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8.6.17 News Briefs

Writers’ League of Texas announces winners and finalists of its 2016 book awards, Discovery Prize winners

Honoring books published by texas authors in 2016


AUSTIN -- The Writers’ League of Texas has announced the winners and finalists of the 2016 Writers’ League of Texas Book Awards, recognizing outstanding books of 2016, written by Texas authors, in five categories. Here is the full list of 2016 honors.



Winner:  News of the World by Paulette Jiles

Finalists: The Last Painting of Sara de Vos by Dominic Smith

The Association of Small Bombs by Karan Mahajan

The Regional Office is Under Attack by Manuel Gonzales

Pull Me Under by Kelly Luce

Discovery Prize Winner:  The Tombstone Race by José Skinner



Winner: The Midnight Assassin: Panic, Scandal, and the Hunt for America's First Serial Killer by Skip Hollandsworth

Finalists: The General vs. the President: MacArthur and Truman at the Brink of Nuclear War by H.W. Brands

Who Killed These Girls? Cold Case: The Yogurt Shop Murders by Beverly Lowry

The Glamor of Strangeness: Artists and the Last Age of the Exotic by Jamie James

Eccentric Orbits: The Iridium Story by John Bloom

Discovery Prize Winner: Amado Muro and Me: A Tale of Honesty and Deception by Robert L. Seltzer



Winner: Hammer is the Prayer by Christian Wiman

Finalists:  Plenty by Corinne Lee

Her, Infinite by Sawnie Morris

Ultra-Cabin by Kimberly Lambright

Discovery Prize Winner: Take to the Highway: Arabesques for Travelers by Bryce Milligan



Winner:  Step Right Up: How Doc and Jim Key Taught the World About Kindness by Donna Janell Bowman


Whoosh!: Lonnie Johnson's Super-Soaking Stream of Inventions by Chris Barton

Lucy by Randy Cecil

Be the Change: A Grandfather Gandhi Story by Arun Gandhi and Bethany Hegedus

Bears Make the Best Reading Buddies by Carmen Oliver

Discovery Prize Winner:  The Tale of Lucky the Dog by Lynn G. Abrams



Winner: Somewhere Among by Annie Donwerth-Chikamatsu

Finalists: A Fierce and Subtle Poison by Samantha Mabry

The Radiant Road by Katherine Catmull

Hillary Rodham Clinton: A Woman Living History by Karen Blumenthal

Time Zero by Carolyn Cohagan

Maybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee

Discovery Prize Winner:   Bloodline by Joe Jiménez


The Writers’ League of Texas, a statewide nonprofit founded in 1981 and currently with more than 1300 members, launched its annual book awards, originally known as the Violet Crown Awards, in 1991.  A few years later, the Teddy Children’s Book Awards, honoring outstanding books for young readers, were established.  In 2008, the two awards were renamed the Writers’ League of Texas Book Awards and the Discovery Prize was added to each category in 2013. For more information, visit


(From organization’s press release)


Texas Teen Book Festival announces 2017 lineup

Young Adult book festival will Feature award-winning authors Francisco X. Stork, E. Lockhart, Adam Silvera, and More


AUSTIN — The Texas Teen Book Festival has announced its 2017 lineup, featuring New York Times bestselling authors E. Lockhart, Francisco X. Stork, Adam Silvera, Stephanie Perkins, Zac Brewer, and more. The 2017 Festival will take place on Saturday, October 7, at St. Edward’s University in Austin. TTBF is in its ninth year and remains free and open to the public.


"From high fantasy to high tech to high drama, TTBF's Class of ’17 offers a little something for everyone,” says Meghan Goel, TTBF Programming Director. “With thirty-eight featured authors, terrific programming partners like We Need Diverse Books, and a brand-new interactive space, this is shaping up to be our best Festival yet.”


This year’s slate will feature a wide array of notable and award-winning authors. Among others, New York Times bestselling author Adam Silvera will present his book They Both Die at the End, and E. Lockhart will discuss her latest psychological suspense novel, Genuine Fraud, which tells the story of a young woman whose diabolical smarts are her ticket into a charmed life.


Francisco X. Stork, author of Marcelo in the Real Word and winner of the Schneider Family Book Award for Teens, will join the lineup to discuss his new fiction work, Disappeared. TTBF will also showcase international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins and her novel There’s Someone Inside Your House, as well as bestselling author of The Slayer Chronicles Zac Brewer and his latest novel, Madness.


YA-genre enthusiasts will be able to enjoy sessions and panels throughout the one-day Festival, including a panel presented by Fierce Reads, the Young Adult initiative launched by Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group. The Fierce Reads panel will feature authors Mitali Perkins, Caleb Roehrig, Anna-Marie McLemore, and Jennifer Mathieu.


TTBF authors will join previously announced keynote speakers Mayim Bialik, actress, neuroscientist, and author of Girling Up: How to Be Strong, Smart and Spectacular, and Marie Lu, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling series The Young Elites and the blockbuster bestselling Legend series. At TTBF, Lu will present her latest work, Warcross. Author Jason Reynolds will be the closing keynote speaker. Reynolds will launch his narrative verse novel, Long Way Down, at the 2017 Festival.


The full lineup of authors and their featured books for the 2017 Texas Teen Book Festival is available on the organization’s website,


A program of the Texas Book Festival, the TTBF is presented in collaboration with BookPeople, a dedicated team of librarians, and venue sponsor St. Edward’s University. The program is made possible in part by a grant from Humanities Texas, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The 2016 TTBF boasted more than 4,000 attendees and an all-star lineup representing the best in literature for teens with more than 25 celebrated authors including New York Times bestselling authors Sabaa Tahir, A.J. Hartley, Ally Carter, Leigh Bardugo, and celebrity author, actress, and comedian Mindy Kaling.


The one-day TTBF will take place on October 7 from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. at St. Edward’s University, 3001 South Congress Avenue. TTBF remains free and open to the public thanks to generous donors, sponsors, and dozens of committed volunteers. For more information, please visit and keep up with announcements at, and on  Twitter and Instagram @TXTeenBookFest.



About the Texas Teen Book Festival

The Texas Teen Book Festival is a one-day event that celebrates the teen reading experience by inviting fans to visit with some of the most popular and critically acclaimed young adult authors in the country. The Texas Teen Book Festival was born as the Austin Teen Book Festival in 2009, when librarian Heather Schubert partnered with BookPeople to organize a gathering at Westlake High School. Five hundred guests and sixteen authors attended the first year and the event grew every year thereafter. From 2011 to 2013, the Festival was sponsored by the Austin Public Library Friends Foundation, and in 2014, the Festival became a program of Texas Book Festival and was renamed the Texas Teen Book Festival. One of the largest gatherings of its kind anywhere, the annual TTBF takes place in the fall on the campus of St. Edward’s University.


(Information from organization’s press release)






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Frisco library’s 2nd annual Grow-a-Reader Workshop slated for August 12

Free day of training for parents and teachers of young children


FRISCO—The Frisco Public Library’s second annual Grow-a-Reader Day will help participants learn how to plant the seeds of successful early literacy education. The event, on Sat., Aug. 12 from 9 am–5 pm offers participants the chance to earn up to six hours of Continuing Professional Education Credit (CPE) at no charge.


A panel of experts will lead seminars on important subjects that today’s parents and educators deal with daily:

  • Methods to prepare kids for kindergarten
  • Tools to help children who have sensory issues
  • Resources and connections for young children who have special needs
  • Ways to promote conscious discipline in schools
  • Approaches to link literacy to science


Parents, caregivers, and early learning professionals will gain tools and techniques to help their children and students sprout into kids who are ready to thrive and succeed.


“It’s an honor to, once again, provide this resource to our community’s teachers, parents, and caregivers of young children,” said Bonnie Barber, early literacy librarian. “This year’s speakers have a wealth of expertise to share with those who are shaping young minds during a crucial stage of their development.”


The Frisco Library is committed to early learning and is proud to provide free resources like this for the community.  With this in mind, the event coordinator has assembled a team of presenters who will share techniques and resources designed to help the smallest learners blossom and achieve their biggest dreams.


Attendees are welcome to attend some or all of the seminars. The event is free and registration is not required.  Find more information about presenters and topics covered at


(From organization’s press release)


Texas RITA award winners 2017: CORRECTION


In last week’s news briefs, we incorrectly reported the award category for Texas author Weina Dai Randel. The correct information appears below. We regret the error.


Mainstream Fiction with a Central Romance

The Moon in the Palace by Weina Dai Randel

Sourcebooks, Landmark

Shana Drehs and Anna Michels, editors

Weina Dai Randel was born in China and grew up there. She came to the U.S. when she was 24 and has lived here more than 15 years.  She received an M.A. in English from Texas Woman's University in Denton. She lives in Flower Mound.


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