2003

An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793

By Jim Murphy

Current Publisher: Clarion Books (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
 Digital Publisher: Not Available

Reading Level: Ages 10 & Up

YPL Finalists That Year:

  • Paul Fleischman for Breakout
  • Jim Murphy for An American Plague: The True and Terrifying Story of the Yellow Fever Epidemic of 1793
  • Richard Peck for The River Between Us
  • Jacqueline Woodson for Locomotion

YPL Winner That Year: Polly Horvath for The Canning Season

Judges That Year: Susan Campbell Bartoletti, Lulu Delacre, Jean Craighead George, Barbara Harrison, Margaret Tice

The Year in Literature: Crispin: The Cross of Lead by Avi won the Newbery Medal. Postcards from No Man’s Land by Aidan Chambers won the Printz Award.

More Information: Jim Murphy says that his nonfiction books are most successful when he can get his hands on primary sources. “A dramatic situation is nice, but history really comes alive when I can use the firsthand accounts―excerpts from letters, memoirs, journals, diaries, and recollections… These voices help readers experience events as if they were actually there.”

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