2021 Indie Book Awards Shortlists Announced

The shortlists for the 2021 Indie Book Awards have been announced. The Australian award is selected from titles nominated by independent booksellers from throughout the country. The winners will be announced on March 22nd. Here are the shortlisted titles in the youth categories:


The Grandest Bookshop in the World

The Grandest Bookshop in the World by Amelia Mellor

Hollowpox: The Hunt for Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend

55507471. sx318

The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Dangerous Animals by Sami Bayly

55867695. sx318

Sing Me the Summer by Jane Godwin, illustrated by Alison Lester


Catch Me If I Fall

Catch Me If I Fall by Barry Jonsberg

55176044. sy475

Future Girl by Asphyxia

The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix

54397780. sy475

This One Is Ours by Kate O’Donnell

Long Way Down: The Graphic Novel by Jason Reynolds

Long Way Down: The Graphic Novel by Jason Reynolds, art by Danica Novgorodoff (9781534444959)

The original verse novel by Reynolds won many awards, including a Newbery Honor, Printz Honor and Coretta Scott King Honor. I was hesitant to take a look at the graphic novel version of the book, wondering how it could work. While the graphic novel does not improve the book (because how could it), instead it is like a new jazz version of the original, taking the story and transforming it into something similar but altogether different. This new graphic version is incredible, just as moving, tense and personal as the original.

Readers who may hesitate at picking up a verse novel will find this new version more approachable. Beautifully, Reynold’s wring is intact here, so many of his important lines and statements left to speak directly to the reader. Novgorodoff manages to transform the work with her art. She sweeps the pages with watercolor blues, fills violent parts with blood spattering red, highlights Will on his elevator journey through death and hope using color and light.

Amazing, transformative and fully in honor of the original work. Appropriate for ages 12-16.

Reviewed from copy provided by Atheneum.

News to Wake Your Brain Cells – January 22


2021 Spring Preview: Kids’ books – Quill & Quire

Announcing Lee & Low Books’ 2020 New Voices Award Winner and Honor – The Open Book Blog

Netflix partners with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi for three projects based on his books – The Hollywood Reporter

Obituary: Kathleen Krull – Publishers Weekly

SCBWI Celebrates #OwnVoices “Celebrating Queer Voices” – SCBWI

These books will get your kids out of their reading rut – LifeHacker

Virtual library gives children in England free book access – BBC News


A life already saved: the power librarians hold, a guest post by B. B. Alston – Teen Librarian Toolbox

Milwaukee Public Library facing major budget shortfalls, considering recommendations – Spectrum News


6 YA adaptations coming to Netflix in 2021 – Netflix Life

January 2021 YA book releases – The Nerd Daily

Netflix lands adaptation of YA graphic novel ‘Heartstopper’ – Deadline