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Litchfield MN 55355

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Friday, May 6, 2011

Minnesota Book Awards 2011

by Beth Cronk, Litchfield head librarian

The Friends of the St. Paul Public Library announced the winners of the 2011 Minnesota Book Awards on April 17th. We have many of them available to check out at the Litchfield Public Library.

My Heart is Like a Zoo by Michael Hall won the award for children’s literature. This is a brightly-colored picture book in which the animals are made from heart shapes. It covers emotions, shapes, and colors, in addition to animals. We have this book in our picture book section.

The award for genre fiction went to Wendy Webb for her novel The Tale of Halcyon Crane. It’s been praised as a creepy, modern gothic novel that readers can’t put down. A copy has been ordered for our library, and it’s currently available to order from another library in Pioneerland.

Another winner we’ve ordered is Carrier: Untangling the Danger in My DNA by Bonnie J. Rough. It won in the memoir and creative non-fiction category. Rough writes about her experience as a carrier of a rare genetic condition as she and her husband consider having a baby and as she researches her family’s experience with the disease. The “creative” part of her non-fiction comes in writing in the voices of her mother and her late grandfather, one a carrier and one a sufferer of hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia.

The Minnesota Award goes to a non-fiction book on Minnesota history, nature, social customs or nostalgia. This year’s winner is North County: The Making of Minnesota, by Mary Lethert Wingerd. It’s described as a comprehensive look at how this area became the state of Minnesota. We have this book in the collection, but it’s frequently checked out. We can help you request it if you don’t find it on the shelf when you stop in.

The award for young adult fiction went to Blank Confession by Pete Hautman. This realistic fiction novel covers bullying and drug dealing with what has been described by reviewers as a simple but gripping story with good character development. Hautman is a past winner of the National Book Award. You’ll find this book in our young adult hardcover section.

We have some of the other nominees for the Minnesota Book Awards available in our library, as well. A Night on the Range by Aaron Frisch was nominated for the children’s literature award. This picture book shows the imaginative cowboy adventures of a little boy and his dog when they camp out in the back yard.

The Assassination of Hole in the Day by Anton Treuer is a non-fiction book for adults on Ojibwe culture and tradition and the events leading up to the 1868 killing of an Ojibwe leader by his own people. Treuer is a professor of Ojibwe at Bemidji State University.

Silencing Sam is a mystery by Julie Kramer. It’s the third book in the series which includes Stalking Susan and Missing Mark. Television reporter Riley Spartz is a suspect in the murder of a gossip columnist in the Twin Cities and secretly investigates the case. Kramer is a past Minnesota Book Award winner and freelance news producer who made an appearance at the Dassel Library as part of our Pioneerland authors tour last year.

If you’d like to check out these honored books written and/or illustrated by Minnesotans, stop in at our library and we’ll be glad to help you find them.