Category Archives: young adult fiction

2010 Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award Winner & Finalists Announced

In my recent travels I found this website Get ‘Em Reading about how to get kids to connect to literature by Daria Plumb, a teacher with a  Master’s in Children’s Literature – she says it is never too late to turn a non-reader into a reader that it just takes the right book.  

I not so secretly planned on my children being big readers (couldn’t help it) so I did all the things you are supposed to do, had cozy reading nooks, books (on a rotating schedule) in the bathroom, read to them, in front of them and with them and I got lucky. Daria Plumb’s site is a great resource for parents of reluctant readers and she chaired the ALAN committee  – Assembly on Literature for Adolescents (ALAN) of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) – that chose the Amelia Elizabeth Walden Award finalists and winner.



The Assembly on Literature for Adolescents celebrates Young Adult Literature through a number of awards and recognitions every year.  ALAN’s newest award, The Amelia Elizabeth Walden Book Award, is presented  annually to the author of a title selected by the AEWA Committee comprised of ALAN members.


Amelia Elizabeth Walden was born in New York City on January 15, 1909. She graduated from Columbia University in 1934 and attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. From 1935 to 1945, she taught English and Dramatics at Norwalk High School in Connecticut. She married John William Harmon in 1946. Her first novel, Gateway, was published in 1946. Walden told her editor that she intended the novel for young people who lived at the gateway, on that middle ground between adolescence and adulthood. Walden claimed, “I respond to young people because I remember my own adolescence so vividly – and fondly. It was a period of total involvement, of enjoying life to the hilt.”  Walden wrote over 40 young adult novels.

Here is the winner: and the finalists include:

I am putting these books on my reading list and in my Amazon store.

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Filed under Authors, books, Books and More, Feed your head, soul, self, Finds, mom blogs, young adult fiction

Favorite books for Middle School readers at Pragmatic Mom

What does Capability Mom do all day? She reads, of course. When she is not unstopping the bathroom sink or walking the dog or making dinner or folding laundry or buying groceries or cleaning or paying attention to her blog or her family. I did all of these things today and posted on social media (okay, it was a really, really short post) at CoffeeShopBloggers.

Pragmatic Mom is an amazingly energetic and productive person (and she is sweet and funny, too) who gets more done in a day than I get done in a week. Seriously. She may not even sleep or maybe she does and is just so super bright and efficient… never mind. I grow weary of this hapless comparison. Go to Pragmatic Mom’s site and read her post that I helped out with…

Top 10: Books for Summer Reading (Middle School)

pragmatic mom top 10 books for middle school by capability mom


Filed under library, young adult fiction

Cream puffs, a rainy day and a book

Book Group book

Of all the kids in the seventh grade at Camillo Junior High, there was one kid that Mrs. Baker hated with heat whiter than the sun.  Me.”  So starts the The Wednesday Wars,  a Newberry Honor winner and deservedly so. It is set in 1967 and the hero, Holling Hoodhood (a name if there ever was one), is starting seventh grade and convinced his teacher is out to get him.  It is funny and beautifully written and appeals to young and old alike.  Shakespeare, baseball, acceptance of others and all in one great read.  The cream puffs are there, too, and you will want at least one after this book, maybe two.

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Young Adult Books

Just got a bag of books from fellow mommy blogger and am tearing through them. Why do I love YA fiction? the conflict? the readability? they are like harlequin romance novels – but with better writing and life lessons. You can easily read one a day and the writing is wonderful. Mitali Perkins, Sharon Creech, Kate DiCamillo. Love these.

Recently read: Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko, Heartbeat by Sharon Creech, getting near to baby, by Audrey Couloumbis and Tiger Rising by Kate DiCamillo, The View from Saturday by E.L. Konigsburg and Secret Keeper by Mitali Perkins.

I had loved The Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler as a young reader – just discovered The View from Saturday. Amazing, wonderful book! 

Will post about all later.

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Filed under Books and More, Feed your head, soul, self, young adult fiction