A Curse Dark As Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce!
Of course, this is the only one of the five nominees I haven't read yet (although I DO have it checked out now!), but Reading Rants has a great review of it, so head over there and check out what Jen has to say about this dark re-imagining of the Rumpelstiltskin story. According to Katie, this packs one wallop of a mystery, so what are you waiting for?
For those of you not in the know, the Morris award (new this year!) is given to the author of the best book for teens by a newbie author, so somebody who's never had anything published before. Elizabeth Bunce was up against some tough competition, so if you can't get your hands on A Curse Dark as Gold right away, check out the other contendors:
Graceling by Kristin Cashore (to which I would award 2nd prize, if there was one!)
Absolute Brightness by James Lecesne
Madapple by Christina Meldrum
Me, the Missing and the Dead by Jenny Valentine
I don't know about you guys, but since these books are 'only' these authors' first try at story writing, I can't wait to see what kind of perfect practice will make!
(who will be starting A Curse Dark as Gold as soon as I finish Tigerheart by Peter David)
P.S. If you want to read something really funny, check out Neil Gaiman's blog post on his reaction to the you-won-the-Newbery phone call!