On April 1, 2023, HCPL held the Championship Game for Tournament of Books 2023 at Atascocita Branch Library. Tournament of Books is a book club with a competitive spirit for teens in grades 9 -12. Teens work together in teams of 4 or 5 to read the 12 books reading list. This was our first year back in person, and it was fantastic to all be in the same room filled with so much energy as we watched the top two teams compete.
The Atascocita Branch Library team Novel Ideas took on last year’s Champions, The Book Thieves from the Kingwood Branch Library. It was a showdown between these two local rivals! As the Tournament of Books lead coordinator (less Seneca Crane from the Hunger Games and more Alex Trebek), I had a chance to visit both teams’ book parties or training sessions. They had plenty to say about the other team as they played books games, book reviews, and discussed book themes. Even HCPL Team Coordinators Kimberly Darneille and Lauren Richards joined in, telling the other that their team is going to take home the championship.
On the day of the Championship Game, families and friends of the competing teams came out to offer their support. Even Atascocita’s library mascot Bob was cheering on the sideline. After a Book Trivia round that demonstrated their book knowledge and an Open-Ended Response round that challenged the teens to express how the books affected them, The Book Thieves managed to hold onto their title as Tournament of Books Champions. Both teams were rewarded prizes, Kindle Fires for The Book Thieves and gift cards and books for Novel Ideas. After congratulating each other on a well played game and a group picture, they promised to see each other next year.
Thank you to the students, their parents, their school librarians, the HCPL Team Coordinators, HCPL judges, and especially the Harris County Friends of the Library for their generous support of the program.
The books for Tournament of Books are selected by HCPL literacy staff and features the latest books in Young Adult literature with diverse character and themes, relevant and relatable subject matter, originality, and strong and memorable plotlines. Read the entire list below.