Samurai Shortstop Named ALA Top Ten Book of the Year

>> Thursday, January 25, 2007

Well, it's been a crazy few days here at Gratz Industries. In the midst of everything else, I learned that Samurai Shortstop just made the American Library Association's Best Books for Young Adults list. Not only that, it made the top ten on that list!

This is huge. Massive. Ginormous even!

Check out the other authors and titles on the list:

Anderson, M.T. The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing.

Gratz, Alan. Samurai Shortstop.

Hartnett, Sonya. Surrender.

McCormick, Patricia. Sold.

Sayres, Meghan Nuttall. Anahita’s Woven Riddle.

Smelcer, John. The Trap.

Turner, Megan Whalen. The King of Attolia.

Werlin, Nancy. The Rules of Survival.

Yang, Gene Luen. American Born Chinese.

Zusak, Markus. The Book Thief.

Holy. Crap. Six of those titles were National Book Award finalists or Printz Award winners. That sound you hear is me passing out and hitting the keyboard. I was just hoping Samurai Shortstop made the BIG list of Best Books of the Year! It's an incredible honor just to be an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, let alone make the top ten.

The ALA and its subsidiary YALSA (the Young Adult Library Services Association) have shown Samurai much love already, but this is major. If I weren't already married, I'd be looking at buying a ring. Thanks so much to all the librarians who voted for Samurai and supported it in Seattle this year at ALA, and a very special thanks to this year's BBYA committee members:

Karyn N. Silverman, Chair, Little Red School House and Elisabeth Irwin High School, New York, NY
Rose M. Allen, Mount Prospect Public Library, Mount Prospect, IL
Lynn E. Evarts, Sauk Prairie High School, Prairie du Sac, WI
Ashley Flaherty, Columbus Metropolitan Library, Columbus, OH
Caroline Kienzle, Coppell, TX
Holly Koelling, King County Library System, King County, WA
Jeanette Larson, Austin, TX
Gregory Lum, Jesuit High School, Portland, OR
Rick Orsillo, King County Library System, Shoreline, WA
Sharon Rawlins, New Jersey Library for the Blind and Handicapped, Trenton, NJ
Hollis Rudiger, Cooperative Children’s Book Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
Lynn M. Rutan, West Ottawa Public Schools, Holland, MI
Edward A. Spicer, Michigan Reading Journal, Allegan, MI
Deborah Taylor, Enoch Pratt Free Library, Baltimore, MD
Jennifer Mattson, consultant, Booklist, Chicago, IL
Amy Chow, Administrative Assistant, New York Public Library, New York, NY

The next time you're in Atlanta guys, look me up.
I'll buy you dinner! :-)


Paul January 25, 2007 at 5:09 PM  

Holy freakin' moly! And to think I got to read a first draft of such greatness!!


"e" January 25, 2007 at 5:25 PM  

And well deserved too!!! I'm so happy for you Alan!

SpicyReads March 2, 2007 at 9:31 PM  

I am proud to be one of the (many) enthusiastic BBYA voters for this amazing book. People (not just teens) will be reading and loving this one for years to come. When is BBYA in Atlanta next? I will be reviewing this for the Michigan Reading Journal.

If you are ever in Southwest Michigan, stop by! Congratulations again on a fabulous book.

Ed Spicer

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