2015 Nominees: young readers

NIPPER OF DRAYTON HALL by Amey Lewis
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 27, 2015

"Between nipping, yipping, and escaping from alligators, Nipper tells a great story of a long-ago time but of a place that still stands. (Picture book. 5-8)"
A graceful, episodic story set in 1916 about South Carolina's Drayton Hall Plantation, told through the eyes of a lively black-and-white dog, Nipper, who really lived there. Read full book review >
LISTEN TO THE MOON by Michael Morpurgo
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 27, 2015

"A poignant and life-affirming story from a master. (author's notes) (Historical fiction. 10-14)"
War invades a peaceful English fishing community. Read full book review >
THE HOUSE by Christina Lauren
Released: Oct. 27, 2015

"Don't read it at night. (Horror. 12-18)"
A rebellious girl falls for a strange boy who lives in an even stranger house. Read full book review >
THE LIGHTNING QUEEN by Laura Resau
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 27, 2015

"This vibrant, intergenerational tale is nothing short of magical. (Magical realism. 8-13)"
A celebration of grandparents' wisdom, cross-cultural friendship, and the idea that nothing is impossible. Read full book review >
HOW TO SHARE WITH A BEAR by Eric Pinder
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 20, 2015

"Tender and charming. (Picture book. 2-6)"
Thomas makes a cozy cave that attracts a small bear. Read full book review >
THE POWER OF HENRY'S IMAGINATION by Skye Byrne
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 20, 2015

"Choice words and creative visuals combine to celebrate and inspire the mind's eye. (Picture book. 4-7)"
A five-year-old's imagination comes to his rescue when his stuffed rabbit goes missing. Read full book review >
WHAT THE DINOSAURS DID LAST NIGHT by Refe Tuma
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 20, 2015

"The authors may well have created a monster with this deliciously chaotic notion. (Picture book. 6-8)"
For anyone who doubts that plastic dinosaurs come to life and sneak out at night to make household messes, here's photographic evidence. Read full book review >
WILLFUL MACHINES by Tim Floreen
Released: Oct. 20, 2015

"Gothic, gadget-y, gay: a socially conscious sci-fi thriller to shelve between The Terminator and Romeo and Juliet. (Science fiction. 12-17)"
Same-sex dating is tricky when your dad is a right-wing political figure. Then there's that whole robot-fueled terrorist attack thing threatening to directly strike at any second. Read full book review >
ILLUMINAE by Amie Kaufman
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Oct. 20, 2015

"Ambitious, heartbreaking, and out-of-this-world awesome. (Science fiction. 13 & up) "
In the wake of an interstellar incident, a post-mortem dossier comprising interview transcripts, memos, instant-messaging transcripts, diary entries, and more is assembled in this mammoth series opener. Read full book review >
PABLO & JANE AND THE HOT AIR CONTRAPTION by José Domingo
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 20, 2015

"Original art and visually engrossing worlds will have readers visiting this book over and over again.(Graphic adventure. 5-7)"
A duo's blasé afternoon deviates into an unexpected journey crossing dimension and time. Read full book review >
TIPTOE TAPIRS by Hanmin Kim
Kirkus Star
by Hanmin Kim, illustrated by Hanmin Kim, translated by Sera Lee
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 15, 2015

"Exquisite. (Picture book. 3-7)"
Tapir's courage and quiet steps show a leopard how to change his ways and avoid a human hunter. Read full book review >
THE FANTASTIC FERRIS WHEEL by Betsy Harvey Kraft
CHILDREN'S AND TEEN
Released: Oct. 13, 2015

"An absorbing read for young makers and dreamers. (biographical note, sources) (Informational picture book. 5-9)"
Heeding the call to "make big plans" for the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, George Ferris designed—and built—the giant observation wheel that now bears his name. Read full book review >

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ABOUT THE KIRKUS PRIZE

The Kirkus Prize is one of the richest literary awards in the world, with a prize of $50,000 bestowed annually to authors of fiction, nonfiction and young readers’ literature. It was created to celebrate the 81 years of discerning, thoughtful criticism Kirkus Reviews has contributed to both the publishing industry and readers at large. Books that earned the Kirkus Star with publication dates between November 1, 2014, and October 31, 2015 (see FAQ for exceptions), are automatically nominated for the 2015 Kirkus Prize, and the winners will be selected on October 15, 2015, by an esteemed panel composed of nationally respected writers and highly regarded booksellers, librarians and Kirkus critics.