The Nutmeg Book Award encourages children in grades 4-12 to read quality literature and to choose their favorite from a list of ten nominated titles. Jointly sponsored by the Connecticut Library Association (CLA) and the Connecticut Assoiation of School Librarians (CASL), the Nutmeg Committee is comprised of children’s librarians and school library media specialists who are members of our sponsoring organizations.
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2016 Teen Nutmeg Nominees (grades 7 & 8)
Better Nate Than Ever by Tim Federle
Nate is a thirteen-year-old boy who feels out of place in his small town, and who dreams of performing on Broadway. He decides that “E.T.: The Broadway Musical Version” is his ticket out of Jankburg, Pennsylvania, and he concocts a plan to go to the auditions all by himself in New York City.
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
In this futuristic retelling of Cinderella, Cinder is both a gifted mechanic and a cyborg, living on a plague-ravaged Earth that is threatened by a ruthless lunar queen. She becomes involved with a prince, and must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect the fate of the world.
Counting by 7′s by Holly Goldberg Sloan
Willow is a twelve-year-old genius, preoccupied with plants, counting by 7′s, and diagnosing medical conditions. It is difficult for her to relate to people from outside her family, but now she must figure out how to connect with other people and find another family for herself after her parents are killed in a car accident.
Golden Boy by Tara Sullivan
Habo is a Tanzanian albino boy who suffers from vicious prejudice for his pale skin, blue eyes, and yellow hair. Wile seeking refuge, he is hunted by a poacher who wants to kill him and sell his body parts on the black market to superstitious buyers in search of good luck.
I Have a Bad Feeling About This by Jeff Strand
Henry Lambert loves video games and could be described as a bit of a nerd. His father decides to send him off to survival camp in order to toughen him up, but everything the nonathletic sixteen-year-old was dreading turns out to be true – and even worse – when criminals show up at camp and survival takes on a whole new meaning for the campers.
The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
On the Eve of St. Mark’s Day, Blue’s clairvoyant family keeps watch over the churchyard at night to watch the ghosts of those that will be passing over in the coming year. Blue has never been able to see any of the ghosts, but this year she sees a Raven Boy from Aglionby Academy named Gansey. This means he is either Blue’s true love or that she will be the one to kill him.
Reboot by Amy Tintera
Seventeen-year-old Wren rises from the dead as a Reboot and is trained as an elite crime-fighting soldier until she is given an order she is unable to follow. Her newest trainee Callum’s big heart makes him a huge liability, and Wren is ordered to eliminate him. To save him, Wren will have to risk it all.
The Rithmatist by Brandon Sanderson
Wild Chalklings threaten the American Isles and Rithmatists are humanity’s only defense, but Joel can only stand back and watch as students practice the magical art that he would do anything to learn. When Rithmatic students begin disappearing, Joel manages to help in the investigation, and perhaps get another chance at becoming one of them.
Shadow on the Mountain by Margi Preus
Swept up by the Norwegian Resistance when Nazi German troops invade his home, 14-year-old Espen performs forbidden courier services before becoming a Gestapo-dodging spy. Over the course of five years he loses friends, falls in love, and plots a daring escape on skis over the mountains to Sweden.
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas
Eighteen-year-old assassin Celanehas served a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes. Prince Dorian offers her an opportunity for early release if she joins the competition to be the King’s Champion, a challenge that is marked by grueling training and the murders of fellow contestants.
2016 High School Nutmeg Nominees (grades 9-12)
Aristotle & Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Ari is a sad and angry young man when he meets Dante at the local pool, Dante – who is open and happy and expressive where Ari is closed off, Dante – with whom he has so much in common, but who is still so different. Can Dante help Ari better know himself?
Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick
Leonard has a plan laid out for his 18th birthday: say good-bye to the four people closest to him, murder his former best friend, and commit suicide. As he makes his rounds, is there anyone who will take note of Leonard’s odd behavior before it is too late?
If You Find Me by Emily Murdoch
15-year-old Carey barely remembers a time when she lived in a real house instead of an old camper hidden in a large forest. She takes care of her mute younger sister Jenessa as he mentally ill mother disappears for longer and longer periods of time. One day a social worker shows up to return her to the father she has only ever been warned against, and she is thrown into a new life of high school and regular life. Will Carey and Jenessa adjust and speak the truth of what happened in the woods?
The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gamian
This atmospheric fable follows a man’s 40-year flashback to a time in his youth when a tragedy set off a chain of events that forced him to face a dark, mysterious, and deadly force. The boy-without-a-name is aided by strange companions to save his family from an evil that has taken over his house.
Out of Nowhere by Maria Padian
Soccer captain and high school senior, Tom Bouchard can do no wrong – until he does. Out of nowhere, a night of shenanigans with his best friend changes everything. His once middle-of-the-road existence takes one messy turn after another. Facing the consequences of his actions leads him to finally see the struggles of his best friend’s addiction, his girlfriend’s bigotry, and the plight of the new Somali immigrants who have flooded his small Maine town. Now he must choose a side as tension rises among his family, his town, and his heart.
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
In 2044, real life is so miserable that everyone lives in OASIS, the virtual reality created by James Halliday. When Halliday died, he left a massive puzzle built into OASIS: solve the puzzle and you inherit his fortune. Enter Wade Wyatt, the 18-year-old gamer who solves part one first – and winds up with a bull’s-eye on his back. He’s got to solve the rest of the puzzle before he’s taken out of the game – permanently.
Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay
After a brutal, random attack, Nastya Kashnikov finds her identity stolen. She used to be a “good” girl well on her way to becoming a concert pianist; now she’s silent and angry, and has withdrawn from the world. In an attempt to help her recover, Nastya’s parents send her to live with her aunt and get a fresh start in a new school. Here, she meets Josh, who has lost everyone he loves and keeps everyone else at a distance. Is it possible for people to be too damaged to truly reconnect with the world?
This Song Will Save Your Life by Lelia Sales
Elise has never been part of the popular crowd, despite her best efforts. A chance encounter at an underground club teaches Elise about friendship, romance, and awakens a love of music that gives her the confidence to embrace the unique person she’s become.
Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan
Harry and Craig, two 17-year-old ex-boyfriends, are about to attempt a new Guinness World Record – a 32 hour marathon of kissing. Filmed and broadcast live, the two boys quickly take center stage in the lives of other teen boys dealing with their own issues of love, identity, and belonging.
Winger by Andrew Smith
Ryan Dean West, aka Winger, is a rugby player at a private boarding school who lives in the dorm for troublemakers, is in love with his best friend Annie, and manages to anger just about everyone as he navigates through his sophomore year. Winger gets by using his intelligence and humor, but can he keep it together when tragedy strikes?