Honor roll: Carnegie Medal

Each of these books has been nominated for a Carnegie Medal. They are ranked by honors received.

Book:The White Darkness

The White Darkness

Geraldine McCaughrean

“I have been in love with Titus Oates for quite a while now—which is ridiculous, since he’s been dead for ninety years. But look at it this way. In ninety years I’ll be dead, too, and the age difference won’t matter.”

Sym is not your average teenage girl. She is obsessed with the Antarctic and the brave, romantic figure of Captain Oates from Scott’s doomed expedition to the South Pole. In fact, Oates is the secret confidant to whom she spills all her hopes and fears.

But Sym’s uncle Victor is even more obsessed—and when he takes her on a dream trip into the bleak Antarctic wilderness, it turns into a nightmarish struggle for survival that will challenge everything she knows and loves.

In her first contemporary young adult novel, Carnegie Medalist and three-time Whitbread Award winner Geraldine McCaughrean delivers a spellbinding journey into the frozen heart of darkness.

Book:The Amber Spyglass

The Amber Spyglass: Book 3 of His Dark Materials

Philip Pullman

Lyra lies sleeping in a cave near a rainbow, drugged into unconsciousness by her mother, Mrs Coulter, whose love for her daughter closely rivals her own ruthless ambition. Now, the latter threatens to overcome the former, as she strives to prevent the events which are dependent on the decisions Lyra is fated to make. Meanwhile, Will - scarred and traumatised after his last, fatal meeting with his father - seeks blindly for her, with only two of Lord Asriel's angels as companions on his dangerous search. The two are fated to meet once more, however, and begin their most treacherous journey..

Book:Kit's Wilderness

Kit's Wilderness

David Almond

“It was very deep, Kit. Very dark. And every one of us was scared of it. As a lad I’d wake up trembling, knowing that as a Watson born in Stoneygate I’d soon be following my ancestors into the pit,” so Kit’s grandfather tells him.

The Watson family moves to Stoneygate, an old coal-mining town, to care for Kit’s recently widowed grandfather. When Kit meets John Askew, another boy whose family had both worked and died in the mines, Askew invites Kit to join him to play a game called Death. As Kit’s grandfather provides stories of the mine’s past and the history of the Watson family, the boys search the mines to find the childhood ghosts of their long-gone ancestors.

Written in haunting prose and lyrical language, Kit’s Wilderness explores the bonds of family from one generation to the next, and how from the depths of darkness, meaning and beauty can be revealed.

Book:The Other Side Of Truth

The Other Side Of Truth

Beverley Naidoo

Sade is slipping her English book into her
schoolbag when her Mama screams. Two sharp
cracks splinter the air.
“Mama mi?” She whispers

Twelve-year-old Sade’s journalist father is a vocal critic of the corrupt government in Nigeria. When Sade’s mother is murdered, her family sees in bloody detail the violent risks that come with exposing the truth.

Her father arranges for Sade and her younger brother to be smuggled to their uncle in London for safety. On the streets of London, the plans fall apart and they are abandoned, passed from foster home to foster home. They try to contact their uncle…[more]

Book:Junk

Junk

Melvin Burgess

When Gemma, a rebellious 14-year-old bored with life in her small seaside town, decides to run away to join her boyfriend Tar in London, the pair are offered shelter in a squat. They meet two heroin addicts and are themselves soon hooked, while Gemma is forced into prostitution to pay for the drug.

Book:Flour Babies

Flour Babies

Anne Fine

Eleven days into The Great Flour Baby Experiment, the rest of the boys in Room 8—the classroom for underachievers and troublemakers— are ready to drop-kick their six-pound flour “babies” into the creek, but not Simon. He’s keeping his flour baby clean and dry, maintaining its weight, and never, never leaving its side, even if the rest of the class thinks he’s crazy.

Maybe he is. But Simon’s flour baby is helping Simon figure out his own life—why his father walked out on him, and how strong his mother is, raising him alone. In fact, Simon might not be able to give up his flour baby as the day of the giant, glorious Flour Free-for-All approaches….

Book:Watership Down

Watership Down

Richard Adams

One of the most beloved novels of our time, Richard Adams’s Watership Down takes us to a world we have never truly seen: to the remarkable life that teems in the fields, forests and riverbanks far beyond our cities and towns. It is a powerful saga of courage, leadership and survival; an epic tale of a hardy band of adventurers forced to flee the destruction of their fragile community…and their trials and triumphs in the face of extraordinary adversity as they pursue a glorious dream called “home.”

Watership Down is a remarkable tale of exile and survival, of heroism and leadership…the epic novel of a group of adventurers who desert their doomed city, and venture forth against all odds on a quest for a new home, a sturdier future,

Book:Maggot Moon

Maggot Moon

Sally Gardner, Julian Crouch

In Sally Gardner’s stunning novel, set in a ruthless regime, an unlikely teenager risks all to expose the truth about a heralded moon landing.

What if the football hadn’t gone over the wall. On the other side of the wall there is a dark secret. And the devil. And the Moon Man. And the Motherland doesn’t want anyone to know. But Standish Treadwell—who has different-colored eyes, who can’t read, can’t write, Standish Treadwell isn’t bright—sees things differently than the rest of the “train-track thinkers.” So when Standish and his only friend and neighbor, Hector, make their way to the other side of the wall, they see what the Motherland has been hiding. And it’s big…

One hundred very short chapters, told in an utterly original first-person voice, propel readers through a narrative that is by turns gripping and darkly humorous, bleak and chilling, tender and transporting.

Book:Between Shades of Gray

Between Shades of Gray

Ruta Sepetys

Lina is just like any other fifteen-year-old Lithuanian girl in 1941. She paints, she draws, she gets crushes on boys. Until one night when Soviet officers barge into her home, tearing her family from the comfortable life they’ve known. Separated from her father, forced onto a crowded and dirty train car, Lina, her mother, and her young brother slowly make their way north, crossing the Arctic Circle, to a work camp in the coldest reaches of Siberia. Here they are forced, under Stalin’s orders, to dig for beets and fight for their lives under the cruelest of conditions.

Lina finds solace in her art, meticulously-and at great risk-documenting events by drawing, hoping these messages will make their way to her father’s prison camp to let him know they are still alive. It is a long and harrowing journey, spanning years and covering 6,500 miles, but it is through incredible strength, love, and hope that Lina ultimately survives. Between Shades of Gray is a novel that will steal your breath and capture your heart.

Book:Just in Case

Just in Case

Meg Rosoff

The day David Case saves his brother’s life, his whole world changes. Suddenly, every moment is fizzing with significance, full of what ifs? He must hide; become an entirely new person to escape Fate… if he can. Will changing his name, befriending an astrophysicist and gaining an imaginary pet be enough? Bewildered and obsessive, he'll try anything to survive.

Just in Case is a daring, powerful and compelling read bringing the spirit of the film Donnie Darko to the heart of middle England.

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