Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Book Battle: Reader's Choice Awards Winners

Thanks to a very observant commenter, I realized this afternoon that I have neglected to post the final winners from the 2011 YA Blogger Debut Book Battle.  Whoops!  It was my intention to post these at the beginning of the month.  Unfortunately, with the delay last week I kind of forgot.  So today we have the winners of the Reader's Choice Awards and tomorrow will be the final battle winners.

Now, before I move on to the winners, I have a little disclaimer to go along with these.  In the end, not a lot of people ended up voting, so some of the categories were pretty cut and dry (Reader's Choice was almost unanimous) and some were a little more split.  So if you don't agree with the choices and you didn't vote, you should vote next time!  :)

Now without further ado, here's the winners of the Reader's Choice Awards!

Best Setting: Bellezza from City Of Masks by Mary Hoffman

The majority of all of the Stravangaza books takes place in Talia, and alternative version of our Renaissance Italy. But of all of the books from that series I've read, I have to agree that Bellezza is one of my favorites. Patterned after historical Venice, this would be a place I would love to visit. Except for the whole having to wear a mask thing. I think that would get old eventually...

Best Cover Art: Stork by Wendy Delsol

There's some great cover art in our group of finalists, but I have to agree that this is one of my favorites.  It really backs up the fairy tale feeling to the book, don't you think?  Blue isn't necessarily one of my favorite colors, but I think it works really well in this situation.

Honorable mention: Intrinsical by Lani Woodland (also a blue cover!)

Best Villian: Lord Daul from StarCrossed by Elizabeth C. Bunce

This category was no contest. Sadly, I still have not had the opportunity to read StarCrossed myself yet (it's on the top of my TBR list though), but this Lord Daul sounds like quite the nasty character. With over 40% of the vote in this category, this dude must be majorly bad news.

Most Unique Premise: The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman

Who wouldn't love a library that loans items from the Grimm fairy tales? Actually sign me up for the library in general! I love the idea of loaning things rather than just books. And although this particular title didn't make it that far in our battle, it certainly gets good marks for a creative idea.

Honorable mention: Storm Thief by Chris Wooding

Best Main Character: Jacky from Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer

This category was actually pretty close. The top three contenders were actually tied. Those of you who voted on the awards might remember there was a space to include any comments you wanted about your votes. Jacky wins this award because although she tied for first place, she was raved about over and over again in those comments. Some of my longest commentaries were on Jacky's side, and so she takes the crown for this round.

Honorable mention: TJ from Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher and Katla from Stork

Most Likely to Re-Read: Academy 7 by Anne Osterlund
(sorry no picture, my computer was being stupid and wouldn't upload one, I'll try again later)

Another category with a more split vote. But in the end Academy 7 just barely slipped ahead of the contenders to take the lead. This book also made an appearance in quite a few votes for other categories, but this is the only one in which it truly shined. Again, not a far mover as far as the battle goes this year, but apparently those who did read would love to dive back in.

Honorable mention: StarCrossed by Elizabeth C. Bunce and The Hollow Kingdom by Clare B. Dunkle

Weirdest/Most Quirky Character: Kiki Strike from Kiki Strike: Inside Shadow City by Kristen Miller

I have to say, I really agree with this choice. An albino girl with a secret past who drives around New York City on a Vespa and has a severe food allergy? Now that qualifies as weird and quirky! Come to think of it, all of Kiki's group of backups (The Irregulars) qualifies in this category. But Kiki is the star of the show, so we'll let her have her moment in the spotlight as the winner of this award.

Most Overlooked: Threads and Flames by Esther Friesner
(another missing picture due to stupid computer)

It's hard to choose a book to win this category, when "overlooked" is the theme of the whole thing after all. But if there's one book that has seemed to surprise the judges over and over during this battle, it's this one. I think historical fiction as a whole tends to get overlooked, and I was so happy to see this book go so far. It's one of my new favorites, and I have enjoyed getting to share it with so many people who may have otherwise passed it by.

Best Romance: Kate and Marak from The Hollow Kingdom by Clare B. Dunkle

I have to say this is my personal favorite romance of this lot (although Threads and Flames is probably my second favorite). And maybe it's because it's such an unusual romance. After all, when Kate and Marak get married, she doesn't even like the guy one bit. The play between the two of them, as well as seeing them come to care for each other, was a real treat for me. You just don't see that as much in YA books nowadays, where so much of it seems to be *poof* I'm in love!

Honorable mention: Keturah And Lord Death from the book of the same name by Martine Leavitt

Reader's Choice: StarCrossed by Elizabeth C. Bunce

So, if you hadn't guessed already, this is the book the most reader's chose to win the battle overall. This one was a bit of landslide, there wasn't much competition from the other books. The next nearest in votes didn't even get half as many as StarCrossed. Good thing it's in our final round! On the other hand, many of the voters hadn't read as many of our finalists, so perhaps in comparison, StarCrossed can be defeated? You'll have to come back tomorrow to see who takes the battle title for this year!

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