“Orphan Island” is the story of nine children who live on an island where one child mysteriously arrives and one child leaves every year. Snyder has written five other middle-grade novels and several picture books.
“Clayton Byrd” is about a boy who loves hanging out with his grandfather and other blues musicians. After Grandpa’s death, Clayton runs away in hopes of joining the band. Williams-Garcia has written 12 children’s books, including National Book Award finalist “One Crazy Summer.”
The two middle-grade novels joined eight young-adult works that are contenders for the National Book Foundation’s annual award. A panel of judges chose the 10 titles and will narrow this list down to five finalists by early October.
The foundation will announce a winner at November’s National Book Awards, which will also honor adult fiction, nonfiction and poetry books.
The long list of nominated books:
●“All the Wind in the World” by Samantha Mabry
●“American Street” by Ibi Zoboi
●“Clayton Byrd Goes Underground” by Rita Williams-Garcia
●“Far from the Tree” by Robin Benway
●“The Hate U Give” by Angie Thomas
●“I Am Not Your Perfect Mexican Daughter” by Erika L. Sánchez
●“Long Way Down” Jason Reynolds
●“Orphan Island” by Laurel Snyder
●“What Girls Are Made of” by Elana K. Arnold
●“You Bring the Distant Near” by Mitali Perkins