Medal: Madapple by Christina Meldrum - A dark horse candidate, and a book that certainly isn't for everyone with its mature themes and a slew of botany, legalese and religious history. But wow, what an amazing read. Deep, dark, twisting and turning. My personal favorite.
Graceling by Kristin Cashore - This is the one that everybody loves. It's also Cashore's first book, and while I know that first books have won, I'm just not sure I see it here. I loved the protagonist with a maturity and independence beyond her years, the whole idea of individuals being graced with powerful abilities, and really loved this book, but I'm not sure it gets the medal.
The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart - This was the first book that I read this year where I thought "Give this book the Printz and call it a day." Frankie is the kind of girl you see yourself in - never appreciated for how smart and funny she is in her own right - and she gets ept enough to be the girl you wish you were - doing something about it by infiltrating an all-male secret society. The characters in this novel were knowable, the language was accessible, but aspirational (I particularly love the idea of false neglected positives and have been using them since I finished the book. In fact, I worked one into this post!).
Paper Towns by John Green - Call it a hat trick, call it a trifecta, just please, don't call it a comeback. I enjoyed Paper Towns while reading it, and truly, it is a great novel. Afterwards, I felt a little bit like I'd read this story, or at least the dynamic between the male and female protagonists before though...in Looking For Alaska and An Abundance of Katherines. There were may differences, obviously, and I really liked the use of Leaves of Grass and the whole mystery element. I'm thinking an honor is well deserved here.
And now, I'm heading home to NJ after a week of inaugural fabulousness in DC. Upon my return and review of all my pictures I plan to share a little bit about my trip, and then it's back to the books!