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Indian Paintbrush Book Award Lists

Sponsored by the Wyoming Library Association and the Wyoming State Reading Council, the Soaring Eagle Book Award will provide the opportunity for Wyoming youth in grades 7-12 to select a favorite book and honor its author.

Its purpose is to help Wyoming students in grades 4-7:

  • Become acquainted with the best contemporary authors
  • Become aware of the qualities that make a good book
  • Choose the best rather than the mediocre
  • Set a goal to read at least three good books
  • To honor an author whose books Wyoming students have enjoyed.

Indian Paintbrush Book Award Links

Indian Paintbrush 2018-2019 Packet
2019 Indian Paintbrush Labels - Indian Paintbrush Nominee Checklist
WLA Book Awards Main Page - includes voting and nomination information and forms.

Past Winners & Nominees by Author or Date (requires the free Adobe Acrobat Reader)

2017-2018 Indian Paintbrush Award Winners

Winner1st Runner-up2nd Runner-up

Alexander, Kwame:
The Crossover

Sara Pennypacker:

Barbara O'Connor:


2018-2019 Indian Paintbrush Award Nominees

Daniel Brown: 
The Boys in the Boat
 Brandon Mull:
 Jason Reynolds:
boys in the boat    ghost book cover 
Cynthia Lord:
Half a Chance
Dusti Bowling:
Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus
Thanhha Lai: 
Listen Slowly
half a chance book cover  Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus book cover  Listen Slowly book cover 
Gordon Korman:
Margaret Peterson Haddix:
Under Their Skin
Kimberly Bradley:
The War That Saved My Life
restart book cover  under their skin book cover  The War That Saved My Life book cover 
Katherine Applegate:
wishtree book cover     

Wyoming Indian Paintbrush Book Award Committee

Committee Members

Indian Paintbrush Questions to be sent to:
Mary Borthwick: [email protected] 
Jennisen Lucas: [email protected]
Richard Landreth (Adviser): [email protected]


Name Term # ORG. Both Email County

Mary Borthwick

 CC 2018  WLA-S    [email protected] 
Kennedy Penn-O'Toole  2020  1  WLA-P   [email protected] Albany
Connie Hollin 2020  1  WLA-P    [email protected]  Guernsey
Cathy Stafford 2019   WLA-S    [email protected] Johnson
Rebecca Jones 2019 1 WSRC x  [email protected] Campbell
Mary Rhoads 2020  1 WSRC    [email protected] Johnson
Melissa Brumsted Snider CC2018  1  WSRC    [email protected]  Teton

Indian Paintbrush Guidelines and By-Laws


The Indian Paintbrush Book Award, sponsored by the Wyoming Library Association, (Children’s/YA Section and the School Library Media Personnel Section) and the Wyoming State Reading Council, provides opportunity for Wyoming youth in fourth, fifth, and sixth grades to choose their favorite book and honor its author. The Wyoming Library Association established this award in 1985 to encourage students to:

  • Become acquainted with the best contemporary authors
  • Become aware of the qualities that make a good book
  • Choose the best rather than the mediocre
  • Honor an author whose book as been enjoyed by Wyoming youth

Indian Paintbrush rules for nominating books


1. Books may be either fiction or nonfiction.
2. Books must have been originally published within the preceding five years.
3. Books must be in print at the time of nomination.
4. No title can be on the list two consecutive years.
5. Books must be nominated by students in grades 4, 5, or 6.

Indian Paintbrush Committee Considerations


1. Nomination criteria.
2. Books with higher numbers of nominations will be considered first by the Committee as long as they
meet the Nomination Criteria.
3. Must have at least two published reviews (exception – see #9)
4. Only one title per author on the list.
5. Exclude comics, interactive, i.e. twist-a-plot
6. Exclude some series; make judgement of good literature.
7. Exclude books with consistent YA designations in reviews.
8. Exclude winning titles of Soaring Eagle Award.
9. Books of local interest or by Wyoming authors may be considered on their own merit.
10. If possible, at least 50% should be available in paperback.
11. If possible, make a split according to boy/girl protagonists.
12. If possible, vary the genre.
13. No books by the winning author can appear on the following year’s list.
14. If a book has been on a recent Soaring Eagle Nominee List or is on their current possible nominee list consider which grade level it best fits.


Other Highly Recommended Titles

Almost Home by Joan Bauer
Byrd and Igloo by Samantha Seiple
Cat Found by Ingrid Lee
Chasing the Milky Way by Erin E. Moulton (has some cussing)
Danger in the Darkest Hour (Magic Tree House Super Edition #1) by Mary Pope Osborne
Death by Toilet Paper by Donna Gephart
Doll Bones by Holly Black
Fantasy League by Mike Lupica
Half Upon a Time by James Riley
Menagerie by Tui Sutherland
Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson
The Mighty Miss Malone by Christopher Paul Curtis
Mission Unstoppable (Genius Files #1) by Dan Gutman
A Nest for Celeste by Henry Cole
Paper Things by Jennifer Richard Jacobson
Sports Camp by Rich Wallace
Tuesdays at the Castle by Jessica Day George