Tuesday, November 22, 2011

White Pine Award Fiction Nominees 2012

The White Pine Award Fiction and Non-Fiction Nominees have arrived.

Ashes, Ashes 
Jo Treggiari
Scholastic Canada

In Lucy’s world, the elements and a pandemic have conspired to take out 99% of the population.  For the people who are left, the world has become a frightening place where only the strong and resourceful survive.  The sole survivor of her family, Lucy lives on her own until a tsunami destroys her shelter.   After a stranger named Aidan helps her out, Lucy's attraction to him leads her to give up being alone and to join his community.  When strange people come after Lucy for mysterious reasons, however, being part of that community proves to be both a blessing and a curse.

Beat the Band

Don Calame
Candlewick Press

In Beat the Band, the sequel to Swim the Fly, Cooper, Matt and Sean are entering their sophomore year at high school.  Cooper’s goal is to hook up with the girl of his dreams, but when he’s paired with the school nightmare he must convince the rest of the student body he is cool.  He forms a band with his buddies and despite being less than talented they enter the Battle of the Bands competition.  What follows is pure hilarity and is sure to make you laugh out loud.

Blood Red Road

Moira Young
Random House Canada/Doubleday Canada

When the person Saba cares for most in the world is taken from her, acceptance is not an option.  Saba’s single-minded determination drives her in pursuit of her twin brother Lugh’s captors through a post-apocalyptic world: across the desert, through cage fighting in Hopetown and past the hellwurms that stand in her way.   Her brash, independent spirit is challenged when she is joined by others in her quest, especially Jack, her potential soul mate (if she doesn’t kill him first).

Chance to Dance for You 

Gail Sidonie Sobat
Great Plains Publications

Sometimes keeping a secret is harder than telling the truth.
Ian lives in a suburb where everything’s the same. The houses are the same, the cars are the same, and their aspirations are the same. But Ian is different. Openly gay in his bigoted high school, Ian doesn’t exactly fit in. But he’s not worried - he’s been training in dance for a long time and soon he’ll be able to leave town and train to become a professional. Then he falls in love with Jess, the high school quarterback…

Death Benefits

Sarah N. Harvey
Orca Book Publishers

Looking after his ninety-five-year-old grandfather is not what Royce had in mind for his summer vacation.
Royce (aka Rolly) is having a bad year. Not only has his mother dragged him across the country in order to be close to her aged father Arthur, a celebrated cellist, but he's also recovering from mono. When he convinces his mother to let him finish the school year by correspondence, he's left feeling isolated and lonely, and spends his time watching TV and plotting ways to get back to his friends in Nova Scotia. But before his plans can be implemented, his grandfather has a small stroke. Suddenly Arthur needs more care than Royce's mother can provide and, after a couple of hired care aides quit, Royce is pressed into service.
Looking after a ninety-five-year-old—especially one as cantankerous, crafty and stubborn as Arthur—is a challenge. But as Royce gets to know the eccentric old man—who loves the Pussycat Dolls, hates Anderson Cooper and never listens to the kind of music that made him famous—he gradually comes to appreciate that his grandfather's life still has meaning. Even if Arthur himself seems to want it to end.

The Fifth Rule

Don Aker
Harper Trophy Canada/ Harper Collins Publishers

Reef  has totally turned his life around  thanks to his mentor, Frank who helped  him recover from a life changing event. He has moved out west, found a job and also become a role model.

Word comes that Frank has been killed in an accident and Reef returns home to pay his respects. Unfortunately, the trip brings many memories and difficult situations including a reunion with Leeza, the girl he wronged  many years ago.

In just a few days, Reef’s life starts to crumble around  him thanks to misunderstandings and his desire to make things right for Frank.

The Gathering  

Kelley Armstrong
Random House Canada/Doubleday Canada

Maya lives in an idyllic community where all the grown-ups have stable jobs at a nearby medical research company and are well provided for.  But when a local teen dies, the questions that pop up are quickly shut down.  Suddenly Maya’s views of her quaint little community life are shattered as a stranger named Rafe introduces her to a world of doubt and mystery.  Why exactly is their community so closed off?  What happened to the reporter who came to town asking questions no one wanted to answer?  And what do Maya’s paw print birthmark and her uncanny connection to local wildlife have in common?

Motorcycles & Sweetgrass

Drew Hayden Taylor
Random House Canada/Vintage Canada

Things are upside-down in 13 year-old Virgil's life.  First his grandmother dies after an awkward visit from a mysterious stranger, and then his mother Maggie starts dating a white man named John whom Virgil really hates.  Used to being the man of the house, Virgil decides to find his reclusive, eccentric uncle and seek his help in getting John out of his mother's life.  Driving John from Otter Lake proves to be more of a challenge than Virgil expects though, as John and an ancient trickster named Nanabush seem to have a lot in common.

Something Wicked

Lesley Anne Cowan
Puffin Canada/Penguin Group Canada

Sixteen-year-old Melissa’s most recent troubles stem from a secret: her twenty-eight-year-old boyfriend, Michael, has just broken up with her. Even though the relationship is clearly over, Melissa clings to the past, riding a never-ending wave of hope and disappointment. Meaningless sexual escapades, drunken nights, and drug-induced blackouts help her deal with heartbreak, but her pain goes much deeper than her failed relationship. Along with a broken heart, Melissa has to cope with the memories of her younger brother’s death; the non-existent parenting of her insecure, flighty mother; being juggled between social workers and psychologists; and getting kicked out of school and sent to a special program for at-risk youth. So when the cracks in her life threaten to tear her apart, Melissa has to decide whether to keep fighting—or to let go.

The Way It Is

Donalda Reid
Second Story Press

The Way It Is is a historical novel full of serious themes written in powerful descriptive language, a great feat for first time novelist Donalda Reid. It’s about racial discrimination and gender inequality, but also about self-discovery, friendship and love. Set in a small town in the British Columbia interior in the 1960s, the story follows Ellen Manery, an academically gifted and self-isolated fifteen-year old who meets Tony Paul, an eighteen year-old who lives on the reserve and their friendship that might blossom into love.

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