You guys, I'm ashamed. For four years now, there has been an entire YA award out there, given by an organization I used to pay money to belong to, and I had never even heard of it until today.
It turns out that ALAN, the Assembly on Literature for Adolescents, has something called the Amelia Elizabeth Walden Book Award, and the 2011 winner has just been announced:
The Last Summer of the Death Warriors, Francisco X. Stork (yay!)
And here are the other finalists:
After Ever After, Jordan Sonnenblick
I Will Save You, Matt de la Peña
Sorta Like a Rock Star, Matthew QuickWolves, Boys, & Other Things That Might Kill Me, Kristen Chandler
So the criteria for the award is not just good literature, but a book "demonstrating a positive approach to life, widespread teen appeal, and literary merit." I'm not sure how I feel about that positive approach to life business, but I bet the Wall Street Journal would be happy...
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