The Edgar Awards

 

2004

Winner

Acceleration by Graham McNamee YA MCN
Stuck working in the Lost and Found of the Toronto Transit Authority for the summer, seventeen-year-old Duncan finds the diary of a serial killer and sets out to stop him.

Nominees

The Last Treasure by Janet Anderson YA Anderson, J.
Thirteen-year-old Ellsworth leaves his father to visit the relatives he has never met and eventually joins forces  with Jess, his distant cousin, to uncover family secrets and search for their ancestor's hidden treasure.

Feast of Fools by Bridget Crowley YA CRO
In England in the late thirteenth century, a young chorister at the Cathedral of Saint Aelred, outcast because of his crippled foot, sympathizes with the city's other outcasts, the Jews, and sets out to prove their leader innocent of murder

Death and the Arrow by Chris Priestly YA PRI
After his friend Will, a pickpocket in London in 1715, is murdered as part of a series of mysterious deaths, fifteen-year-old Tom Marlowe asks his friend Dr. Harker to help find the killer.

Uncovering Sadie's Secrets by Libby Sternberg YA MYSTERY Sternberg, L
Gr. 6-9. Sternberg's first novel is a lightweight, entertaining teen mystery-romance narrated by 15-year-old high-school sophomore Bianca Balducci. The lively story follows Bianca as she tries “to hook up with a guy” who is her major crush, keep up with homework, and be a good daughter. At the same time, she's busy investigating why her new friend Sadie is apparently being stalked by a twosome dubbed “the Lemming Lady and the Ice Man,” and trying to stay ahead of her 20-something sister, Connie, who is a real-life PI. The plot thickens as Bianca uncovers secrets in Sadie's past. The subtitle suggests that this is the first in a new series: Nancy Drew fans and other young mystery aficionados will be pleased.

 

2003

Winner

The Wessex Papers, Vols. 1-3 by Daniel Parker

 

Vol. 1.  Trust Falls

Wessex Academy is a very exclusive boarding school for the very privileged. Unfortunately, it's got a few nasty secrets, including extortion, conspiracy, and scandal. In "Trust Falls, " Sunday Winthrop and new student Fred Bushmill's pranks lead to their uncovering a sinister blackmail ring.

 

Vol. 2.  Fallout

Sunday and Fred discover more about the sinister conspiracy at Wessex. The blackmailers are getting desperate . . . and they're willing to turn to murder.

 

Vol. 3  Outsmart

In the satisfying conclusion, Sunday and Fred pull off the scam of the century and beat the blackmailers at their own game.

Nominees

Cheating Lessons by Nan Willard Cappo YA Cappo, N.

Seventeen-year-old Bernadette Terrell has always felt she's known the right thing to do. Now she must contend with a situation that doesn't have black-and-white answers, where a community's hope, hard work, and pride are on the line. Is a team, and a town, implicated by one person's cheating?


Safe House by Jenny Carroll

Although 16-year-old Jessica Mastriani was on vacation when Amber Mackey went missing, most of her fellow students at Ernest Pyle High School seem to blame her for Amber's brutal slaying. How could Jess's newly acquired psychic ability have stopped Amber from being killed? When another girl disappears, Jess is given a chance to redeem herself--if she can find the girl without letting the Feds know of her power.


Hit and Run by Mark Delaney

An appeal from an old friend lands the young detectives in the middle of a mystery surrounding a hit-and-run accident. What at first seems like a routine investigation quickly turns dangerous as the four teens find themselves caught in a complicated plot involving a gang-controlled car-theft ring, frightened law-abiding citizens, and a twisted plan for revenge.

For Mattie, the case is also uncomfortably personal, and one that provides an unwelcome reunion with the mother he has not seen in years. Now Byte, Peter, and Jake must work fast to stop an innocent woman from going to prison while Mattie must learn an important lesson in forgiveness.


The Night the Penningtons Vanished by Marianna Heusler

Alone in her aunt's gift shop How Do I Love Thee? late one evening, Isabella Ripa opens the door to a glamorous woman carrying a birdcage. Isabella is enchanted by the woman's love birds and agrees to take them - at least for the night - until she can persuade her Aunt Talullah to adopt the pair, called the Penningtons. But in the morning the birds are gone. In their place is a book of love poems. As Isabella and her friends set out to recover the birds, they become embroiled in a mystery of a missing actress, a robbery and an intruder in Aunt Talullah's house. The Night the Penningtons Vanished introduces a delightful trio of friends who work together to solve one strange problem after another. Buffetted by the demands of her teen years and conflict with her older sister, Isabella is determined to get to the bottom of the Penningtons mystery.

2002

Winner

The Boy in the Burning House by Tim Wynne-Jones  YA MYSTERY Wynn-Jones, T.
Two years after his father's disappearance, Jim Hawkins still deals with the loss. He meets Ruth Rose, the bad-girl stepdaughter of the town pastor, and she shocks him when she tells him her stepfather is a murderer. Jim burns with a desire for the truth, until it becomes clear it may be more unsettling than he can bear when he hears about a boy who died in a fire 30 years ago.

Nominees

Dark Secrets Don't Tell by Elizabeth Chandler E. YA MYSTERY Chandler, E.
Eight years after her mother's mysterious drowning, Lauren returns to her hometown to visit her family, but the strange events that follow lead her to believe her mother may be trying to communicate with her. Now, after finding herself the victim of a number of cruel tricks, Lauren suspects there was more to her mother's death than she knows--and it looks like she may be the next target!

Death on Sacred Ground by Harriet K. Feder
Gr. 6-10. In this third title in the Vivi Hartman mystery series, tenth-grader Vivi and her rabbi father travel to the funeral of a young Orthodox Jewish girl. It seems that pretty, rebellious Mindy Solomon was shot to death during a high-school archery club outing, and the police want to know why she died on snake-ridden Seneca Indian sacred ground, well away from the rest of the group. To complicate things, Seneca teen Jimmy Cloud is missing, and his Jewish girlfriend confides to Vivi that she is being stalked. As Vivi snoops around the tense little town, she discovers other suspects, including local teens who resent the Senecas; members of a born-again-Christian group who have been recruiting Jewish teens; and even Mindy's father. 

Shades of Simon Gray by Joyce McDonald  YA MYSTERY McDonald, J.
Gr. 6-8. The author of Shadow People (2000) puts a supernatural spin on her latest tale of teenage criminal mischief. Simon Gray lies in a coma after smashing his car into the Liberty Tree (also known as the Hanging Tree after a 200-year-old lynching) in the center of his small New Jersey town. Accident--or suicide? While he hovers between life and death, he also finds himself hovering about the tree, along with the ghost of the historical victim. Meanwhile, various people keep vigil by his bedside, and odd things occur--weather extremes plague the town; there's a huge «murder» of crows; nine residents fall victim to West Nile Virus. Readers fond of atmosphere and suspense will stay the course, discovering that Simon isn't the only character who comes out of the experience a better person.

2001

Winner

Counterfeit Son by Elaine Marie Alphin
 
When serial killer Hank Miller is killed in a shoot-out with police, his abused son Cameron adopts the identity of one of his father's victims in order to find a better life. But when his father's old accomplice tracks him down, will Cameron give up his new identity to protect the victim's family?

Nominees

Silent to the Bone by E.L. Konigsberg   YA Konigsberg, E.

 When he is wrongly accused of gravely injuring his baby half-sister, 13-year-old Branwell loses his power of speech and only his friend Connor is able to reach him and uncover the truth about what really happened.

                                   
The Body of Christopher
Creed by Carol Plum-Ucci   YA MYSTERY Plum-Ucci

Torey Adams, a high school junior with a seemingly perfect life, struggles with doubts and questions surrounding the mysterious disappearance of the class outcast. His search for answers opens his eyes to the lies, pain, and need to blame when tragedy strikes, and his once-safe world comes crashing down around him.


Locked Inside by Nancy Werlin

Marnie is tremendously wealthy, and tremendously alone. The sixteen-year-old daughter of a superstar who died years ago, Marnie refuses to take part in her oppressive boarding-school community. Nor does she have any interest in returning to Manhattan to live with her guardian, a well-meaning but stiff man named Max. She would rather burrow away in the dark, comforting world of her favorite Internet adventure game. Especially now that she has started chatting online with one of the other players, an intriguing rogue who calls himself the Elf.   But closing herself off from everyone around her doesn't mean that she's safe, as Marnie soon discovers. Kidnapped, locked inside an empty basement cell, Marnie is forced to confront painful truths about herself and her famous mother as she desperately tries to escape her jailer. Oh, how little her cyber-adventure game has prepared her for this real-life dungeon! And how she longs for just one more battle of wits with her mischievous Elf! Marnie's spellbinding tale offers surprise at every turn. Gripping, deeply moving, Locked Inside is a remarkable mix of self-discovery and suspense.