YALSA names first 2010 Nonfiction Award finalist

Contact: Stephanie Kuenn

Communications Specialist




For Immediate Release

December 9, 2009

CHICAGO – The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) selected five books as finalists for the 2010 Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults, which honors the best nonfiction books written for young adults between Nov. 1, 2008 and Oct. 31, 2009. This is the first time the awards have been announced. YALSA will name the 2010 winner at the Youth Media Awards on Jan. 18, during the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in Boston.

The 2010 finalists are:

  • “Almost Astronauts: 13 Women Who Dared to Dream” by Tanya Lee Stone, published by Candlewick
  • “Charles and Emma: The Darwins’ Leap of Faith” by Deborah Heiligman, published by Henry Holt Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group
  • “Claudette Colvin: Twice toward Justice” by Phillip Hoose, published by Melanie Kroupa Books/ Farrar Straus Giroux, an imprint of Macmillan children’s Publishing Group
  • “The Great and Only Barnum: The Tremendous and Stupendous Life of the Showman P. T. Barnum” by Candace Fleming, published by Schwartz & Wade Books/Random House
  • “Written in Bone: Buried Lives of Jamestown and Colonial Maryland” by Sally M. Walker, published by Carolrhoda/Lerner

“The committee is so proud and excited to present a short list of nonfiction books that are full of life and of particular interest and appeal to young adults. These authors represent the very best in nonfiction scholarship, presentation and writing, while satisfying a variety of interests including forensic archaeology, show business, civil rights history, space exploration, science and even a little romance,” said Angela Carstensen, 2010 Nonfiction committee chair. “All of these books deserve a wide, enthusiastic readership, and we look forward to publishing the full list of nominated titles in January after the winning title is announced.”

More information on the finalists and the award can be found at
www.ala.org/yalsa/nonfiction. YALSA plans to sell finalist seals to librarians and publishers to place on books at
www.alastore.ala.org. YALSA will host a reception honoring the shortlist authors and the winner, as well as YALSA’s Morris Award winners, at a free reception from 8-10 p.m. on Jan. 18 at the Westin Copley Place Essex Center South.

Members of the 2010 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults award committee are: Chair Angela Carstensen, Convent of the Sacred Heart, New York; Sallie H. Barringer, Walnut Hills High School, Cincinnati; Betsy J. Fraser, Calgary (Alb.) Public Library, Canada; Joyce K. Giuliani, Hayfield Secondary School, Alexandria, Va.; Andy Howe, Albuquerque (N.M.) Academy Simms Library; Dr. Jami L. Jones, East Carolina University, Greenville, N.C.; Tena Litherland, Webb School of Knoxville, Tenn.; Stephen L. Matthews, Foxcroft School, Middleburg, Va.; Jody Sharp, Baltimore County Public Library, Towson, Md.; Judy Sasges, administrative assistant, Sno-Isle Libraries, Marysville, Wash.; and Daniel Kraus, 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