she was prepared to die, until she meets Elián….
There’s a lot more where this came from! You can find these titles, along with all of the others on this year’s list, at any public library or on the Overdrive site. So don’t delay, start reading today! Voting will begin on March 20, 2017, and close at midnight Wednesday, April 12, 2017. All eligible students can vote at the Winnipeg public library of their choice.
Now, when I say MYRCA you say: “Manitoba Young Readers Choice Award!”