For immediate release | December 1, 2010

YALSA announces 2011 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults shortlist

CHICAGO – The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) selected five books as finalists for the 2011 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults, which honors the best nonfiction books written for young adults between Nov. 1, 2009 and Oct. 31, 2010. YALSA will name the 2011 winner at the Youth Media Awards on Jan. 10, during the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in San Diego
The 2011 finalists are:
  • “Janis Joplin: Rise Up Singing” by Ann Angel, published by Amulet/Abrams
  • “They Called Themselves the K.K.K.: The Birth of an American Terrorist Group” by Susan Campbell Bartoletti, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • “Spies of Mississippi: The True Story of the Spy Network that Tried to Destroy the Civil Rights Movement” by Rick Bowers, published by National Geographic Society
  • “The Dark Game: True Spy Stories” by Paul Janeczko, published by Candlewick Press
  • “Every Bone Tells a Story: Hominin Discoveries, Deductions, and Debates” by Jill Rubalcaba and Peter Robertshaw, published by Charlesbridge
“The committee is pleased to announce our list of five finalists. These titles offer young adults rich reading experiences on a variety of topics, including archaeology, civil rights, spies, terrorists and an American music icon,” said Nonfiction Award Chair Don Latham. “We congratulate the authors on this well-deserved recognition for their outstanding work—and we look forward to the pleasurably difficult task of selecting a winner in January.”
More information on the finalists and the award can be found at YALSA sells finalist seals to librarians and publishers to place on books at YALSA will host a reception honoring the shortlist authors and the winner, as well as YALSA’s Morris Award winner and finalists, at a free reception, 8–10 p.m. on Jan. 10 in Room 24 A-C at the San Diego Convention Center.
Members of the 2011 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults Award committee are: Chair Don Latham, Florida State University School of Library and Information Studies, Tallahassee, Fla.; Christine Allen, Arlington High School, Riverside, Calif.; Rachel Aronowitz, San Francisco Public Library; Carrie Bryniak, Wadsworth (Ohio) Public Library; Monique Franklin, Texas Women’s University School of Library and Information Science, Denton, Texas; Jeanette Larson, Pflugerville, Texas; Teri Lesesne, Sam Houston State University, Huntsville, Texas; Courtney Lewis, Wyoming Seminary Upper School, Kingston, Pa.; Charli Osborne, Oxford (Mich.) Public Library; Judy Sasges, administrative assistant, Sno-Isle Libraries, Marysville, Wash.; and Laura Tillotson, Booklist consultant, Chicago.
For more than 50 years, YALSA has been the world leader in selecting books, videos and audio books for teens. For more information about YALSA or for lists of recommended reading, viewing and listening, go to
For more information on the YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults, please visit


Stephanie Kuenn