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A Chair, A Fireplace & a Tea Cozy
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YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Winner

The winner for YALSA’s Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults was announced at Midwinter!

YALSA 300x213 YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction Winner

The winner:

The Nazi Hunters: How a Team of Spies and Survivors Captured the World’s Most Notorious Nazi by Neal Bascomb. From my review: “In 1960, a group of Israeli spies and operatives captured the Nazi fugitive, Adolf Eichmann. Eichmann had been in charge of “Jewish affairs,” the head of operations for the Final Solution. In the chaos of the aftermath of World War II, he had disappeared. The Nazi Hunters traces the rumors of Eichmann being in Argentina; the steps to investigate whether the old man living in a small house is, indeed, the man responsible for the death of millions of men, women, and children. And, then, what was involved in Israel sending in a team to capture Eichmann and get him back to Israel for a trial.

Finalists:

Go: A Kidd’s Guide to Graphic Design by Chip Kidd. From my review: ”A book about graphic design, designed in such a way to both show and tell what graphic design is. To be honest, the nonfiction titles on the YALSA Nonfiction Finalist that are about history are ones that I would want to read anyway. One thing I like about my self-imposed challenge to read all the titles on the list is it pushes me to read outside my typical scope of interests. GO is terrific. I love how Kidd both tells the reader what graphic design is, but also shows it, using pictures, fonts, and other design features.

Imprisoned: The Betrayal of Japanese Americans During World War II by Martin W. Sandler. From my review: “I was familiar with the general story of the Japanese American internment camps. Mostly, I admit, from a line or two in history class, and books and movies. Imprisoned shares all the details, the years of prejudices and fears that led to politicians and others believing, without any proof, that Japanese American citizens, of all ages, were a significant military threat justifying their imprisonment. And, because of the nature of the imprisonment, it was also the loss of property and homes and businesses that had to be left behind or sold at a loss; it was the nature of the imprisonment; the loss of freedom, the humiliation.”

Courage Has No Color: The True Story of the Triple Nickles, America’s First Black Paratroopers by Tanya Lee Stone. From my review: ”During World War II, the US Armed Forces were segregated. This discrimination also included what roles African American men were, and weren’t, allowed. Combat? No. Cleaning? Yes. Courage Has No Color is the story of one group of men who challenged and helped change the status quo: the 555th Parachute Infantry Battalion, the “Triple Nickles.” What is courage? What is strength? Perhaps it is being ready to fight for your nation even when your nation isn’t ready to fight for you.

The President Has Been Shot! The Assassination of John F. Kennedy by James L. Swanson. From my review: The past November — the 50th anniversary of the assassination of JFK — I watched a lot of specials and documentaries about Kennedy, his life, his presidency, his death, the assassination, the aftermath. While “where were you when Kennedy was shot” is a defining question for the generation before mine, a moment of cultural unity, a loss of innocence. For the rest of us, it’s a story. A story known from fragments, here and there: a short home video; a handful of photographs; names and moments, recognized before they were understood or comprehended.

 

 

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About Elizabeth Burns

Looking for a place to talk about young adult books? Pull up a chair, have a cup of tea, and let's chat. I am a New Jersey librarian. My opinions do not reflect those of my employer, SLJ, YALSA, or anyone else. On Twitter I'm @LizB; my email is lizzy.burns@gmail.com.

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