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February 12, 2018

The 2018 ALA Youth Media Awards

Posted by Rebecca M
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Today is one of the biggest days of the year for young adult and children's literature: the announcement of the ALA Youth Media Awards. Each year the American Library Association honors the books, videos and other outstanding works that have released that year for kids and teens and are recognized worldwide for the high quality they represent. We've compiled all of the children's awards announcements here, so read on to see which of your favorites made the cut and click here to see the young adult awards announcements!


The Newbery Medal is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children. On June 22, 1921, Frederic G. Melcher proposed the award to the American Library Association meeting of the Children's Librarians' Section and suggested that it be named for the eighteenth-century British bookseller John Newbery. The idea was enthusiastically accepted by the children's librarians and Melcher's official proposal was approved by the ALA Executive Board in 1922.

  • HELLO, UNIVERSE written by Erin Entrada Kelly, is the 2018 Newbery Medal winner. The book is published by Greenwillow Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

  • Three Newbery Honor Books also were named: CROWN: An Ode to the Fresh Cut, written by Derrick Barnes, illustrated by Gordon C. James and published by Bolden, an Agate Imprint, a Denene Millner Book; LONG WAY DOWN, written by Jason Reynolds and published by Atheneum, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division, a Caitlyn Dlouhy Book; and PIECING ME TOGETHER, written by Renée Watson and published by Bloomsbury Children’s Books.

The Randolph Caldecott Medal was named in honor of nineteenth-century English illustrator Randolph Caldecott. It is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children. During 2013, children's picturebook lovers everywhere celebrated the 75th anniversary of the Caldecott Award.

  • WOLF IN THE SNOW, illustrated and written by Matthew Cordell is the 2018 Caldecott Medal winner. The book was published by Feiwel and Friends, an Imprint of Macmillan.

  • Four Caldecott Honor Books also were named: BIG CAT, LITTLE CAT, illustrated and written by Elisha Cooper and published by Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership; CROWN: An Ode to the Fresh Cut, illustrated by Gordon C. James, written by Derrick Barnes, and published by Bolden, an Agate Imprint, a Denene Millner Book; A DIFFERENT POND, illustrated by Thi Bui, written by Bao Phi and published by Capstone Young Readers, a Capstone imprint; and GRAND CANYON, illustrated and written by Jason Chin, a Neal Porter Book, published by Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership.

The Coretta Scott King Book Awards are given annually to outstanding African American authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values. The award commemorates the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and honors his wife, Mrs. Coretta Scott King, for her courage and determination to continue the work for peace and world brotherhood. The award is sponsored by ALA's Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT). The Coretta Scott King Book Award was founded in 1969 by Mabel McKissick and Glyndon Greer at the American Library Association Annual Conference in Atlantic City, New Jersey.  The first award was given to Lillie Patterson in 1970 for her biography, MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR.: Man of Peace (Garrard). In 1982, the Coretta Scott King Book Awards became an officially recognized ALA award. Three awards are given annually: Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award, Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award and Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award.

  • PIECING ME TOGETHER written by Renée Watson, is the King Author Award winner. The book is published by Bloomsbury Children’s Books.

  • Three King Author Honor Books also were named: CROWN: An Ode to the Fresh Cut, written by Derrick Barnes, published by Bolden, an Agate Imprint, a Denene Millner Book; LONG WAY DOWN, written by Jason Reynolds, published by Atheneum, an Imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division, a Caitlyn Dlouhy Book; and THE HATE U GIVE, written by Angie Thomas, published by Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

  • OUT OF WONDER: Poems Celebrating Poets, illustrated by Ekua Holmes, is the King Illustrator Award winner. The book is written by Kwame Alexander with Chris Colderly and Marjory Wentworth.

  • Two King Illustrator Honor Books also were named: CROWN: An Ode to a Fresh Cut, illustrated by Gordon C. James, written by Derrick Barnes and published by Bolden, an Agate Imprint, a Denene Millner Book; and BEFORE SHE WAS HARRIET: The Story of Harriet Tubman, illustrated by James E. Ransome, written by Lesa Cline-Ransome and published by Holiday House.

  • THE STARS BENEATH OUR FEET written by David Barclay Moore, is the Steptoe Author Award winner. The book is published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC.

  • MAMA AFRICA! How Miriam Makeba Spread Hope with Her Song, illustrated by Charly Palmer, is the Steptoe Illustrator Award winner. The book is written by Kathryn Erskine and published by Farrar Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Macmillan Publishing Group, LLC.

The Coretta Scott King--Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement is named in memory of beloved children’s author Virginia Hamilton. The annual award is presented in even years to an African American author, illustrator or author/illustrator for a body of his or her published books for children and/or young adults and who has made a significant and lasting literary contribution. In odd years, the award is presented to a practitioner for substantial contributions through active engagement with youth using award-winning African American literature for children and/or young adults, via implementation of reading and reading related activities/programs. The award is sponsored by ALA's Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT). A medal and check for $1,500 is presented to the winner during the Coretta Scott King Awards Breakfast at the ALA Annual Conference. Virginia Hamilton was an award-winning author of children's books. She wrote more than 35 books throughout her career, including M.C. HIGGINS, THE GREAT for which she won the 1975 Newbery Medal. During her lifetime, Ms. Hamilton received numerous awards including the Coretta Scott King Book Award, the Edgar Allan Poe Award, the Boston Globe-Horn Book.

  • Eloise Greenfield is the winner of the Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement. Eloise Greenfield was born in Parmele, North Carolina, and currently resides in Washington, D.C. Early in life, she discovered a love of reading and writing and realized there were few books that showed the fullness of African American life. She published her first book in 1972 and went on to write and publish more than 40 books. From HONEY, I LOVE to THE GREAT MIGRATION, this multiple award-winning author has captivated audiences through the years.

The Schneider Family Book Awards honor an author or illustrator for a book that embodies an artistic expression of the disability experience for child and adolescent audiences. The award is donated by Dr. Katherine Schneider. Three annual awards are presented for the best Teen, Middle School and Children’s Book. The American Library Association administers the Awards, and each recipient receives $5000 and a framed plaque. Winners are announced at the ALA Midwinter Meeting.

  • SILENT DAYS, SILENT DREAMS, written and illustrated by Allen Say and published by Arthur A. Levine Books, an Imprint of Scholastic Inc., wins the award for young children (ages 0 to 8).

  • MACY MCMILLAN AND THE RAINBOW GODDESS, written by Shari Green and published by Pajama Press Inc., is the winner for middle grades (ages 9-13).

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 2018 winner is Jacqueline Woodson, whose award-winning works include BROWN GIRL DREAMING, AFTER TUPAC & D FOSTER, LOCOMOTION, and SHOW WAY.

The May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture recognizes an author, critic, librarian, historian or teacher of children's literature, who then presents a lecture at a winning host site. The lecturer, announced annually at the ALA Midwinter Meeting, shall prepare a paper considered to be a significant contribution to the field of children's literature. Once the name is made public, institutions wishing to host the lecture may apply. A library school, department of education in college or university or a children's library system may be considered. This 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 established the lecture series in 1969 with sponsorship from Scott, Foresman and Company. May Hill Arbuthnot (1884-1969) was born in Mason City, Iowa, and graduated from the University of Chicago in 1922, receiving her master's degree in 1924 from Columbia University. Along with educator William Scott Gray, she created and wrote the Curriculum Foundation Readers --- better known as the Dick and Jane series --- for children published by Scott, Foresman and Company (now Pearson Scott Foresman).

  • Debbie Reese will deliver the 2019 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture. Dr. Reese is a longtime advocate for Native representation and is a former teacher and university professor. She earned her PhD in Education from the University of Illinois, where she also helped establish the Native American House and American Indian Studies program. Dr. Reese also holds an M.Ed degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University. She is tribally enrolled at Nambe Owingeh Pueblo in New Mexico.

The Mildred L. Batchelder Award, established in Mildred L. Batchelder's honor in 1966, is a citation awarded to an American publisher for a children's book considered to be the most outstanding of those books originally published in a foreign language in a foreign country, and subsequently translated into English and published in the United States. The award is administered by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association.

  • THE MURDERER'S APE is the 2018 Batchelder Award winner. Originally published in Sweden as “Mördarens Apa,” the book was written and illustrated by Jakob Wegelius, translated from Swedish by Peter Graves and published by Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC.

  • Three Batchelder Honor Books also were named: MALALA: Activist for Girls’ Education, published by Charlesbridge Publishing, written by Raphaële Frier, illustrated by Aurélia Fronty and translated from French by Julie Cormier; WHEN A WOLF IS HUNGRY, published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, written by Christine Naumann-Villemin, illustrated by Kris Di Giacomo and translated from French by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers; and YOU CAN'T BE TOO CAREFUL!, published by Elsewhere Editions, written and illustrated by Roger Mello, and translated from Portuguese by Daniel Hahn.

The Odyssey Award is given to the producer of the best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States. The award is jointly given and administered by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) and the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), divisions of ALA, and is sponsored by Booklist. The story of the wanderings of Ulysses, as he returns to his kingdom of Ithaca after the Trojan War, are ascribed to the blind poet Homer who either wrote, or dictated, the epic poem called THE ODYSSEY. Whether this odyssey of Ulysses was based on one specific event, or many different ones, is argued by researchers today, though they all seem to agree that the poems comprising THE ODYSSEY were originally told and retold in the oral tradition, hence the name for this award. The Odyssey Award allows us to return to the ancient roots of storytelling, while living in our modern world.

  • THE HATE U GIVE, produced by HarperAudio, is the 2018 Odyssey Award winner. The book is written by Angie Thomas and narrated by Bahni Turpin.

  • Five Odyssey Honor Audiobooks also were named: THE BOOK OF DUST: La Belle Sauvage, produced by Listening Library, an imprint of the Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group, written by Philip Pullman and narrated by Michael Sheen; A BOY CALLED CHRISTMAS, produced by Listening Library, an imprint of the Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group, written by Matt Haig and narrated by Stephen Fry; LONG WAY DOWN, produced by Simon & Schuster Audio and written and narrated by Jason Reynolds; TROMBONE SHORTY produced by Live Oak Media, written by Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews and narrated by Dion Graham; and THE WIZARDS OF ONCE, produced by Hachette Audio, written by Cressida Cowell and narrated by David Tennant.

The Pura Belpré Awards are named after Pura Belpré, the first Latina librarian at the New York Public Library. The Pura Belpré Award, established in 1996, is presented annually to a Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays, affirms and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth. It is co-sponsored by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA) and REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking, an ALA affiliate.

  • LA PRINCESA AND THE PEA, illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal, is the Belpré Illustrator Award winner. The book was written by Susan Middleton Elya and published by G. P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.

  • Two Belpré Illustrator Honor Books also were named: ALL AROUND US, illustrated by Adriana M. Garcia, written by Xelena González and published by Cinco Puntos Press; and FRIDA KAHLO AND HER ANIMALITOS, illustrated by John Parra, written by Monica Brown and published by NorthSouth Books, Inc., an imprint of NordSüd Verlag AG.

  • LUCKY BROKEN GIRL, written by Ruth Behar, is the Pura Belpré Author Award winner. The book is published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.

  • Two Belpré Author Honor Books also were named: THE EPIC FAIL OF ARTURO ZAMORA, written by Pablo Cartaya and published by Viking, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC; and THE FIRST RULE OF PUNK written by Celia C. Pérez and published by Viking, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.

The Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal is awarded annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished informational book published in the United States in English during the preceding year. The award is named in honor of Robert F. Sibert, the long-time President of Bound to Stay Bound Books, Inc. of Jacksonville, Illinois. The Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, administers the award.

  • TWELVE DAYS IN MAY: Freedom Ride 1961, written by Larry Dane Brimner, is the Sibert Award winner. The book is published by Calkins Creek, an imprint of Highlights.

  • Four Sibert Honor Books also were named: CHEF ROY CHOI AND THE STREET FOOD REMIX, written by Jacqueline Briggs Martin and June Jo Lee, illustrated by Man One and published by Readers to Eaters Books; GRAND CANYON, written and illustrated by Jason Chin and published by Roaring Book Press, a Neal Porter Book; NOT SO DIFFERENT What You Really Want to Ask about Having a Disability, written by Shane Burcaw, illustrated by Matt Carr and published by Roaring Brook Press; and SEA OTTER HEROES: The Predators That Saved an Ecosystem, written by Patricia Newman and published by Millbrook Press, a division of Lerner Publishing Group, Inc.

Stonewall Book Award --- Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award is given annually to English-language works of exceptional merit for children or teens relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience. The award is sponsored by the American Library Association's Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Round Table.

  • LITTLE & LION, written by Brandy Colbert and published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group Inc.; and THE 57 BUS, written by Dashka Slater and published by Farrar Straus Giroux for Young Readers, an imprint of Macmillan Publishing Group, LLC are the 2018 recipients of the Stonewall Book Awards–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award.

  • Two Stonewall Honor Books were also named: AS THE CROW FLIES, written and illustrated by Melanie Gillman and published by Iron Circus Comics; and THE GENTLEMAN'S GUIDE TO VICE AND VIRTUE written by Mackenzi Lee and published by Katherine Tegen Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award is given annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished American book for beginning readers published in English in the United States during the preceding year. The winner(s), recognized for their literary and artistic achievements that demonstrate creativity and imagination to engage children in reading, receives a bronze medal. Honor Book authors and illustrators receive certificates, which are presented at the ALA Annual Conference. The award was established in 2004 and first presented in 2006. The award is named for the world-renowned children’s author, Theodor Geisel. "A person’s a person no matter how small," Theodor Geisel, a.k.a. Dr. Seuss, would say. "Children want the same things we want: to laugh, to be challenged, to be entertained and delighted." Brilliant, playful and always respectful of children, Dr. Seuss charmed his way into the consciousness of four generations of youngsters and parents. In the process, he helped them to read. The Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, administers the award.

  • The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award for the most distinguished book for beginning readers is CHARLIE & MOUSE written by Laurel Snyder and illustrated by Emily Hughes. The book is published by Chronicle Books.

  • Five Geisel Honor Books also were named: I SEE A CAT, written and illustrated by Paul Meisel and published by Holiday House; KING & KAYLA AND THE CASE OF THE MISSING DOG TREATS, written by Dori Hillestad Butler, illustrated by Nancy Meyers and published by Peachtree Publishers; MY KITE IS STUCK! And Other Stories, written and illustrated by Salina Yoon and published by Bloomsbury Children’s Books; NOODLEHEADS SEE THE FUTURE, written by Tedd Arnold, Martha Hamilton and Mitch Weiss, illustrated by Tedd Arnold and published by Holiday House; and SNAIL & WORM AGAIN, written and illustrated by Tina Kügler and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

Recognized worldwide for the high quality they represent, ALA awards guide parents, educators, librarians and others in selecting the best materials for youth. Selected by judging committees of librarians and other children’s experts, the awards encourage original and creative work. For more information on the ALA youth media awards and notables, please visit www.ala.org/yma.