Rick Riordan was named author of the year, and David Wiesner was named illustrator of the year at Monday night’s fourth annual Children's Choice Book Awards, held at a gala at New York City’s Chelsea Piers, which kicked off Children's Book Week. Riordan won for the first book in his new Heroes of Olympus series, The Lost Hero (Disney-Hyperion), and Wiesner for Art & Max (Clarion Books). The awards are all chosen by children; more than 500,000 children and teens voted for their favorite books this year, a record number for the Children's Book Council, which administers the awards along with the Every Child a Reader foundation.
Other highlights of the awards ceremony included former National Ambassador Jon Scieszka making a guest appearance dressed as Snooki, and emcee Jarrett J. Krosoczka singing the Reading Rainbow theme song with former Reading Rainbow host LeVar Burton.
The Impact Award, which is given for “raising awareness of important issues and encouraging global understanding,” had been announced as going to author Greg Mortenson, but given the controversy currently surrounding the author, CBC executive director Robin Adelson announced, “We have decided not to present the Impact Award at this time. Too many questions remain unanswered. That doesn't mean he won't get the award someday, but not at this time."
The book of the year winners, by age group, were:
Kindergarten to second grade: Little Pink Pup by Johanna Kerby (Putnam)
Third to fourth grade: Lunch Lady and the Summer Camp Shakedown by Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Knopf)
Fifth to sixth grade: The Red Pyramid (The Kane Chronicles: Book 1) by Rick Riordan (Disney-Hyperion)
Teen: Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan (Dutton)
See below for a photo-essay of the evening's festivities. And click here for a list of Children's Book Week events and activities taking place across the country all week.