Monday, October 25, 2021

Gold Sticker: LARKIN ON THE SHORE and the Whippoorwill Award

A gold sticker! 

Okay. There are big lists and little lists, and for an author, they all matter. Today I got a supply of stickers for the cover of LARKIN ON THE SHORE – stickers to announce that this book was awarded a 2020 Whippoorwil Award, a list curated by educators throughout the United States. (And oh, how I wish we had something similar in Canada!)

“The Whippoorwill Award for Rural Young Adult Literature is a curated list of high-quality literature. The award is intended to provide texts that can spark critical conversations about rurality. Award books must meet the general criteria for excellent in YA literature in its genre, portray the values of rural spaces, knowledge, cultures, and histories, and contribute to diverse representations of people and places.”

LARKIN ON THE SHORE is set in a small town in rural Nova Scotia. It’s the place where Larkin goes to heal – and she does heal there - but it’s also a place that threatens her well-being. No, not in a “I Know What You Did Last Summer” kind of way. But in that small-town culture in which everyone knows everyone else. People talking. People making judgements. People with histories and secrets. All set in a landscape of empty spaces and nature and farms and the shore.

I’m so happy this award committee of educators saw the importance of the meaningful, intentional choices I made when setting this book where I did. I hope teachers and librarians will help get this book into the hands of young readers who live this kind of rural life or who want to experience it through the words of a story.

Yes, a book with a gold sticker!

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