Eliot Rosewater Indiana High School
Book Award

1998-1999 School Year

 

Winner

Driver's Ed by Caroline Cooney YA AWARD Cooney, C. (2)
Driver's Ed means getting that license, which means freedom. Remy and Morgan can't wait. Then they take a late-night joyride with someone who already has his license, and they end up stealing a souvenir stop sign. Their innocent prank has deadly consequences, and Remy and Martin share a painful secret. Young Adult


Nominees

Blue Skin of the Sea by Graham Salisbury YA Salisbury, G.
Gr 7 Up-- Sonny Mendoza and his fisherman father live in the village of Kailua-Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii. In a series of short stories, Sonny's childhood, teen years, search for identity, and coming of age during the early '50s through mid-'60s are chronicled. Vignettes of life with vivid characters and universal themes such as friends and bravery are presented through scenes of sleepy village life, the fisherman's love affair with the sea, school days, and facing natural enemies such as sharks and hurricanes. From story to story, Sonny and his relatives--and, of course, the ocean--are common threads that tie the book together. Salisbury has a poetic way with language, and his descriptive passages make the ocean and seashore tangible, living things. Dialogue rings true, and the events in a boy's growing up are realistically portrayed. The sixth grade ``gang'' and its bully leader, Jack, as well as a teenage confrontation over a beautiful girl, are particularly well done. Humorous incidents provide insight into the characters. When his father's fishing boat fails to return to port, Sonny's fear of losing him is palpable. Salisbury has successfully created stories that stand alone, yet join together to build a world of people, places, and conflicts that will engage teen readers. Young Adult

Deadly Feasts: Tracking the Secrets of a Terrifying New Plague by Richard Rhodes 616.8 RHO (2)
"The U.S. still has a chance to avoid a BSE [bovine spongiform encephalopathy] epidemic" like the outbreak of "mad cow disease" that has ravaged the British cattle industry, warns this explosive report by Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Rhodes (The Making of the Atomic Bomb). In Britain, Rhodes notes, BSE spread after lax government regulations permitted millions of cattle to ingest ruminant wastes by way of meat-and-bone meal, and evidence mounts that Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), a human variant of BSE, has already killed Europeans who ate infected beef. Both CJD and BSE belong to a strange new group of "slow virus diseases" (transmissable spongiform encephalopathies, or TSEs) that riddle the brain with holes, result in slow death and so far defy efforts to stop them. In cinematic fashion, Rhodes creates a complex, colorful and sometimes gory medical documentary, beginning with a 1950s-era cannibalism-induced epidemic of kuru (a fatal neurological disorder) in New Guinea, then jump-cutting to a San Francisco lab where, in 1983, biochemist Stanley Prusiner identified prions, or abnormal proteins, as the possible disease agent of TSEs, then moving on to a 1985 global outbreak of CJD in children with dwarfism who were injected with human growth hormone. Rhodes's important, gripping book ominously warns that unless the FDA bans and strinctly enforces that ban the feeding of ruminant protein to cattle, Americans could face its own plague of fatal brain diseases. Photos. Adult

Don't You Dare Read This, Mrs. Dunphrey by Margaret Haddix YA Haddix, M. (2)
Like the other girls in her class, Tish Bonner at first resents having to keep a journal for English class--even though Mrs. Dunphrey has told them she will not read any entry marked "Do not read this". But Tish finds solace in writing about those problems she can't discuss--such as the fact that her mother has abandoned Tish and her little brother, and she doesn't know how to support them with the wages from her part-time Burger Boy job. Young Adult

Dune by Frank Herbert SCI FIC HER
This is the novel that shaped modern science fiction. Set on the desert planet Arrakis begins the story of a great family's plan to bring to fruition an unattainable dream. Winner of the first Nebula Award. Adult

Follow the River by James A. Thom THO

Mary Ingles was twenty-three, married, and pregnant, when Shawnee Indians invaded her peaceful Virginia settlement, killed the men and women, then took her captive. For months, she lived with them, unbroken, until she escaped, and followed a thousand mile trail to freedom--an extraordinary story of a pioneer woman who risked her life to return to her people. Adult

Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick YA Philbrick, R. (2)
An established writer of adult suspense makes a stunning entry into children's literature with this extraordinary novel about two boys--a slow learner too large for his age, and a tiny, crippled genius--who pair up to create on formidable human force. Young Adult

Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer 796.5 KRA (2)

When Jon Krakauer reached the summit of Mt. Everest in the early afternoon of May 10, 1996, he hadn't slept in fifty-seven hours and was reeling from the brain-altering effects of oxygen depletion. As he turned to begin his long, dangerous descent from 29,028 feet, twenty other climbers were still pushing doggedly toward the top. No one had noticed that the sky had begun to fill with clouds. Six hours later and 3,000 feet lower, in 70-knot winds and blinding snow, Krakauer collapsed in his tent, freezing, hallucinating from exhaustion and hypoxia, but safe. The following morning he learned that six of his fellow climbers hadn't made it back to their camp and were in a desperate struggle for their lives. When the storm finally passed, five of them would be dead, and the sixth so horribly frostbitten that his right hand would have to be amputated. Krakauer examines what it is about Everest that has compelled so many people - including himself - to throw caution to the wind, ignore the concerns of loved ones, and willingly subject themselves to such risk, hardship, and expense. Written with emotional clarity and supported by his unimpeachable reporting, Krakauer's eye-witness account of what happened on the roof of the world is a singular achievement. Adult

Maus II: A Survivor's Tale: And Here My Troubles Began by Art Spiegelman  YA Graphic Novel 940.53 SPI
Spiegelman's startling comic about the Holocaust, which revolves around his survivor father's experiences, won a 1992 Pulitzer Prize Adult

One Fat Summer by Robert Lipsyte YA Lipsyte, R. + j LIP
Overweight Bobby Marks hates the summertime because he can't hide under heavy clothing. Then he gets a job grooming the grounds of Dr. Kahn's estate, and it isn't long before he finds out how terrifying and exhilirating, how dangerous and wonderful, one fat summer can be. ALA Best of the Best Books (YA); New York Times Oustanding Children's Book. Young Adult

Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse YA AWARD Hess, K.
In a series of poems, fifteen-year-old Billie Jo relates the hardships of living on her family's wheat farm in Oklahoma during the dust bowl years of the Depression. Young Adult

Puppies, Dogs and Blue Northers by Gary Paulsen YA 789.8 PAU (2)
An experienced Iditarod racer, Gary Paulsen brings his love of the sport to readers on a more personal level in this intimate essay about the life of a litter of pups born to pull sleds across the snowy frontier--and the marvel he experiences as he watches them grow and learn. Full-color illustrations. Young Adult

Ramsay Scallop by Francis Temple YA Temple, F. (2)
In a striking departure from her first two novels ( Taste of Salt ; Grab Hands and Run ), which center on current political and social injustices, Temple travels back to 13th-century Europe for a coming-of-age story about a 14-year-old orphan. Eleanor of Ramsay is betrothed to the rakish Thomas, who has just returned from fighting in the Crusades for eight years. Frightened by the prospect of an arranged marriage to a man she hardly knows, Eleanor worries even more when the town priest sends her and Thomas on a pilgrimage to Spain to atone for the sins of all the townspeople. Along the way Thomas and Eleanor meet up with scholars, peasants and performers, each of whom plays a role in helping the young protagonists to discover their true feelings for each other. Temple's pleasing portrayal of the saintly but plucky heroine guides readers through a rather long-winded journey. While Eleanor's spiritual and emotional awakenings are believable and sensitively wrought, her internal conflicts fail to buoy the tale with any significant doses of humor, pathos or drama. However, readers newly introduced to Chaucer's famous Canterbury pilgrims may find Temple's contemporary style an easier introduction to medieval settings and customs. Ages 11-14. Young Adult

She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb LAM (3)

An extraordinary coming-of-age odyssey, She's Come Undone tells the story of Dolores Price, a dysfunctional, heartbreakingly comical young heroine, and her wild journey to love, pain, and renewal. "(A) saga of moral liberation". Adult

Spite Fences by Trudy Krisher YA Krisher, T.
Coming of age during the '60s in the poor-white section of Kinship, Ga., Maggie Pugh sees the effects of poverty all around her: her neighbors have become violent; her father has grown quiet and somber; and her angry, desperate mother clings to the dream of having her younger, favored daughter, Gardenia, win the Hayes County Little Miss Pageant. The community is ruled by prejudice and spite, and Maggie has little hope for change until she makes the acquaintance of a black lawyer, George Hardy. Although her association with a ``colored'' man leads to all kinds of trouble for her family, Maggie is inspired by Mr. Hardy's quiet determination, and she finds the courage to join his battle for equal rights. This painfully realistic first novel evokes tensions in the South at the brink of the civil rights movement. Characters emerge as complex individuals, not pawns of a political agenda. Hearts will go out to Maggie as she weathers various forms of physical and emotional abuse; her final triumph is a tribute to all who have suffered for justice. Ages 12-up. Young Adult

Stranded in Harmony by Barbara Shoup YA Shoup, B. (2)
Suddenly restless with small-town life ("I felt as if I'd just awakened from a long sleep"), high school senior Lucas Cantrell is anxious to move on with his life somewhere other than Harmony, Ind. Unfortunately, the rate of his progression may seem as slow for readers as for him. While the smooth narrative provides many insightful moments, nearly all of which emerge from Lucas's involvement with two atypical members of the community, the momentum lags as Lucas meanders through the fall semester trying to find the right time to break up with his cheerleader girlfriend and to admit his disinterest in football, the sport that has made him a local hero. The pace does pick up considerably in the last few chapters, as Lucas's growing friendship with Allie, a '60s radical, coincides with personal loss, and Lucas feels a "sudden clarity" that dispels his ennui. While YAs bored with the high school scene will relate to Lucas's case of senioritis, there's less for them to sink their teeth into here than in Shoup's first book, Wish You Were Here. Ages 12-up. Young Adult

A Stranger is Watching by Mary H. Clark MYSTERY CLA (2)

Ronald Thompson knows he never killed Nina Peterson...yet in two days the state of Connecticut will take his life, having found him guilty via due process of law. But in the shadows a stranger waits, a cunning psychopath who has killed before, who has unfinished business at the Peterson home.... Adult

Thwonk by Joan Bauer YA Bauer, J. (2)
Bauer's (Squashed) lighthearted (literally) story subtly delivers a meaningful statement to its YA audience. A.J., a high school senior who is very serious about her future career as a photographer, is quickly approaching the final deadline for a big assignment: to take the cover photo for the Valentine's Day issue of her school paper. As it turns out, her inspiration for that task comes from a most unusual source. Driving home one day she almost runs over a box, out of which rolls a stuffed cupid. He comes to life, setting A.J.'s existence onto an amusing-if obviously unbelievable-roller-coaster of a ride. Not only does he lead her to the site of the ideal photo op for the paper, but he shoots his arrow into the heart of the drop-dead gorgeous Peter Terris, whom A.J. has long ogled from afar. Peter asks her out and then, much to A.J.'s embarrassment, insists on proclaiming his undying love in public-loudly. Catapulted into Peter's popular, decidedly vapid crowd, A.J. discovers that what she has wished for is more likely to suffocate her than to bring her happiness. Bauer's buoyant narrative will elicit chuckles as it delivers its message (thwonk!) with the accuracy of a well-aimed arrow from Cupid. Ages 12-up. Young Adult

Who Killed Mr. Chippendale by Mel Glenn YA MYSTERY Glenn, M.
When popular Tower High English teacher Mr. Chippendale is fatally shot, everyone's a suspect. The killer could be anyone -- one of his students, a colleague, or even an ex-flame. Told in a series of interlocking poems, this suspenseful story will keep readers guessing who the killer is right up until the last page. Young Adult

Wrestling Sturbridge by Rich Wallace YA Wallace, R. (2)
Ben, the second-best 135-pound wrestler in his high school, watches as a friend's future becomes brighter and his turns dim. Eager to leave his home town of Sturbridge, Pennsylvania, and to avoid a dismal future working in a cinder block factory, Ben, spurred on by an intense young woman, and partly by a strength found deep within himself, looks for a way out. Young Adult