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National Book Award Winners - Young People's Literature

Description: The National Book Awards are presented "to celebrate the best of American literature, to expand its audience, and to enhance the cultural value of good writing in America." Here are the medal winners for Young People's Literature. #award #teens #kids


Showing 1 through 25 of 37 results
 

The Poet X

by Elizabeth Acevedo

Fans of Jacqueline Woodson, Meg Medina, and Jason Reynolds will fall hard for this astonishing #ownvoices novel-in-verse by an award-winning slam poet, about an Afro-Latina heroine who tells her story with blazing words and powerful truth. Xiomara Batista feels unheard and unable to hide in her Harlem neighborhood. Ever since her body grew into curves, she has learned to let her fists and her fierceness do the talking.

But Xiomara has plenty she wants to say, and she pours all her frustration and passion onto the pages of a leather notebook, reciting the words to herself like prayers—especially after she catches feelings for a boy in her bio class named Aman, who her family can never know about. With Mami’s determination to force her daughter to obey the laws of the church, Xiomara understands that her thoughts are best kept to herself. So when she is invited to join her school’s slam poetry club, she doesn’t know how she could ever attend without her mami finding out. But she still can’t stop thinking about performing her poems. Because in the face of a world that may not want to hear her, Xiomara refuses to be silent.

A New York Times Bestseller

2018 National Book Award Winner for Young Adults

Date Added: 11/15/2018


Year: 2018

The Marvelous Misadventures of Sebastian

by Lloyd Alexander

When fourth fiddler Sebastian loses his place in the Baron's orchestra, he has to leave the only home he knows--which turns out to be the least of his troubles. He rescues a stray cat from a group of tormentors, who then smash his precious violin.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1971

Westmark

by Lloyd Alexander

A boy fleeing from criminal charges falls in with a charlatan, his dwarf attendant, and an urchin girl, travels with them about the kingdom of Westmark, and ultimately arrives at the palace where the king is grieving over the loss of his daughter.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1982

Goblin Secrets

by William Alexander

A boy joins a theatrical troupe of goblins to find his missing brother.In the town of Zombay, there is a witch named Graba who has clockwork chicken legs and moves her house around--much like the fairy tale figure of Baba Yaga. Graba takes in stray children, and Rownie is the youngest boy in her household. Rownie's only real relative is his older brother Rowan, who is an actor. But acting is outlawed in Zombay, and Rowan has disappeared.Desperate to find him, Rownie joins up with a troupe of goblins who skirt the law to put on plays. But their plays are not only for entertainment, and the masks they use are for more than make-believe. The goblins also want to find Rowan--because Rowan might be the only person who can save the town from being flooded by a mighty river.This accessible, atmospheric fantasy takes a gentle look at love, loss, and family while delivering a fast-paced adventure that is sure to satisfy.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2012

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

by Sherman Alexie

Bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation.

Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot.

Heartbreaking, funny, and beautifully written, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which is based on the author's own experiences, coupled with poignant drawings by Ellen Forney that reflect the character's art, chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy as he attempts to break away from the life he was destined to live.

With a forward by Markus Zusak, interviews with Sherman Alexie and Ellen Forney, and four-color interior art throughout, this edition is perfect for fans and collectors alike.

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2007

The Pox Party (The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing

by M. T. Anderson

A gothic tale becomes all too shockingly real in this mesmerizing magnum opus by the acclaimed author of FEED. It sounds like a fairy tale. He is a boy dressed in silks and white wigs and given the finest of classical educations. Raised by a group of rational philosophers known only by numbers, the boy and his mother -- a princess in exile from a faraway land -- are the only persons in their household assigned names. As the boy's regal mother, Cassiopeia, entertains the house scholars with her beauty and wit, young Octavian begins to question the purpose behind his guardians' fanatical studies. Only after he dares to open a forbidden door does he learn the hideous nature of their experiments -- and his own chilling role in them. Set against the disquiet of Revolutionary Boston, M. T. Anderson's extraordinary novel takes place at a time when American Patriots rioted and battled to win liberty while African slaves were entreated to risk their lives for a freedom they would never claim. The first of two parts, this deeply provocative novel reimagines the past as an eerie place that has startling resonance for readers today.

WInner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2006

Far from the Tree

by Robin Benway

Robin Benway’s beautiful interweaving story of three very different teenagers connected by blood explores the meaning of family in all its forms—how to find it, how to keep it, and how to love it.

Being the middle child has its ups and downs.

But for Grace, an only child who was adopted at birth, discovering that she is a middle child is a different ride altogether. After putting her own baby up for adoption, she goes looking for her biological family, including—Maya, her loudmouthed younger bio sister, who has a lot to say about their newfound family ties. Having grown up the snarky brunette in a house full of chipper redheads, she’s quick to search for traces of herself among these not-quite-strangers.

And when her adopted family’s long-buried problems begin to explode to the surface, Maya can’t help but wonder where exactly it is that she belongs.

And Joaquin, their stoic older bio brother, who has no interest in bonding over their shared biological mother. After seventeen years in the foster care system, he’s learned that there are no heroes, and secrets and fears are best kept close to the vest, where they can’t hurt anyone but him.

Don't miss this moving novel that addresses such important topics as adoption, teen pregnancy, and foster care.

A New York Times Bestseller

National Book Award Winner

Date Added: 11/21/2017


Year: 2017

The Penderwicks

by Jeanne Birdsall

This summer the Penderwick sisters have a wonderful surprise: a holiday on the grounds of a beautiful estate called Arundel. Soon they are busy discovering the summertime magic of Arundel’s sprawling gardens, treasure-filled attic, tame rabbits, and the cook who makes the best gingerbread in Massachusetts. But the best discovery of all is Jeffrey Tifton, son of Arundel’s owner, who quickly proves to be the perfect companion for their adventures.

The icy-hearted Mrs. Tifton is not as pleased with the Penderwicks as Jeffrey is, though, and warns the new friends to stay out of trouble. Which, of course, they will—won’t they? One thing’s for sure: it will be a summer the Penderwicks will never forget.

Deliciously nostalgic and quaintly witty, this is a story as breezy and carefree as a summer day.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2005

A Gathering of Days

by Joan W. Blos

I, Catherine Cabot Hall, aged 13 years, 6 months, 29 days...do begin this book. So begins the journal of a girl coming of age in nineteenth-century New Hampshire. Catherine records both the hardships of pioneer life and its many triumphs. Even as she struggles with her mother's death and father's eventual remarriage, Catherine's indomitable spirit makes this saga an oftentimes uplifting and joyous one.

Winner of the Newbery Medal

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1980

What I Saw and How I Lied

by Judy Blundell

This National Book Award winner set during the aftermath of WWII is now available in paperback!When Evie's father returned home from World War II, the family fell back into its normal life pretty quickly. But Joe Spooner brought more back with him than just good war stories. When movie-star handsome Peter Coleridge, a young ex-GI who served in Joe's company in postwar Austria, shows up, Evie is suddenly caught in a complicated web of lies that she only slowly recognizes. She finds herself falling for Peter, ignoring the secrets that surround him . . . until a tragedy occurs that shatters her family and breaks her life in two.

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2008

The Night Swimmers

by Betsy Byars

Retta, Johnny, and Roy have no parental rules to follow, so they&’ve made up their ownAfter their mother passes away, Retta, Johnny, and Roy don&’t have much parenting in their lives. Their dad is a country singer who keeps them well fed but isn&’t around much. Older sister Retta takes control, leading her brothers on all sorts of unwise adventures and promising that one day they&’ll have money, safety, and a nice home. When their dad is away performing at night, they slip into a neighbor&’s pool to swim and pretend to have a glamorous life beneath the light of the moon. But freedom doesn&’t mean happiness, especially when a new crisis emerges. National Book Award winner The Night Swimmers is a moving story of siblings who can count on nobody but one another. This ebook features an illustrated biography of Betsy Byars including rare images from the author&’s personal collection.

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1981

King and the Dragonflies

by Kacen Callender

Twelve-year-old Kingston James is sure his brother Khalid has turned into a dragonfly. When Khalid unexpectedly passed away, he shed what was his first skin for another to live down by the bayou in their small Louisiana town. Khalid still visits in dreams, and King must keep these secrets to himself as he watches grief transform his family.

It would be easier if King could talk with his best friend, Sandy Sanders. But just days before he died, Khalid told King to end their friendship, after overhearing a secret about Sandy-that he thinks he might be gay. "You don't want anyone to think you're gay too, do you?"

But when Sandy goes missing, sparking a town-wide search, and King finds his former best friend hiding in a tent in his backyard, he agrees to help Sandy escape from his abusive father, and the two begin an adventure as they build their own private paradise down by the bayou and among the dragonflies. As King's friendship with Sandy is reignited, he's forced to confront questions about himself and the reality of his brother's death.

The Thing About Jellyfish meets The Stars Beneath Our Feet in this story about loss, grief, and finding the courage to discover one's identity, from the author of Hurricane Child.

Date Added: 11/19/2020


Year: 2020

The Court of the Stone Children

by Eleanor Cameron

Someone draws Nina to the ancient courtyard. Someone from another time ...

Who is Dominique? When Nina first sees her in the French Museum, she senses that there is something unreal about the strange, beautiful girl. In fact, Domi is from Napoleon's time, and she has come to get Nina's help.

Domi's father was executed as a traitor during the French Revolution, and Domi is convinced that Nina can prove his innocence. But to save Domi's father, Nina will have to solve a mystery that has lasted two centuries. And she will have to travel back through time, back to France and the court of the stone children ....

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1974

Mockingbird

by Kathryn Erskine

Caitlin has Asperger's. The world according to her is black and white; anything in between is confusing.

Before, when things got confusing, Caitlin went to her older brother, Devon, for help. But Devon was killed in a school shooting, and Caitlin's dad is so distraught that he is just not helpful.

Caitlin wants everything to go back to the way things were, but she doesn't know how to do that. Then she comes across the word closure--and she realizes this is what she needs.

And in her search for it, Caitlin discovers that the world may not be so black and white after all.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2010

The House of the Scorpion

by Nancy Farmer

Matt is six years old when he discovers that he is different from other children and other people. To most, Matt isn't considered a boy at all, but a beast, dirty and disgusting. But to El Patron, lord of a country called Opium, Matt is the guarantee of eternal life. El Patron loves Matt as he loves himself - for Matt is himself. They share the exact same DNA.

As Matt struggles to understand his existence and what that existence truly means, he is threatened by a host of sinister and manipulating characters, from El Patron's power-hungry family to the brain-deadened eejits and mindless slaves that toil Opium's poppy fields. Surrounded by a dangerous army of bodyguards, escape is the only chance Matt has to survive. But even escape is no guarantee of freedom... because Matt is marked by his difference in ways that he doesn't even suspect.

Newbery Honor book

National Book Award

Winner of Pacific Northwest Library Association's Young Reader's Choice Senior Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2002

Homesick

by Jean Fritz

This heartwarming fictionalized autobiography tells the story of what it is like for a little girl to be growing up in an unfamiliar place.

While other girls her age were enjoying childhood in America, Jean Fritz was in China in the midst of political unrest. During this time, foreigners were becoming more and more unpopular, and evacuation at a moment's notice was imminent. Although Jean appreciated the beauty of China - the mountains, the countryside, the sea - she knew she belonged in America and longed to make her home there.

Newbery Honor Book

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1983

M.C. Higgins, the Great

by Virginia Hamilton

Hamilton's classic coming-of-age tale about a young man who must choose between supporting his tight-knit family and pursuing his own dreams

Mayo Cornelius Higgins sits on his gleaming, forty-foot steel pole, towering over his home on Sarah's Mountain. Stretched before him are rolling hills and shady valleys. But behind him lie the wounds of strip mining, including a mountain of rubble that may one day fall and bury his home.

M.C. dreams of escape for himself and his family. And, one day, atop his pole, he thinks he sees it -- two strangers are making their way toward Sarah's Mountain. One has the ability to make M.C.'s mother famous. And the other has the kind of freedom that M.C. has never even considered.

Newbery Medal Winner

National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1975

Godless

by Pete Hautman

"Why mess around with Catholicism when you can have your own customized religion?" Fed up with his parents' boring old religion, agnostic-going-on-atheist Jason Bock invents a new god -- the town's water tower. He recruits an unlikely group of worshippers: his snail-farming best friend, Shin, cute-as-a-button (whatever that means) Magda Price, and the violent and unpredictable Henry Stagg. As their religion grows, it takes on a life of its own. While Jason struggles to keep the faith pure, Shin obsesses over writing their bible, and the explosive Henry schemes to make the new faith even more exciting -- and dangerous. When the Chutengodians hold their first ceremony high atop the dome of the water tower, things quickly go from merely dangerous to terrifying and deadly. Jason soon realizes that inventing a religion is a lot easier than controlling it, but control it he must, before his creation destroys both his friends and himself.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2004

When Zachary Beaver Came to Town

by Kimberly Willis Holt

The red words painted on the trailer caused quite a buzz around town and before an hour was up, half of Antler was standing in line with two dollars clutched in hand to see the fattest boy in the world.

Toby Wilson is having the toughest summer of his life. It's the summer his mother leaves for good; the summer his best friend's brother returns from Vietnam in a coffin. And the summer that Zachary Beaver, the fattest boy in the world, arrives in their sleepy Texas town.

While it's a summer filled with heartache of every kind, it's also a summer of new friendships gained and old friendships renewed. And it's Zachary Beaver who turns the town of Antler upside down and leaves everyone, especially Toby, changed forever.

With understated elegance, Kimberly Willis Holt tells a compelling coming-of-age story about a thirteen-year-old boy struggling to find himself in an imperfect world. At turns passionate and humorous, this extraordinary novel deals sensitively and candidly with obesity, war, and the true power of friendship.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1999

Claudette Colvin

by Phillip M. Hoose

"When it comes to justice, there is no easy way to get it. You can't sugarcoat it. You have to take a stand and say, 'This is not right.'" - Claudette Colvin

On March 2, 1955, an impassioned teenager, fed up with the daily injustices of Jim Crow segregation, refused to give her seat to a white woman on a segregated bus in Montgomery, Alabama. Instead of being celebrated as Rosa Parks would be just nine months later, fifteen-year-old Claudette Colvin found herself shunned by her classmates and dismissed by community leaders. Undaunted, a year later she dared to challenge segregation again as a key plaintiff in Browder v. Gayle, the landmark case that struck down the segregation laws of Montgomery and swept away the legal underpinnings of the Jim Crow South. Based on extensive interviews with Claudette Colvin and many others, Phillip Hoose presents the first in-depth account of an important yet largely unknown civil rights figure, skillfully weaving her dramatic story into the fabric of the historic Montgomery bus boycott and court case that would change the course of American history.

Claudette Colvin is the 2009 National Book Award Winner for Young People's Literature, a 2010 Newbery Honor Book, a Sibert Honor book, and a Jane Addams Honor book.

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2009

The Canning Season

by Polly Horvath

Love under trying circumstances

One night out of the blue, Ratchet Clark’s ill-natured mother tells her that Ratchet will be leaving their Pensacola apartment momentarily to take the train up north. There she will spend the summer with her aged relatives Penpen and Tilly, inseparable twins who couldn’t look more different from each other. Staying at their secluded house, Ratchet is treated to a passel of strange family history and local lore, along with heaps of generosity and care that she has never experienced before. Also, Penpen has recently espoused a new philosophy – whatever shows up on your doorstep you have to let in. Through thick wilderness, down forgotten, bear-ridden roads, come a variety of characters, drawn to Penpen and Tilly’s open door. It is with vast reservations that the cautious Tilly allows these unwelcome guests in. But it turns out that unwelcome guests may bring the greatest gifts.

By turns dark and humorous, Polly Horvath offers adolescent readers enough quirky characters and outrageous situations to leave them reeling!

The Canning Season is the winner of the 2003 National Book Award for Young People's Literature.

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2003

The Thing About Luck

by Cynthia Kadohata

The winner of the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature, from Newbery Medalist Cynthia Kadohata. There is bad luck, good luck, and making your own luck—which is exactly what Summer must do to save her family.

Summer knows that kouun means “good luck” in Japanese, and this year her family has none of it. Just when she thinks nothing else can possibly go wrong, an emergency whisks her parents away to Japan—right before harvest season. Summer and her little brother, Jaz, are left in the care of their grandparents, who come out of retirement in order to harvest wheat and help pay the bills.

The thing about Obaachan and Jiichan is that they are old-fashioned and demanding, and between helping Obaachan cook for the workers, covering for her when her back pain worsens, and worrying about her lonely little brother, Summer just barely has time to notice the attentions of their boss’s cute son. But notice she does, and what begins as a welcome distraction from the hard work soon turns into a mess of its own.

Having thoroughly disappointed her grandmother, Summer figures the bad luck must be finished—but then it gets worse. And when that happens, Summer has to figure out how to change it herself, even if it means further displeasing Obaachan. Because it might be the only way to save her family.

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2013

The Thing About Luck

by Cynthia Kadohata and Julia Kuo

Summer knows that kouun means “good luck” in Japanese, and this year her family has none of it. Just when she thinks nothing else can possibly go wrong, an emergency whisks her parents away to Japan—right before harvest season. Summer and her little brother, Jaz, are left in the care of their grandparents, who come out of retirement in order to harvest wheat and help pay the bills.

The thing about Obaachan and Jiichan is that they are old-fashioned and demanding, and between helping Obaachan cook for the workers, covering for her when her back pain worsens, and worrying about her lonely little brother, Summer just barely has time to notice the attentions of their boss’s cute son. But notice she does, and what begins as a welcome distraction from the hard work soon turns into a mess of its own.

Having thoroughly disappointed her grandmother, Summer figures the bad luck must be finished—but then it gets worse. And when that happens, Summer has to figure out how to change it herself, even if it means further displeasing Obaachan. Because it might be the only way to save her family.

Winner of the National Book Award for Young People's Literature

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2013

Inside Out and Back Again

by Thanhha Lai

No one would believe me but at times I would choose wartime in Saigon over peacetime in Alabama.

For all the ten years of her life, HÀ has only known Saigon: the thrills of its markets, the joy of its traditions, the warmth of her friends close by...and the beauty of her very own papaya tree.

But now the Vietnam War has reached her home. HÀ and her family are forced to flee as Saigon falls, and they board a ship headed toward hope. In America, HÀ discovers the foreign world of Alabama: the coldness of its strangers, the dullness of its food, the strange shape of its landscape...and the strength of her very own family.

This is the moving story of one girl's year of change, dreams, grief, and healing as she journeys from one country to another, one life to the next.

Newbery Honor Book

Winner of the National Book Award

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 2011

The Farthest Shore

by Ursula K. Le Guin

The National Book Award–winning third novel in the renowned Earthsea series from Ursula K. LeGuin.In this third book in the Earthsea series, darkness threatens to overtake Earthsea: The world and its wizards are losing their magic. But Ged Sparrohawk—Archmage, wizard, and dragonlord—is determined to discover the source of this devastating loss.Aided by Enlad’s young Prince Arren, Ged embarks on a treacherous journey that will test their strength and will. Because to restore magic, the two warriors must venture to the farthest reaches of their world—and even beyond the realm of death. With millions of copies sold worldwide, Ursula K. Le Guin’s Earthsea Cycle has earned a treasured place on the shelves of fantasy lovers everywhere, alongside the works of such beloved authors as J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis.

Date Added: 05/25/2017


Year: 1973


Showing 1 through 25 of 37 results