April 15-30, 2005 Edition




TARRYTOWN, NY/04/12/05—The American Booksellers Association (ABA) has announced the winners of the 2005 Book Sense Book of the Year Awards. The winners in both adult and children’s categories represent those titles independent booksellers most enjoyed handselling during the past year, as voted by the owners and staff of ABA member bookstores. Also announced were four Book Sense Honor Books in each category. The winners will be feted at ABA’s annual Celebration of Bookselling at BookExpo America on Friday, June 3, in New York City.

The 2005 Book Sense Book of the Year winners are:

Adult Fiction—Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke (Bloomsbury) Adult Nonfiction—Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World War II by Robert Kurson (Random House) Children’s Literature—Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett, illustrated by Brett Helquist (Scholastic Press) Children’s Illustrated—Duck for President, by Doreen Cronin, illustrated by Betsy Lewin (Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)

“We are looking forward to presenting the Book Sense Book of the Year Awards to these outstanding authors at the Celebration of Bookselling,” said Avin Mark Domnitz, CEO of the American Booksellers Association. “These books are representative of what independent booksellers do best—recommend and handsell wonderful books to their customers.”

The Book Sense Book of the Year ballot included those titles most often nominated by booksellers for the Book Sense Picks recommendation lists in 2004. Booksellers could also include write-in titles in each category. Only books published in 2004 were eligible.

Winners will receive a plaque, as well as a gift from Book Sense partner Levenger, Inc., a catalog and Internet seller of high-quality tools for reading and writing. The Celebration of Bookselling brings together independent booksellers, publishers, and the media to toast the spirit of independent bookselling in America.

Now in its sixth year, the Book Sense Book of the Year Awards include, for the first time this year, four Book Sense Honor Books in each category. These are:

Adult Fiction: Eventide by Kent Haruf (Knopf); The Birth of Venus by Sarah Dunant (Random House); The Plot Against America by Philip Roth (Houghton Mifflin); and The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (Penguin Press).

Adult Nonfiction: Candyfreak by Steve Almond (Algonquin and Harcourt); The Complete Cartoons of The New Yorker, Robert Mankoff (Ed.) (Black Dog & Leventhal); Magical Thinking by Augusten Burroughs (St. Martin’s); Truth & Beauty by Ann Patchett (HarperCollins).

Children’s Illustrated: Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henke (Greenwillow /HarperCollins); Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems (Hyperion Books for Young Readers); Mister Seahorse by Eric Carle (Philomel/Penguin USA); and Wild About Books by Judy Sierra, illustrated by Marc Brown (Knopf Books for Young Readers).

Children’s Literature: Becoming Naomi Leon by Pam Munoz Ryan (Scholastic); Ida B … and Her Plans to Maximize Fun, Avoid Disaster, and (Possibly) Save the World by Katherine Hannigan (Greenwillow/HarperCollins); Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson (Disney Editions); and The Sea of Trolls by Nancy Farmer (Richard Jackson/Antheneum/Simon & Schuster).

BookExpo America, the nation’s largest annual book industry trade show, will be held this year at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York from Thursday, June 2, through Sunday, June 5. The Celebration of Bookselling will be held on Friday, June 3rd, at 5:30 p.m. ABA’s full day of education for booksellers will take place on Thursday, June 2.

About the American Booksellers Association

Founded in 1900, the American Booksellers Association is a not-for-profit trade organization devoted to meeting the needs of its core members—independently owned bookstores with retail storefront locations—through advocacy, education, research, and information dissemination. The ABA actively supports free speech, literacy, and programs that encourage children to read. The association is headquartered in Tarrytown, New York, and online at

Book Sense

Wholly-owned by the American Booksellers Association, Book Sense is a national marketing campaign that seeks to build a national identity for independent bookstores while celebrating the unique character of each store; to create awareness of independent booksellers across the country; and to underscore the collective strength of independent booksellers to consumers. Book Sense is comprised of 1,200 bookstore locations in 50 states. Book Sense includes the Book Sense Picks, the Book Sense Bestseller Lists, the Book Sense Gift Card program, and