The Washington Center for the Book, a partnership of The Seattle Public Library and Washington State Library, announces the finalists in eight categories for the 2017 Washington State Book Awards (WSBA) for outstanding books published by Washington authors in 2016. This is the 51st year of the program, formerly called the Governor's Writers Awards.

Winners will be announced at the awards celebration, held from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 14 at the Central Library, 1000 Fourth Ave., Level 1, Microsoft Auditorium, 206-386-4636 . A reception and book signing will follow in the Norcliffe Foundation Living Room on Level 3 of the Central Library, with book sales by Third Place Books. This event is free and open to the public.

A book award is given based on the strength of the publication's literary merit, lasting importance and overall quality to an author who was born in Washington state or is a current resident and has maintained residence here for at least three years.

"The Solace of Monsters" by Laurie Blauner, of Seattle (Leapfrog Press)
"Stories of Your Life and Others" by Ted Chiang (Vintage Books; reissued 2016; original publication date 2002)
"Barkskins" by Annie Proulx, of Carnation (Scribner)
"Lovecraft Country" by Matt Ruff, of Seattle (HarperCollins Publishers)
"Daredevils" by Shawn Vestal, of Spokane (Penguin Press)
"Hardly War" by Don Mee Choi, of Seattle (Wave Books)
"My, My, My, My, My" by Tara Hardy, of Seattle (Write Bloody Publishing)
"Imaginary Vessels" by Paisley Rekdal, who was born in Washington state and now lives in Salt Lake City, Utah (Copper Canyon Press)
"Blood Song" by Michael Schmeltzer, of Seattle (Two Sylvias Press)
"Wintering" by Megan Snyder-Camp, of Seattle (Tupelo Press)
"Inside: One Woman's Journey through the Inside Passage" by Susan Marie Conrad, of Arlington (Epicenter Press)
"An Earlier Life" by Brenda Miller, of Bellingham (Judith Kitchen's Ovenbird Books)
"Shrill: Notes from a Loud Woman" by Lindy West, of Seattle (Hachette Books)
"My Old Man and the Mountain" by Leif Whittaker, of Bellingham (Mountaineers Books)

History/General Nonfiction
"The Immortal Irishman" by Timothy Egan, of Seattle (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
"Eruption: The Untold Story of Mount St. Helens" by Steve Olson, of Seattle (W.W. Norton & Company)
"While the City Slept: A Love Lost to Violence and a Young Man's Descent into Madness" by Eli Sanders, of Seattle (Viking / Penguin Random House)
"Turning Homeward: Restoring Hope and Nature in the Urban Wild" by Adrienne Ross Scanlan, of Seattle (Mountaineers Books)
"Seawomen of Iceland: Survival on the Edge" by Margaret Willson, of Seattle (University of Washington Press)


Picture Books
"Thunder Boy Jr." written by Sherman Alexie, of Seattle, and illustrated by Yuyi Morales (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)
"A Ticket to the Pennant: A Tale of Baseball in Seattle" written by Mark Holtzen, of Seattle, and illustrated by John Skewes, of Seattle (Little Bigfoot, an imprint of Sasquatch Books)
"Are You an Echo? The Lost Poetry of Misuzu Kaneko" narrative written by David Jacobson, of Seattle with translation by Sally Ito and Michiko Tsuboi, and illustrated by Toshikado Hajiri (Chin Music Press)
"Journey: Based on the True Story of OR7, the Most Famous Wolf in the West" illustrated by Robin James, of Snohomish, and written by Emma Bland Smith (Little Bigfoot, an imprint of Sasquatch Books)

Books for Young Readers (ages 6 to 8)
"Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea" by Ben Clanton of Tacoma (Tundra Books)
"Zach and Lucy and the Museum of Natural Wonders" written by the Pifferson Sisters - Jennifer Bradbury, of Burlington, and Stephanie Guerra, of Seattle (Simon Spotlight, an imprint of Simon & Schuster)
"Quackers" by Liz Wong, of Edmonds (Alfred A. Knopf)

Books for Middle Readers (ages 8 to 12)
"Cleo Edison Oliver: Playground Millionaire" by Sundee T. Frazier, of Renton (Arthur A. Levine Books, an imprint of Scholastic)
"Some Kind of Courage" by Dan Gemeinhart, of Cashmere (Scholastic Press)
"Audacity Jones to the Rescue" by Kirby Larson, of Kenmore (Scholastic Press)
Books for Young Adults (ages 13 and up)
"Useless Bay" by M.J. Beaufrand, of Seattle (Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams)
"Essential Maps for the Lost" by Deb Caletti, of Seattle (Simon Pulse, an imprint of Simon & Schuster)
"Up to This Pointe" by Jennifer Longo, of Mercer Island (Random House)

The authors of the award-winning books, as well as the illustrator of the picture book, will receive a $500 honorarium, thanks to the generous support of The Seattle Public Library Foundation.


The jury for the adult awards included Linda Andrews, English instructor, Walla Walla Community College; Lisa Bitney, adult services librarian, Tacoma Public Library; Pam Cady, manager, University Book Store; Lisa Gresham, collection support manager, Whatcom County Library System.

The jury for the youth awards included Sheri Boggs, youth collection development librarian, Spokane County Library District; Tom Brown, librarian, Seattle Public Schools; and Raina Sedore, youth services librarian, Timberland Library System.