2012-2013 SC Children's Book Award Nominees

After All, You're Callie Boone

“Oh, fishsticks, tartar, and a side of fries!” Runaway ferrets, former BFF drama-trauma, and one GIGANTIC (and very, very public) belly flop. No doubt about it, Callie Boone’s summer is CRUMMY. The only things keeping her afloat are dive practice with her dad and a top-secret Olympic dream. Then a boy named Hoot—who is NOT her boyfriend!—moves in next door and turns her world upside down and right-side up.

Because of Mr. Terupt

It’s the start of fifth grade for seven kids at Snow Hill School. There’s . . . Jessica, the new girl, smart and perceptive, who’s having a hard time fitting in; Alexia, a bully, your friend one second, your enemy the next; Peter, class prankster and troublemaker; Luke, the brain; Danielle, who never stands up for herself; shy Anna, whose home situation makes her an outcast; and Jeffrey, who hates school.

Belly Up

Henry the Hippo, the beloved mascot of FunJungle, America’s hottest new tourist attraction, is dead. Twelve-year-old Teddy Fitzroy suspects foul play, but when no one believes him, he decides to investigate himself. To his surprise, he discovers that plenty of people wanted Henry gone — and the list of suspects keeps growing. As Teddy searches through the clues and asks too many questions, it becomes clear that he too might end up belly up.

Cheesie Mack is not a Genius or Anything

Ronald "Cheesie" Mack is not a genius or anything, but he remembers everything that happened before, during, and after fifth-grade graduation, and he's written it all down in his own unique and hilarious way—with lots of lists, drawings, and splenderful (that's splendid plus wonderful!) made-up words.

A Dog's Way Home

Abby knows that Tam, her Shetland sheepdog, is her north star, and she's pretty certain she's his, too. But when an accident separates Abby and Tam, it feels as though all the stars have fallen out of the sky and nothing will ever be right again. As the days between them turn to weeks, then months, dangers and changes fill up Abby's and Tam's lives. Will they ever find their way home to each other?

Doodlebug: A Novel in Doodles

Moving is tough. Being the new kid in school is even tougher. But the hardest thing of all about the move that Doreen “Dodo” Bussey’s family is making is that she suspects it might be because of her. She got into trouble at her last school. On the drive to their new home, her mother gives Dodo a blank notebook, which she uses to chronicle the move, the first days in a new city, and the ups and downs of starting a new school and making new friends. In the process, she reinvents herself as the Doodlebug. Her little sister seems to adjust to everything so easily—why is it so hard for Dodo?

The Fantastic Secret of Owen Jester

An amazing secret has tumbled off a freight train into Carter, Georgia, and Owen Jester is the only person who knows about it. If he can simply manage to evade his grandfather’s snappish housekeeper, organize his two best friends, and keep his nosy neighbor, Viola, at bay, he just might be in for a summer of a lifetime.

The Ghost of Crutchfield Hall

In this bone-chilling story, when 12-year-old Florence moves to her long-lost great-uncle's country estate, she figures it has to be better than her previous home, a grim London orphanage. But she didn't count on a ghost! The eerie presence is the ghost of her cousin, Sophia, who died in a tragic accident the year before. Determined to avenge her death, Sophia wants to re-create the accident and cause someone else to die in her place. That way, Sophia can come back to life. Even worse, she's forcing Florence to help her with her evil plan!

Henry Aaron's Dream

Before he was Hammerin' Hank, Henry Aaron was a young boy growing up in Mobile, Alabama, with what seemed like a foolhardy dream: to be a big-league baseball player. He didn't have a bat. He didn't have a ball. And there wasn't a single black ball player in the major leagues. But none of this could stop Henry Aaron.

How I, Nicky Flynn, Finally Get a Life (and a Dog): A Novel

Nicky Flynn’s life just got a whole lot harder. Not only have Nicky’s parents just gone through a messy divorce—forcing him to start a new life, in a new city, in a new school—but now his mom has totally gone behind his back and brought home Reggie, an eighty-pound German shepherd, from the animal shelter. Turns out, Reggie is far from an ordinary pound mutt: he’s a former seeing-eye dog. Trouble is, nobody’s ever told Reggie he’s retired…

I Feel Better with a Frog in My Throat

It wasn’t too long ago that people tried all sorts of things to helpsick people feel better. They tried wild thingslike drinking a glass full of millipedes or putting some mustard on one's head. Some of the cures worked, and some of them…well, let’s just say that millipedes,living or dead, are not meant to be ingested.

Inside Out & Back Again

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.

Little Joe

It’s a cold December night and Fancy, the Stegner family’s cow, is about to give birth. Out pops Little Joe, a huge bull calf, and with him comes nine-year-old Eli’s first chance to raise an animal to show at next fall’s county fair. Over the next ten months, Eli, and Little Joe, learn some hard lessons about growing up and what it means to take on bigger responsibilities, especially when it comes to taking care of another living thing. But one thing Eli is trying not to think about is what will happen to Little Joe after the fair: it’s auction time, and he’ll have to sell Little Joe!

The Romeo and Juliet Code

Felicity's glamorous parents don't tell her anything when they drop her off at the Bathburn house in Maine. They don't tell her why Uncle Gideon acts so strangely. They don't tell her why Derek, the only other kid in the house, refuses to come out of his room. Worst of all, Felicity's parents don't tell her where they are going, and won't say when they'll return.

The Secret of the Sealed Room

Indentured servant Patience Martin lives a hard life in 1721 Boston, but things get even harder when her demanding employer is found dead—in a bedroom locked from the inside. Powerful townsmen accuse Patience’s friend, Moll Bacon, of being a witch and the murderer, but with her own future in jeopardy, Patience doesn’t know how she can help prove Moll’s innocence—until she finds a new friend. Ben Franklin is a clever young printer’s apprentice with a fondness for wise aphorisms.

The Strange Case of Origami Yoda

The Strange Case of Origami Yoda is a novel about a weird kid who makes a Yoda finger puppet out of paper. The kid seems completely clueless, but Origami Yoda is totally Jedi-wise. Some kids believe in Origami Yoda. Some think he's just a piece of paper. One kid, Tommy, decides to find out the truth.

Touch Blue

"Why take chances?" says eleven-year-old Tess Brooks. "Especially when it's so easy to let the universe know what you want by touching blue or turning around three times or crossing your fingers." But Tess is coming to know that it's not always that simple. The state of Maine plans to shut down her island's schoolhouse, which would force Tess's family to move to the mainland—and Tess to leave the only home she has ever known. Fortunately, the islanders have a plan too: increase the numbers of students by having several families take in foster children.

True (sort of)

True: Delly Pattison likes surpresents (presents that are a surprise). The day the Boyds come to town, Delly's sure a special surpresent is on its way. But lately, everything that she thinks will be good and fun turns into trouble. She's never needed a surpresent more than now.

True: Brud Kinney wants to play basketball like nothing anybody's ever seen. When the Boyds arrive, though, Brud meets someone who plays like nothing he's ever seen.

True: Ferris Boyd isn't like anyone Delly or Brud have ever met. Ferris is a real mysturiosity (an extremely curious mystery).

Turtle in Paradise

Life isn't like the movies, and eleven-year-old Turtle is no Shirley Temple. She's smart and tough and has seen enough of the world not to expect a Hollywood ending. After all, it's 1935, and jobs and money and sometimes even dreams are scarce. So when Turtle's mama gets a job housekeeping for a lady who doesn't like kids, Turtle says goodbye without a tear and heads off to Key West, Florida, to stay with relatives she's never met.

What's for Dinner?

What in nature could be more poetic than the hunt for food and the struggle for survival? In twenty-nine poems readers will squirm at the realities of how the animal world catches food, eats it, and becomes dinner in turn. In these quirky poems readers are introduced to many animals with disgusting eating habits, such as the marabou stork that lurks on the periphery, like a vampire in the shadows, waiting for a chance to pick at a rotting carcass.