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Core announces the 2021 Excellence in Children’s and Young Adult Science Fiction Notable Lists

Core announces the 2021 Excellence in Children’s and Young Adult Science Fiction Notable Lists

The Core Committee Recognizing Excellence in Children’s and Young Adult Science Fiction presents the 2021 Excellence in Children’s and Young Adult Science Fiction Notable Lists. The lists are composed of notable children’s and young adult science fiction published between November 2019 and October 2020 and organized into three age-appropriate categories. The annotated lists will be posted on the website at

The Golden Duck Notable Picture Books List is selected from books intended for pre-school children and very early readers, up to 6 years old. Recognition is given to the author and the illustrator:

The Barnabus Project by Terry Fan, Eric Fan & Devin Fan. Tundra Books

Field Trip to the Ocean Deep by John Hare. Margaret Ferguson Books

A Jedi You Will Be written by Preeti Chhibber, illustrated by Mike Deas. Disney Lucasfilm Press

Llama Unleashes the Alpacalypse written by Jonathan Stutzman, illustrated by Heather Fox. Henry Holt & Co

Mara the Space Traveler by An Leysen. Clavis

Mars’ First Friends: Come on Over, Rovers! written by Susanna Leonard Hill, illustrated by Elisa Paganelli. Sourcebooks Wonderland

Robobaby by David Wiesner. Clarion Books

The Stray by Molly Ruttan. Nancy Paulsen Books

The Eleanor Cameron Notable Middle Grade Books List titles are chapter books or short novels that may be illustrated. They are written for ages 7 – 11. This list is named for Eleanor Cameron, author of the Mushroom Planet series.

Alien Nate by Dave Whamond. Kids Can Press.

Bloom by Kenneth Oppel. Knopf Books for Young Readers;

Cleo Porter and the Body Electric by Jake Burt. Feiwel & Friends

Dragon Ops by Mari Mancusi. Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Finn and the Intergalactic Lunchbox by Michael Buckley. Delacorte Books for Young Readers

GenPet by Damian Campanario, Mike Kennedy & Alex Fuentes. Magnetic Press

Glitch by Laura Martin. HarperCollins

In the Red by Christopher Swiedler. HarperCollins 

Jinxed by Amy McCulloch. Sourcebooks Young Readers

Last Pick (series) by Jason Walz. First Second

Mega-Dogs of New Kansas by Dan Jolley & Jacques Khouri. Graphic Universe 

Sal and Gabi Fix the Universe by Carlos Hernandez. Rick Riordan Presents

The Hal Clement Notable Young Adult Books List contains science fiction books written for ages 12 – 18 with a young adult protagonist. This list is named for Hal Clement, a well-known science fiction writer and high school science teacher who promoted children’s science fiction.

Catfishing on Catnet by Naomi Kritzer. Tor Teen

The Cloven Book One by Garth Stein & Matthew Southworth. Fantagraphics

Crown Chasers by Rebecca Coffindaffer. Harper Teen

Devastation Class by Glen Zipper & Elaine Mongeon. Blink

Girl of Flesh and Metal by Alicia Ellis. Figmented Ink 

Hard Wired by Len Vlahos. Bloomsbury YA

The Loop by Ben Oliver. Chicken House

Malice by Pintip Dunn. Entangled

School for Extraterrestrial Girls #1: Girl on Fire by Jeremy Whitley & Jamie Noguchi. Papercutz

Sia Martinez and the Moonlit Beginning of Everything by Raquel Vasquez Gilliland. Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

The Sound of Stars by Alechia Dow. Inkyard Press

Swamp Thing: Twin Branches by Maggie Stiefvater & Morgan Beem. DC Comics