Past Nominees

2021 Nominees

Upper Elementary Division (grades 3-5):
Bob by Wendy Mass and Rebecca Stead and Nicholas Gannon
Cardboard Kingdom by Chad Sell
Dragons in a Bag by Zetta Elliott
Front Desk by Kelly Yang
Knights vs. Dinosaurs by Matt Phelan
Louisiana’s Way Home by Kate DiCamillo
Out of Left Field by Ellen Klages
Thirty Minutes Over Oregon: A Japanese Pilot’s World War II Story by Marc Tyler Nobleman and Melissa Iwai

Middle School Division (grades 6-8):
Be Prepared by Vera Brosgol
Escape from Aleppo by N.H. Senzai
Ghost Boys by Jewell Parker Rhodes
The Last by Katherine Applegate
The Night Diary by Veera Hiranandani
No Fixed Address by Susin Nielsen
Sunny by Jason Reynolds
Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier

High School Division (grades 9-12):
Darius the Great Is Not Okay by Adib Khorram
Dread Nation by Justina Ireland
Dry by Neal Shusterman and Jarrod Shusterman
Emergency Contact by Mary H.K. Choi
The Faithful Spy: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the Plot to Kill Hitler by John Hendrix
A Heart in a Body in the World by Deb Caletti
Hey, Kiddo by Jarrett J. Krosoczka
The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo


2020 Nominees

Upper Elementary Division (grades 3-5):
Amina’s Voice by Hena Khan
Her Right Foot by Dave Eggers and Shawn Harris
I’m Just No Good at Rhyming and Other Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-ups by Chris Harris and Lane Smith
The Losers Club by Andrew Clements
Spirit Hunters by Ellen Oh
Stef Soto, Taco Queen, by Jennifer Torres
The Vanderbeekers of 141st Street by Karina Yan Glaser
Wishtree by Katherine Applegate

Middle School Division (grades 6-8):
All’s Faire in Middle School by Victoria Jamieson
Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk
Frogkisser! by Garth Nix
One Trick Pony by Nathan Hale
Podkin One-Ear by Kieran Larwood
Refugee by Alan Gratz
Restart by Gordon Korman
Scar Island by Dan Gemeinhart

High School Division (grades 9-12):
The 57 Bus by Dashka Slater
The Epic Crush of Genie Lo by F.C. Yee
Far From the Tree by Robin Benway
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner
Long Way
Down by Jason Reynolds
Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu
They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera


2019 Nominees

Upper Elementary Division (grades 3-5):
The Wild Robot by Peter Brown
Some Kind of Courage by Dan Gemeinhart
Garvey’s Choice by Nikki Grimes
Full of Beans by Jennifer Holm
Compass South by Hope Larson
The Turn of the Tide by Rosanne Parry
The Best Man by Richard Peck
Two Naomis by Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich and Audrey Vernick

Middle School Division (grades 6-8):
Booked by Kwame Alexander
The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill
My Seventh Grade Life in Tights by Brooks Benjamin
Nameless City by Faith Erin Hicks
The Seventh Wish by Kate Messner
Ghost by Jason Reynolds
Darkstalker by Tui T. Sutherland
Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

High School Division (grades 9-12):
The Reader by Traci Chee
Burn Baby Burn by Meg Medina
If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo
Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
Scythe by Neal Shusterman
Paper Girls, Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughan
The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner


2018 Nominees

Upper Elementary Division (Grades 3-5)
The Terrible Two
by Mac Barnett and Jory John
Circus Mirandus
by Cassie Beasley
My Near-Death Adventures (99% True!)
by Alison DeCamp
Stella by Starlight
by Sharon M. Draper
by Alex Gino
Fish In a Tree
by Lynda Mullaly Hunt
Roller Girl
by Victoria Jamieson
Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer
by Kelly Jones

Middle School Division (Grades 6-8)
The War That Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley
Lost in the Sun
by Lisa Graff
Full Cicada Moon
by Marilyn Hilton
The Boys Who Challenged Hitler
by Phillip Hoose
Listen, Slowly
by Thanhha Lai
The Nest
by Kenneth Oppel
Orbiting Jupiter
by Gary D. Schmidt
Lumberjanes, Vol. 1: Beware the Kitten Holy
by Noelle Stevenson

High School Division (Grades 9-12)
The Wrath and the Dawn
by Renee Ahdieh
The Game of Love and Death
by Martha Brockenbrough
The Weight of Feathers
by Anna-Marie McLemore
by Julie Murphy
All American Boys
by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely
More Happy Than Not
by Adam Silvera
by Noelle Stevenson
Everything, Everything
by Nicola Yoon


2017 Nominees

Upper Elementary Division (Grades 3-5)
El Deafo by Cece Bell
The Madman of Piney Woods by Christopher Paul Curtis
Under the Egg by Laura Marx Fitzgerald
By the Grace of Todd by Louise Galveston
Operation Bunny by Sally Gardner
Gabriel Finley and the Raven’s Riddle by George Hagen
A Snicker of Magic by Natalie Lloyd
Hook’s Revenge by Heidi Schulz

Middle School Division (Grades 6-8)
The Crossover by Kwame Alexander
The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier
The Fourteenth Goldfish by Jennifer L. Holm
The Great Greene Heist by Varian Johnson
Egg and Spoon by Gregory Maguire
Greenglass House by Kate Milford
The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel
Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson

High School Division (Grades 9-12)
Through the Woods by Emily Carroll
Girls Like Us by Gail Giles
The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim by E.K. Johnston
We Were Liars by E. Lockhart
How It Went Down by Kekla Magoon
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero
Jackaby by William Ritter


2016 Nominees

Upper Elementary Division
True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp by Kathi Appelt
Jinx by Sage Blackwood
Flora & Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo
Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein
A Tangle of Knots by Lisa Graff
Donner Dinner Party by Nathan Hale
Mountain Dog by Margarita Engle
Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell

Middle School Division
Serafina’s Promise by Ann E. Burg
Etiquette & Espionage by Gail Carriger
Etched in Clay: The Life of Dave, Enslaved Potter and Poet by Andrea Cheng
Delilah Dirk and the Turkish Lieutenant by Tony Cliff
Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan
The Great Trouble: A Mystery of London, the Blue Death, and A Boy Called Eel by Deborah Hopkinson
One Came Home by Amy Timberlake
Brotherhood by Anne Westrick

High School Division
The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black
The Boys in the Boat:Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics by Daniel James Brown
The Living by Matt de la Pena
The Summer Prince by Alaya Dawn Johnson
Reality Boy by A.S. King
More Than This by Patrick Ness
Midwinterblood by Marcus Sedgwick
All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill


2015 ORCA Nominees

Upper Elementary Division
Cardboard by Doug TenNapel
Chomp by Carl Hiaason
The One and Only Ivan 
by Katherine Applegate
Splendors and Glooms by Laura Amy Schlitz
Starry River of the Sky by Grace Lin
Summer of the Gypsy Moths by Sara Pennypacker
Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage
Who Could That Be At This Hour? 
by Lemony Snicket

Middle School Division
Beyond Courage: The Untold Story of Jewish Resistance During the Holocaust by Doreen Rappaport
Colin Fischer by Ashley Edward Miller & Zack Stentz
The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen
Keeper of the Lost Cities by Shannon Messenger
The Lions of Little Rock by Kristin Sims Levine
by Marissa Burt
Titanic: Voices from the Disaster by Deborah Hopkinson
Ungifted by Gordon Korman

High School Division
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
by Marissa Meyer
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth E. Wein
Dodger by Terry Pratchett
Endangered by Eliot Schrefer
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman


2014 ORCA Nominees

Upper Elementary Division
Abe Lincoln at Last! by Mary Pope Osborne
The Emerald Atlas  by John Stephens|
Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai
Liesl & Po by Lauren Oliver
Pie by Sarah Weeks
Vanishing Acts by Phillip Margolin and Ami Margolin Rome
Young Fredle by Cynthia Voigt
Zita the Spacegirl: Far from Home by Ben Hatke

Middle School Division
Amelia Lost: The Life and Disappearance of Amelia Earhart by Candace Fleming
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys
Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos
Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson
A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
The Mostly True Story of Jack by Kelly Regan Barnhill
Okay for Now by Gary D. Schmidt
Wildwood by Colin Meloy

High School Division
Anya’s Ghost by Vera Brosgol
Au Revoir, Crazy European Chick by Joe Schreiber
Beauty Queens by Libba Bray
The Berlin Boxing Club by Robert Sharenow
Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Everybody Sees the Ants by A. S. King
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

2013 ORCA Nominees
Hereville:  How Mirka Got Her Sword by Barry Deutsch
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place: the Mysterious Howling by Maryrose Wood
Jimi Sounds Like a Rainbow by Gary Golio
Meanwhile: Pick any Path, 3,856 Story Possibilities by Jason Shiga
Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool
One Crazy Summer by Rita Williams-Garciaotes
The Strange Case of Origami Yoda by Tom Angleberger
Turtle in Paradise by Jennifer Holm

Countdown by Deborah Wiles
Fever Crumb by Philip Reeve
Foiled by Jane Yolen
The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman
Heart of a Samurai by Margi Preus
The Red Umbrella by Christina Gonzalez
Smile by Raina Telgemeier
A Tale Dark and Grimm by Adam Gidwitz

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
For the Win by Cory Doctorow
Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King
Ship Breaker by Paolo Bacigalupi
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green & David Levithan

2012 ORCA Nominees
JUNIOR DIVISION (4th – 6th grade)
The Day-Glo Brothers
 by Chris Barton
N.E.R.D.S by Michael Buckley
The Magician’s Elephant by Kate DiCamillo
Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman
Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin
11 Birthdays by Wendy Mass (winner)
Heart of a Shepherd by Rosanne Perry
The Storm in the Barn by Matt Phelan

North of Beautiful by Justina Chen Headley
Scat by Carl Hiaasen
Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Phillip Hoose
The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate by Jacqueline Kelly
The Carbon Diaries, 2015 by Saci Lloyd
Notes from the Dog by Gary Paulsen
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead (winner)
Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld

SENIOR DIVISION (10th – 12th grade)
Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson
Tales of the Madman Underground by John Barnes
The Maze Runner by James Dashner (winner)
If I Stay by Gayle Forman
Love is the Higher Law by David Levithan
Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco X. Stork
Lips Touch: Three Times by Laini Taylor
The Monstrumologist by Richard Yancey

2011 ORCA Nominees
JUNIOR DIVISION (4th – 6th grade)
Masterpiece by Elise Broach
Found: Book 1 of Missing Series by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Rapunzel’s Revenge by Shannon & Dean Hale
The Stonekeeper: Amulet 1 by Kazu Kibuishi (winner)
Savvy by Ingrid Law
Alvin Ho: Allergic to Girls, School, and Other Scary Things by Lenore Look
The Willoughbys by Lois Lowry
Knucklehead by Jon Scieszka

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson
Heck: Where the Bad Kids Go by Dale Basye
Waiting for Normal by Leslie Connor
London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
Nation by Terry Pratchett
Elephant Run by Roland Smith (winner)
After Tupac and D Foster by Jacqueline Woodson

SENIOR DIVISION (10th – 12th grade)
Graceling by Kristin Cashore
Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (winner)
Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
Paper Towns by John Green
Dark Dude by Oscar Hijuelos
The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart
Sunrise Over Fallujah by Walter Dean Myers
The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson


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