Young Reader Award (Ages 6-11)

Bad News for Outlaw: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves, Deputy U.S. Marshal

Written by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson

Illustrated by R. Gregory Christie

Published by Carolrhoda Books

Tales of the Wild West don't get any better than the life and times of Bass Reeves, the first African-American deputy U.S. marshal and the most successful in American history. Vaunda Micheaux Nelson and illustrator R. Gregory Christie bring this fascinating historical figure to life in Bad News for Outlaws, The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves; Deputy U. S. Marshal.

Sitting tall in the saddle, with a wide-brimmed black hat and twin Colt pistols on his belt, Bass Reeves seemed bigger than life. As a U.S. Marshal and former slave who escaped to freedom in the Indian Territories, Bass was cunning and fearless. When a lawbreaker heard Bass Reeves had his warrant, he knew it was the end of the trail, because Bass always got his man, dead or alive. He achieved all this in spite of whites who didn't like the notion of a black lawman.

Bad News for Outlaws reveals the story of a remarkable African American hero of the Old West.

Older Reader Award (Ages 11+)

Marcelo in the Real World

Written by Francisco X. Stork

Published by Arthur A. Levine Books

Marcelo Sandoval, a 17-year-old with an Asperger's-like condition, has arranged a job caring for ponies at his special school's therapeutic-riding stables. But he is forced to exit his comfort zone when his high-powered father steers Marcelo to work in his law firm's mailroom. Marcelo manifests his anomalies: he harbors an obsession with religion; hears "internal" music; and sleeps in a tree house. Readers enter his private world as he navigates the unfamiliar realm of menial tasks and office politics with the ingenuity of a child, his voice never straying from authenticity even as the summer strips away some of his differences. Stork introduces ethical dilemmas, the possibility of love, and other "real world" conflicts, all the while preserving the integrity of his characterizations and intensifying the novel's psychological and emotional stakes.

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