Excellence in Nonfiction

Excellence in Nonfiction

The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) Award for Excellence in Nonfiction honors the best nonfiction book published for young adults (ages 12-18).

Award Web Site: YALSA's Award for Excellence in Nonfiction

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Author: Steve Sheinkin
2013 Excellence in Nonfiction - Winner

Recounts the scientific discoveries that enabled atom splitting, the military intelligence operations that occurred in rival countries, and the work of brilliant scientists hidden at Los Alamos.

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Author: PhillipvM. Hoose
2013 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

Documents the survival tale of an intrepid shorebird who has endured annual migrations between Argentina and the Canadian Arctic throughout the course of a long lifetime while his species continues to decline.

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Author: Karen Blumenthal
2013 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

From the start, his path was never predictable. Steve Jobs was given up for adoption at birth, dropped out of college after one semester, and at the age of twenty, created Apple in his parents' garage with his friend Steve Wozniack. Then came the core and hallmark of his genius--his exacting moderation for perfection, his counterculture life approach, and his level of taste and style that pushed all boundaries. A devoted husband, father, and Buddhist, he battled cancer for over a decade, became the ultimate CEO, and made the world want every product he touched.--Publisher.

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Author: Deborah Hopkinson
2013 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

Tells the tale of the sinking of the Titanic using the narratives of the witnesses and survivorsto the disaster.

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Author: Cynthia Levinson
2013 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

Discusses the events of the 4,000 African American students who marched to jail to secure their freedom in May 1963.

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Author: Steve Sheinkin
2012 Excellence in Nonfiction - Winner
An introduction to the life of Benedict Arnold that highlights not only the traitorous actions that made him legendary, but also his heroic involvement in the American Revolution.
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Author: Karen Blumenthal
2012 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

It began with the best of intentions. Worried about the effects of alcohol on American families, mothers and civic leaders started a movement to outlaw drinking in public places. Over time, their protests, petitions, and activism paid off--when a Constitional Amendment banning the sale and consumption of alcohol was ratified, it was hailed as the end of public drunkenness, alcoholism, and a host of other social ills related to booze. Instead, it began a decade of lawlessness, when children smuggled (and drank) illegal alcohol, the most upright citizens casually broke the law, and a host of notorious gangsters entered the public eye. Filled with period art and photographs, anecdotes, and portraits of unique characters from the era, this fascinating book looks at the rise and fall of the disastrous social experiment known as Prohibition.

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Author: Susan Goldman Rubin
2012 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

Beginning with Lenny's childhood in Boston and ending with his triumphant conducting debut at Carnegie Hall with the New York Philharmonic when he was just twenty-five, Music Was IT draws readers into the energetic, passionate, challenging music-filled life of young Leonard Bernstein.

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Author: Marc Aronson
2012 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

When this award-winning husband-and-wife team discovered that they each had sugar in their family history, they were inspired to trace the globe-spanning story of the sweet substance and to seek out the voices of those who led bitter sugar lives. The trail ran like a bright band from religious ceremonies in India to Europe's Middle Ages, then on to Columbus, who brought the first cane cuttings to the Americas. Sugar was the substance that drove the bloody slave trade and caused the loss of countless lives but it also planted the seeds of revolution that led to freedom in the American colonies, Haiti, and France. With songs, oral histories, maps, and over 80 archival illustrations, here is the story of how one product allows us to see the grand currents of world history in new ways.

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Author: Sue Macy
2012 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

Take a lively look at women's history from aboard a bicycle, which granted females the freedom of mobility and helped empower women's liberation.

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Author: Ann Angel
2011 Excellence in Nonfiction - Winner

Forty years after her death, Janis Joplin remains among the most compelling and influential figures in rock history. Her story is one of a girl who struggled against rules and limitations, yet worked diligently to improve as a singer.

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Author: Jill Rubalcaba
2011 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

When did language begin? How did early humans populate the globe? By looking closely at four of the most significant hominins ever discovered, the authors explain how Turkana Boy, Lapedo Child, Kennewick Man, and Iceman have influenced debates about the nature of the earliest members of the family Hominidae.

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Author: Rick Bowers
2011 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

In the 1950s and 1960s, the Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission compiled secret files on more than 87,000 private citizens in the most extensive state spying program in U.S. history. Its mission: to save segregation.

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Author: Paul B. Janeczko
2011 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

From clothesline codes to surveillance satellites and cyber espionage, Janeczko uncovers two centuries' worth of true spy stories in U.S. history.

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Author: Susan Campbell Bartoletti
2011 Excellence in Nonfiction - Honor

Boys, let us get up a club. With those words, six restless young men raided the linens at a friend's mansion, pulled pillowcases over their heads, hopped on horses, and cavorted through the streets of Pulaski, Tennessee. The six friends named their club the Ku Klux Klan, and, all too quickly, their club grew into the self-proclaimed Invisible Empire with secret dens spread across the South. This is the story of how a secret terrorist group took root in America's democracy. Filled with chilling and vivid personal accounts unearthed from oral histories, congressional documents, and diaries, it is a book to read and remember.