2020 Finalists

2020 High Plains Book Awards Finalists

Art & Photography

  • The Arapaho Way: Continuity and Change on the Wind River Reservation by Sara Wiles, published by University of Oklahoma Press (Read a Review)
  • Truth and Beauty in the Canadian Rockies by Lisa Christensen, published by Fifth House Press (Read a Review)
  • Victor Cicansky: The Gardener’s Universe / L’univers d’un jardinier by Timothy Long & Julia Krueger, Editors, published by MacKenzie Art Gallery (Read a Review)

Children’s Book

  • Forever Neverland by Susan Adrian, published by Random House Children’s Books (Read a Review)
  • Howl: A New Look at the Big Bad Wolf by Ted Rechlin, published by RexTooth Studios (Read a Review)
  • Major: A Soldier Dog by Trevor Jones, illustrated by Ming Hai, published by Six Foot Press (Read a Review)

Creative Nonfiction

  • Deep Creek: Finding Hope in the High Country by Pam Houston, published by W.W. Norton & Company (Read a Review)
  • Encounters in Yellowstone: The Nez Perce Summer of 1877 by M. Mark Miller, published by Two Dot Press (Read a Review)
  • Essential Yellowstone: A Landscape of Memory and Wonder by Michael J. Yochim, published by Riverbend Publishing (Read a Review)


  • Fall Back Down When I Die by Joe Wilkins, published by Little, Brown and Company (Read a Review)
  • The Healer’s Daughter by Charlotte Hinger, published by Gale/Cengage (Five Star) (Read a Review)
  • The Line Between by Tosca Lee, published by Howard Books/Simon & Schuster (Read a Review)

First Book

  • The Cheyenne Story: An Interpretation of Courage by Gerry Robinson, self-published (Read a Review)
  • Earth to Charlie by Justin Olson, published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (Read a Review)
  • Reckless Steps Toward Sanity by Judith Sara Gelt, published by University of New Mexico Press (Read a Review)

Indigenous Writer

  • From the Ashes: My Story of Being Métis, Homeless, and Finding My Way by Jesse Thistle, published by Simon & Schuster Canada (Read a Review)
  • Perception: A Photo Series by KC Adams, published by HighWater Press/ Portage & Main Press (Read a Review)
  • The Red Chesterfield by Wayne Arthurson, published by University of Calgary Press (Read a Review)

Medicine & Science

  • Birds, Bones, and Beetles: The Improbable Career and Remarkable Legacy of University of Kansas Naturalist Charles D. Bunker by Charles H. Warner, published by University Press of Kansas (Read a Review)
  • The Science of Why, Vol 4 by Jay Ingram, published by Simon & Schuster Canada (Read a Review)
  • Six Hundred Generations: An Archaeological History of Montana, by Carl M. Davis, published by Riverbend Publishing (Read a Review)


  • Lakota America: A New History of Indigenous Power by Pekka Hamalainen, published by Yale University Press (Read a Review)
  • One Size Fits None: A Farm Girl’s Search for the Promise of Regenerative Agriculture by Stephanie Anderson, published by University of Nebraska Press (Read a Review)
  • Voices of Yellowstone’s Capstone edited by Traute N. Parrie & Jesse A. Logan, published by Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness Foundation (Read a Review)


  • Mercy by Shirley Camia published by Turnstone Press (Read a Review)
  • St. Boniface Elegies by Catherine Hunter, published by Signature Editions (Read a Review)
  • Wilderness//Kingdom by Jory Mickelson, published by Floating Bridge Press (Read a Review)

Short Stories

  • Not a Thing to Comfort You by Emily Wortman-Wunder, published by University of Iowa Press (Read a Review)
  • This. This. This. Is. Love. Love. Love. by Jennifer Wortman, published by Split/Lip Press (Read a Review)
  • Winning Chance by Katherine Koller, published by Great Plains Publications (Read a Review)

Woman Writer

  • Cold Metal Stairs by Su Croll, published by Turnstone Press (Read a Review)
  • Nighthawk Rising: A Biography of Accused Cattle Rustler Queen Ann Bassett of Brown’s Park by Diana Allen Kouris, published by High Plains Press (Read a Review)
  • River People by Margaret Lukas, published by BQB Publishing (Read a Review)

Young Adult Book

  • Cold White Sun by Sue Farrell Holler, published by Groundwood Books (Read a Review)
  • Qaqavii by Miriam Korner, published by Red Deer Press (Read a Review)
  • Spin by Colleen Nelson, published by Dundurn Press (Read a Review)

    The Billings Public Library Board has established the High Plains Book Awards to recognize regional literary works which examine and reflect life on the High Plains, including the states of Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Nebraska, Colorado and Kansas, and the Canadian provinces of Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.


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