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Crow, by Barbara Wright

South Carolina Junior Book Award Nominees 2014-2015

The 2014-2015 South Carolina Junior Book Award Nominees can be checked out from Richland Library. Get your hands on a copy, today!


Breathing Room by Marsha Hayles
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Evvy Hoffmeister is thirteen years old when her family brings her to Loon Lake Sanatorium to get cured of tuberculosis (TB). Evvy is frightened by her new surroundings; the ru more...
Amazon Says: Evvy Hoffmeister is thirteen years old when her family brings her to Loon Lake Sanatorium to get cured of tuberculosis (TB). Evvy is frightened by her new surroundings; the rules to abide are harsh and the nurses equally rigid. But Evvy soon falls into step with the other girls in her ward. There’s Sarah, quiet but thoughtful; Pearl, who adores Hollywood glamour; and Dina, whose harshness conceals a deep strength. Together, the girls brave the difficult daily routines. Set in 1940 at a time of political unrest throughout the U.S. and Europe, this thought-provoking novel sheds light on a much-feared worldwide illness. Hundreds of thousands of people died each year of TB, and many ill children were sent away to sanatoriums to hopefully recover.This is a masterful novel—both eloquent and moving—that gives voice to those who fought hard to overcome the illness. less...
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Crow by Barbara Wright
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: The summer of 1898 is filled with ups and downs for 11-year-old Moses. He's growing apart from his best friend, his superstitious Boo-Nanny butts heads constantly with his pra more...
Amazon Says: The summer of 1898 is filled with ups and downs for 11-year-old Moses. He's growing apart from his best friend, his superstitious Boo-Nanny butts heads constantly with his pragmatic, educated father, and his mother is reeling from the discovery of a family secret. Yet there are good times, too. He's teaching his grandmother how to read. For the first time she's sharing stories about her life as a slave. And his father and his friends are finally getting the respect and positions of power they've earned in the Wilmington, North Carolina, community. But not everyone is happy with the political changes at play and some will do anything, including a violent plot against the government, to maintain the status quo. One generation away from slavery, a thriving African American community—enfranchised and emancipated—suddenly and violently loses its freedom in turn of the century North Carolina when a group of local politicians stages the only successful coup d'etat in US history. less...
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Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Sometimes, the greatest comebacks take place far away from the ball field. Meet Peter Friedman, high school freshman. Talented photographer. Former baseball star. When a frea more...
Amazon Says: Sometimes, the greatest comebacks take place far away from the ball field. Meet Peter Friedman, high school freshman. Talented photographer. Former baseball star. When a freakish injury ends his pitching career, Peter has some major things to figure out. Is there life after sports? Why has his grandfather suddenly given him thousands of dollars worth of camera equipment? And is it his imagination, or is the super-hot star of the girls' swim team flirting with him, right in front of the amazing new girl in his photography class? In his new novel, teen author Jordan Sonnenblick performs his usual miraculous feat: exploring deep themes of friendship, romance, family, and tragedy, while still managing to be hilariously funny. less...
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Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: A stunning middle-grade debut--full of heart, humor, and nonstop action It's tough to be thirteen, especially when somebody's trying to kill you. Not that Egg's life was eve more...
Amazon Says: A stunning middle-grade debut--full of heart, humor, and nonstop action It's tough to be thirteen, especially when somebody's trying to kill you. Not that Egg's life was ever easy, growing up on sweaty, pirate-infested Deadweather Island with no company except an incompetent tutor and a pair of unusually violent siblings who hate his guts. But when Egg's father hustles their family off on a mysterious errand to fabulously wealthy Sunrise Island, then disappears with the siblings in a freak accident, Egg finds himself a long-term guest at the mansion of the glamorous Pembroke family and their beautiful, sharp-tongued daughter Millicent. Finally, life seems perfect. Until someone tries to throw him off a cliff. Suddenly, Egg's running for his life in a bewildering world of cutthroat pirates, villainous businessmen, and strange Native legends. The only people who can help him sort out the mystery of why he's been marked for death are Millicent and a one-handed, possibly deranged cabin boy. Come along for the ride. You'll be glad you did. less...
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Eye of the Storm by Kate Messner
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: In the not-too-distant future, huge tornadoes and monster storms have become a part of everyday life. Sent to spend the summer in the heart of storm country with her meteorolo more...
Amazon Says: In the not-too-distant future, huge tornadoes and monster storms have become a part of everyday life. Sent to spend the summer in the heart of storm country with her meteorological engineer father, Jaden Meggs is surprised at the strides her father's company StormSafe, has made with custom shelters that keep her family safe in even the worst of storms. At her exclusive summer science camp, Eye On Tomorrow, Jaden meets Alex, a boy whose passion for science matches hers. Together, they discover that her father's company is steering storms away from the expensive neighborhoods and toward the organic farming communities that are in competition with his bio-engineered food company, NatureMade. Jaden must confront her father, but when she does, she uncovers a terrifying family secret and must call on both her scientific knowledge and her faith to save the people she loves most from one of her father's monster storms. less...
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Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: In this first book in a remarkable trilogy, an orphan is forced into a twisted game with deadly stakes. Choose to lie...or choose to die. In a discontent kingdom, civil war more...
Amazon Says: In this first book in a remarkable trilogy, an orphan is forced into a twisted game with deadly stakes. Choose to lie...or choose to die. In a discontent kingdom, civil war is brewing. To unify the divided people, Conner, a nobleman of the court, devises a cunning plan to find an impersonator of the king's long-lost son and install him as a puppet prince. Four orphans are recruited to compete for the role, including a defiant boy named Sage. Sage knows that Conner's motives are more than questionable, yet his life balances on a sword's point -- he must be chosen to play the prince or he will certainly be killed. But Sage's rivals have their own agendas as well. As Sage moves from a rundown orphanage to Conner's sumptuous palace, layer upon layer of treachery and deceit unfold, until finally, a truth is revealed that, in the end, may very well prove more dangerous than all of the lies taken together. An extraordinary adventure filled with danger and action, lies and deadly truths that will have readers clinging to the edge of their seats. less...
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Fourmile by Watt Key
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Twelve-year-old Foster knows in his gut that Dax Ganey, the man dating his widowed mother, is a bad seed. Then a mysterious stranger arrives at their Alabama farm, a former more...
Amazon Says: Twelve-year-old Foster knows in his gut that Dax Ganey, the man dating his widowed mother, is a bad seed. Then a mysterious stranger arrives at their Alabama farm, a former Army Ranger in Iraq rambling across the country, and Foster believes he has found an ally against Dax. The stranger proves a fascinating mentor, full of wisdom and secrets. And Dax soon has reason to resent not just him and Foster but also Foster’s mother. A spurned Dax will be a dangerous enemy, but Foster is increasingly aware that the stranger is just as dangerous, if not more so.From the author of one of the most highly acclaimed children's survival adventures of the last decade comes this tautly wound new novel reminiscent of classic westerns, about a boy caught in the middle of a clash that may turn out to be his own battle to fight. less...
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The Ghost of Graylock by Dan Poblocki
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Does an abandoned asylum hold the key to a frightful haunting? Everyone's heard the stories about Graylock Hall. It was meant to be a place of healing - a hospital where chi more...
Amazon Says: Does an abandoned asylum hold the key to a frightful haunting? Everyone's heard the stories about Graylock Hall. It was meant to be a place of healing - a hospital where children and teenagers with mental disorders would be cared for and perhaps even cured. But something went wrong. Several young patients died under mysterious circumstances. Eventually, the hospital was shut down, the building abandoned and left to rot deep in the woods. As the new kid in town, Neil Cady wants to see Graylock for himself. Especially since rumor has it that the building is haunted. He's got fresh batteries in his flashlight, a camera to document the adventure, and a new best friend watching his back. Neil might think he's prepared for what he'll find in the dark and decrepit asylum. But he's certainly not prepared for what follows him home. . . . Scary, suspenseful, and surprising, Dan Poblocki's latest ghost story will keep you turning pages deep into the dead of night. less...
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Guitar Notes by Mary Amato
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: A "sweet story of two different loners finding their counterpoint" (School Library Journal) from a star of state master and children's choice lists making her YA debut. Clean more...
Amazon Says: A "sweet story of two different loners finding their counterpoint" (School Library Journal) from a star of state master and children's choice lists making her YA debut. Clean YA with the emotional resonancy of John Green and Sarah Dessen. On odd days, Tripp Broody uses a school practice room to let loose on a borrowed guitar. Eyes closed, strumming that beat-up instrument, Tripp escapes to a world where only the music matters. On even days, Lyla Marks uses the same practice room. To Tripp, she’s trying to become even more perfect—she’s already a straight-A student and an award-winning cellist. But when Lyla begins leaving notes for him in between the strings of the guitar, his life intersects with hers in a way he never expected.  What starts as a series of snippy notes quickly blossoms into the sharing of interests and secrets and dreams, and the forging of a very unlikely friendship. Challenging each other to write songs, they begin to connect, even though circumstances threaten to tear them apart. From beloved author Mary Amato comes a YA novel of wit and wisdom, both heartfelt and heart­breaking, about the power of music and the unexpected chords that draw us together. less...
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Laugh with the Moon by Shana Burg
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Laugh with the Moon is on the Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List.   Thirteen-year-old Clare Silver is stuck. Stuck in denial about her mother’s recent death. Stuck in the more...
Amazon Says: Laugh with the Moon is on the Texas Bluebonnet Award Master List.   Thirteen-year-old Clare Silver is stuck. Stuck in denial about her mother’s recent death. Stuck in the African jungle for sixty-four days without phone reception. Stuck with her father, a doctor who seems able to heal everyone but Clare. Clare feels like a fish out of water at Mzanga Full Primary School, where she must learn a new language. Soon, though, she becomes immersed in her new surroundings and impressed with her fellow students, who are crowded into a tiny space, working on the floor among roosters and centipedes.    When Clare’s new friends take her on an outing to see the country, the trip goes horribly wrong, and Clare must face another heartbreak head-on. Only an orphan named Memory, who knows about love and loss, can teach Clare how to laugh with the moon.    Told from an American girl’s perspective, this story about how death teaches us to live and how love endures through our memories will capture the hearts of readers everywhere. less...
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Lincoln's Grave Robbers by Steve Sheinkin
Leah B. Says: Nonfiction
Amazon Says: A true crime thriller -- the first book for teens to tell the nearly unknown tale of the brazen attempt to steal Abraham Lincoln's body! The action begins in October of 1875, more...
Amazon Says: A true crime thriller -- the first book for teens to tell the nearly unknown tale of the brazen attempt to steal Abraham Lincoln's body! The action begins in October of 1875, as Secret Service agents raid the Fulton, Illinois, workshop of master counterfeiter Ben Boyd. Soon after Boyd is hauled off to prison, members of his counterfeiting ring gather in the back room of a smoky Chicago saloon to discuss how to spring their ringleader. Their plan: grab Lincoln's body from its Springfield tomb, stash it in the sand dunes near Lake Michigan, and demand, as a ransom, the release of Ben Boyd --and $200,000 in cash. From here, the action alternates between the conspirators, the Secret Service agents on their trail, and the undercover agent moving back and forth between the two groups. Along the way readers get glimpses into the inner workings of counterfeiting, grave robbing, detective work, and the early days of the Secret Service. The plot moves toward a wild climax as robbers and lawmen converge at Lincoln's tomb on election night: November 7, 1876. less...
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Losing It by Erin Fry
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Bennett Robinson loves baseball, especially watching Dodgers games with his dad while munching on burgers and fries—the perfect “game food.” Baseball even helped Bennett more...
Amazon Says: Bennett Robinson loves baseball, especially watching Dodgers games with his dad while munching on burgers and fries—the perfect “game food.” Baseball even helped Bennett and his dad get over his mom’s death from cancer. But there’s no way Bennett could ever play baseball. Bennett is fat, the kind of fat that gives you belly button sweat stains and makes it tough to get off a sagging couch. But on one perfect, baseball-watching day, everything changes. Bennett’s dad is taken away on a stretcher, and Bennett doesn’t know if he will live or die. Now Bennett has to move in with know-it-all Aunt Laura. And she’s making it her personal mission to Get Bennett Healthy. Bennett knows that Aunt Laura will take over his entire life if he lets her. It’s time for Bennett to step up to the plate. Because maybe there are some things a Fat Boy can do...like talk to a girl, run a mile, and maybe even save his own life. Erin Fry explores the issue of obesity with heart, depth, and humor in this unforgettable debut novel. less...
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May B. by Caroline Starr Rose
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: I've known it since last night: It's been too long to expect them to return. Something's happened. "If May is a brave, stubborn fighter, the short, free-verse lines are one more...
Amazon Says: I've known it since last night: It's been too long to expect them to return. Something's happened. "If May is a brave, stubborn fighter, the short, free-verse lines are one-two punches in this Laura Ingalls Wilder-inspired ode to the human spirit," raved Kirkus Reviews in a starred review. May is helping out on a neighbor's Kansas prairie homestead—just until Christmas, says Pa. She wants to contribute, but it's hard to be separated from her family by 15 long, unfamiliar miles. Then the unthinkable happens: May is abandoned. Trapped in a tiny snow-covered sod house, isolated from family and neighbors, May must prepare for the oncoming winter. While fighting to survive, May's memories of her struggles with reading at school come back to haunt her. But she's determined to find her way home again. Caroline Starr Rose's fast-paced novel, written in beautiful and riveting verse, gives readers a strong new heroine to love. less...
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One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: A moving debut novel about a foster child learning to open her heart to a family's love Carley uses humor and street smarts to keep her emotional walls high and thick. But th more...
Amazon Says: A moving debut novel about a foster child learning to open her heart to a family's love Carley uses humor and street smarts to keep her emotional walls high and thick. But the day she becomes a foster child, and moves in with the Murphys, she's blindsided. This loving, bustling family shows Carley the stable family life she never thought existed, and she feels like an alien in their cookie-cutter-perfect household. Despite her resistance, the Murphys eventually show her what it feels like to belong--until her mother wants her back and Carley has to decide where and how to live. She's not really a Murphy, but the gifts they've given her have opened up a new future. less...
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The Raft by S. A. Bodeen
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Robie is an experienced traveler. She’s taken the flight from Honolulu to the Midway Atoll, a group of Pacific islands where her parents live, many times. When she has to ge more...
Amazon Says: Robie is an experienced traveler. She’s taken the flight from Honolulu to the Midway Atoll, a group of Pacific islands where her parents live, many times. When she has to get to Midway in a hurry after a visit with her aunt in Hawaii, she gets on the next cargo flight at the last minute. She knows the pilot, but on this flight, there’s a new co-pilot named Max. All systems are go until a storm hits during the flight. The only passenger, Robie doesn’t panic until the engine suddenly cuts out and Max shouts at her to put on a life jacket. They are over miles of Pacific Ocean. She sees Max struggle with a raft. And then . . . she’s in the water. Fighting for her life. Max pulls her onto the raft, and that’s when the real terror begins. They have no water. Their only food is a bag of Skittles. There are sharks. There is an island. But there’s no sign of help on the way. less...
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See You at Harry's by Jo Knowles
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Starting middle school brings all the usual challenges - until the unthinkable happens, and Fern and her family must find a way to heal. Twelve-year-old Fern feels invi more...
Amazon Says: Starting middle school brings all the usual challenges - until the unthinkable happens, and Fern and her family must find a way to heal. Twelve-year-old Fern feels invisible. Her dad is always busy planning how to increase traffic to the family business. Her Mom is constantly going off to meditate. Her sister Sarah, who's taking a "gap year" after high school, is too busy finding ways not to work; and her brother Holden is too focused on his new "friend" to pay attention to her. And then there's Charlie: three years old, a "surprise" baby, and  the center of everyone's world. If it wasn't for Ran, Fern's best and oldest friend, there would be nowhere to turn. Ran is always calm, always positive. His mantra "All will be well" is soothing in a way that nothing else seems to be. And when Ran says it, Fern can almost believe. But when their lives are unexpectedly turned upside down, Fern feels more alone than ever, and responsible for the event that wrenches the family apart. All will not be well. Or at least, all will never be the same. less...
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Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human more...
Amazon Says: Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee. Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling. Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart. less...
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Spy School by Stuart Gibbs
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Like many kids, Ben Ripley imagines life as a secret agent would be pretty awesome -- so when he learns he's been recruited to the C.I.A.'s top secret Academy of Espionage, it more...
Amazon Says: Like many kids, Ben Ripley imagines life as a secret agent would be pretty awesome -- so when he learns he's been recruited to the C.I.A.'s top secret Academy of Espionage, it sounds too good to be true.  And it is.  From the moment he arrives -- and ends up in the middle of an enemy attack -- Ben finds Spy School is going to be far more difficult, dastardly and dangerous than he expected.  Even worse, he soon discovers that he hasn't been recruited to become a top agent; instead, he's been brought in as bait to catch a devious double agent.  Now, Ben needs a crash course in espionage so that he can catch the mole, prove his worth -- and get the girl.  It won't be easy, but it'll be a very fun -- and very funny -- ride. less...
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Unchained by L.B. Tillit
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Sometimes we find ourselves on a gravel road, not sure of how we got there or where the road leads. Sharp stones pellet the unprotected, and the everyday wear and tear sears m more...
Amazon Says: Sometimes we find ourselves on a gravel road, not sure of how we got there or where the road leads. Sharp stones pellet the unprotected, and the everyday wear and tear sears more deeply.After two years in a loving home, TJ's mother got him back. She was clean. No pot. No meth. His chest felt like it was burning. His heart was racing. Trapped. He felt trapped. He didn't have a say. Everything he had come to care about would be gone: Miss Dixie, hot meals, friends, Mae's little hand, and Annabelle. And the brutal life he'd escaped quickly reclaimed him. Kaden Cruz didn't run after him. Instead his voice boomed, You owe us.; TJ didn't look back. But he knew this wasn't the end of Kaden Cruz. He could still hear his father's voice. It's not free. You'll have to pay them back one day. less...
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What the Dog Said by Randi Reisfeld
Leah B. Says: Novel
Amazon Says: Ever since her police officer father was killed a few months ago, Grace Abernathy hasn't wanted to do much of anything. She's pulled away from her friends, her grades are plum more...
Amazon Says: Ever since her police officer father was killed a few months ago, Grace Abernathy hasn't wanted to do much of anything. She's pulled away from her friends, her grades are plummeting . . . it's a problem. The last thing Grace wants is to be dragged into her older sister Regan's plan to train a shelter dog as a service dog. But Grace has no idea how involved she'll get-especially when a mangy mutt named Rex starts talking to her. Has Grace gone off the deep end? Or might this dog be something really special-an angel? A spirit? Either way, he is exactly the therapy that Grace needs. less...
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