Award Day!

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More anticipated (by some of us) than the Academy Awards, this morning the winners of the American Library Association Awards for the best books of the year were announced.

Here they are:

John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature:

The Crossover” written by Kwame Alexander is the 2015 Newbery Medal winner. (A happy surprise – this has become a book I regularly recommend to middle school students who begin a conversation with: “I don’t know what to read.”)

Two Newbery Honor Books also were named.  I love both of them so much that when thinking about which would win the “big” award, I couldn’t choose. This is perfect – equal billing!


El Deafo by Cece Bell


Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson 

Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children:


The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat  is the 2015 Caldecott Medal winner.  (Totally caught me off guard – we have the book at school, but admittedly it was not on my Caldecott radar! As soon as I’m plowed out from under the snow, I am going to take another look….)

Six Caldecott Honor Books also were named:

Nana in the City by Lauren Castillo

The Noisy Paint Box: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art by iMary GrandPré and Barb Rosenstock

Sam & Dave Dig a Hole by Jon Klassen and Mac Barnett (this is the one I thought would win)

Viva Frida by Yuyi Morales

The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus illustrated by Melissa Sweet and written by Jen Bryant

This One Summer illustrated by Jillian Tamaki and written by Mariko Tamaki

Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award recognizing an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults:

Brown Girl Dreaming written by Jacqueline Woodson is the King Author Book winner.

Three King Author Honor Books were selected:

Kwame Alexander for The Crossover

Marilyn Nelson for How I Discovered Poetry (this one has been in my to-read stack for too long – I need to move it to top of the pile!)

Kekla Magoon for How It Went Down

Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award:


Firebird illustrated by Christopher Myers

Two King Illustrator Honor Book were selected:

Christian Robinson for Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker by Patricia Hruby Powell

Frank Morrison for Little Melba and Her Big Trombone by Katheryn Russell-Brown,

Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults:


I’ll Give You the Sun written by Jandy Nelson is the 2015 Printz Award winner.

Four Printz Honor Books also were named:

And We Stay by Jenny Hubbard

The Carnival at Bray by Jessie Ann Foley

Grasshopper Jungle by Andrew Smith

This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by Jillian Tamaki

Schneider Family Book Award for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience:


A Boy and a Jaguar written by Alan Rabinowitz and illustrated by Catia Chien

Here’s a link to NPR’s story about the awards:


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