Here's a list of the Red Maple Fiction Award Nominees 2015:
Will Everett wasn’t born with a silver spoon in his mouth, but after his family’s fortunes change, he finds himself with a first-class ticket for The Boundless. The longest, most glamorous locomotive in the world, it stretches more than eleven kilometres long and pulls an astounding 987 cars: passenger cars, shooting galleries, gardens, an onboard swimming pool, cinema and much more. But its maiden voyage won’t be a smooth ride for Will. After witnessing a murder during a station stop, he barely makes it back onto the train (with a running leap!), then must work his way from the caboose forward to his father in first class—with the murderer and his cronies on his tail. Luckily, a clever and nimble friend is perfecting her act in The Boundless’s circus car, and there the real thrill ride begins. Sasquatches, bog-dwelling hags and illusions abound in this outsized middle-grade adventure.
The Comic Book War
It’s 1943 and World War II is raging. 15-year-old Robert Tourond is safe at home in Calgary, but his three brothers are all overseas, fighting the Nazis. A dreamer, Robert closely follows the exploits of his three favourite comic book heroes – Captain Ice, Sedna of the Sea and the Maple Leaf Kid – who also battle the bad guys in the monthly comics he spends his allowance on.
When Robert finds a meteorite in Nose Hill Park near his home, a strange chain of events begins. In the same week, a meteorite features in the storylines of all three superheroes. Then his brother Patrick writes to him from Italy about a shooting star he has seen! Robert becomes convinced a magical link exists; his comic book heroes are giving him messages about his brothers’ far away fortunes…and misfortunes. Can Robert and his heroes really protect all three brothers and bring them home? What would happen if reality came crashing into his world, like a meteorite falling from space? Who will help then?
Dead Man's Switch
Messages can be sent in many ways. From a method as ancient as a carving on a tree, to lettering in plain view that just needs to be seen in a different light. To binary digits sent through cyberspace. To a video from a friend.
King knows this, because he's been getting those messages. Here’s what’s different. The messages to King started with emails that his friend sent him two weeks after his friend drowned trying to escape the island, an island that houses a prison with some of the most dangerous men in the country.
The most urgent message is this: “Trust no authorities. They will hunt you too.”
When King becomes the hunted, he is trapped on the same island, where he can trust no one. Not even his father.
How to Outrun a Crocodile When Your Shoes Are Untied
Ana didn't ask to be named after an anaconda. She didn't ask for zoologist parents who look like safari guides. And she definitely didn't ask for a twin brother whose life goal seems to be terrorizing her with his pet reptiles. Now, to make matters worse, her parents have decided to move the whole family INTO the zoo! All of which gives the Sneerers (the clan of carnivorous female predators in her class) more ammunition to make her life miserable-and squash any hope of class tennis stud, Zack, falling in love with her. Ana tries to channel her inner chameleon and fade into the background, but things are changing too quickly for her to keep up.
Lynn’s life is full — choir practice, school, shopping for the perfect jeans, and dealing with her free-spirited mother. Then one day her life is saved by a mysterious girl named Blossom, who introduces Lynn to her own world and family — both more bizarre, yet somehow more sane, than Lynn’s own.
Blossom’s family is a small band of outcasts and eccentrics who live secretly in an ingenious bunker beneath a city reservoir. The Underlanders forage and trade for the things they need (“Is it useful or lovely?”), living off the things “Citizens” throw away. Lynn is enchanted and amazed. But when she inadvertently reveals their secret, she is forced to take measure of her own motives and lifestyle, as she figures out what it really means to be a family, and a friend.
Classic Sarah Ellis, this novel is smart, rich, engaging and insightful.
The Rule of Three
A person can last 3 minutes without air, 3 days without water, 3 weeks without food. A community begins to die in just seconds. One shocking afternoon, computers around the globe shut down in a viral catastrophe. At sixteen-year-old Adam Daley’s high school, the problems at first seems to be a typical electrical outage, until the students discover the cell phones are down, municipal utilities are failing, and the only vehicles that function are a few ancient computer-free cars like Adam’s. Driving home, Adam encounters a storm tide of anger and gear as the region becomes paralyzed. Soon – as resources dwindle, crises mount, and chaos descends – he will see his suburban neighborhood band together for protection. And Adam will understand that having a police captain for a mother and a retired government spy living next door are not just the facts of his life but the keys to survival.
The Strange Gift of Gwendolyn Golden
This morning, I woke up on the ceiling ... So begins the strange story of Gwendolyn Golden. One perfectly ordinary day for no apparent reason, she wakes up floating around her room like one of her little brother’s Batman balloons.
Puberty is weird enough. Everyone already thinks she’s an oddball with anger issues because her father vanished in a mysterious storm one night when she was six. Then there are the mean, false rumours people are spreading about her at school. On top of all that, now she’s a flying freak.
How can she tell her best friend or her mother? How can she live her life? After Gwendolyn almost meets disaster flying too high and too fast one night, help arrives from the most unexpected place. And stranger still? She’s not alone.
Summer Days, Starry Nights
A famous rock star, a family secret and a boy with a great smile make for one unforgettable summer.
It's 1962, and thirteen-year-old Reenie Starr comes alive the minute guests begin to arrive at her family's summer resort. She dreams of the day she can run Sandy Shores, and she spends her time helping out at the resort, swimming, climbing trees, and singing under the stars.
One day, Reenie's mother announces that she thinks the resort could use some entertainment. She invites Gwen, her best friend's almost-grown daughter, to come and teach a dance class. Although Gwen seems sad and remote, Reenie's thrilled to have her there.
As Reenie starts to learn more about the world beyond Sandy Shores, she comes up with a plan that could really put it on the map. She also finds herself caught between the simpler world of her childhood and all of the wonderful new discoveries (boys) and heartaches (boys) that growing up can bring. Reenie thought she wanted Sandy Shores to never change, but after this summer nothing will ever be the same again.
On her first voyage as a stewardess aboard the Empress of Ireland, Ellie is drawn to the solitary fire stoker who stands by the ship’s rail late at night, often writing in a journal.
Jim. Ellie finds it hard to think of his name now. After their wonderful time in Quebec City, that awful night happened. The screams, the bodies, the frigid waters … she tries hard to tell herself that he survived, but it’s hard to believe when so many didn’t.
So when Wyatt Steele, journalist at The New York Times asks her for her story, Ellie refuses. But when he shows her Jim’s journal, she jumps at the chance to be able to read it herself, to find some trace of the man she had fallen in love with, or perhaps a clue to what happened to him. There’s only one catch: she will have to tell her story to Steele and he’ll “pay” her by giving her the journal, one page at a time.
Bob and Evil-O (her name is Olive but she spells it backwards) have a strange new classmate this year. Imre is the only kid who gets bused to school. He is small and quiet and kind of gloomy and Evil-O really likes him. Bob doesn't -- and it's not because he's jealous. Well, not much.
When the news breaks that Imre is actually undead, he becomes an international celebrity and a focus for protest. Media haunt the school, the parent council is split, and the "Z" word is on everybody's lips. Plenty of opportunity for hatred, horror, and hi jinks.
Bob must face the possibility of losing his best friend, and overcome his personal fear of zombies to see Imre as an individual. In the shocking climax, Bob has to make a choice.