The Mark Twain Readers Award, also known simply as the Mark Twain Award, is an award given annually to a book for children in grades four through six by the Missouri Association of School Librarians (MASL). Students primarily in grades four through six in Missouri schools can vote for their favorite book from an annual list of nominees. The 1970 Newbery Medal winning book Sounder, by William H. Armstrong, was the inaugural winner of the award in 1972.
Books should interest children in grades four through six.
Books should be an original work written by an author living in the United States.
Books should be of literary value which may enrich children's personal lives.
Books should be published two years prior to nomination on a master list of twelve nominees.
Though the list of nominated books is designated for grades four through six, any student can vote for the winner so long as they satisfy the following criteria:
Book must have been read by voter.
Voter must have read at least four books from the list of nominees.
Voter can only vote once.
Schools design their own ballots. Individual votes for each school (or qualified group) are tallied on a single sheet and submitted to the MASL.