Our Final Short List: 2011 Mock Newbery Nominations

This may be one of the longer short lists you will ever see!   Each of our club members nominated seven books, just as the official Newbery committee does, and the combined results are on this list.  There is one book here that was nominated by 17 of our members!  Can you guess which one?

  • After Ever After by Jordan Sonnenblick
    **”You can really connect with the characters…” – Bonnie
  • Alcatraz versus The Shattered Lens by Brandon Sanderson
    **”…quirky style & humor. Its unorthodox plot & interesting characters keep you reading..” – Chaz
    **”…very funny book with great characters.” – Kyle
  • As Simple As It Seems by Sarah Weeks
    **”…loved the small town feel and pure simplicity and honesty…” – Zoe
  • Belly Up by Stuart Gibbs
    **”…the setting is neat…” – Bonnie
    **”…great descriptions of setting/characters.” – Patrick
  • Brightly Woven by Alexandra Bracken
    **”Characters and plot drew me in… it was simply a joy to read.” – Breanna
  • The Candymakers by Wendy Mass
    **”…the huge twist at the end was really cool..” – Jay
  • The Cardturner by Louis Sachar
    **”The struggle of the relationship between the uncle and nephew had me wanting to read more…” – Abby
  • The Clockwork Three by Matthew Kirby
    **”The plot and characters were fantastic and had depth…” -Breanna
  • A Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whelan Turner
    **”Definitely distinguished writing!  Never underestimate these characters.” – Martha
  • Forge by Laurie Halse Anderson
    **”Lots of authentic detail and nuanced writing…” – Lisa
  • The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman
    **”…very well written and described..” – Matthew
  • Hawksmaid by Kathryn Lasky
    **”Character development was AMAZING…” -Ruchi
    **”Another heartbreakingly beautiful masterpiece.” – Zoe
  • Heart of a Samurai by Margi Preus
    **”The real-life characters are great as well as the fictional ones.” -Kyle
    **”I loved the friendship between the captain and the Japanese fisherman.” – Surya
  • Heist Society by Ally Carter
    **”The plot is riveting, and the characters fit into the storyline very well.” -Kyle
    **”..the writing style supports the fast-paced plot.” – Chaz
  • Keeper by Kathi Appelt
    **”Only Kathi Appelt can write plots this amazing and have it all come together to create a beautiful, wonderful story about love and growing up and true family…” -Breanna
    **”The relationships between each of the characters were incredible…” – Alicia
  • Lost Children by Carolyn Cohagan
    **”…interesting plot and well-developed characters.” -Ponni
    **”..ending was a good surprise.” – Bonnie
  • Lulu and the Brontosaurus by Judith Viorst
    **”Very fun book… heroine was annoying but the author makes you like her anyway.” – Breanna
  • Mindblind by Jennifer Roy
    **”… a great job making the teenage characters sound like real, intelligent people.” -Breanna
    **”You can feel the character’s emotions running through you..” -Ruchi
  • Mockingbird by Kathryn Erskine
    **”The amount of emotion I felt while reading this book was purely amazing…” -Jasper
    **”I felt that I was in the book when it all happened..” -Mukil
  • On the Blue Comet by Rosemary Wells
    **”…brings character development, description, and a sense of realness all into an entertaining plot!” -Jasper
    **” Great plot with interesting happenings…” – Patrick
  • One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garcia
    **”Full of action and keeps you reading.” -Patrick
    **”…unique and touching… the ending was great.” -Bonnie
    **”…the author specializes in setting.” – Gokul
  • Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper
    **”It makes you feel for the character.” – Parv
    **”This really hooked onto me.” -Surya
    **”I really wanted to jump into the book and speak for the character…” – April
    **”I feel emotionally attached to the main character, despite the fact that she cannot speak ..” – Chaz
    **”… touched my heart.” – Ruchi
    The Red Umbrella by Christina Diaz Gonzalez
    **”I could connect well with the character and understand the awkwardness of being new…” – Alicia
    **”Filled with hope, love, and a will to overcome… hard not to love.” – Zoe
  • The Secret of Ka by Christopher Pike
    **”The conflict… kept me from putting down the book.” – Alicia
    **”…with good characters.” – Patrick
  • Smells Like Dog by Suzanne Selfors
    **”I thought it was a really creative story.” – Alicia
    **”The writing left a stronger impression than even the plot.” -Sachi
  • The Smoky Corridor by Chris Grabenstein
    **”Everything… was perfect…” – Matthew
  • Somebody Everybody Listens To by Suzanne Supple
    **”…plot was very moving.” – Abby
    **”…showed me how important it is to embrace yourself…” – Zoe
  • The Strange Case of Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger
    **”I like how there are many small stories all from different points of view. The end is very completing.” – Mukil
  • Theodore Boone, Kid Lawyer by John Grisham
    **”Full of suspense.” -Patrick
  • Touch Blue by Cynthia Lord
    **”Interesting book with unque plot…” – Yates
  • Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer Holm
    **”…really made you think about what was going on..” – Abby
  • We Could Be Brothers by Derrick Barnes
    **”…underrated gem of this year.” – Kyle
  • A Whole Nother Story by Dr. Cuthbert Soup
    **”I liked how they added new characters into the story…” – Jay
    **”…many great sub-plots.” – Jasper
  • Woods Runner by Gary Paulsen
    **”I understood through brief description… well-written book.” – Gokul
    **”The setting gave me a great idea of the time period.” – Jasper

The Candymakers, by Wendy Mass

Summary:  When four twelve-year-olds, including Logan, who has grown up never leaving his parents’ Life Is Sweet candy factory, compete in the Confectionary Association’s annual contest, they unexpectedly become friends and uncover secrets about themselves during the process. 453 p., Little, Brown.

Find it at WCPL

Belly Up, by Stuart Gibbs

Summary: Twelve-year-old Teddy investigates when a popular Texas zoo’s star attraction–Henry the hippopotamus–is murdered. 294 p., Simon & Schuster.

Find it at WCPL

Lulu and the Brontosaurus, by Judith Viorst

Summary:  Lulu’s parents refuse to give in when she demands a brontosaurus for her birthday and so she sets out to find her own, but while the brontosaurus she finally meets approves of pets, he does not intend to be Lulu’s. 113 p., Atheneum.

Find it at WCPL

The Smoky Corridor, by Chris Grabenstein

Summary: With the help of his stepmother, his dog Zipper, and new friend Malik, Zack Jennings faces ghosts and zombies at his new middle school, which is said to house a lost Confederate treasure.  326 p., Random House.

Find it at WCPL

Heart of a Samurai, by Margi Preus

Summary: In 1841, rescued by an American whaler after a terrible shipwreck leaves him and his four companions castaways on a remote island, fourteen-year-old Manjiro, who dreams of becoming a samurai, learns new laws and customs as he becomes the first Japanese person to set foot in the United States. 301 p., Amulet Books.

Find it at WCPL

The Grimm Legacy, by Polly Shulman

Summary: New York high school student Elizabeth gets an after-school job as a page at the “New-York Circulating Material Repository,” and when she gains coveted access to its Grimm Collection of magical objects, she and the other pages are drawn into a series of frightening adventures involving mythical creatures and stolen goods. 325 p., G. P. Putnam’s Sons.

Find it at WCPL

Forge, by Laurie Halse Anderson

Summary: Separated from his friend Isabel after their daring escape from slavery, fifteen-year-old Curzon serves as a free man in the Continental Army at Valley Forge until he and Isabel are thrown together again, as slaves once more.  304 p. Atheneum.

Find it at WCPL

The Secret of Ka, by Christopher Pike

Summary: When fifteen-year-old Sara unearths a flying carpet in Turkey, it takes her and new friend Amesh to the mysterious Island of the Djinn where she faces terrible creatures and an impossible decision–whether to save mankind, herself, or the boy she is coming to love.

Harcourt, 407 pages

Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer Holm

Summary: In 1935, when her mother gets a job housekeeping for a woman who does not like children, eleven-year-old Turtle is sent to stay with relatives she has never met in far away Key West, Florida.  191 pages

Random House

As Simple As It Seems, by Sarah Weeks

Summary: Eleven-year-old Verbena Polter gets through a difficult summer of turbulent emotions and the revelation of a disturbing family secret with an odd new friend who believes she is the ghost of a girl who drowned many years before. 181 p., Laura Geringer Books.

Find it at WCPL

The Red Umbrella, by Christina Diaz Gonzalez

Summary: In 1961 after Castro has come to power in Cuba, fourteen-year-old Lucia and her seven-year-old brother are sent to the United States when her parents, who are not in favor of the new regime, fear that the children will be taken away from them as others have been. 284 p., Alfred A. Knopf.

Mindblind, by Jennifer Roy

Summary: Fourteen-year-old Nathaniel Clark, who has Asperger’s Syndrome, tries to prove that he is a genius by writing songs for his rock band, so that he can become a member of the prestigious Aldus Institute, the premier organization for the profoundly gifted. 256 p., Marshall Cavendish.

The Cardturner: A Novel About a King, a Queen, and a Joker, by Louis Sachar

Summary:  When his wealthy uncle, a champion bridge player who has lost his vision, asks seventeen-year-old Alton to be a cardturner for him, Alton has no idea how much he will ultimately learn from his eccentric relative. Includes appendix by Syd Fox with information about bridge. 336 p., Delacorte.

Find it at WCPL

Alcatraz versus the Shattered Lens, by Brandon Sanderson

Summary:  When a hero is needed to save the doomed kingdom of Mokia from the evil Librarians, thirteen-year-old Alcatraz Smedry, whose family talents include getting lost and breaking things, answers the call. 304 p., Scholastic.


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