by Christine, Chapman Branch
Have you heard of the Newbery or Caldecott Awards? What about the Printz; Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature; or the Stonewall award? These are just some of the prestigious awards given out by the American Library Association (ALA) every January to some of their top choices for children’s and teen books from the previous year. This year the ALA awards were announced on January 24, 2022 and these are some of the teen books that received awards.
Have you read any of these books? Or maybe this is a list of books to add to your To Read list. I know mine is longer now! Take a look and see what you think. For a complete list of all the award winning books click here!
The Michael L. Printz Award is given for excellence in literature written for young adults. The 2022 winner is Firekeeper’s Daughter, written by Angeline Boulley.
Eighteen-year-old Daunis Fontaine has never quite fit in, both in her hometown and on the nearby Ojibwe reservation. She dreams of a fresh start at college, but when family tragedy strikes, Daunis puts her future on hold to look after her fragile mother. The only bright spot is meeting Jamie, the charming new recruit on her brother Levi's hockey team.Yet even as Daunis falls for Jamie, she senses the dashing hockey star is hiding something. Everything comes to light when Daunis witnesses a shocking murder, thrusting her into an FBI investigation of a lethal new drug. Reluctantly, Daunis agrees to go undercover, drawing on her knowledge of chemistry and Ojibwe traditional medicine to track down the source. But the search for truth is more complicated than Daunis imagined, exposing secrets and old scars. As the deceptions--and deaths--keep growing, Daunis must learn what it means to be a strong Anishinaabe kwe (Ojibwe woman) and how far she'll go for her community, even if it tears apart the only world she's ever known. (From the publisher.)
William C. Morris Award
The William C. Morris Award is given to a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens. This year’s winner is Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley.
Schneider Family Book Award
The Schneider Family Book Award is given to books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience. Words in My Hands, written and illustrated by Asphyxia is the winner for teens (ages 14-18).
Words in My Hands is a fast-paced novel about smart, artistic, and independent sixteen year old Piper, who is tired of trying to conform. Her mom wants her to be "normal," to pass as hearing, to get a good job. But in a time of food scarcity, environmental collapse, and political corruption, Piper has other things on her mind--like survival. Piper has always been told that she needs to compensate for her Deafness in a world made for those who can hear. But when she meets Marley, a new world opens up--one where Deafness is something to celebrate, and where resilience means taking action, building a community, and believing in something better. This empowering, unforgettable story is told through a visual extravaganza of text, paint, collage, and drawings. (From the publisher.)
Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award
The Coretta Scott King Book Award recognizes an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults. This year’s award winner is Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre, written by Carole Boston Weatherford, and illustrated by Floyd Cooper.
Celebrated author Carole Boston Weatherford and illustrator Floyd Cooper provide a powerful look at the 1921 Tulsa race massacre, one of the worst incidents of racial violence in our nation's history. (From the publisher.)
Pura Belpré Awards
The Pura Belpré Awards honor Latinx writers and illustrators whose children's and young adult books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience. This year, How Moon Fuentez Fell in Love with the Universe, written by Raquel Vasquez Gilliland, is the Pura Belpré Young Adult Author Award winner.
When her twin sister reaches social media stardom, Moon Fuentez accepts her fate as the ugly, unwanted sister hidden in the background, destined to be nothing more than her sister’s camerawoman. But this summer, Moon also takes a job as the “merch girl” on a tour bus full of beautiful influencers and her fate begins to shift in the best way possible.
Most notable is her bunkmate and new nemesis, Santiago Phillips, who is grumpy, combative, and also the hottest guy Moon has ever seen.
Moon is certain she hates Santiago and that he hates her back. But as chance and destiny (and maybe, probably, close proximity) bring the two of them in each other’s perpetual paths, Moon starts to wonder if that’s really true. She even starts to question her destiny as the unnoticed, unloved wallflower she always thought she was.
Could this summer change Moon’s life as she knows it? (From the publisher.)
Stonewall Book Award
The Stonewall Book Award - Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award is given annually to English-language children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience. This year’s young adult recipient is Last Night at the Telegraph Club, written by Malinda Lo.
Seventeen-year-old Lily Hu can't remember exactly when the question took root, but the answer was in full bloom the moment she and Kathleen Miller walked under the flashing neon sign of a lesbian bar called The Telegraph Club. America in 1954 is not a safe place for two girls to fall in love, especially not in Chinatown. Red-Scare paranoia threatens everyone, including Chinese Americans like Lily. With deportation looming over her father--despite his hard-won citizenship--Lily and Kath risk everything to let their love see the light of day. (From the publisher.)
Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature
The Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature promotes Asian/Pacific American culture and heritage and is awarded based on literary and artistic merit. The award is administered by the Asian Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA), an affiliate of the American Library Association. This year the award was presented to Last Night at the Telegraph Club, written by Malinda Lo.
American Indian Youth Literature Awards
American Indian Youth Literature Awards are announced in even years (e.g. 2022, 2024, 2026) and were established to identify and honor the very best writing and illustrations by and about American Indians and Alaska Natives. Selected titles present American Indians in the fullness of their humanity in the present and past contexts. This year’s young adult winner is Apple (Skin to the Core), written by Eric Gansworth [Onondaga], cover art by Filip Peraić.
The term "Apple" is a slur in Native communities across the country. It's for someone supposedly "red on the outside, white on the inside." Eric Gansworth is telling his story in Apple (Skin to the Core). The story of his family, of Onondaga among Tuscaroras, of Native folks everywhere. From the horrible legacy of the government boarding schools, to a boy watching his siblings leave and return and leave again, to a young man fighting to be an artist who balances multiple worlds. Eric shatters that slur and reclaims it in verse and prose and imagery that truly lives up to the word heartbreaking. (From the publisher.)
The Sidney Taylor Book Award
The Sydney Taylor Book Award is an annual award presented to outstanding books for children and teens that authentically portray the Jewish experience. The award is presented by the Association of Jewish Libraries since 1968, and encourages the publication and widespread use of quality Judaic literature. This year’s young adult winner is The City Beautiful by Aden Polydoros.
Death lurks around every corner in this unforgettable Jewish historical fantasy about a city, a boy, and the shadows of the past that bind them both together. Chicago, 1893. For Alter Rosen, this is the land of opportunity, and he dreams of the day he'll have enough money to bring his mother and sisters to America, freeing them from the oppression they face in his native Romania. But when Alter's best friend, Yakov, becomes the latest victim in a long line of murdered Jewish boys, his dream begins to slip away. While the rest of the city is busy celebrating the World's Fair, Alter is now living a nightmare: possessed by Yakov's dybbuk, he is plunged into a world of corruption and deceit, and thrown back into the arms of a dangerous boy from his past. A boy who means more to Alter than anyone knows. Now, with only days to spare until the dybbuk takes over Alter's body completely, the two boys must race to track down the killer--before the killer claims them next. (From the publisher.)
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