Truman Awards

About the Truman Readers Award

Age Level

The winner of the annual Truman Readers Award is selected by students in grades six through eight.


The Truman Readers Award encourages students in the early teen years to express their unique voice through exploring new literary genres, communicating with their peers about young adult literature, and honoring authors writing for young teens.

Guidelines for Choosing Books

  1. Books should interest early teens in grades six through eight.
  2. Books should be written by an author living in the United States.
  3. Books should be of literary value which may enrich early teens' personal lives.
  4. Books should be published two years prior to nomination on a Master List of 12 nominees. (Currently 2012)
  5. Some consideration should be given to genre diversity, gender representation, range of reading level, racial diversity, and diversity of social, political, economic, and religious viewpoints.

Truman Website


Pieces of Me


Amber Kizer



Delacorte Press

Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek  

Maya Van Wagenen


Dutton Juvenile


David Klass


Farrar Strauss Giroux

The Body in the Woods

April Henry  


Henry Holt & Company

Buzz Kill

Beth Fantaskey


Houghton Mifflin

Midnight Thief

Livia Blackburne



Famous Last Words

Katie Alender



Falls the Shadow

Stefanie Gaither


Simon & Schuster

Just a Drop of Water

Kerry O'Malley Cerra


Sky Pony Press

I Have a Bad Feeling About This

Jeff Strand


Sourcebooks Fire

The Blood Guard

Carter Roy


Two Lions, Amazon Children's Publishing

Codename Zero    

Chris Rylander

Walden Pond Press


1st Place:  Prisoner B-3087 by Alan Gratz - 729 votes

2nd PlaceThe Girl Who Was Supposed to Die by April Henry - 622 votes

3rd Place:  The Testing by Joelle Charbonneau - 614 votes


Pictures from the Truman Voting Party


1st Place - The Raft by SA Bodeen
2nd Place - See you at Harry's by Joelle Knowles
3rd Place - Cinder by Melissa Meyer


1st place - Legend, by Marie Lu
2nd place - Michael Vey: the Prisoner of Cell 25, by Richard Paul Evans
3rd place - The Running Dream, by Wendelin Van Draanen


1st Place: Girl Stolen by April Henry
When an impulsive carjacking turns into a kidnapping, Griffin, a high school dropout, finds himself more in sympathy with his wealthy, blind victim, sixteen-year-old Cheyenne, than with his greedy father.

2nd Place: Lost Hero by Rick Riodan
Jason, Piper, and Leo, three students from a school for "bad kids," find themselves at Camp Half-Blood, where they learn that they are demigods and begin a quest to free Hera, who has been imprisoned by Mother Earth herself.

3rd Place: Virals by Kathy Reichs
Tory Brennan and her friends are exposed to a canine parvovirus when they rescue a dog from a medical testing facility and soon realize they have heightened senses, which they use to solve a cold case murder.

1st Place--Maze Runner by James Dashner
Sixteen-year-old Thomas wakes up with no memory in the middle of a maze and realizes he must work with the community in which he finds himself if he is to escape.

2nd Place--The Last Thing I Remember by Andrew Klavan
High school student Charlie West awakens bloody and bruised in a concrete bunker only to discover that he has lost a year of his life and remembers nothing about escaping from prison after being convicted of murdering his former best friend, or why he is being pursued by both the law and a group of terrorists trying to bring down the government of the United States.

3rd Place--Jane in Bloom by Deborah Lytton

Devastated when her beautiful, older sister dies from anorexia, twelve-year-old Jane recovers slowly from the tragedy, with help from unexpected sources.

1st Place--The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen accidentally becomes a contender in the annual Hunger Games, a grave competition hosted by the Capitol where young boys and girls are pitted against one another in a televised fight to the death.

2nd Place--Gone by Michael Grant
In a small town on the coast of California, everyone over the age of fourteen suddenly disappears, setting up a battle between the remaining town residents and the students from a local private school, as well as those who have "The Power" and are able to perform supernatural feats and those who do not.

3rd Place--Jump the Cracks by Stacy DeKeyser
On the way to visit her father in New York City, fifteen-year-old Victoria finds an apparently abused child in the train's bathroom and soon finds herself branded a kidnapper and on the run while trying to fulfill her promise to protect the boy at all costs.


1st Place--The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod: Eighth Grade Bites
Thirteen-year-old half-vampire Vladimir Tod struggles to navigate the ups and downs of eighth grade while keeping his untested powers and impulses under control.

2nd Place--Cracker by Cynthia Kadohata
A young soldier in Vietnam bonds with his bomb-sniffing German shepherd.

3rd Place--Carpe Diem by Autumn Cornwell
Sixteen-year-old Vassar Spore's detailed plans for the next twenty years of her life are derailed when her bohemian grandmother insists that she join her in Southeast Asia for the summer, but as she writes a novel about her experiences, Vassar discovers new possibilities.

1st Place--Life as We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer
Through journal entries sixteen-year-old Miranda describes her family's struggle to survive after a meteor hits the moon, causing worldwide tsunamis, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions.

2nd Place--Runaway by Wendelin Van Draanen
After running away from her fifth foster home, Holly, a twelve-year-old orphan, travels across the country, keeping a journal of her experiences and struggle to survive.

3rd Place--Rash by Pete Hautman
In a future society that has decided it would "rather be safe than free," sixteen-year-old Bo's anger management problems land him in a tundra jail where he survives with the help of his running skills and an artificial intelligence program named Bork.

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