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!