YALSA’s 2015 Morris/Nonfiction Reading Challenge Begins!

yalsa morris nonfiction sealsIt’s official: there are now eight weeks until ALA’s Youth Media Awards, where the winners of the William C. Morris Award, the Award for Excellence in Nonfiction, and all of YALSA’s other book awards will be announced– so it’s time to start our annual Morris/Nonfiction Reading Challenge here on The Hub! We’re hoping the challenge will encourage you to read as many of these outstanding titles as possible.

Challenge objective Read all of the 2015 finalists for the William C. Morris Award for debut YA authors, all of the 2015 finalists for YALSA’s Award for Excellence in Nonfiction, or both between now and the Youth Media Awards on February 2.

Challenge rewards Beyond experiencing the best of the best that new YA authors and YA nonfiction have to offer, everyone who finishes the challenge may use what they read toward our 2015 Hub Reading Challenge. The Hub Reading Challenge includes prizes (!!!), so by participating in the Morris/Nonfiction Reading Challenge, you’re getting a head start on reading some of the best books published this year and you’re giving yourself an advantage in trying to win those prizes. 

Challenge guidelines

  • The challenge begins at 8:00AM Eastern Time on Monday, December 8 and ends at 7:45AM Central Time on Monday, February 2. (And in case you’re wondering, the challenge ends on Central Time because the awards will be announced live at the 2015 ALA Midwinter Meeting in Chicago– which is on Central Time.)
  • Participants may count the reading they have done since the finalists for each award was announced last week (December 3rd for the Morris and December 4th for the Nonfiction Award, to be exact). If you read one of the finalists before the announcement of the shortlist for that award, you must re-read it for it to count.
  • Participants may read either all of the finalists for the Morris Award, all of the finalists for the Nonfiction Award, or both. The challenge cannot be completed simply by picking five titles between the two lists; participants must read the entire list of finalists for one or both awards.
  • Just about everyone who doesn’t work for ALA is eligible to participate. That means non-ALA/YALSA members are eligible. Teens are eligible! Non-US residents/citizens are eligible! (More eligibility questions? Leave a comment or email us.)

How to participate

  • Ready to start reading? Great! Comment here announcing your intention to participate. If you’re going to be tracking what you read on your blog, Goodreads, LibraryThing, YouTube or some other site, include a link to your blog/shelf/channel/profile in your comment. If you’re not tracking your reading online, keep a list some other way.
  • Still undecided? It’s okay to take your time. You may register for the challenge by leaving a comment here and starting your reading any time during the challenge period.
  • Every Sunday, we’ll publish a check-in post. Leave a comment letting us know what you’ve read since the last check-in post. If you’ve reviewed those titles somewhere online, include links to those reviews! Otherwise, let us know what you thought of the books in the comments. We are eager to hear your thoughts.
  • If you’ve finished the challenge since the last check-in post, fill out the embedded form with your name and contact information. Please fill out the form only once.

If you have any questions or problems, let us know in the comments or via email. And if you want to talk about the challenge on Twitter, use the hashtag #hubchallenge. Happy reading!

-Allison Tran, currently listening to The Iron Trial by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare

Published by

Allison Tran

Past Member Manager for YALSA's The Hub. Passionate about information literacy, social media, and connecting readers with books they'll love.

81 thoughts on “YALSA’s 2015 Morris/Nonfiction Reading Challenge Begins!”

  1. I am a high school librarian and my 1Book1Marist book club kids plan to participate. They will be commenting via Twitter with the handle @1Book1Marist. How best can I differentiate for you guys which ones of them complete the challenge?

  2. Alright, I’m in for both lists. I have to reread about half the books but that is more than OK because I liked them so well the first time round. I thought both lists were excellent. I will be tracking my progress on my blog booksandbassets.wordpress.com which links to my twitter account @adrienneelva.

    I am starting with “Gabi, A Girl in Pieces”.

  3. I’m definitely in for the Nonfiction and may add the Morris in later. I’ll be reviewing at least some of the titles on my website.

  4. I’ve been looking forward to this! I’m not sure if it’s a good sign or a bad sign that I only need to re-read one title. I’ll be tracking on LibraryThing and Goodreads. If I can get my act together, I’ll be reviewing on my blog as well.

  5. I’ll be reading the Morris finalists, but I need to get through the stack I’ve been working on for the last month and a half first. I’ll be tracking on my library’s blog – search for the Hub 2015 tag to see my posts!

  6. I’m in! I try to read Morris nominees anyways, so that’s the list I’ll be going for. Just gonna jot down my reads myself and keep track of them that way!

  7. WooHoo! It’s Hub Challenge time again! I’m starting with the nonfiction list, but maybe I can get both lists done. Gonna try!

  8. I am the Media Specialist at Red Lake Middle School in northern Minnesota. I enjoy this challenge, because it forces me to read outside my typical reading zone. Last year was the 1st year I participated and I thoroughly enjoyed the books, so I was looking forward to the new list of non-fiction books.

  9. I got a really late start in the Hub Challenge last year and finished just in the nick of time by including a lot of graphic novels. I’m excited to get a head start this year by participating in the Nonfiction Challenge. I usually read a lot more fiction, so this will be a good incentive to get some nonfiction books read!

  10. I’m in for the Nonfiction Award challenge and if I finish will move on to the Morris Award list. Do the nonfiction books count for the HUB challenge only if you get all 5 on the list read by Feb 2? Or do any of the nonfiction books from the list that I complete between now and Feb 2 count for the HUB challenge? Thanks!

  11. I plan to join the challenge again this year! I am much busier and haven’t been reading as much but have enjoyed for the past few years! Can’t wait! Hoping my library peeps will join as well #simsburyct

  12. Okay I’m gonna give this a try again. I skipped last year but we’ll see how far I get this year. I only track my reading offline, but sometimes I mention it on Twitter @srhlib

  13. I’m in for the Morris finalists! Hopefully I’ll make it through all the Nonfiction as well, but I’m jumping into the Morris nominees first!

  14. Hey so I just realized that in the section under “Challenge Guidelines,” those links are actually for the 2014 finalists, not the 2015 ones! So I put all the wrong books on hold. The links at the top of this post are fine, but not the ones under “Challenge Guidelines.” Oops!

  15. So I’ve participated in the Hub Challenge for the past few years, but so far I’ve yet to finish! This is my first year starting early with the Morris and Nonfiction finalists. I’m going to start with Nonfiction and see how that goes. If an amazing time-warp situation happens, and a portal to extra reading time opens up, I might get to the Morris finalists before February 2nd. Crossing my fingers! I’ll be keeping track on paper, and on Goodreads, here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/4988215-amy?shelf=2015-nonfic-morris

  16. I’m in. I’ve finished Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets written by Evan Roskos and will be starting 2 others today.

  17. I’ll be participating again this year and keeping track on my Goodreads account. I’m planning on reading all of the finalists.

  18. I’m late, but I’m in. I can do 5 titles in a month. I’ll be tracking it on my goodreads, but I’ll have to make the shelf at home.

  19. I’m late!!!! Spent the Christmas break reading other stuff. Hope to finish at least one of the lists.

  20. I’m in for the Morris challenge. I’ve finished The Scar Boys and Gabi, and I’m currently listening to Ava Lavender and reading The Story of Owen.

  21. I would like to join! Better late than never. I’ll try all 10 books this year. :) Happy reading everyone.

  22. I am/actually have read all of the Nonfiction books. I put my completion over there.
    Gayle Keresey

  23. I started an MLIS program last week and found out about the challenge through a class.
    Last week, I read
    The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim by E.K. Johnston
    The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton
    The Scar Boys by Len Vlahos
    and enjoyed each; I eagerly await interlibrary loan delivery of
    The Carnival at Bray by Jessie Ann Foley
    Gabi, a Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quintero

  24. I am a bit late, but I’ll do my best! Excited to finally read some of the books that have been on my “to read” list.

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