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Stuff for the Teen Age

2012 YALSA Awards


On the morning of January 25, 2012, the theater of the Dallas Convention Center was packed with literary professionals and enthusiasts who were awaiting the results of the YALSA Awards. The announcements started promptly at 7:45 a.m. If you showed up late, all the good seats were taken. You had to hoof it to the balcony. Of course, you could have watched the live web cast.

Who would be honored, noticed, and praised this year? Who would get those shiny gold and silver stickers on the cover of their books?

These stickers are more than just decorations (although they do jazz things up!) They can lead to instant fame and notice, tons of pictures and blog posts, even a spot on the New York Times best sellers list. There were surprised gasps and happy cheers to come. Audience members were a-titter while they waited, their phones and iPads illuminating the auditorium. Many were at the ready to post the results to Twitter or Facebook. Anticipation was in the air as YALSA president Sara Flowers stepped up to the mic to start the announcements.

Here are the awards that were announced and their results:

Alex Awards

This award honors 10 books that are considered cross overs from the adult genre that appeal to young adults.

Big Girl Small by Rachel DeWoskin
In Zanesville by Jo Anne Beard
The Lover’s Dictionary by David Levithan
The New Kids by Brooke Hauser
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Robopocalypse by Daniel H. Wilson
Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward
The Scrapbook of Frankie Pratt by Caroline Preston
The Talk-Funny Girl by Roland Merullo

The Stonewall Awards

This award honors the best LGBTQ reads for teens published that year.

Putting Makeup on the Fat Boy by Bil Wright

Honor Books:

A + E 4ever by Merey
Money Boy by Paul Yee
Pink by Lili Wilkinson
With or Without You by Brian Farrey

Edwards Award

The Edwards Award honors an author for his/her specific works for teens.

Susan Cooper for The Dark is Rising Sequence

Morris Award

The William C. Morris YA Debut Award honors the best book by a previously unpublished author writing for teens.

Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley


The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
Paper Covers Rock by Jenny Hubbard
Under the Mesquite by Guadalupe Garcia McCall
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

Nonfiction Award

The YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults Award honors the best nonfiction written for teens each year.

The Notorious Benedict Arnold by Steve Sheinkin


Sugar Changed the World by Marc Aronson
Bootleg by Karen Blumenthal
Wheels of Change by Sue Macy
Music Was It by Susan Goldman Rubin

Printz Award

The Michael L. Printz Award honors the best book written for teens each year based on literary merit.

Where Things Come Back by John Corey Whaley

Honor Books:

Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler
The Returning by Christine Hinwood
Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater


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