The finalists for this year's Minnesota Book Awards — 36 books in nine categories — were announced Saturday afternoon. Minneapolis writer Sun Yung Shin is a finalist in two categories — poetry and children's literature. The winners will be announced at the annual awards gala May 2 at the Ordway Theater in St. Paul.
Here are the finalists:
Young adult, sponsored by Expedition Credit Union:
"Mendel," by Damone Bester (The Story Plant); "Maxwell and the Legend of Inini-Makwa," by Simon Hargreaves (AHR Publishing); "Born in a Red Canoe," by Katharine Johnson (Silver Fox Books); "The Complicated Calculus (and Cows) of Carl Paulsen" by Gary Eldon Peter (Fitzroy Books).
"You Are Life" by Bao Phi, illustrated by Hannah Li (Capstone Editions); "So Much Snow," by Kristen Schroeder, illustrated by Sarah Jacoby (Random House Studio); "The Dark Was Done" by Lauren Stringer (Beach Lane Books); "Where We Come From" by Diane Wilson, Sun Yung Shin, Shannon Gibney and John Coy, illustrated by Dion MBD (Carolrhoda Books).
Middle Grade, sponsored by Education Minnesota:
"Monsters in the Mist" by Juliana Brandt (Sourcebooks); "Meet Me Halfway," by Anika Fajardo (Simon & Schuster); "The Counterclockwise Heart," by Brian Farrey (Algonquin Young Readers); "Windswept," by Margi Preus (Amulet Books).
Memoir & Creative Nonfiction:
"Seven Aunts," by Staci Lola Drouillard (University of Minnesota Press); "Farewell Transmission," by Will McGrath (Dzanc Books); "The Way She Wants to Get There," by Mary Moore Easter (Nodin Press); "Sinkhole: A Legacy of Suicide," by Juliet Patterson (Milkweed Editions).
Minnesota Nonfiction, sponsored by Emilie Buchwald:
"When Minnehaha Flowed With Whiskey," by Karen E. Cooper (Minnesota Historical Society Press); "A Natural Curiosity: The Story of the Bell Museum," by Lansing Shepard, Don Luce, Barbara Coffin and Gwen Schagrin (University of Minnesota Press); "The Steger Homestead Kitchen," by Will Steger and Rita Mae Steger (University of Minnesota Press); "Rochester: An Urban Biography," by Virginia M. Wright-Peterson (Minnesota Historical Society Press).
General Nonfiction, sponsored by The Duchess Harris Collection:
"Daughters of Arraweelo: Stories of Somali Women," by Ayaan Adan (Minnesota Historical Society Press); "They Don't Want Her There: Fighting Sexual and Racial Harassment in the American University," by Carolyn Chalmers (University of Iowa Press); "Through the Banks of the Red Cedar," by Maya Washington (Little A); "Wilhelm's Way: The Inspiring Story of the Iowa Chemist Who Saved The Manhattan Project," by Teresa Wilhelm Waldof (Third Generation Publishing).
Novel & Short Story, sponsored by Jeff & Bernadette Janisch
"Sirens & Muses," by Antonia Angress (Ballantine Books); "The Barrens," by Kurt Johnson and Ellie Johnson (Arcade Publishing); "Till the Wheels Fall Off," by Brad Zellar (Coffee House Press). Originally there were four finalists, but judges removed one book on Wednesday because it did not meet eligibility requirements.
Genre Fiction, sponsored by Macalester College:
"The Temps," by Andrew DeYoung (Keylight Books); "The Ursulina" by Brian Freeman (Blackstone Publishing); "The Quarry Girls" by Jess Lourey (Thomas and Mercer); "Sinister Graves" by Marcie R. Rendon (Soho Press).
Poetry, sponsored by Wellington Management:
"How to Communicate" by John Lee Clark (W.W. Norton); "Real Work" by Janna Knittel (Nodin Press); "Surface Displacements" by Sheila Packa (Wildwood River Press); "The Wet Hex" by Sun Yung Shin (Coffee House Press).
The Minnesota Book Awards are sponsored by the Friends of the St. Paul Public Library. Tickets for the awards will go on sale Monday at www.thefriends.org/mnba.