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National Book Award for Youth

The National Book Award for Young People's Literature has been awarded in consecutive years, beginning in 1996. 

Awards are given by the National Book Foundation and recognize outstanding literary work by US citizens.

Inside Out & Back Again


Inside Out & Back Again
By Lai, Thanhha
2011-02 - Harper
9780061962783 Check the Library

2011 National Book Award Winner-Young People's Literature

Inspired by the author's own childhood experience of fleeing Vietnam as a refugee and immigrating to Alabama, this tween novel told in verse is sure to capture young readers' hearts and open their eyes. …More



By Erskine, Kathryn
2010-04 - Philomel Books
9780399252648 Check the Library

2010 National Book Award Winner-Young People's Literature 

In Caitlin's world, everything is black or white. Anything in between is confusing. That's the stuff Caitlin's older brother, Devon, has always explained. But now Devon's dead and Dad is no help at all. Caitlin wants to get over it, but as an 11-year-old girl with Asperger's, she doesn't know how. …More


Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice


Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice
By Hoose, Phillip M.
2009-01 - Farrar Straus Giroux
9780374313227 Check the Library

2009 National Book Award Winner-Young People's Literature

On March 2, 1955, 15-year-old Claudette Colvin refused to give up her bus seat to a white passenger. In her own words, Claudette gives a detailed look at segregated life in 1950s Memphis and the start of the civil rights movement. …More

What I Saw and How I Lied


What I Saw and How I Lied
By Blundell, Judy
2010-01 - Scholastic Paperbacks
9780439903486 Check the Library

2008 National Book Award Winner-Young People's Literature

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.

As she begins to realize that almost everything she believed to be a truth was really a lie, Evie must get to the heart of the deceptions and choose between her loyalty to her parents and her feelings for the man she loves. Someone will have to be betrayed. The question is . . . who? …More

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
By Alexie, Sherman
Illustrator Forney, Ellen
2007-09 - Little, Brown Young Readers
9780316013680 Check the Library

2007 National Book Award- Winner Young People's Literature

Based on the author's own experiences, this first young adult novel by bestselling author Alexie features poignant drawings by acclaimed artist Ellen Forney that reflect the characters art as it chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy attempting to break away from the life he was destined to live. …More

The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation: Volume 1, the Pox Party

The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation: Volume 1, the Pox Party
By Anderson, M. T.
2006-09 - Candlewick Press (MA)
9780763624026 Check the Library

Winner - 2006 National Book Award for Youth

Various diaries, letters, and other manuscripts chronicle the experiences of Octavian, a young African American, from birth to age 16, as he is brought up as part of a science experiment in the years leading up to and during the Revolutionary War. …More

The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy


The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy
By Birdsall, Jeanne
2005-06 - Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
0375831436 Check the Library

Winner - 2005 National Book Award for Youth

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.



By Hautman, Pete
2004-06 - Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
0689862784 Check the Library

Winner - 2004 National Book Award for Youth

As a joke, agnostic-going-on-atheist Jason Bock invents his own religion: theworship of his town's water tower. But what starts as a loose congregation of Jason's friend Shin and some classmates soon takes on a power of its own. …More

The Canning Season

The Canning Season
By Horvath, Polly
2003-05 - Farrar Straus Giroux
0374399565 Check the Library


Winner-2003 National Book Award for Youth
By turns dark and humorous, Horvath offers adolescent readers enough quirky characters and outrageous situations to leave them reeling.

The House of the Scorpion


The House of the Scorpion
By Farmer, Nancy
2004-04 - Simon Pulse
0689852231 Check the Library

National Book Award for Young People's Literature

To most people around him, Matt is not a boy, but a beast. As Matt struggles to understand his existence, he is threatened by sinister characters in this National Book Award winner.



True Believer

True Believer
By Wolff, Virginia Euwer
2001-02 - Atheneum Books for Young Readers
0689828276 Check the Library

Winner - 2001 National Book Award for Youth

In this second novel of Wolff's "Make Lemonade" trilogy, 15-year old Verna LaVaughn is visited by Jody, a boy she knew as a child who comes back to the housing project where she lives. Jody behaves as if he's in love with her, but Jody is wrestling with questions of his own identity. …More

Homeless Bird


Homeless Bird
By Whelan, Gloria
2000-03 - HarperCollins
0060284528 Check the Library

Winner - 2000 National Book Award for Youth

Like many girls her age in India, thirteen-year-old Koly is getting married. Full of hope and courage, she leaves home -- forever.

But there's been a terrible mistake. The husband chosen for her is too young, and he's very ill. And as tradition dictates, it's too late to turn back. On her wedding day, Koly's fate is sealed. Her future, it would seem, is lost.

Alive with the crush of marketplace crowds, the thick smell of funeral garlands, the cooling rush of the holy river Ganges, and the sting of injustice as a girl's life is forsaken, master storyteller Gloria Whelan transports readers into the heart of a gripping tale of hope. Here is a story of one rare young woman who, by standing against the powerful current of tradition, discovers her own remarkable future. …More


By Sachar, Louis
1998-08 - Frances Foster Books
0374332657 Check the Library

1st book in Camp Green Lake series

1999 Newbery Award Winner

A darkly humorous tale of crime and punishment Stanley Yelnat's family has a history of bad luck, so he isn't too surprised when a miscarriage of justice sends him to a boys' juvenile detention center, Camp Green Lake. …More

Dancing on the Edge


Dancing on the Edge
By Nolan, Han
1997-10 - Harcourt Children's Books
0152016481 Check the Library

Winner - 1997 National Book Award for Youth

A National Book Award finalist tells a poignant story of a young girl teetering on the edge of insanity. Miracle McCloy has always known that there is something different about her. Having been raised according to a set of mystical rules and beliefs, she is unable to cope in the real world. After accidentally setting herself on fire, Miracle meets a kind psychiatrist who helps her through the painful struggle to take charge of her life. …More

Parrot Oven

Parrot in the Oven
By Martinez, Victor
Illustrator Scott, Steve
1996-09 - Rayo
0060267046 Check the Library


Winner - 1996 National Book Award for Youth
For Manuel Hernandez, the year leading up to his test of courage, his initiation into a gang, is a time filled with the pain and tension, awkwardness and excitement of growing up in a mixed-up, crazy world. Manny wants to find out what it means to be a vato firme, a guy to respect, in this powerful novel of a young Mexican-American boy's coming-of-age experiences.

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