rockinlibrarian: (librarians)
I have nothing but contented feelings toward this year's Youth Media Awards. It's a gut reaction I couldn't actually pinpoint, but I'm just pleased. Someone online pointed out that it's a very kid-friendly bunch of honorees this year: not just award-bait that teachers will push on kids for decades, but books kids will willingly scoop up on their own. Someone else pointed out how diverse in the #WeNeedDiverseBooks sense the winners are, but me in my privileged place HAD to have that pointed out to me, because everything and everyone is so clearly there on their own merit, which just makes non-diverse award lineups-- like the Oscar noms-- suddenly look like "Oh, yeah. That IS weirdly whitewashed in comparison to what could be." So perhaps these are factors that affect my gut satisfaction, but whatever the factors are, they're just all mixed in to make a general soup of "Oh, I like this!"

Which isn't to say I can't find anything more specific to say about the full list, which I will put under a cut for posterity's sake:

(What you see here is the ALA press release, with my commentary in green. Because green is nice).

American Library Association announces 2015 youth media award winners
CHICAGO - The American Library Association (ALA) today announced the top books, video and audio books for children and young adults – including the Caldecott, Coretta Scott King, Newbery and Printz awards – at its Midwinter Meeting in Chicago.
A list of all the 2015 award winners follows:

John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children's literature:
“The Crossover,” written by Kwame Alexander, is the 2015 Newbery Medal winner. The book is published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
Two Newbery Honor Books also were named:
“El Deafo” by Cece Bell, illustrated by Cece Bell and published by Amulet Books, an imprint of ABRAMS.
“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson and published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.

Back when I was actually reading frequently I made it a goal to try to read the Newbery before it actually won. I wasn't remotely going to aim for that this year. AND YET, I have still managed to read 1/3 of this year's Newbery Honorees! Yes, if you haven't read Brown Girl Dreaming yet even though I recommended it in my <a href="http://rockinlibrarian.livejournal.com/371454.html">Best of The Year</a> post, HERE I AND THE ALA ARE RECOMMENDING IT AGAIN. As for the others, well, I probably COULD read both of those in no time. And even though I haven't yet read them, I am still excited. I was excited merely to BUY The Crossover for the library because it seemed weird how few high-quality sports books we had in our Intermediate Fiction section, let alone verse novels. A SPORTS-RELATED VERSE NOVEL THAT WAS MIDDLE-GRADE (rather than YA) APPROPRIATE? YES we needed it. And El Deafo-- yes, a graphic novel wins a Newbery Honor! That's a first. And a cute first, too. And yes, this is DEFINITELY a kid-friendly bunch. I'm thrilled.

Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for
children:
“The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend,” illustrated by Dan Santat, is the 2015 Caldecott Medal winner. The book was written by Dan Santat and published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc. So true story: Jason has us making new D&D characters to try out the new edition he just got for Christmas, and the name "Beekle" just kept haunting me from this book. I HAD to name my antisocial druid SOMETHING like Beekle. I settled on "Beetle" because it was more appropriate, but I was really thinking about Beekle. Even though Beekle the Unimaginary Friend is not an antisocial druid. I JUST REALLY LIKE THE NAME.
Six Caldecott Honor Books also were named: “Nana in the City,” illustrated by Lauren Castillo, written by Lauren Castillo and
published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
This is my fail! It's the only of the Newbery and Caldecott winners I HADN'T already bought for the library! I WAS SO CLOSE THIS YEAR, TOO!
“The Noisy Paint Box: The Colors and Sounds of Kandinsky’s Abstract Art,” illustrated by Mary GrandPré, written by Barb Rosenstock and published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc., New York. Reading a review of this made me Google Kandinsky and I was so glad I did! PSYCHEDELIA HOORAY! Also this book itself is very nice, too. And I'm willing to speak for most American Harry Potter fans when I say I'm sure we all have a soft spot for Mary GrandPré.
“Sam & Dave Dig a Hole,” illustrated by Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett and published by Candlewick Press. Of all the books on my<a href="http://rockinlibrarian.livejournal.com/371454.html">Favorite NEW Picture Books of The Year</a> list, this was the one I knew had the best chance at a Caldecott. My top two don't qualify: one's Australian, the other's actually from 2013; and the other two are wonderful and they certainly make the pool of potentials, but they don't STAND OUT like Sam and Dave. This is a perfect example of what I always stress when I run the Mock Caldecott or try to explain picture books as an art form: the art not only helps tell the story, but ENHANCES the story. And I love you Mac Barnett, but the wonder of this book is (okay ALMOST) all Jon: the pictures MAKE this book mindblowing. It's the unvoiced story in the pictures that make this book distinguished.
“Viva Frida,” illustrated by Yuyi Morales, written by Yuyi Morales and published by Roaring Brook Press, a Neal Porter Book. My personal top pick! Right, if you don't follow me on Facebook you probably didn't see a couple weeks ago where <a href="https://www.facebook.com/amy.m.weir/posts/10205690627725392?pnref=story">I posted a list of new favorites</a> that I WISH I could have included in my End of Year Roundup but didn't actually read until I sat down with a bunch of buzzed books in prep for my Mock Caldecott. The first time I saw any of Yuyi Morales' work, it was the cover of the SCBWI bulletin and I actually squealed out loud. THESE PERFECT LITTLE STOP-MOTION PUPPET SCENES! This book is just such a gorgeous use of her unique media. I want to live in those pictures.
“The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus,” illustrated by Melissa Sweet, written by Jen Bryant, and published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. Haven't seen this one yet, but I DID ORDER it-- it's coming with our current JLG subscription and I think it's in a box in the tech room right now, actually.
“This One Summer,” illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, written by Mariko Tamaki and published by First Second STOP THE PRESSES! IT'S A YA GRAPHIC NOVEL! Even higher grade level than Hugo Cabret, and THAT was a shocker of a Caldecott.

SIX HONOR BOOKS! SEVEN BOOKS TOTAL! Because this was the only category I HAD done a lot of pre-reading in and DID have pre-formed opinions on, that thrilled me. SEVEN BOOKS GET LOVIN'! And yet it's amazing how many really worthy books STILL missed the cut! Our Mock Caldecott (which was one first grader, his mom, and I very difficultly narrowing down a table of about 30 books down to four, and then carrying those four books around the library getting everyone else there to pick their favorite), named Kadir Nelson's Baby Bear the winner and Viva Frida and SPARKY! the honors-- only one made the seven so there's two additional great books right there. And MY other favorites (again Sparky! but the others on my two above linked favorite lists as well). And it seemed like everyone and their brother was pushing for The Farmer and the Clown, which personally I didn't find all that special but certainly lots of other people did. BUT SEVEN BOOKS MADE IT! Somebody from the Horn Book pointed out that the Caldecott Committee room must have been a war zone. Yep, probably right.

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. The book is published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
Three King Author Honor Books were selected:
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.

I bought ALL of these for the library, go me; granted, two of them also made the Newbery list. HEY, IT'S ANOTHER WIN FOR BROWN GIRL DREAMING, Y'ALL!
Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award:
“Firebird,” illustrated by Christopher Myers, is the King Illustrator Book winner. The book was written by Misty Copeland and published by G. P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
Two King Illustrator Honor Book were selected:
Christian Robinson for “Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker,” by Patricia Hruby Powell, published by Chronicle Books LLC.
Frank Morrison for “Little Melba and Her Big Trombone,” by Katheryn Russell-Brown, published by Lee and Low Books, Inc.
Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Author 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.

On the flip side, the only one of all the above I'd bought already is Josephine. Which is a very cute book, too, by the way, though I actually loved the writing more than the pictures.
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.
This is where I make the obligatory mention that Virginia Hamilton was once two people behind me in line for the bathroom.

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. The book is published by Dial Books, an imprint of Penguin Group USA, a Penguin Random House Company.
Four Printz Honor Books also were named:
“And We Stay,” by Jenny Hubbard, and published by Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House, Inc., a Penguin Random House Company.
“The Carnival at Bray,” by Jessie Ann Foley, and published by Elephant Rock Books.
“Grasshopper Jungle,” by Andrew Smith, and published by Dutton Books, an imprint of Penguin Group USA, a Penguin Random House Company.
“This One Summer,” by Mariko Tamaki, illustrated by Jillian Tamaki, and published by First Second.

THAT CARNIVAL AT BRAY, taking me by surprise there. I hadn't even heard of it until it got shortlisted for the Morris, which was only a month or so ago. Otherwise, okay, I've got all these. And look, there's This One Summer again, this time on a list more likely to be read by the proper age range!

Schneider Family Book Award for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience:
“A BOY AND A JAGUAR” written by Alan Rabinowitz, illustrated by Catia Chien and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, wins the award for children ages 0 to 10.
“RAIN REIGN” written by Ann M. Martin and published by A FEIWEL AND FRIENDS BOOK, is the winner of the middle-school (ages 11-13).
The teen (ages 13-18) award winner is “Girls Like Us,” written by Gail Giles and published by Candlewick Press.

We've got the first two, not the YA. Decent enough showing I guess.

Alex Awards for the 10 best adult books that appeal to teen audiences:
“All the Light We Cannot See,” by Anthony Doerr, published by Scribner, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.
“Bellweather Rhapsody,” by Kate Racculia, published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
“Bingo’s Run,” by James A. Levine, published by Spiegel & Grau, an imprint of the Random House Publishing Group, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.
“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.
“Everything I Never Told You,” by Celeste Ng, published by The Penguin Press, a member of Penguin Group LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.
“Lock In,” by John Scalzi, a Tor Book published by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.
“The Martian,” by Andy Weir, published by Crown Publishers, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group, a division of Random House 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.
“Those Who Wish Me Dead,” by Michael Koryta, published by Little, Brown and Company, a division of Hachette Book Group, Inc.
“Wolf in White Van,” by John Darnielle, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Since I work in a public rather than high school library, the Alex Award winners are not really my jurisdiction. But shout out to Andy Weir for having a good name. Being that I live with a J. Andrew Weir and an S. Andrew Weir, I have long been pleased by your existance.

Andrew Carnegie Medal for excellence in children's video:
Paul R. Gagne and Melissa Reilly Ellard, Weston Woods Studios, Inc., producers of “Me…Jane,” are the Carnegie Medal winners. This transcendent adaptation of Patrick McDonnell’s 2012 Caldecott Honor draws viewers into the childhood of a young Jane Goodall
who, with beloved stuffed chimpanzee, Jubilee, is transformed by what she observes in her own backyard, a “magical world full of joy and wonder.”

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 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
. I can totally get behind this one. Default stop for very small children who like vehicles.

Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults:
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.

2016 May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture Award recognizing an author, critic, librarian, historian or teacher of children's literature, who then presents a lecture at a winning host site.
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.

Mildred L. Batchelder Award for an outstanding children’s book translated from a foreign language and subsequently published in the United States:
“Mikis and the Donkey” is the 2015 Batchelder Award winner. The book was written by Bibi Dumon Tak, illustrated by Philip Hopman, translated by Laura Watkinson, and published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
Two Batchelder Honor Books also were selected: “Hidden: A Child’s Story of the Holocaust,” published by First Second an imprint of
Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership, written by Loic Dauvillier, illustrated by Marc Lizano, color by Greg Salsedo, translated by Alexis Siegel.
“Nine Open Arms,” published by Enchanted Lion Books, written by Benny Lindelauf, illustrated by Dasha Tolstikova, translated by John Nieuwenhuizen
.
I noticed copying the winners into the posters I'm putting in the library, using last year's format, that Laura Watkinson translated LAST year's entirely different winner, too. So go her. We're actually pretty on top of things in this category this year, too: Mikis is DUE to arrive from JLG in a couple months (my excuse on why I haven't ordered it YET I mean), and we have Hidden. So hey!

Odyssey Award for best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States:
“H. O. R. S. E. A Game of Basketball and Imagination,” produced by Live Oak Media, is the 2015 Odyssey Award winner. The book is written by Christopher Myers and narrated by Dion Graham and Christopher Myers.
Three Odyssey Honor Recordings also were selected:
“Five, Six, Seven, Nate!” produced by AUDIOWORKS (Children’s) an imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster, Inc., written by Tim Federle, and narrated by Tim Federle;
“The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place,” produced by Listening Library, an imprint of the Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group, written by Julie Berry, and narrated by Jayne Entwistle;
“A Snicker of Magic,” produced by Scholastic Audiobooks, written by Natalie Lloyd, and narrated by Cassandra Morris.

Pura Belpré (Illustrator) Award honoring a Latino writer and illustrator whose children's books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience:
“Viva Frida,” illustrated by Yuyi Morales, is the Belpré Illustrator Award winner. The book was written by Yuyi Morales and published by Roaring Brook Press, a Neal Porter Book.
VIVA Viva Frida! Again! Yay!
Three Belpré Illustrator Honor Books were named:
“Little Roja Riding Hood,” illustrated by Susan Guevara, written by Susan Middleton Elya, and published by G. P. Putnam’s Sons, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
“Green Is a Chile Pepper,” illustrated by John Parra, written by Roseanne Greenfield Thong, and published by Chronicle Books LLC.
“Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation,” illustrated and written by Duncan Tonatiuh, and published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of ABRAMS.
We have this one, too.

Pura Belpré (Author) Award honoring Latino authors whose work best portrays,
affirms and celebrates the Latino cultural experience:
"I Lived on Butterfly Hill" is the 2015 Pura Belpré (Author) Award winner. The book is
written by Marjorie Agosín, illustrated by Lee White and published by Atheneum Books for
Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Division.
One Belpré Author Honor Book was named:"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.
Total wash in this category though. I mean in regards to me already having them in the library.On the other hand:

Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award for most distinguished informational book for children:
“The Right Word: Roget and His Thesaurus,” written by Jen Bryant, is the Sibert Award winner. The book is published by Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
Five Sibert Honor Books were named:
“Brown Girl Dreaming,” written by Jacqueline Woodson, and published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
“The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion, & the Fall of Imperial Russia,” written by Candace Fleming, and published by Schwartz & Wade Books, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Random House LLC, a Penguin Random House Company.
“Josephine: The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker,” written by Patricia Hruby Powell, illustrated by Christian Robinson and published by Chronicle Books LLC.
“Neighborhood Sharks: Hunting with the Great Whites of California’s Farallon Islands,” written and illustrated by Katherine Roy, and published by David Macaulay Studio, an imprint of Roaring Brook Press.
“Separate Is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation,” written and illustrated by Duncan Tonatiuh and published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of ABRAMS.

...We have this WHOLE FRIGGIN' LIST! (If you count The Right Word being in a box in the tech room still). I mean we have entire other categories, too, but this is a LONG list! I am on TOP of my award-worthy nonfiction!

Stonewall Book Award - Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award given annually to English-language children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience:
“This Day in June,” written by Gayle E. Pitman, Ph.D., illustrated by Kristyna Litten and published by Magination Press, an imprint of the American Psychological Association, is the winner of the 2015 Stonewall Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award.
Three Honor Books were selected:
“Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out,” by Susan Kuklin, photographed by Susan Kuklin and published by Candlewick Press.
“I’ll give you the sun,” written by Jandy Nelson, published by Dial Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC.
“Morris Micklewhite and the Tangerine Dress,” written by Christine Baldacchio, pictures by Isabelle Malenfant, published by Groundwood Books / House of Anansi Press.


Theodor Seuss Geisel Award for the most distinguished beginning reader book:
“You Are (Not) Small,” written by Anna Kang and illustrated by Christopher Weyant, is the Seuss Award winner. The book is published by Two Lions, New York.
Two Geisel Honor Books were named:
“Mr. Putter & Tabby Turn the Page,” written by Cynthia Rylant, illustrated by Arthur Howard, and published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
“Waiting Is Not Easy!” written by Mo Willems, illustrated by Mo Willems, and published by Hyperion Books for Children, an imprint of Disney Book Group.

I feel truly ashamed that I don't have You Are (Not) Small already because I'm a big fan of the Geisel and I love to highlight it. But NATURALLY I bought Waiting is Not Easy as soon as it came out; and Mr. Putter & Tabby are quite popular in our library so I'm on that, too. Though, actually, ...Turn the Page is in that SAME box down in the tech room at the moment.

William C. Morris Award for a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens:
“Gabi, a Girl in Pieces,” written by Isabel Quintero, is the 2015 Morris Award winner. The book is published by Cinco Puntos Press.
Four other books were finalists for the award:
“The Carnival at Bray” written by Jessie Ann Foley and published by Elephant Rock Books.
“The Story of Owen: Dragon Slayer of Trondheim” written by E.K. Johnston and published by Carolrhoda Lab™, an imprint of Carolrhoda Books, a division of Lerner Publishing Group.
“The Scar Boys” written by Len Vlahos and published by Egmont Publishing.
“The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender” written by Leslye Walton and published by Candlewick Press.

There's that Carnival at Bray again! I didn't have Scar Boys yet, either. The others, yes, though. I'm actually looking forward to reading The Story of Owen myself (eventually)-- E.K. Johnston is apparently critique buddies with R.J. Anderson, the latter of whom kept linking to these hilarious alternate histories from the world of the book, and I said, "okay, that's fun, I'm going to have to at least BUY it for the library... and maybe get around to reading it."

YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults:
“Popular: Vintage Wisdom for a Modern Geek,” written by Maya Van Wagenen, is the 2015 Excellence winner. The book is published by Dutton, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group.
Four other books were finalists for the award:
“Laughing at My Nightmare” written by Shane Burcaw, and published by Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan’s Children’s Publishing Group.
“The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion & the Fall of Imperial Russia” written by Candace Fleming, and published by Schwartz & Wade, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books.
“Ida M. Tarbell: The Woman Who Challenged Big Business—and Won!” written by Emily Arnold McCully, and published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Books for Young Readers.
“The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights” written by Steve Sheinkin, and published by Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group.

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 .

And that's it! That's all I have to say. Except IF THIS DOESN'T INTEREST YOU, YOU'RE WRONG. That is all.

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