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Volunteer State Book Award

January 26, 2021

Did you know that Tennessee has its own award for books? It’s called the Volunteer State Book Award, and kids choose the winner!

This award is given annually in four different categories - Primary (Grades K-2), Intermediate (Grades 3-5), Middle School (Grades 6-8), and High School (Grades 9-12). Each category has its own list of twenty* nominated titles chosen by librarians and teachers from around the state.

Last year’s winners were:

For the Primary (Grades K-2) Division

The Legend of Rock, Paper, Scissors by Drew Daywalt

Intermediate (Grades 3-5) Division

Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling

Middle School (Grades 6-8) Division

Refugee by Alan Gratz

High School (Grades 9-12) Division

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Who can vote?

Children who have read at least three titles from the list of their corresponding grade level are eligible to vote for their favorite in the spring, and the book with the most votes statewide wins! Check out this year’s nominations below, and keep an eye on the Volunteer State Book Award website for when voting goes live. And, don’t forget to vote for your favorite!!

*This year, 2021, there are thirty titles on each nomination list.

This year's nominations:

Primary (Grades K-2) Division Nominated Titles

Intermediate (Grades 3-5) Division Nominated Titles

Middle School (Grades 6-8) Division Nominated Titles

High School (Grades 9-12) Division Nominated Titles

Cassie headshot thumbnail


Cassie is a Children's Librarian at Edmondson Pike Branch Library. She can often be found reading books and singing songs, and not just at the library! Her favorite thing to do at the moment is cuddle her baby while they read phenomenal picture books and earn Read to Rise points.