2023-2024 William Allen White Award Winners

Kansas kids have chosen, and this year’s William Allen White Award Winners are “Stella” and “Ground Zero”! Scroll down to learn more about the books.

 Stella by McCall Hoyle

 3rd-5th Grade winner

Even dogs deserve a second chance.

Ever since she was a puppy, Stella was trained to use her powerful beagle nose to sniff out dangerous chemicals and help her handler keep people safe. But during a routine security inspection, Stella misses the scent of an explosive. The sound of the blast is loud and scary. Unable to go back to work because of her anxiety, Stella is retired as a working dog.

When a young girl named Cloe wants to adopt Stella, the beagle knows this is her last chance to prove her worth. But how? When Stella smells a strange chemical inside Cloe’s body, a scent that surges just before the girl has a seizure, Stella’s nose makes the connection. But how can Stella warn her new family without them thinking she’s having an anxiety attack? How can she convince others that she can be a new kind of service dog and hopefully save Cloe’s life?

Told from Stella’s perspective, this story is about a special dog who must find the courage to overcome her fears in order to help save a young girl with epilepsy.

Book/ Audiobook/ eBook/ eAudio

 Ground Zero by Alan Gratz

 6th-8th Grade winner


It’s September 11, 2001. Brandon, a 9-year-old boy, goes to work for the day with his dad . . . at the World Trade Center in New York City. When two planes hit the towers, Brandon and his father are trapped inside a fiery nightmare as terror and confusion swirl around them. Can they escape — and what will the world be like when they do?
In present-day Afghanistan, Reshmina is an 11-year-old girl who is used to growing up in the shadow of war, but she has dreams of peace and unity. When she ends up harboring a wounded young American soldier, she and her entire family are put in mortal danger. But Reshmina also learns something surprising about the roots of this endless war.

BookAudiobook/Large PrinteBook/ eAudio


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Graduation Book List

Congratulations to high school and college graduates! Whether you are going to college, leaving college, getting a job, your own apartment, or taking a gap year, here are some books that might help.

Non-Fiction about Living on Your Own (or with roommates)

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Almost Adulting : all you need to know to get it together (sort of) / › Koha online catalog (bywatersolutions.com)

Adulting : how to become a grown-up in 468 easy(ish) steps / › Koha online catalog (bywatersolutions.com)

The ultimate cooking for one cookbook : 175 super easy recipes made just for you / › Koha online catalog (bywatersolutions.com)

Money out loud : all the financial stuff no one taught us / › Koha online catalog (bywatersolutions.com)

Be you, only better : real life self-care for young adults (and everyone else) / › Koha online catalog (bywatersolutions.com)

Budget bytes : over 100 easy, delicious recipes to slash your grocery bill in half / › Koha online catalog (bywatersolutions.com)

Non-Fiction about College and Finding a Job

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Undecided : navigating life and learning after high school 

The prepared graduate : find your dream job, live the life you want, and step into your purpose

Country living: crafting a business : make money doing what you love

This is how to get your next job: an inside look at what employers really want 

There is life after college : what parents and students should know about navigating school to prepare for the jobs of tomorrow 

Lean in : for Graduates 

Books about Traveling

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The solo travel handbook : practical tips and inspiration for a safe, fun and fearless trip 

Booked : A Traveler’s Guide to Literary Locations Around the World 

Wanderlust : A Traveler’s Guide to the Globe

Fiction Set on College Campuses

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 Study break : 11 college tales from orientation to graduation


Required reading for the disenfranchised freshman 

 The chosen one : a first-generation odyssey 

Begin again

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Again, but better 

I hate everyone but you

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Picture Books for Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is coming up! Here’s a list of picture books that celebrate the moms that work hard everyday.

To the moon and back for you /Emilia Bechrakis Serhant

In this picture book, families of different shapes, colors, and sizes must cross deserts, navigate rough seasons, and climb mountains–all to find their miracle babies. Emilia’s story reminds us that, despite the challenges and complications often thrown our way, hope will always prevail. To the Moon and Back for You combines a timeless feel with a timely subject, and is poised to become a modern classic for years to come.

Put on Hold


T. Rex and the Mother’s Day hug /Lois G. Grambling

 Eager to do something special for Mother’s Day, T. Rex decides to surprise his mother by decorating her car.

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Mother’s Day surprise / Stephen Krensky

 After watching the other animals make Mother’s Day gifts, Violet the snake tries hard to think of something nice that she can make for her mother.

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Mommy’s hands / Kathryn Lasky & Jane Kamine

Young children describe the various things their hands and their mothers’ hands do when they are together throughout the different seasons of the year.

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I [heart] Mom with the very hungry caterpillar / Eric Carle

World of Eric Carle: I Love Mom with the Very Hungry Caterpillar ...The very hungry caterpillar shows its love for Mom.

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Some moms / Nick Bland

Amazon cover image Explores how mothers can have different personalities and qualities, including fearlessness, gracefulness, and toughness.

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M.O.M. (Mom Operating Manual) / Doreen Cronin

Amazon cover image A guide to the care and maintenance of mothers, who are, according to the manual, the most advanced human models on the planet.

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Superhero mom / Timothy Knapman

Amazon cover imageCelebrates all the incredible things moms can do in the eyes of their children, including fixing bumps with a kiss, running so fast it feels like flying, and finding lost teddy bears.

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