ALA Youth Media Awards

While there were numerous books, authors and illustrators recognized this past week for their outstanding contribution to children and young adult literature, I’d like to give special recognition to the following authors of color for their contribution to young adult literature. The pressure is on to get the typing correct and not to miss anyone. Please call me out as soon as you spot an error. This is one post I’d like to do with no errors or omissions.

If you missed it before, here’s how the awards work.

While the awards seem more diverse than ever before, don’t let this one year let you think our work is done. Do you see any books by Native American writers here? Watch as I post each month and see how few books continue to be released by authors of color. And, watch for other diversities as well.

In addition to the ALA awards, I have to call your attention to the 2015 Titles for Youth in Custody. These are titles you’re not going to see on many other lists, but many African American and Latin@ readers will devour them. The list contains fiction and nonfiction title while the blog post relates some of the discussion that got the books on the list. Indeed, Ebony Canion’s Left for Dead sounds like a compelling read, but I don’t think I can wait to get my hands on a copy of The Griots of Oakland: Voices from the African American Oral History Project by Angela Beth Zusman. 

What about you? Which of these have you read and enjoyed? Which are you most looking forward to reading?

Alex Awards
“Everything I Never Told You,” by Celeste Ng, published by The Penguin Press, a member of Penguin Group LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.

“The Terrorist’s Son: A Story of Choice,” by Zak Ebrahim with Jeff Giles, published by TED Books, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.

“Confessions,” by Kanae Minato, translated by Stephen Snyder, published by Mulholland Books, an imprint of Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.

Coretta Scott King
“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson, published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
Honor
Kwame Alexander for “The Crossover,” published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing.
Marilyn Nelson for “How I Discovered Poetry,” illustrated by Hadley Hooper and published by Dial Books, an imprint of Penguin Books (USA) LLC.
Kekla Magoon for “How It Went Down,” published by Henry Holt and Company, LLC

Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award
“When I Was the Greatest,” written by Jason Reynolds, is the Steptoe winner. The book is published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division.

Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement
Deborah D. Taylor is the winner of the Coretta Scott King – Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement. The award pays tribute to the quality and magnitude of beloved children’s author Virginia Hamilton.
Taylor’s career in public service began more than 40 years ago with the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, where she is currently coordinator of School and Student Services. Her career has been spent as mentor, educator and literacy advocate for young adults. As an inspiring young adult librarian, leader in national associations and university instructor, she has been distinctly effective in introducing young people and her professional colleagues to the outstanding work of African American authors.

John Newbery Medal
winner
“The Crossover,” written by Kwame Alexander, is the 2015 Newbery Medal winner. The book is published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
honor
“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson and published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Laura Ingalls Wilder Award
The Laura Ingalls Wilder Award honors an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made, over a period of years, a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children. The award is administered by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, and presented every two years.
The 2015 winner is Donald Crews, whose award-winning works include “Freight Train,” which was a Caldecott Honor Book in 1979, and “Truck,” a Caldecott Honor Book in 1981. He has been consistently excellent with a wide range of titles, such as “Harbor,” “Parade,” “Shortcut” and “Bigmama’s,” all published by Greenwillow Books.

Margaret A. Edwards Award
The Margaret A. Edwards Award, established in 1988, honors an author, as well as a specific body of his or her work, for significant and lasting contribution to young adult literature. The annual award is administered by the Young Adult Library Services Association, a division of the American Library Association. and sponsored by School Library Journal magazine.

The 2015 winner is Sharon M. Draper, author of more than 20 books, including: “Tears of a Tiger” (1994), “Forged by Fire” (1997), “Darkness Before Dawn” (2001), “Battle of Jericho” (2004), “Copper Sun” (2006), and “November Blues” (2007), all published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing.

Arbuthnot Lecturer
The lecturer may be an author, critic, librarian, historian, or teacher of children’s literature, of any country, who shall prepare a paper considered to be a significant contribution to the field of children’s literature. The paper is delivered as a lecture each April, and is subsequently published in Children & Libraries, the journal of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association. The award is administered byALSC.

The 2016 Arbuthnot Lecture will be delivered by Pat Mora. Pioneering author and literacy advocate Pat Mora has written more than three dozen books for young people that represent the Mexican American experience.

Michael L. Printz Award
honor book
“This One Summer,” by Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, and published by First Second.

Pura Belpé Author Award
“I Lived on Butterfly Hill” by Marjorie Agosín, illustrated by Lee White and published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division.
honor
“Portraits of Hispanic American Heroes,” written by Juan Felipe Herrera, illustrated by Raúl Colón and published by Dial Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Randoph Caldecott Award
honor
“Viva Frida,” illustrated by Yuyi Morales, written by Yuyi Morales and published by Roaring Brook Press, a Neal Porter Book.

“This One Summer,” illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, written by Mariko Tamaki and published by First Second.

Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal
“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson, and published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

William C. Morris Award
“Gabi, a Girl in Pieces,” written by Isabel Quintero, is the 2015 Morris Award winner. The book is published by Cinco Puntos Press.

Best Fiction in Young Adults
Top Ten
The Young Elites by Marie Lu. Putnam
The Crossover by Kwame Alexander
also on the list
When I was the Greatest by Jason Reynolgs
A Time to Dance by Padma Venkatraman
How It Went Down by Kekla Magoon, Holt
Gabi, A Girl in Pieces by Isabel Quitero
Complicit by Stephanie Kuehn

Still to come are announcements from the American Indian Library Association and the Asian Pacific American Library Association.

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