2008 Kentucky Bluegrass Award Master Lists

Master List



Animal Strike at the Zoo: It’s True/By Karma Wilson; Illustrated by Margaret Spengler
HarperCollins Publishers, 2006. $15.99
The zoo animals go on strike until the tears of a disappointed little girl makes them realize that they actually like what they do.
Big Alaska: A Journey Across America’s Most Amazing State/By Debbie S. Miller; Illustrated by Jon Van Zyle
Walker & Company, 2006. $17.95
This large-format book introduces a variety of natural places in Alaska. Miller’s text follows a bald eagle’s flight across Alaska, beginning with Admiralty Island and circling back to the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve.
Good Boy, Fergus!/By David Shannon.
Scholastic: The Blue Sky Press, 2006. $15.99
Fergus is a West Highland terrier who goes wild when he sees a cat, won’t come when he’s called, eats the daisies, and puddles in the wrong places.
Henry’s Freedom Box/By Ellen Levine; Illustrated by Kadir Nelson.
Scholastic Press, 2007. $16.99
Inspired by an actual 1830’s lithograph, this beautifully crafted picture book briefly relates the story of Henry “Box” Brown’s daring escape from slavery. Torn from his mother as a child, and then forcibly separated from his wife and children as an adult, a heartsick and desperate Brown conspired with abolitionists and successfully traveled north to Philadelphia in a packing crate.
John, Paul, George & Ben/By Lane Smith
Hyperion Books for Children, 2006. $16.99
Describing each man in turn as either bold, noisy, honest, clever, or independent, and taking many liberties with the truth, Smith relates how the Founding Fathers of the title – and Jefferson, too – played a part in securing America’s freedom.
Library Lion/By Michelle Knudsen; Illustrated by Kevin Hawkes
Candlewick, 2006. $15.99
Miss Merriweather, the head librarian, is very particular about rules in the library. No running allowed. And you must be quiet. But when a lion comes to the library one day, no one is sure what to do. There aren’t any rules about lions in the library. And, as it turns out, this lion seems very well suited to library visiting. His big feet are quiet on the library floor. He makes a comfy backrest for the children at story hour. And he never roars in the library, at least not anymore. But when something terrible happens, the lion quickly comes to the rescue in the only way he knows how.
Mammoths on the Move/By Lisa Wheeler; Illustrated by Kurt Cyrus
Harcourt, 2006. $16.00
This handsome picture book features a poem about woolly mammoth migration and suitably large-scale illustrations on a series of wide, double-paged spreads. The text describes a group of female mammoths and their young traveling south for the winter, reaching their destination only to turn around and begin their long trek back.
Max’s Words/By Kate Banks; Illustrated by Boris Kulikov
Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2006. $13.60
Max’s brothers have grand collections that everyone makes a big fuss over. Benjamin collects stamps and Karl collects coins, and neither one will share with their little brother. So Max decides to start a collection of his own. He’s going to collect words. He starts with small words that he cuts out of newspapers and magazines, but soon his collection has spilled out into the hall. All the while, his brothers are watching. Benjamin brags that he has one thousand stamps. Karl is just a few coins short of five hundred. But a thousand stamps is really just a bunch of stamps, and a lot of coins is only a help of money. A pile of words, however, can make a story.
Night Boat to Freedom/By Margo Theis Raven; Illustrated by E.B. Lewis
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2006. $16.00
When Granny Judith asks twelve-year-old Christmas John to row Molly, cook’s daughter, across the river from Kentucky to the Free State of Ohio, he’s terrified. Bravely, he begins the first of many journeys. Each time he returns, Granny Judith asks what color clothing his passenger wore, for she’s had a dream-vision and is making a quilt from squares of these “freedom colors.” When there are only two squares left, she tells him, “Dream says we got to get ourselves over the river, 'cause the danger’s gonna grow awful.'
The Perfect Nest/By Catherine Friend; Illustrated by John Manders
Candlewick Press. 2007. $16.99
It’s the perfect read-aloud! A flustered cat is on the verge of crying fowl in a farmyard story that will crack kids up.
Recess at 20 Below/By Cindy Lou Aillaud
Alaska Northwest Books, 2005. $15.95
Through minimal text, a girl describes dressing for an enjoyable recess in Alaska, even when it is 20 degrees below zero.
Ruby and Bubbles/By Rosie Windstead
Dial Books for Young Readers, 2006. $15.99
Ruby discovers how much she means to her pet bird, Bubbles, when he helps her deal with two bullying girls.
Sky Boys: How They Built the Empire State Building/By Deborah Hopkinson; Illustrated by James E. Ransome
Schwartz & Wade Books, 2006. $16.95
In 1931, a boy and his father watch as the world’s tallest building, the Empire State Building, is constructed, step-by-step, near their Manhattan home.
Thelonius Monster’s Sky-high Fly Pie: A Revolting Rhyme/By Judy Sierra; Illustrated by Edward Koren
Random House: Knopf, 2006. $16.95
Judy Sierra’s funny read-aloud romp presents a monster that children will love as he makes a goo-filled crust, lures hundreds and thousands of succulent flies into it, and invites his “disgusting-est” friends and relations to a gala fly-pie party. “How it glistens! and listen – it hums!” shout the ravenous monsters. But just as his guests are about to dig in – the pie flies off. “Bye, bye, fly pie.”
Wolves/By Emily Garvett
Simon & Schuster, 2006. $15.95
This imaginative, cleverly designed story unfolds in a delectable blend of spare text and eloquent multimedia illustrations. A textured welcome mat serves as background for title and publisher information, the pages feel somewhat scratchy, and the wolves are expressively drawn with charcoal pencil. In the story, Rabbit borrows Wolves by Emily Grrrabbit from the West Bucks Public Burrowing Library and leaves with his nose already stuck in the red book. His long wavy ears ooze movement.


Clementine/By Sara Pennypacker
Hyperion Press, 2006. $14.99
While sorting through difficulties in her friendship with her neighbor Margaret, eight-year-old Clementine gains several unique hairstyles while also helping her father in his efforts to banish pigeons from the front of their apartment building.
The Coastwatcher/ By Elise Weston
Peachtree Junior Publications, 2005. $14.95
While eleven-year-old Hugh, his family, and his cousin Tom are spending the summer of 1943 on the South Carolina shore to escape the polio epidemic, Hugh uncovers clues that point to a German plot to sabotage a nearby naval base.
Counting on Grace/By Elizabeth Winthrop
Random House: Wendy Lamb Books, 2006. $15.95
It's 1910 in Pownal, Vermont. At 12 Grace and her best friend Arthur must go to work in the mill, helping their mothers work the looms. Together Grace and Arthur write a secret letter to the Child Labor Board about underage children working in the mill. A few weeks later, Lewis Hine, a famous reformer arrives undercover to gather evidence. Grace meets him and appears in some of his photographs, changing her life forever.
Gabriel’s Horses/By Alison Hart
Peachtree Publishers, 2007. $14.95
In Kentucky, during the Civil War, the twelve-year-old slave Gabriel, contends with a cruel new horse trainer and skirmishes with Confederate soldiers as he pursues his dream of becoming a jockey.
Ghosthunters and the Incredibly Revolting Ghosts/By Cornelia Funke
Chicken House Ltd., 2007. $16.99
A timid boy named Tom reluctantly agrees to help professional ghostbuster Hetty Hyssop dispel an IRG (Incredibly Revolting Ghost) from an old house.
The Invention Of Hugo Cabret/By Brian Selznick
Scholastic Press, 2007. $22.99
When twelve-year-old Hugo, an orphan living and repairing clocks within the walls of a Paris train station in 1931, meets a mysterious toyseller and his goddaughter, his undercover life and his biggest secret are jeopardized.
Ivy & Bean/By Annie Barrows
Chronicle Books, 2007. $5.95
When seven-year-old Bean plays a mean trick on her sister, she finds unexpected support for her antics from Ivy, the new neighbor, who is less boring than Bean first suspected.
Larger Than Life Lara/y Dandi Daley Mackall
Dutton Juvenile, 2006. $16.99
Using the writing techniques she has learned in school, fourth-grader Laney relates how an obese girl new to the class changes the lives of those around her, despite being bullied by her peers.
Lunch Money/By Andrew Clements
Dutton Children’s Books, 2005. $16.99
Twelve-year-old Greg, who has always been good at moneymaking projects, is surprised to find himself teaming up with his lifelong rival, Maura, to create a series of comic books to sell at school.
My Name Is Sally Little Song/By Brenda Woods
Putnam Juvenile, 2006. $15.99
When their owner plans to sell one of them in 1802, twelve-year-old Sally and her family run away from their Georgia plantation to look for both freedom from slavery and a home in Florida with the Seminole Indians.
On Christmas Eve/By Ann M. Martin
Scholastic Press, 2006. $15.99
Eight-year-old Tess is convinced that if she believes and stays aware of the magic around her, she will meet Santa Claus on Christmas Eve of 1958, when she will thank him for his gifts and ask him to use his magic to cure her best friend's father of cancer.
Punished!/By David Lubar
Darby Creek Publishing, 2005. $15.95
Logan and his friend Benedict are playing tag in the library. Logan gets caught when he runs into a mysterious man. When Logan doesn't apologize sincerely, the mysterious gentleman punishes him by causing him to speak in puns. Only finding seven examples each of oxymorons, anagrams and palindromes within the time limits will return Logan to normal.
Sheep/By Valerie Hobbs
Farrar Straus Giroux, 2006. $15.95
After a fire destroys the farm where he was born, a young border collie acquires a series of owners and learns about life as he seeks a home and longs to fulfill his life’s purpose of shepherding sheep.
Toys Go Out: Being the Adventures of a Knowledgeable Sting Ray, a Toughy Little Buffalo, and Someone Called Plastic/By Emily Jenkins
Schwartz & Wade, 2006. $16.95
Six stories relate the adventures of three best friends, who happen to be toys.
Water Street/by Patricia Reilly Giff
Wendy Lamb Books, 2006. $15.95
In the shadow of the construction of the Brooklyn Bridge, eighth-graders and new neighbors Bird Mallon and Thomas Neary make some decisions about what they want to do with their lives.


Alabama Moon/By Watt Keyt
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2006. $16.00
Moon Blake, a strong ten-year-old boy, has hidden out in the Alabama wilderness with his father since birth. When his father dies, Moon is soon caught up in a world he has never been exposed to, becoming property of the government his father has taught him to mistrust. The adventure begins when Moon and his two new friends, Hal and Kit, break out of the state home and head out on a fun-filled roller coaster of laughter and tears.
Archer’s Quest/By Linda Sue Park
Clarion Books, 2006. $16.00
Twelve-year-old Kevin Kim knows something is definitely strange when Chu-mong, a legendary king of Ancient Korea, shows up in his bedroom. Kevin soon finds himself on the magical adventure of his life struggling to help Chu-mong return to his own time.
Blood on the River: Jamestown 1607/By Elisa Carbone
Viking Press, 2006. $16.99
Twelve-year-old Samuel Collier is placed aboard ship as the page to Captain John Smith and sent to the New World. Samuel has never trusted anyone in his young life, and he soon learns that trusting others may be the only thing that will help him survive. Realistic historical fiction recounting the 1607 founding of Jamestown – definitely not the Disney version.
Fairest/By Gail Carson Levine
HarperCollins, 2006. $16.99
In a magical land where beauty and singing are valued above all else, young Aza eventually comes to realize her magical voice outweighs her so-called ordinary appearance. Trouble is on the horizon for Aza, however, when the Evil Queen discovers Aza’s magical powers and wants to steal them away.
Green Glass Sea/By Ellen Klages
Viking Press, 2006. $16.99
Eleven-year-old Dewey Kerrigan is on her way to New Mexico to live with her father who is a famous mathematician. The year is 1943, the world is at war. Dewey is shocked to discover what her father and other famous scientists from around the world are working on – a secret mission called “the gadget.”
Hard Hit/By Ann Turner
Scholastic Press, 2006. $16.99
Mark Warren has the perfect life – starting pitcher on his baseball team, a new girlfriend, a wonderful family. Everything falls apart, however, when Mark’s father is diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Written in poetry, each page is filled with emotion.
Hattie Big Sky/By Kirby Larson
Delacorte Press, 2006. $15.95
Sixteen-year-old orphan, Hattie Brooks, is alarmed to learn that an unknown uncle has left her a homesteading claim in Montana. Despite the many hardships of life on the frontier in 1917, Hattie sets out on her own to face frost, drought and blizzards. Her strong character shines as she struggles to prove a young girl can make her dreams come true.
Life As We Knew It/By Susan Beth Pfeffer
Harcourt, 2006. $17.00
When Miranda first hears the warning that a meteor is headed on a collision path with the moon, like most teenagers, she doesn’t pay any attention. Her disbelief soon turns to fear as the entire world witnesses a lunar impact that knocks the moon closer in orbit, unbelievably altering the earth’s climate – not to mention the behavior of the people around her.
The Miner’s Daughter/By Gretchen Moran Laskas
Simon & Schuster, 2007. $15.99
Sixteen-year-old Willa, living in Depression-era West Virginia, works hard to help her mining family. When her town becomes a community supported by Eleanor Roosevelt’s program, Willa finds an outlet for her writing and experiences love and true friendship. True-to-life historical fiction of a coal-mining town during the Great Depression.
Mysteries of the Mummy Kids/By Kelly Milner Halls
Darby Creek Publishers, 2007. $18.95
This well-written non-fiction book explores mummies from around the world, focusing on mummified children; provides information about their deaths, sites where they were found, and what caused their preservation.
Rules/By Cynthia Lord
Scholastic Press, 2006. $15.99
Twelve-year-old Catherine is sick of putting up with the problems her autistic brother causes for her family. When a new girl moves in next door, Catherine longs for a normal home-life where she can bring friends without outbursts and interruptions. Catherine’s entire outlook on life changes, however, when she becomes friends with a young paraplegic who is also frustrated with his life, helping Catherine see her handicapped brother in a new light.
Runaway/By Wendelin Van Draanen
Alfred A. Knopf, 2006. $15.95
After running away from her fifth foster home, 12-year-old Holly travels across the country keeping a journal of her experiences and struggle to survive.
Semiprecious/By Anne Love
Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2006. $16.95
When their mother runs off to pursue her dream of becoming a country-western singer, 13-year-old Garnet and her sister, Opal, find themselves dumped on an aunt they hardly know in small-town 1960’s Oklahoma. To make matters worse, the girls’ father is seriously injured on a job out of town, and isn’t physically capable of coming to get them. Days turn into months as the girls realize their lives will never be the same again.
The Trap/By John Smelcer
Henry Holt and Company, 2006. $15.95
Seventeen-year-old Johnny Least-Weasel worships his Alaskan Indian grandparents, especially his grandfather, Albert Least-Weasel. When Albert doesn’t return from a hunting trip after several days, Johnny sets out on his trail, hoping to find his beloved grandfather alive. Written in alternating chapters, Johnny and Albert each tell the story of their individual struggles to survive in the Alaskan winter.
Truth and Salsa/By Linda Lowery
Peachtree Publishers, 2006. $14.95
Twelve-year-old Hayley feels her life is falling apart after her parents’ separation. Things definitely get better, however, when Hayley is sent to live with her fun-loving grandmother in Mexico. Surrounded by wonderful townspeople, Hayley soon feels accepted and loved in her new surroundings. Things become strained, however, when immigration laws cause problems for men in their small township.


A Bad Boy Can Be Good For a Girl/By Tanya Lee Stone
Wendy Lamb, 2006. $14.95
Josie, Nicolette, and Aviva all get mixed up with a senior boy who can talk them into doing almost anything he wants. In a blur of high school hormones and personal doubt, each girl struggles with how much to give up and what ultimately to keep for herself.
American Born Chinese/By Gene Yang
First Second, 2006. $16.95
Alternates three interrelated stories about the problems of young Chinese Americans trying to participate in the popular culture. Presented in comic book format.
Astonishing Adventures of Fan Boy and Goth Girl/By Barry Lyga
Houghton Mifflin, 2006. $16.95
A fifteen-year-old "geek" who keeps a list of the high school jocks and others who torment him, and pours his energy into creating a great graphic novel, encounters Kyra, Goth Girl, who helps change his outlook on almost everything, including himself.
The Book Thief/By Marcus Zusak
Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2006.
Trying to make sense of the horrors of World War II, Death relates the story of Liesel--a young German girl whose book-stealing and story-telling talents help sustain her family and the Jewish man they are hiding, as well as their neighbors.
Code Orange/By Caroline B. Cooney
Delacorte, 2005. $15.95
While conducting research for a school paper on smallpox, Mitty finds an envelope containing 100-year-old smallpox scabs and fears that he has infected himself and all of New York City.
Dairy Queen/By Catherine Murdock
Houghton Mifflin, 2006. $16.00
After spending her summer running the family farm and training the quarterback for her school's rival football team, sixteen-year-old D.J. decides to go out for the sport herself, not anticipating the reactions of those around her.
Impulse/By Ellen Hopkins
Margaret K. McElderry, 2007. $16.99
Three teens who meet at Reno, Nevada's Aspen Springs mental hospital after each has attempted suicide connect with each other in a way they never have with their parents or anyone else in their lives.
Knights of the Hill Country/By Tim Tharp
Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2006. $16.95
In his senior year, high school star linebacker Hampton Greene finally begins to think for himself and discovers that he might be interested in more than just football.
La Linea/By Ann Jaramillo
Roaring Brook Press, 2006. $16.95
When fifteen-year-old Miguel's time finally comes to leave his poor Mexican village, cross the border illegally, and join his parents in California, his younger sister's determination to join him soon imperils them both.
Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist/By Rachel Cohn
Random House, 2006.
High school student Nick O'Leary, member of a rock band, meets college-bound Norah Silverberg and asks her to be his girlfriend for five minutes in order to avoid his ex-sweetheart. Strong language makes this title more appropriate for mature readers.
Nineteen Minutes/By Jodi Picoult
Atria, 2007. $26.95
In Sterling, New Hampshire, 17-year-old high school student Peter Houghton has endured years of verbal and physical abuse at the hands of classmates. His best friend, Josie Cormier, succumbed to peer pressure and now hangs out with the popular crowd that often instigates the harassment. One final incident of bullying sends Peter over the edge and leads him to commit an act of violence that forever changes the lives of Sterling's residents.
Peeps/By Scott Westerfeld
Razorbill, 2005. $14.95
Cal Thompson is a carrier of a parasite that causes vampirism, and must hunt down all of the girlfriends he has unknowingly infected.
Saint Iggy/By K. L. Going
Harcourt, 2006. $17.00
Iggy Corso, who lives in city public housing, is caught physically and spiritually between good and bad when he is kicked out of high school, goes searching for his missing mother, and causes his friend to get involved with the same dangerous drug dealer who deals to his parents.
Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood/By Koren Zailckas
Penquin Group, 2006. $31.00
From earliest experimentation to habitual excess to full-blown abuse, twenty-four-year-old Koren Zailckas leads us through her experience of a terrifying trend among young girls, exploring how binge drinking becomes routine, how it becomes "the usual." With the stylistic freshness of a poet and the dramatic gifts of a novelist, Zailckas describes her first sip at fourteen, alcohol poisoning at sixteen, a blacked-out sexual experience at nineteen, total disorientation after waking up in an unfamiliar New York City apartment at twenty-two, when she realized she had to stop, and all the depression, rage, troubled friendships, and sputtering romantic connections in between.
Sold/By Patricia McCormick
Hyperion, 2006. $15.99
Thirteen-year-old Lakshmi leaves her poor mountain home in Nepal thinking that she is to work in the city as a maid only to find that she has been sold into the sex slave trade in India and that there is no hope of escape.

[ « 2007 ] [ 2009 » ]