Nonfiction Award

nonfiction awardAbout the Nonfiction Award

YALSA's Award for Excellence in Nonfiction honors the best nonfiction book published for young adults (ages 12-18) during a Nov. 1 – Oct. 31 publishing year. The winner is announced annually at the ALA Youth Media Awards, with a shortlist of up to five titles named the first week of December.

Seal Licensing

Individuals who wish to buy small quantities of seals can find them in the ALA Online Store. nonfiction finalistPublishers wishing to buy bulk seals or license seal images can find more information by consulting YALSA's Award Seals Usage Guidelines and  ALA's Seals Sales & Permissions page.

If you'd like to license the winner, finalist, or nominee seal, please learn more here.

Visit YALSA's Teen Book Finder Database, a one-stop shop for finding selected lists and award winners. Users can search this free resource by award, list name, year, author, genre and more, as well as print customizable lists.

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Current Winner & Finalists

Official Nomination Lists

Previous Winners

Policies and Procedures

Committee Contacts


Teen Book Finder App & Database   

2024 Winner

Accountable: The True Story of a Racist Social Media Account and the Teenagers Whose Lives It Changed by Dashka Slater. Farrar Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group. 9780374314347.

When a high school student started a private Instagram account that used racist and sexist memes to make his friends laugh, he thought it was "edgy" humor. Then a few other kids found out about the account and soon, everyone knew. Unfortunately, no one in the small town of Albany, CA was safe from the repercussions of the account's discovery. In the end, no one was laughing. And everyone was left asking: “where does accountability end for online speech that harms? And what does accountability even mean?

2024 Finalists 

America Redux: Visual Stories from Our Dynamic History written and illustrated by Ariel Aberg-Riger. Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins. 9780063057531.

Through Aberg-Riger's mix of writing and collage, we learn about aspects of American History that are often not discussed, and she does not shy away from difficult topics. The exploitation of BIPOC individuals is front and center as she shows how this exploitation helped build our country.

Family Style: Memories of an American from Vietnam written by Thien Pham. First Second, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group. Paperback 9781250809711/Hardcover 9781250809728

In this captivating graphic memoir, Thein and his family embark on a poignant journey to the United States. Seamlessly weaving together themes of food, family, and resilience, Pham's narrative will resonate deeply with readers.

From Here by Luma Mufleh. Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House. 9780593354452.

Mufleh's journey as a gay teenager navigating a religious family's expectations is powerfully relatable for many teens. Through her courageous decision to journey to the United States, the narrative beautifully showcases her unwavering bravery and resilience.

Nearer My Freedom: The Interesting Life of Olaudah Equiano by Himself by Monica Edinger and Lesley Younge. Zest Books, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group. 9781728450988.

Told in found verse, using Equiano's own writings, this book spans his life from childhood through his enslavement and travels as a free man.


Members of the 2024 YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults committee are: Chair Janet Hilbun, Garland, Texas; Anne Dame, Seattle; Candace Fox, Parma, Ohio; Cyndi Hamann, Arlington Heights, Illinois; Thea Hashagen, San Francisco; Amy Ojserkis, Media Center, Atlantic County Institute of Technology, Mays Landing, New Jersey; Kali Olson, Minneapolis; Celeste Swanson, Richmond, Indiana; and Monica Toomer, Homestead, Florida.

YALSA’s portfolio of book and media awards helps strengthen library services for and with teens by identifying quality, age appropriate resources for librarians and library workers to share with the teens in their communities.

Previous Winners

View a complete list of Nonfiction Award winners and finalists.

2023 Nonfiction Award

2022 Nonfiction Award

2021 Nonfiction Award

2020 Nonfiction Award

2019 Nonfiction Award

2018 Nonfiction Award

2017 Nonfiction Award

2016 Nonfiction Award

2015 Nonfiction Award

2014 Nonfiction Award

2013 Nonfiction Award

2012 Nonfiction Award

2011 Nonfiction Award

2010 Nonfiction Award