So that is the official header for the Academy Book Awards 2015. Get involved if you want my nominating your own books and linking back to this post so I can see it (or commenting with your nominations). If I get enough responses I’ll have some overall winners! For the list of awards to nominate books for click here.
I’ve tried not to nominate books twice for age groups and genres, so if a book was used in age groups section, I didn’t also use it for the genre section.
- Best Middle Grade Novel (9-12):
This book is about a girl with dyslexia and I connected with it on a deep level, the writing was gorgeous, I loved the relationships between brother and sister, teacher and student that were found in this book. I loved how much emotion it made me feel and how important the story is.
- Best Young Adult Novel:
This book was incredible. The storyline, the characters, the setting, the world development, the relationships, the romance. It was absolutely phenomenal and it was probably my favourite book of the year.
- Best New Adult Novel:
This is actually one of two NA novels I’ve read this year, both of which I didn’t realise were NA until I had started reading them. The other one was unnecessarily sexual and I actually got rid of it, so this obviously has to win. I did, however, really enjoy this and I absolutely loved Rhysand. He’s great!
- Best Adult Novel:
The magic system, characters, social structures and conflicts in this book blew my mind and made me so super enthusiastic to read more of Brandon Sanderson’s work. I love how Sanderson weaves together so many different plot strands- and he does it so beautifully, as well.
GENRES AND TYPES OF BOOKS
- Best Historical Fiction
Okay, well, some people probably wouldn’t consider this historical fiction- it is a picture book and it actually takes place in the present day. However, the book is about a little girl who visits her grandfather, who tells her about immigrating to America through things in matchboxes, so I’m counting it. The artwork in this book is gorgeous and it was a highly enjoyable read!
- Best Contemporary
This book beautifully deals with some incredibly important topics, such as self-acceptance, trust and family. The relationships in this book undergo a lot of development and I felt like the idea was unique and well-structured and the book was wonderfully written.
- Best Classic
I’m kind of cheating with this one as well. I was originally only going to include books that counted towards my goodreads reading challenge (so books I read from June onwards) but I decided that I really did need to include this one, so I broke the rules. I read this book twice this year- once for pleasure and then once for school and I absolutely adore it. I’ve seen multiple dance adaptations as well as film adaptations of this story as well.
- Best Non-Fiction
This is another book I read for school, but more recently in November. We got to pick whichever non-fiction book we wanted and then we had to read it and give a presentation on the structure of the book at the end (which I didn’t do so great on because I ended up analysing content more than layout, but oh well). Anyway, this book talks about a variety of subjects pertaining to the concept of honour and how our ideas of honour change through time. The purpose of the book is to persuade the reader that honour is a modern concept, which I felt Appiah was successful in doing.
- Best Fantasy
This is the second book in the Tearling trilogy (I read book one this year too, but preferred this one). It is a high fantasy series with some really interesting concepts, a science fiction element to it as well, and I really liked the two different POVs in this book- the present day and the one before the Crossing and I love how they were handled. I also really love the characters in this book and the way the drama is dealt with.
(this could also be Queen of Shadows, so consider it a tie)
- Best Science Fiction
This is the last book in the Lunar Chronicles series which I started and finished this year. The reason I picked this book of the series for best science fiction is because I found the science fiction elements of this book the best out of the series and really well developed. Cress was my favourite book in the series, but not for the self-discovery aspects.
- Best General Fiction
This book, I found, was really unique and special. It reminded me a bit of Watership Down by Richard Adams in the way that the author has used issues that the animals actually face and somehow made it possible for me to connect with their issues and identify with them.
- Best Graphic Novel
Well, I kind of only read this one graphic novel this year but it convinced me to read more in the coming year!!!
- Best standalone
This was incredible. It was a retelling of multiple fairytales and I absolutely loved, loved it. I loved the characters, the romance, everything.
- Best series
As I mentioned before, I started and finished this book in the series. I picked this series over the other few series which I started and finished because there was something different I loved about each book. I loved the challenging of social ideas in Cinder, the romance and family in Scarlet, the journey of acceptance and character development in Cress, the depravity of Levanna in Fairest and the complex social dynamics and genetic mutations and tears in Winter. Every book in this series brought something special to the table, which is why I have picked it for this award.
- Best book adaptation (movie or TV)
This might have been better than the book. Enough said.
APPEARANCE DOES MATTER, A BIT
- Book with the best cover typography
I just really like the swirls and the extra drop and the ways there is a line that is almost part of the main curve but isn’t and then the diamond looking things and slightly spiky but very elegant lettering.
- Best title
I just think that the title for this book is really interesting and fits the book really, really well.
- Most Beautiful Book (inside and out)
I couldn’t find a picture of this book without the dust jacket on, but it has the same picture as on the front only with the two people closer together (foreheads touching) and in red and pink and I think it is gorgeous on both layers.
- Best illustrations
I mean, they’re gorgeous. Absolutely stunning.
- Best Cover
I love all of the eye covers for this series, but the flowers in this one are particularly lovely. This book also happens to be my favourite out of the trilogy.
ALL ABOUT THE CHARACTERS
- Character with the best hair
In both The Winner’s Crime and The Winner’s Curse Kestrel has gorgeous hairstyles, but perhaps for longer in The Winner’s Crime (book 2) due to certain circumstances. You can see two examples of her beautiful hair in the pictures above, even if they aren’t the clearest.
- Best side characters (nominate up to two)
I’ve said it before and I’ve said it again, I absolutely love Andalie. I think she balances Kelsea out well and her abilites make her one interesting woman. She makes a wonderful addition to the court and she is such a strong and wise character who is also a wonderful, dedicated mother, which we don’t see enough of in Fantasy.
I felt like Lysandra underwent so much character development in this book and, in the coming books, I think she might even step up and be another protagonist, she was that strong.
- Best dressed characters (nominate up to two)
Before I talk about who I nominated, I want to give a quick honourable mention to Sophia from Rook by Sharon Cameron, who also deserves this award. I also want to point out a running theme here…. both of my winners and my honourable mentions where old-style clothes like ballgowns, capes and tunics…
Aelin wears all sorts of things. From epic battle gear, to sultry night dresses, to draw-dropping ball gowns and fabulous tunics, this girl can dress for anything. She always looks great and I wish I had her wardrobe. The girl on the right is Aelin (not on the left- that is more Manon).
Another ballgown wearing beauty, Kestrel doesn’t have the variety which Aelin has but she definitely has the splendour… and maybe the variety will come in the last book to the trilogy. Both the girl on the cover and in the picture are Kestrel.
- Best protagonists (nominate up to two)
I have a quite few runners up for this one- Rowan (Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas), Lia (The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson), Kelsea (The Invasion of the Tearling by Erika Johansen), Kestrel (The Winner’s Crime by Marie Rutkoski), Aedion (Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas), Renee (Rook by Sharon Cameron), Jude (I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson).
Okay, well this pick is kind of spoilery. Technically, I suppose, some people would say Manon is a side character, but I think that, like Lysandra, she is such a strong character that although she isn’t the main protagonist, she certainly is one of them. Unlike Lysandra, she has her own independent incentives and goals which were much more developed than those of Lysandra, which is why I have awarded her with protagonist status and not just side character. For those who have not finished Queen of Shadows yet might be like ‘but she’s an antagonist!!!’. To them I say- finish the book. Manon is such an interesting and strong character and I find the way she deals with her struggles fascinating.
Sophia is bad ass, stylish and an incredibly interesting person. What I like most about her is how real her fears are, how deep and meaningful and true they are.
- Best antagonists (nominate up to two)
Another award with a runner up (one this time, not seven like the last one) and that is Queen Levanna from Fairest by Marissa Meyer.
I love the protagonist-antagonist relationships in this one and I like how fully rounded and developed the Komizar is, instead of just a flat, stereotypical antagonist. I actually almost feel bad for him at some points in this book.
Voldemort is kind of a classic villain… how could I not include him?
RANDOM IS KEY
- Book with the best acknowledgements
I just, for some reason, really like the acknowledgements for this book.
- Best book in a foreign language (seeing as most books are in English, any book that isn’t english counts)
I’m kind of cheating for this book, seeing as I’ve actually only read half of this book (I am still currently reading it) but the only other non-english book I’ve read this year is a short story which I really didn’t like. In my defence, this book is split in two halves (Part 1 and 2) and I finished Part 1. I just really like the characters in this book and although the conflicts are a bit repetitive and times, which usually annoys me, for some reason it really works in this book.
- Best book under 200 pages
As I mentioned before, this book evoked some connection with me and I found it a very poignant and emotional read.
- Best fandom
Potterheads of course! We will always be the best.
- Best atmosphere and world building
Well, there is certainly a lot of world building in this chunk of a book and I love how it is executed and the world itself is really quite phenomenal and intriguing.
- Most tear-jerking book
I’m pretty sure I have talked about why this book affected me so much before, but I’ll say it again. This book is about dyslexia and my sister has dyslexia and I saw a lot of her struggles in this book, so it really touched me on a deeply personal level and made it seem more real.
- Most unique plot
I loved how morally ambiguous the characters in this book were and the main character, Nimona adds a lot of really original and unique twists on the plot.
- Most complicated plot
Well, this book has an appendix to explain things and at least five different POVs. I think that makes it pretty darn complicated.
- Most memorable book
This book was so unique and its issues felt so real that it has stuck in my mind ever since I read it in June.
- Best book written by more than one author
Technically only Patrick Ness wrote this book, but the idea was conceived by Siobhan Dowd who died before she could write the novel from her plans. This is another beautifully arresting, poignant and special book which deals with really important topics.
- Overall best book
I’ve mentioned why I love elements of this book a few times already, so suffice it to say that I was absolutely blown away by this book.
Well that is it! I think this has been my longest post to date at over 2,500 words. Be sure to nominate your own picks and link back to this post. Let me know whether you think this should be kept individual or if I should collect all of the nominations together and come up with overall winners? You can also comment your nominations below in the comments. Let me know what you think of my picks!!