2023 North Carolina Children's Book Award Nominees

The North Carolina Children's Book Award program is a children's choice program designed to introduce children to current children's literature and to instill a love of reading. The award is sponsored by the North Carolina Library Association's Youth Services Section and supported by school and public librarians across the state.

NCCBA website

Updated December 7, 2022
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Amari and the night brothers
Alston, B. B.
Paper Book
New York Times bestseller! Artemis Fowl meets Men in Black in this exhilarating debut middle grade fantasy, the first in a series filled with #blackgirlmagic. Perfect for fans of Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky, the Percy Jackson series, and Nevermoor. Amari Peters has...
Willodeen
Applegate, Katherine
Paper Book
From #1 New York Times bestseller Katherine Applegate, a singular middle-grade novel about a girl who risks everything to help a handmade creature who comes to life. The earth is old and we are not, and that is all you must remember . . .
I'm Trying to Love Garbage
Barton, Bethany
Paper Book
Children's Choice Award winner Bethany Barton explores the history and future of garbage with tons of humor, fascinating information, and entertaining illustrations. Do you ever wonder where we put all of our garbage, who gets rid of it, or how our planet isn't a big pile of mess...
Rez dogs
Bruchac, Joseph
Paper Book
Renowned author Joseph Bruchac tells a powerful story of a girl who learns more about her Penacook heritage while sheltering in place with her grandparents during the coronavirus pandemic. Malian loves spending time with her grandparents at their home on a Wabanaki reservation...
Nigel and the Moon
Eady, Antwan
Paper Book
From debut author Antwan Eady and artist Gracey Zhang comes a glowing tale about the young dreaming big. A perfect story to demonstrate how pride in where we come from can bring a shining confidence. When Nigel looks up at the moon, his future is bright. He imagines himself...
A Song of Frutas
Engle, Margarita
Paper Book
From Pura Belpré Award-winning author Margarita Engle comes a lively, rhythmic picture book about a little girl visiting her grandfather who is a pregonero--a singing street vendor in Cuba--and helping him sell his frutas. When we visit mi abuelo, I help...
It Fell from the Sky
Fan, Terry
Paper Book
From the creators of the critically acclaimed The Night Gardener and Ocean Meets Sky comes a whimsical and elegantly illustrated picture book about community, art, the importance of giving back--and the wonder that fell from the sky. It fell from the sky on a...
Dozens of doughnuts
Finison, Carrie
Paper Book
A generous but increasingly put-upon bear makes batch after batch of doughnuts for her woodland friends without saving any for herself in this delightful debut picture book about counting, sharing, and being a good friend. LouAnn (a bear) is making a doughnut feast in preparation...
The boy who grew a forest : the true story of Jadav Payeng
Gholz, Sophia M.
Paper Book
2020 Green Earth Book Award Long list2020 Crystal Kite Awards - Southeast Division Winner2020-2021 Keystone to Reading Elementary Book Award ListNotable Social Studies Trade Books list - Winning Title! 2019 Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award - Winning TitleFlorida Book Award Gold Winner Recipient...
How to build an insect
Gibson, Roberta Lynn
Paper Book
See what the buzz is about in this fresh, fun look at insect anatomy.Let's build an insect! In the pages of this book, you'll find a workshop filled with everything you need, including a head, a thorax, an abdomen, and much more. Written by entomologist Roberta Gibson and accompanied by delightfully...
Unplugged
Korman, Gordon
Paper Book
From the New York Times bestselling author of The Unteachables, Gordon Korman, comes a hilarious middle grade novel about a group of kids forced to "unplug" at a wellness camp--where they instead find intrigue, adventure, and a whole lot of chaos. Perfect for fans of Korman's...
Mars! : Earthlings welcome
McAnulty, Stacy
Paper Book
From writer Stacy McAnulty and illustrator Stevie Lewis, Mars! Earthlings Welcome is a light-hearted nonfiction picture book about the red planet--told from the perspective of Mars himself... Meet Mars! The red planet. Planet Marvelous. Favorite sibling of Earth (or so...
A wolf called Wander
Parry, Rosanne
Paper Book
A New York Times bestseller! "Don't miss this dazzling tour de force."--Katherine Applegate, Newbery Medal winning author of The One and Only Ivan This gripping novel about survival and family is based on the real story of one wolf's incredible journey to find a safe place to...
The box turtle
Roeder, Vanessa
Paper Book
An irresistibly cute story about finding the confidence to be yourself, starring a turtle in search of the perfect shell. Terrance the turtle was born without a shell, so he uses a cardboard box instead. Terrance loves his box. It keeps him dry on soggy days, safe from snooping...
Clean getaway
Stone, Nic
Paper Book
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Nic Stone comes a timely middle-grade road-trip story through landmarks of the Civil Rights movement and the map they lay for contemporary race relations. How to Go on an Unplanned Road Trip with Your Grandma: Grab a...
Skunk and Badger
Timberlake, Amy
Paper Book
Learn how Skunk and Badger first became roommates before embarking on their latest adventure, Egg Marks the Spot! A Best Book of 2020: People * Kirkus Reviews * Booklist  * School Library...
Katie the catsitter
Venable, Colleen A. F.
Paper Book
NOMINATED FOR MULTIPLE STATE AWARDS! Calling all Raina Telgemeier fans! Introducing an irresistible new middle-grade graphic novel series about growing up, friendship, heroes, and cats (lots of cats!)--perfect for fans of Guts, Awkward and Real Friends (not to...
Watercress
Wang, Andrea
Paper Book
Caldecott Medal Winner Newbery Honor Book APALA Award Winner A story about the power of sharing memories-including the painful ones-and the way our heritage stays with and shapes us, even when we don't see it. New England Book Award Winner A...
How to give your cat a bath in five easy steps
Winstanley, Nicola
Paper Book
In this hilarious and clever "how-to," a little girl and a know-it-all narrator are thwarted by a cat who refuses to take a bath. The perfect read-aloud for fans of Snappsy the Alligatorand Interrupting Chicken. Step one- fill the bath Step two- put the cat in...

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