National Book Awards

So for the last month or so this blog has been all me, me, me! That’s the way things go when you have a new book out.

But yesterday the nominees for the National Book Awards were announced. As you may remember, I’ve been on the jury this summer, furiously reading about 250 books in a mere four months.

Argh. I now know the true meaning of the word “reluctant reader.”

I’ll have some reflections on the 250-books-in-one-summer experience later, when I have some time to, you know, reflect on it. But today let us honor the five awesome books chosen for the young people’s shortlist:

Sherman Alexie, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
The story of a Spokane Indian kid who leaves the reservation to attend a relatively wealthy white school. Funny and full of charm.

Kathleen Duey, Skin Hunger: A Resurrection of Magic, Book One
Two stories, set decades apart, intertwine to show how magic reenters the world. Dark and fascinating.

M. Sindy Felin, Touching Snow
A teenage girl in a Hatian family in the US tells how she killed her abusive step father. A surprisingly funny glimpse into a brutal immigrant experience. A first novel!

Brian Selznick, The Invention of Hugo Cabret
Told half in pictures and half in text, a young boy discovers mechanical secrets inside the walls of the Paris train station. Magical storytelling.

Sara Zarr, Story of a Girl
A seventeen-year-old girl in a small town has lived with a bad reputation for years. Pitch perfect realism. Another first novel! (Damn, us jurors were good.)

We haven’t chosen the winner yet, so I can’t say too much more publicly about the books, but click here for a collection of reviews of the five nominees in Horn Book Review.

Thanks to my fellow judges, Elizabeth Partridge, Pete Hautman, James Howe, and Patricia McCormick, who were awesome and smart and a blast to read WAY too many books with. See you all at the ceremony.

Going briefly back to ME, I’m in Seattle tonight and tomorrow:

Thursday, Oct 11
Shorecrest Performing Arts Center
15343 25th Avenue NE
Shoreline, WA 98155
Books will be sold by Third Place Books
Public presentation and signing.

Friday, Oct 12
Edmonds Branch Library
650 Main St.
Edmonds, WA 98020
Books will be sold onsite by Barnes & Noble

Can’t wait to see all you Seattlites!

49 thoughts on “National Book Awards

  1. Yay, 5th comment? Well, I haven’t read any of those books, but they sound good. just more books i’ll have to add to my list to read!


  2. thats alot to read scott-la, love your blog but try not to make it so long o ya and chapter 5 on midnighters

  3. Those all sound really intesting, especially Touching Snow and The Invention of Hugo Cabret. I’ll have to check them out!

  4. Wow, he posted twenty minutes ago, and look at all the posts…wow

    SUMOS UNITE! :))))))))))))))))))))))))))
    (Still, anyone remember that?!?1 🙁 )

  5. Ha ha I said the books look intesting instead of interesting. Sorry. Anyway, whenever there are these award things, the book that wins is one I’ve never heard of before. So obviously I get some pretty good reading suggestions from them.

  6. wow 250 books?!?!?! that is like more than ive read in life maybe idk since i dont keep track but im sure that is way more than i would read in a summer thats impressive and must make reading list even longer (which means christmas list much longer)

  7. i read skin hunger!
    (after seeing it on justine’s site with a mega-glowing review, actually)
    it was pretty awesome. dark and sort of reminded me of the Truth-teller’s Tale/Safe-Keeper’s Secret books
    haven’t read any of the others though. heard of most of them though. i think the part-time indian one is sitting out from the library somewhere downstairs, actually.

    i read a lot.
    a lot.
    still, i only read like 50-something books this summer.
    or more.
    i lost count.

  8. Huh.
    I didn’t notice that intel you pointed it out.

    I have never had 1st comment.
    3rd– thats the best I have had.

  9. i’ve had first a couple times—mostly from jumping the gun and commenting at school. and i just got 300th on the spoiler thread.
    funny how face-rank we get about the sort of things, even when there isn’t a contest to be first going on anymore

  10. I’ve never read any of those books. sad-making.

    Ooh Serafina I love the Safe-Keeper’s Secret I just read it last month. Do people tell the author of a book if their book is a state award nominee because Uglies is a South Carolina Junior book award nominee. It should totally win.

  11. i read it a while ago so i don’t remember that much. have u read Truth-Teller’s Tale? it’s sorta in the same world with cameos from old book people.

    and go awards for books that deserve them!

    okay, i’m going to sleep now.

  12. hehe
    seatlites sounds like satalites
    and hooray for new books…
    i would LOVE to be forced to read 250 books in 4 months, cause then i would have a legitimate excuse to forget the world for a while…

  13. HORAY! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! i just met Scott-la! it was FAWESOME! i also talked to Justine-la! it was FAWESOME! they both recognized my name from here. it was FAWESOME! Scott-las funny. hehe. it was fool. except he kept talkin about this dentist gal. and some five year plan thing. overzealously wierd.

    about the books. that one with the bunch of pictures looks REALLY good. i saw it at the library, but i coudn’t get it. first i have to finish EXTRAS, and then i have to read Justine’s books. then she told me tonite that i should read DEVILISH by Moureen. i hope thats how you spell it. THEN ill read that book. and maybe the others.

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 😛

  14. Scott, it was really great to see you in person. Thanks for putting up with all of us librarians in your signing line. You really made my year!

    I am looking forward to seeing who you (and the rest of the jury) chose for the National Book Award.

  15. sadly, I don’t read any of the books in the list. It’s really cloudy here now…looks like its going to rain soon! Hmm~~one more subject before finishing my end of year exams! What a pity that I don’t have the chance to let Mr Westerfeld bring my books for him to sign!

  16. it’s pouring rain here right now.
    and Devilish is a really good book too, co-prez.

    but u know wat ppl should read? the morganville vampires books. no one’s read them and they’re fun and angsty and awesome. the vampires in them are the good kind….by which i mean they eat people.

    and if anyone on earth hasnt, GO READ CITY OF BONES BY CASSANDRA CLARE. it is, like, the best book ever. or more precisely one of my six best books ever, which include midnighters, tithe, ironside, and CoB.
    it is an AWESOME book. AWESOME. jace wayland ROCKS. i can’t wait for City of Ashes.
    lemme check….
    164 days, 18 hours and 55 minutes til March 25th.
    i am *not* obsessed.

  17. I spent the last 30 or so minutes working on the uncropped Pretties cover (only the girl, tho) on Photoshop. much patience required…

  18. This is just my opinion:

    The Pretty operation is like digital touch-up. Like that video on youtube…its like called Dove evolution or something.

  19. hi Justine-la! yeah it was fool. im ALMOST done with EXTRAS! only 87 more pages left. then i’ll read your books. already read the first chapter tho. i just hope i can finish all three before there due at the libary. (the 28) but i will. then i can go on your blog two! WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!

    and by the way co-prez, that book on your site looks pretty fool. i just added it to my list. i now have 347 books on my NEED TO READ booklist. *scurries off to finish EXTRAS*

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 😛

  20. On the picture, I dyed the right side of her hair red like the left side, made the eyes black like a Special’s, made the nose slightly smaller, and got rid of the minor hair frizz. I also changed the lighting. It still pretty much looks the same, tho.

  21. And I thought I read a lot in the last few months.

    Ive been meaning to read The Invention of Hugo Cabret. Ive also heard of Story of a Girl.

  22. R U GONNA COME NEWHERE IN LOWER NEW ENGLAND AT ALL BEFORE OR AFTER BEING IN MAINE?!?!?!!?!?!!?!?!?!!??!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
    -Riderchild-wa 😀

  23. that is fawesome..
    i so need to go to the store soon on a book shopping spree..fizzy. but first i need to finish my english paper.. emm..maybe later

  24. im on Scott-la’s blog! i look like a dork. a fool dork! but anyway. love the pic Allie-wa! they should totlaly have done that instead. it looks soooooooo much better! im gonna put that on my blog if ya dont mind.

    -Lizzy-wa OUT! 😛

  25. very odd-looking. i like it though.

    and thanks! skin hunger was cool. but when is book two coming!!! when??????? how dare the ending be so completely cliffy?! must. have. sequalage!

    and yes! despite my (let me count) four honors classes, i have no homework because i only had like three classes today! woo!

    and i read an inhuman amount. the last book i read was HOMEFREE by nina wright, which was great! very angsty teenage superpowers Heroes-esque. but i only finished that like 10 minutes ago…before that…..Beastly by Alex Flinn? or…lemme think….stupid homework taking away my time. oh, duh! Midnight Alley! which is part of another series everyone should read…and then EXTRAS!
    i’m working through KIKI STRIKE 2, Seeing Redd, Missisippi Jack, Snow Fire Sword and The Dark Is Rising right now.

    whoever said i read too much??? not me. or my librarian.

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