Hearing From the 2015 YALSA Nonfiction for Young Adults Award Finalists

Last week I was fortunate to have a bit of space in my schedule, which was just enough time to sign up for the School Library Journal Webcast:  “A Conversation with the 2015 YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Finalists.”  Each of the finalists was represented, four by the authors and one by the editor who worked closely on the book. It was golden!

Some tidbits from the webcast:

  • Two of five finalist authors are young adults, and Maya Van Wagenen is only 16.
  • Articulate Maya Van Wagenen is already working on her next book, a novel.
  • Witty Shane Burclaw’s memoir came from his blog of the same name.
  • Candace Fleming didn’t want sidebars in her book because she thinks they distract the reader. Her editor agreed.
  • Power author Steve Sheinkin draws cartoons. Since no one will buy them, he puts them on his blog.
  • Emily Arnold McCully’s roots are in illustration. Her next book features a hippopotamus.

The awards will be announced on Monday, February 2, 2015.

In case you were wondering, the YALSA Nonfiction finalists for 2015 are:

Laughing at My Nightmare
by Shane Burcaw

The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, and the Fall of Imperial Russia
by Candace Fleming

Ida M. Tarbell: The Woman Who Challenged Big Business–and Won!
by Emily Arnold McCully

The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights
by Steve Sheinkin

Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek
by Maya Van Wagenen

What an eye-catching cover!

Have you read any of these titles yet? Which do you think will win?


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