2011-2012 SC Junior Book Award Nominees

All the Broken Pieces: A Novel in Verse

Two years after being airlifted out of war-torn Vietnam, Matt Pin is haunted: by bombs that fell like dead crows, by smoke and death, by the brother — and the terrible secret — he left behind. Now in a loving adoptive home in the United States, over the course of a baseball season, a series of profound events forces him to confront his past, and slowly, sometimes painfully, heal.

Also Known as Harper

Harper is an aspiring poet, which isn’t surprising, seeing as how she’s named after her mama’s favorite writer, Harper Lee. And life is giving her a lot to write about just now. Daddy up and walked out, leaving them with too many bills and too little money. Then Harper’s family gets evicted and has to move into the Knotty Pine Deluxe Motor Hotel, which is not nearly as nice as it sounds.

Anything But Typical

Jason Blake is anything but typical. He tells his story in his own language, that of an autistic twelve-year-old boy. He is intelligent and sensitive, with many special gifts, and he is different. We learn of his sensitivity and "differentness" as he writes about his life and describes his world. Through his writing, which he posts on a writing website, he meets another young writer, Rebecca, who responds to the post of his story.

Bystander

Eric is the new kid in seventh grade. Griffin wants to be his friend. When you’re new in town, it’s hard to know who to hang out with—and who to avoid. Griffin seems cool, confident, and popular. But something isn't right about Griffin. He always seems to be in the middle of bad things. And if Griffin doesn't like you, you'd better watch your back. There might be a target on it.

Callie’s Rules

Calliope Jones—who prefers to be called Callie—is discovering that in middle school the rules are different. Some of them don’t make sense to her, so she starts writing some rules of her own.

The Demon King

When 16-year-old Han Alister and his Clan friend Dancer encounter three underage wizards setting fire to the sacred mountain of Hanalea, he has no idea that this event will precipitate a cascade of disasters that will threaten everything he cares about.

Faith, Hope and Ivy June

Ivy June Mosely and Catherine Combs, two girls from different parts of Kentucky, are participating in the first seventh-grade student exchange program between their schools. The girls will stay at each other’s homes, attend school together, and record their experience in their journals.

Heart of a Shepherd

Brother has never been the rancher that his father and the older boys are. Sure, he can ride a horse, rescue a wayward calf, or mend a broken fence, but his heart just doesn’t seem to be in it. Even worse, every time one of the ranch animals dies he feels it too keenly.

If the Witness Lied

This young adult thriller takes place in twenty-four hours and explores how people as well as the media can exploit a situation with devastating results, especially when innocent children are involved.

The Indigo Notebook

Fifteen-year-old Zeeta lives in a different country every year with her flighty, English-teaching mom, Layla. The wandering life suits Layla, who lives in the moment, quotes mystical poetry, and hangs out with penniless artists and scraggly-haired clowns. But Zeeta yearns for the "normal life" she sees in American magazine ads.

Leviathan

Prince Aleksander, would-be heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, is on the run. His own people have turned on him. His title is worthless. All he has is a battletorn war machine and a loyal crew of men. Deryn Sharp is a commoner, disguised as a boy in the British Air Service. She’s a brilliant airman. But her secret is in constant danger of being discovered.

Lifting the Sky

Blue's mother has always said, "Just bloom where you're planted." And it's a good motto for a girl who's moved around as much as Blue has. Then her mom gets hired to run a tumbledown ranch and, for the first time, Blue finds herself unpacking in a place she could really call home.

Marching for Freedom

This book recounts the three months of protest that took place before Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s landmark march from Selma, Alabama, to Montgomery to promote equal rights and help African-Americans earn the right to vote.

Mission Control, This is Apollo

July 20, 1969, marked one of the climactic moments in our history—the day Apollo 11 landed on the moon. But it is only one piece of a magnificent story. Mission Control, This Is Apollo, recounts space history from the Mercury missions through Apollo 17 and beyond.

Operation Redwood

Waking up alone in an abandoned office, Julian Carter-Li intercepts an angry e-mail message meant for his high-powered uncle: SIBLEY CARTER IS A MORON AND A WORLD-CLASS JERK!!! With that, OPERATION REDWOOD is set in motion as Julian discovers his Uncle Sibley's plan to log an ancient redwood grove in Northern California.

The Potato Chip Puzzles

When puzzle addict Winston Breen and his best friends head to an all-day puzzle hunt with a $50,000 grand prize, they’re pumped. But the day is not all fun and games: not only do they have a highstrung and highly competitive teacher along for the ride, but the puzzles are hard even for Winston, the other schools’ teams are no joke, and someone in the contest is playing dirty in order to win.

Skeleton Creek

Strange things are happening in Skeleton Creek and Ryan and Sarah are trying to get to the heart of it. But after an eerie accident leaves Ryan housebound and forbidden to see Sarah, their investigation takes two tracks: Ryan records everything in his journal, while Sarah uses her videocam to search things out … and then emails the clips for Ryan to see.

Slob

Picked on, overweight genius Owen tries to invent a television that can see the past to find out what happened the day his parents were killed.

A Taste for Red

Do you prefer the taste of red?
Do you sleep under your bed?
Do you read people's thoughts?
Do you think you are a vampire?

Svetlana Grimm does! And it's making her transition to sixth grade at Sunny Hill Middle School all the more difficult. After all, what can someone with her extrasensory powers possibly have in common with a classroom full of jellybean eaters?

War Games: A Novel Based on a True Story

For 12-year-old Petros, World War II feels far away. But when the Germans invade Greece, the war is suddenly impossibly close. Overnight, neighbors become enemies. People begin to keep secrets (Petros's family most of all). And for the first time, Petros has the chance to prove himself to his older brother, Zola.