2012 Abraham Lincoln Award Winner
The Maze Runner
James Dashner (Delacorte, 2010)
Sixteen-year-old Thomas wakes up with no memory in the middle of a maze and realizes he must work with the community in which he finds himself if he is to escape.
Amy Efaw (Speak, 2010)
In complete denial that she is pregnant, straight-A student and star athlete Devon Davenport leaves her baby in the trash to die, and after the baby is discovered, Devon is accused of attempted murder.
Alex Flinn (HarperTeen, 2008)
A modern retelling of "Beauty and the Beast" from the point of view of the Beast, a vain Manhattan private school student who is turned into a monster and must find true love before he can return to his human form.
*Before I Die
Jenny Downham (David Fickling, 2009 )
A terminally ill teenaged girl makes and carries out a list of things to do before she dies.
Carter Finally Gets It
Brent Crawford (Hyperion, 2010)
Awkward freshman Will Carter endures many painful moments during his first year of high school before realizing that nothing good comes easily, focus is everything, and the payoff is usually incredible.
Dave Cullen (Twelve, 2010)
An account of the shootings at Colorado's Columbine High School on April 20, 1999, focusing on the teenage killers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, drawing from interviews, police files, psychological studies, and writings and tapes by the boys to look at the signs they left that disaster was looming.
S.A. Bodeen (Square Fish, 2009)
After his parents, two sisters, and he have spent six years in a vast underground compound built by his wealthy father to protect them from a nuclear holocaust, fifteen-year-old Eli, whose twin brother and grandmother were left behind, discovers that his father has perpetrated a monstrous hoax on them all.
L.K. Madigan (Houghton Miffline Harcourt, 2010)
After he takes a photograph of a woman who is living on the streets and discovers it to be the meth-addicted mother of his closest friend Marissa, Blake finds himself spending more time with Marissa than with his girlfriend.
Ghosts of War
Ryan Smithson (Harpercollins, 2010)
Recounts the author's experiences as an Army engineer in the Iraq War.
Libba Bray (Random House, 2010)
Cameron Smith, a disaffected sixteen year-old who, after being diagnosed with Creutzfeldt-Jakob's (aka mad cow) disease, sets off on a road trip with a death-obsessed video gaming dwarf he meets in the hospital in an attempt to find a cure.
How to Build a House
Dana Reinhardt (Wendy Lamb, 2009)
Seventeen-year-old Harper Evans hopes to escape the effects of her father's divorce on her family and friendships by volunteering her summer to build a house in a small Tennessee town devastated by a tornado.
If I Stay
Gayle Forman (Speak, 2010)
While in a coma following an automobile accident that killed her parents and younger brother, seventeen-year-old Mia, a gifted cellist, weighs whether to live with her grief or join her family in death.
*The Looking Glass Wars
Frank Beddor (Speak, 2007)
When she is cast out of Wonderland by her evil aunt Redd, young Alyss Heart finds herself living in Victorian Oxford as Alice Liddell, and struggles to keep memories of her kingdom intact until she can return and claim her rightful throne.
*Love is the Higher Law
David Levithan (Knopf, 2010)
Three New York City teens express their reactions to the bombing of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, and its impact on their lives and the world.
Mexican White Boy
Matt de la Pena (Delacorte, 2010)
Sixteen-year-old Danny searches for his identity amidst the confusion of being half-Mexican and half-white while spending a summer with his cousin and new friends on the baseball fields and back alleys of San Diego County, California.
Peter Abrahams (HarperTeen, 2010)
After a knee injury destroys sixteen-year-old Cody's college hopes, he drops out of high school and gets a job in his small Montana town; but when his ex-girlfriend disappears from her Vermont boarding school, Cody travels cross-country to join the search.
In all the years she has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house, Grace has been particularly drawn to an unusual yellow-eyed wolf who, in his turn, has been watching her with increasing intensity.
Story of a Girl
Sara Zarr (Little, Brown, 2008)
In the three years since her father caught her in the back seat of a car with an older boy, sixteen-year-old Deanna's life at home and school has been a nightmare, but while dreaming of escaping with her brother and his family, she discovers the power of forgiveness.
Tweak: Growing Up On Methamphetamines
Nic Sheff (Atheneum, 2008)
The author details his immersion in a world of hardcore drugs, revealing the mental and physical depths of addiction, and the violent relapse one summer in California that forever changed his life, leading him down the road to recovery.
Why I Fight
J. Adams Oaks (Atheneum, 2010)
After his house burns down, twelve-year-old Wyatt Reaves takes off with his uncle, and the two of them drive from town to town for six years, earning money mostly by fighting, until Wyatt finally confronts his parents one last time.
Wish You Were Dead
Todd Strasser (EgmontUSA, 2010)
Madison, a senior at a suburban New York high school, tries to uncover who is responsible for the disappearance of her friends, popular students mentioned in the posts of an anonymous blogger, while she, herself, is being stalked online and in-person.
World War Z: An Oral History Of The Zombie War
Max Brooks (Three Rivers, 2007) An account of the decade-long conflict between humankind and hordes of the predatory undead is told from the perspective of dozens of survivors who describe in their own words the epic human battle for survival.
* Student Reader Panel selection