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AWARD WINNERS: Alex Award Winners

YALSA's Alex Awards are given to ten books written for adults that have special appeal to young adults, ages 12 through 18. The winning titles are selected from the previous year's publishing.

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All the light we cannot see : a novel book All the light we cannot see : a novel

Doerr, Anthony, 1973-
FIC DOERR

A blind Parisian girl and an orphaned German boy conscripted by the Nazis for his radio skills meet in the chaos of the American bombing of a French coastal resort.

2015




The Martian : a novel book The Martian : a novel

Weir, Andy.
FIC WEIR

Marooned on Mars after a tragic accident, astronaut Mark Watney’s supplies are running low and he has no way to signal Earth. Fortunately Mark can grow space potatoes and has a bold plan to escape the Red Planet.

2015




The terrorist's son : a story of choice book The terrorist's son : a story of choice

Ebrahim, Zak, 1983- author.
303.625 EBRAHIM

This true account of Zak Ebrahim, whose father was responsible for the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, is a powerful book about tolerance and choice.

2015




Those who wish me dead book Those who wish me dead

Koryta, Michael, author.
FIC KORYTA

On the day Jace conquers the highest jump of the quarry, he discovers a murder victim and begins to run for his life.

2015




Wolf in white van book Wolf in white van

Darnielle, John.
FIC DARNIEL

After his face is destroyed, Sean manages to carve out a life for himself as a designer of virtual role-playing games. When two teens take the game too far, Sean is forced to relive all his moves

2015




Bellweather rhapsody book Bellweather rhapsody

Racculia, Kate, author.
FIC RACCULI

High-school students gather at the isolated Bellweather Hotel for a statewide music festival only to be trapped by a blizzard with an arrogant fingerless conductor, drunken chaperones, a missing corpse, and perhaps the ghosts of long-dead newlyweds.

2015




Bingo's run : a novel book Bingo's run : a novel

Levine, James, 1963-
FIC LEVINE

The ultimate hustler, Bingo uses his brains and charm to run drugs in a Kenyan slum, but after witnessing a murder he finds himself an art dealer, an adoptee, and someone caught in a dangerous moral dilemma.

2015




Confessions : a novel book Confessions : a novel

Minato, Kanae, 1973-
FIC MINATO

Japanese teacher Yuko knows two middle-school students killed her daughter, and nothing in their explanations of why and how will stop her revenge.

2015




Everything I never told you book Everything I never told you

Ng, Celeste.
FIC NG

Lydia is dead. Is it murder? Suicide? As her family grieves for their perfect teen, they learn how little they really knew Lydia and how many secrets died with her.

2015




Lock in book Lock in

Scalzi, John, 1969-
FIC SCALZI

A virus leaves millions as “Hadens”—locked in and fully aware, but unable to move or speak except when linked to androids. Chris is one of them, working as a rookie FBI agent hunting a murderer who is targeting Hadens.

2015




The Sea of Tranquility : a novel book The Sea of Tranquility : a novel

Millay, Katja.
FIC MILLAY

Nastya has barely survived a brutal attack. Josh has lost his entire family. The two isolated teens are drawn together as they deal with their emotional and physical damage.

2014




Relish : my life in the kitchen book Relish : my life in the kitchen

Knisley, Lucy, aut, art.
BIO KNISLEY KNISLEY

This poignant graphic novel is a wonderful journey of cartoonist Lucy Knisley’s transition from childhood, to adolescence, to adulthood, framed by the food that shaped her worldview. Through colorful vignettes she tackles complex issues with humor and unique family recipes.

2014




The universe versus Alex Woods book The universe versus Alex Woods

Extence, Gavin, 1982-
FIC EXTENCE

It all begins when Alex is hit in the head by a meteorite and it all ends when he is arrested trying to re-enter England with several grams of marijuana, lots of cash, and the ashes of Mr. Peterson.

2014




Golden boy : a novel book Golden boy : a novel

Tarttelin, Abigail, 1987-
FIC TARTTEL

Max, an intersex teen, is confused about who he is and who he is meant to be. After one shattering night, he is faced with a choice that no boy should ever have to make.

2014




Help for the haunted book Help for the haunted

Searles, John, author.
FIC SEARLES

Sylvie has been dealing with taunting classmates, her erratic older sister and the unsolved murder of her ghost-hunting parents. But perhaps more problematic are the cursed remnants of her parents’ work still lingering in the basement.

2014




The lives of Tao book The lives of Tao

Chu, Wesley.
FIC CHU

Couch potato Roen Tan becomes host to the alien Tao who has lived millennia inside some of the most famous people in history. With Tao on board, Roen enters a war to save mankind.

2014




Mother, mother : a novel book Mother, mother : a novel

Zailckas, Koren.
FIC ZAILCKA

Why did Rose run away? Did Violet really stab her little brother? Is her alcoholic father really having an affair? In this chilling novel about family dysfunction, does mother really know best?

2014




The death of bees : a novel book The death of bees : a novel

O'Donnell, Lisa, 1972-
FIC ODONNEL

With their parents dead and buried in the backyard, Scottish teens Marnie and Nelly are finally free from a childhood wracked with abuse. If only the neighbor’s dog would quit digging in the garden.

2014




Lexicon book Lexicon

Barry, Max, 1973-
FIC BARRY

In this fast-paced, cutthroat story, words are weapons and poets are the ones who wield the swords. Teen prodigy Emily may be the finest poet ever until she makes the catastrophic mistake of falling in love.

2014




Brewster : a novel book Brewster : a novel

Slouka, Mark.
FIC SLOUKA

Feeling stifled and powerless, high school friends Ray Cappicciano and Jon Mosher yearn for change and plan for freedom from their blue-collar town and dysfunctional homes, even while knowing they can never truly escape.

2014




Pure book Pure

Baggott, Julianna.
FIC BAGGOTT

In a post-apocalyptic world, Pressia, a sixteen-year-old survivor with a doll's head fused onto her left hand meets Partridge, a "Pure" dome-dweller who is searching for his mother, sure that she has survived the cataclysm.

2013




Where'd you go, Bernadette : a novel book Where'd you go, Bernadette : a novel

Semple, Maria.
FIC SEMPLE

When her notorious, hilarious, volatile, talented, troubled, and agoraphobic mother goes missing, teenage Bee begins a trip that takes her to the ends of the earth to find her.

2013




One shot at forever : a small town, an unlikely coach, and a magical baseball season book One shot at forever : a small town, an unlikely coach, and a magical baseball season

Ballard, Chris.
796.3576 BALLARD

In 1971, a small-town high school baseball team from rural Illinois playing with hand-me-down uniforms and peace signs on their hats defied convention and the odds. Led by an English teacher with no coaching experience, the Macon Ironmen emerged from a field of 370 teams to become the smallest school in Illinois history to make the state final, a distinction that still stands. There, sporting long hair, and warming up to Jesus Christ Superstar, the Ironmen would play a dramatic game against a Chicago powerhouse that would change their lives forever.

2013




The round house book The round house

Erdrich, Louise, author.
FIC ERDRICH

When his mother, a tribal enrollment specialist living on a reservation in North Dakota, slips into an abyss of depression after being brutally attacked, 14-year-old Joe Coutz sets out with his three friends to find the person that destroyed his family.

2013




Tell the wolves I'm home : a novel book Tell the wolves I'm home : a novel

Brunt, Carol Rifka.
FIC BRUNT

It is 1987, and only one person has ever truly understood fourteen-year-old June Elbus -- her uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss. Shy at school and distant from her older sister, June can only be herself in Finn's company; he is her godfather, confidant, and best friend. So when he dies, far too young, of a mysterious illness her mother can barely speak about, June's world is turned upside down. But Finn's death brings a surprise acquaintance into June's life -- someone who will help her to heal, and to question what she thinks she knows about Finn, her family, and even her own heart.

2013




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