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Friday, March 23, 2012

Minnesota Book Awards

The 24th annual Minnesota Book Awards will be announced at an evening event on Saturday, April 14, 2012
The awards were created over two decades ago by Friends of the St. Paul Public Library.  Books created by writers, illustrators or book artists who are Minnesotans are eligible for the award.  Each year, 24 preliminary judges narrow each of the eight categories to four books.  Another round of judges decides the final winner in each category.  The different categories are:
Children's Literature, General Nonfiction, Genre Fiction, Memoir and Creative Nonfiction, Minnesota, Novel and Short Story, Poetry, and Young People's Literature.  Check out the finalists for this years awards
I have been a judge for the past five years; twice in the novel and short story, once in memoir and creative nonfiction, and twice in the Minnesota category.  As a preliminary judge, I received books in the late fall and met with the other judges at the end of January to narrow the books to four.  There are usually 25 - 35 books per category.
As a final judge, I have read four books during the month of February, and met in the beginning of March to pick the finalist.  It is exciting to be a judge and see the variety of books written or illustrated by Minnesotans.  As a librarian, I have enjoyed adding some of these books to our Northfield collection for others to read.
Look at the list of finalists for this year and years past.  How many have you read?

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