The award is named in honor of Frank Yerby, an Augusta native whose novel The Foxes of Harrow was the first by an African-American author to sell a million copies. It is awarded by Paine College during the annual Augusta Literary Festival.
The Key of Elyon tells the story of a 12-year-old boy who discovers an ancient book that transports him to another realm.
Taking second-place was Tyora Moody, who wrote When Rain Falls, followed by Regina Jeffers with The Mysterious Death of Mr. Darcy in third place. Jessica Hawke came in fourth with her book, Phantom Touch, and Alicia Michaels was fifth with Child of the Sacred Earth.