2013 Finalists: Young Adult Non-Fiction

Breakfast on Mars and 37 Other Delectable Essays Roaring Brook Nominated by: Katy Manck (BooksYALove) Writing and reading essays usually evokes yawns.  Forcing students to use the formal style of writing not only is boring but kills creativity.  Breakfast on Mars takes the dreaded essay assignment and spins a fun, creative twist that is sure to inspire younger writers. Each essay …

2013 Finalists: Poetry

Follow Follow: A Book of Reverso Poems Marilyn Singer Dial Nominated by: Perogyo Marilyn Singer returns to the reverso, a poetic form she created, in Mirror, Mirror.  The reverso is quite clever. First you read the poem from top to bottom. Then you flip it and read it from the bottom up. The reverso proves the old adage “there are …

2013 Finalists: Speculative Fiction: Elementary & Middle Grade

Jinx Sage Blackwood HarperCollins Nominated by: Brandy Painter Deep in the dangerous forest of the Urwald, a boy named Jinx grows up in the home of a mysterious magician. Though Jinx is no apprentice mage, magic runs deep in him. When the magician steals part of that away, Jinx, devastated and furious, runs away into the forest. With two other …

2013 Finalists: Speculative Fiction: Young Adult

Conjured Sarah Beth Durst Walker Books for Young Readers Nominated by: Leila Roy Conjured is a multiverse fantasy about a magician, a dark carnival of horrors and delights, a group of snarky, teenaged magic users, and a protagonist who is hugely powerful but also hugely vulnerable. It’s a cop story about a girl in witness protection. It’s a story about friendship and …

2013 Finalists: Graphic Novels: Young Adult

Bad Machinery John Allison Oni Press Publisher/ Author Submission Who knew that the sleepy little town of Tackleford, England would be home to so many weird and wacky mysteries?  A group of local teenage girls, Shauna, Charlotte and Mildred, are working together to keep old Mrs. Biscuits in her house in the face of evil industrialism.  Meanwhile, their schoolmates, Jack, …

2013 Finalists: Fiction Picture Books

Count the Monkeys Mac Barnett Disney Hyperion Nominated by: Brian Rock Looking at the troop of monkeys on this cover, young readers may be in for a bit of a surprise as they begin to turn the pages. Where did all the monkeys go? No need to fret, though, for each page brings a new (and increasingly ridiculous) possible factor …

2013 Finalists: Middle Grade Fiction

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library Chris Grabenstein Random House Books for Young Readers Nominated by: Melissa Fox When a book is compared to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Night at the Museum, From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, and The Westing Game, you know you have something very intriguing in your hands.  A quirky benefactor invites 12 …

2013 Finalists: Nonfiction: Elementary & Middle Grade

Anubis Speaks!: A Guide to the Afterlife by the Egyptian God of the Dead (Secrets of the Ancient Gods) Vicky Alvear Shecter Boyds Mills Press Nominated by: Jackie Parker Shecter brings to life the god of the dead, no easy feat for a mere mortal author.  As narrator, Anubis guides us through the Duat, the Egyptian afterworld, and explains many …

2013 Finalists: Graphic Novels: Elementary & Middle Grade

Bluffton: My Summers with Buster Keaton Matt Phelan Candlewick Press Nominated by: Cathy Potter Although some readers may not know the story of Buster Keaton, they will quickly become entranced and enthralled with him thanks to the beautiful graphic novel Bluffton: My Summers with Buster. From 1908 to 1938, Muskegon, Michigan was taken over by the premier Vaudevillian actors of …

2013 Finalists: Easy Readers

A Big Guy Took My Ball! (An Elephant and Piggie Book) Mo Willems Disney Hyperion Nominated by: Danielle Smith Elephant and Piggie are back, bigger and better than ever! When Piggie’s beloved new ball get stolen by a mysterious “big guy” it’s Elephant to the rescue! Until he sees just…how…BIG that big guy is! It’s all about perspective in this …