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Kern County Library Staff Suggests...: California Young Reader Medal 2008 Winners

Friday, January 2, 2009

California Young Reader Medal 2008 Winners

The California Young Reader Medal program encourages recreational reading of popular literature among the young people of our state. Since its inception in 1974, millions of California children have nominated, read, and voted for the winners of the California Young Reader Medal. See the California Young Reader Medal official website for more information about the award and past winners.

2008 Winners

Primary: Dex: The Heart of a Hero (originally published as Superdog: The Heart of a Hero) by Caralyn Buehner, illustrated by Mark Buehner - Tired of being overlooked because he is so small, a big-hearted dog named Dexter transforms himself into a superhero.

Intermediate: Each Little Bird That Sings by Deborah Wiles - Comfort Snowberger is well acquainted with death since her family runs the funeral parlor in town, but the ten-year-old is unprepared for the series of heart-wrenching events that begins with the sudden death of her beloved great-aunt.

Middle School / Junior High: The Schwa Was Here by Neal Shusterman - A Brooklyn eighth-grader nicknamed Antsy befriends the Schwa, an "invisible-ish" boy who is tired of blending into his surroundings and going unnoticed by nearly everyone. Anthony, also known as "Antsy," is fascinated by "The Schwa Effect"--the fact that no one ever sees Calvin Schwa. Even when acting weird and dressed like a total freak, The Schwa is only barely noticed. The two boys form a partnership and get away with all kinds of mischief, from conducting experiments at school to confounding opponents on the basketball court. When The Schwa senses that even Antsy is beginning to lose sight of him, he vows to do something that will make him so visible, no one will ever forget him. Any kid who's ever felt unnoticed will identify with Schwa and Antsy and their quest for notoriety.

Young Adult: Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo - When Thomas Peaceful's older brother is forced to join the British Army, Thomas decides to sign up as well, although he is only fourteen years old, to prove himself to his country, his family, his childhood love, Molly, and himself.

Picture Books for Older Readers: Mr. Maxwell's Mouse by Frank Asch - School Library Journal: "A clever game of cat and mouse is presented with delicious humor by this father/son team."


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