Oregon Spirit Book Awards Presentation

You may have heard that SMASH: TRIAL BY FIRE won the 2013 Oregon Spirit Book Award for Graphic Novel. Sticker

On Saturday, October 4, SMASH writer Chris A. Bolton attended the awards ceremony at Wilsonville High School. Sponsored by the Oregon Council of Teachers of English, it was a wonderful day that kicked off with a rousing keynote speech by author Brian Doyle.

Then the winners were each presented a beautiful plaque onstage and given a few minutes to speak.


Afterward, they had a chance to sign books and mingle with teachers and other nominees. Chris heard from several teachers who were phenomenally excited to introduce SMASH to their classroom.

Chris and His Award

From the bottom of our hearts, we want to thank the OCTE for this honor. Their award highlights a variety of children's books from Oregon writers and helps introduce the value of stories to young minds that crave them. We are deeply grateful for this award and a wonderful ceremony!


Chris and Karen

And, if you'd like to watch Chris's acceptance speech:

SMASH Picked by the Children's Choice Book Awards!

Children's ChoiceIt's been nearly a year since SMASH: Trial by Fire was published by Candlewick Press. And what a year it's been!

In just nine short months, we've received a flurry of fantastic reviews and numerous award nominations, including winning the 2013 Oregon Spirit Book Award.

And now comes word that SMASH is a winner of the 2014 Children's Choice Book Awards! From their website:

The reading list kids pick! Each year, 12,500 children from different regions of the United States read newly-published children's and young adult trade books and vote for the ones they like best!

The Children's Book Council has overseen the awards for over 70 years.

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Kyle and I couldn't be more honored to be selected by the most prestigious group of judges in the world — actual kids!

Huge thanks to the Children's Book Council for promoting such a worthy endeavor — and, of course, to all the young readers who voted.

If you haven't gotten a copy of SMASH: Trial by Fire for yourself or a young reader in your life, click on one of the links in the right-hand margin and order now. It's the perfect summertime read. And if you don't believe us, just ask the kids who voted!

SMASH Wins the 2013 Oregon Spirit Book Award!

We are thrilled to announce that SMASH:  Trial  by  Fire  has  been  named  the  winner  in   the  Graphic  Novels  category  of  the  2013 Oregon  Spirit  Book  Award  by  the  Oregon  Council  of   Teachers  of  English.

  The  Oregon  Spirit  Book  Award  is  given  yearly  to  the  author  of  a  distinguished  contribution  to  picture   books,  middle  reader,  young  adult,  graphic  novels,  or  non-­fiction  literature...reflecting  the  spirit  and  values  help  by  Oregonians.

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This is a tremendous honor for us. Kyle and I are hugely flattered, and want to thank the Oregon Council of Teachers of English, as well as all our wonderful readers. We couldn't have done it without your support!

SMASH Nominated for Oregon Spirit Book Award!

We've received wonderful news — SMASH: TRIAL BY FIRE is on the shortlist in the Graphic Novel category for the 2013 Oregon Spirit Book Award. The Awards are presented by the Oregon Council of Teachers of English. Kyle and I are hugely thrilled and want to thank the Oregon Council of Teachers of English for this honor.

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The Oregon Spirit Book Awards are given to Oregon authors who make "a distinguished contribution to children's literature or young adult literature that engage and encourage readers' imagination, discovery, and understanding, reflecting the spirit and values held by Oregonians."

Winners will be announced on June 1st. As SMASH appears to be the only title nominated in the category, I have to admit... I like our chances!

SMASH Is a Black-Eyed Susan Nominee!

The Black-Eyed Susan Award is presented each year by the Maryland Association of School Librarians (MASL) to "authors and/or illustrators of outstanding books chosen for the award by Maryland students." The list of 10 nominees for the 2014 Black-Eyed Susan Award has been posted — and we're thrilled that Smash: Trial by Fire is one of them!

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We've made the list alongside such fantastic titles as Nathan's Hale's Big Bad Ironclad, Rob Harrell's Monster On the Hill, Jake Parker's Missile Mouse: Rescue on Tankium3, and Dave Roman's Astronaut Academy: Zero Gravity.

Click here to see the full list of nominees — there's a ton of great reading to be found here.

SMASH Nominated for Great Graphic Novels for Teens Award!

We just found out that SMASH: TRIAL BY FIRE has been nominated for a 2014 YALSA* Great Graphic Novels for Teens award! It's quite an honor, especially considering how many very distinguished titles were nominated along with us. Smash Cover Small

* FYI, YALSA stands for Young Adult Library Services Association. In case you were wondering.

SMASH: A Junior Library Guild Selection!

We're deeply thrilled and honored to announce that Smash: Trial by Fire has been selected by the Junior Library Guild for its Fall 2013 picks! What is the Junior Library Guild, you ask? From their own website:

We read thousands of books every year and select only the best.

The JLG editorial team reviews more than 3,000 new titles each year, in manuscript or prepublication stage. We've developed a keen sense for finding the best of the best. Nearly 95 percent of our selections go on to receive awards and/or favorable reviews.

So, as you can imagine, this is quite an honor! And we truly couldn't be more pleased. Read more about the JLG here.