Tae Keller has won the 2021 John Newbery Medal for When You Trap a Tiger (Random House), edited by Chelsea Eberly. Michaela Goade has won the 2021 Randolph Caldecott Medal for We Are Water Protectors, written by Carole Lindstrom (Roaring Brook), edited by Mekisha Telfer. And Daniel Nayeri has won the 2021 Michael L. Printz Award for Everything Sad Is Untrue (a true story) (Levine Querido), edited by Arthur A. Levine. It is a first-time win for all three recipients. The Youth Media Awards were announced Monday morning during the American Library Association’s midwinter conference, which is being held virtually this year due to the pandemic.
Five Newbery Honor Books were named: All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys’ Soccer Team, written by Christina Soontornvat (Candlewick); BOX: Henry Brown Mails Himself to Freedom, written by Carole Boston Weatherford, illustrated by Michele Wood (Candlewick); Fighting Words, written by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (Dial); We Dream of Space, written by Erin Entrada Kelly (Greenwillow); and A Wish in the Dark, written by Christina Soontornvat (Candlewick).
There were four Caldecott Honor Books: A Place Inside of Me: A Poem to Heal the Heart, illustrated by Noa Denmon, written by Zetta Elliott (FSG); The Cat Man of Aleppo, illustrated by Yuko Shimizu, written by Irene Latham and Karim Shamsi-Basha (Putnam); Me & Mama, illustrated and written by Cozbi A. Cabrera (S&S/Denene Millner); and Outside In, illustrated by Cindy Derby, written by Deborah Underwood (HMH).
Four Printz Honor Books were named: Apple (Skin to the Core) by Eric Gansworth (Levine Querido); Dragon Hoops by Gene Luen Yang, color by Lark Pien (First Second); Every Body Looking by Candice Iloh (Dutton); and We Are Not Free by Traci Chee (HMH).
|More: When They Got the Call: PW Speaks with the 2021 Newbery, Caldecott, and Printz Winners|
The 2021 Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults went to Kekla Magoon, whose books include X: A Novel, co-written by Ilyasah Shabazz; How It Went Down; The Rock and the River; and Fire in the Streets.
The Children’s Literature Legacy Award, which honors an author or illustrator whose books have made a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children, was given to Mildred D. Taylor, whose award-winning works include Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, which earned the 1977 Newbery Medal and a Coretta Scott King Author honor; The Land, the 2002 Coretta Scott King Author Award winner; The Road to Memphis, recipient of the 1991 CSK Author Award; All the Days Past, All the Days to Come; and The Gold Cadillac, among others.
The Robert F. Sibert Award for the most distinguished informational book for children went to Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera, written by Candace Fleming and illustrated by Eric Rohmann (Holiday House/Neal Porter Books). There were three Sibert Honors: How We Got to the Moon: The People, Technology, and Daring Feats of Science Behind Humanity’s Greatest Adventure, written and illustrated by John Rocco (Crown); Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks, written by Suzanne Slade, illustrated by Cozbi A. Cabrera (Abrams); and All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys’ Soccer Team by Christina Soontornvat (Candlewick).
The Mildred L. Batchelder Award for best work of translation went to Telephone Tales, originally published in Italian as Favole al telefono, by Gianni Rodari, illustrated by Valerio Vidali, and translated by Antony Shugaar (Enchanted Lion). One Batchelder Honor Book was selected: Catherine’s War by Julia Billet, illustrated by Claire Fauvel, and translated from the French by Ivanka Hahnenberger (HarperAlley).
This year’s Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement was given to Dorothy L. Guthrie, in recognition of her work as a children’s literature advocate. A retired librarian, district administrator, author, and school board member, Guthrie also founded the first African American museum in her home of Gaston County, N.C.
Before the Ever After by Jacqueline Woodson (Penguin/Paulsen) won the Coretta Scott King Author Award, and the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award went to Frank Morrison for R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, written by Carole Boston Weatherford (Atheneum).
Three King Author Honor Books were selected: All the Days Past, All the Days to Come by Mildred D. Taylor (Viking); King and the Dragonflies by Kacen Callender (Scholastic Press), winner of the 2020 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature; and Lifting as We Climb: Black Women’s Battle for the Ballot Box by Evette Dionne (Viking).
Three King Illustrator Honor Books were chosen: Magnificent Homespun Brown: A Celebration, illustrated by Kaylani Juanita, written by Samara Cole Doyon (Tilbury House); Exquisite: The Poetry and Life of Gwendolyn Brooks, illustrated by Cozbi A. Cabrera, written by Suzanne Slade (Abrams); and Me & Mama, illustrated and written by Cozbi A. Cabrera (S&S/Denene Millner Books).
The Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Author Award went to Legendborn by Tracy Deonn (McElderry).
The William C. Morris Award, for a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens, was given to If These Wings Could Fly, written by Kyrie McCauley (HarperCollins/Katherine Tegen Books). Four finalists were announced in December: Black Girl Unlimited: The Remarkable Story of a Teenage Wizard by Echo Brown (Henry Holt/Christy Ottaviano Books); The Black Kids by Christina Hammonds Reed (Simon & Schuster); It Sounded Better in My Head by Nina Kenwood (Flatiron); and Woven in Moonlight by Isabel Ibañez (Page Street).
The Stonewall Book Award–Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award, given to children’s and YA books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender experience, went to We Are Little Feminists: Families, written by Archaa Shrivastav, designed by Lindsey Blakely (Little Feminist). Four Honor Books were named: Beetle & the Hollowbones, written and illustrated by Aliza Layne (S&S/Atheneum); Darius the Great Deserves Better by Adib Khorram (Dial); Felix Ever After by Kacen Callender (HarperCollins/Balzer + Bray); and You Should See Me in a Crown by Leah Johnson (Scholastic Press).
The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award for the most distinguished beginning reader book went to See the Cat: Three Stories About a Dog, written by David LaRochelle, illustrated by Mike Wohnoutka (Candlewick). Four Geisel Honor Books were named: The Bear in My Family, written and illustrated by Maya Tatsukawa (Dial); Ty’s Travels: Zip, Zoom! written by Kelly Starling Lyons, illustrated by Nina Mata (HarperCollins); What About Worms!? written and illustrated by Ryan T. Higgins (Disney-Hyperion); and Where’s Baby? written and illustrated by Anne Hunter (Tundra).
The YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults went to The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh by Candace Fleming (Random House/Schwartz and Wade). There were four finalists: All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys’ Soccer Team by Christina Soontornvat (Candlewick); The Cat I Never Named: A True Story of Love, War, and Survival by Amra Sabic-El-Rayess with Laura L. Sullivan (Bloomsbury); How We Got to the Moon: The People, Technology, and Daring Feats of Science Behind Humanity's Greatest Adventure, written and illustrated by John Rocco (Crown); and You Call This Democracy?: How to Fix Our Democracy and Deliver Power to the People by Elizabeth Rusch (HMH).
The Pura Belpré Awards, honoring a Latinx writer and illustrator whose children’s books best portray, affirm, and celebrate the Latino cultural experience, went to ¡Vamos! Let’s Go Eat, illustrated and written by Raúl Gonzalez (HMH/Versify) for the Illustrator Award; Efrén Divided by Ernesto Cisneros (Harper) for the Author Award; and Furia by Yamile Saied Méndez (Algonquin), for the Young Adult Author Award.
One Belpré Illustrator Honor Book was named: Sharuko: El Arqueólogo Peruano/Peruvian Archaeologist Julio C. Tello, illustrated by Elisa Chavarri, written by Monica Brown (Children’s Book Press). Two Belpré Children’s Author Honor Books were named: The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez by Adrianna Cuevas (FSG), and Lupe Wong Won’t Dance by Donna Barba Higuera (Levine Querido). And two Belpré Young Adult Author Honor Books were named: Never Look Back by Lilliam Rivera (Bloomsbury) and We Are Not from Here by Jenny Torres Sanchez (Philomel).
The Sydney Taylor Book Award for outstanding books for young readers that authentically portray the Jewish experience are presented by the Association of Jewish Libraries. This year’s Gold Medalists are: in the Picture Book category, Welcoming Elijah: A Passover Tale with a Tail by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Susan Gal (Charlesbridge); in the Middle Grade category, Turtle Boy by M. Evan Wolkenstein (Delacorte); and in the Young Adult category, Dancing at the Pity Party, written and illustrated by Tyler Feder (Dial).
Sydney Taylor Book Award Silver Medalists include: in the Picture Book category, I Am the Tree of Life: My Jewish Yoga Book by Mychal Copeland, illustrated by André Ceolin (Apples and Honey) and Miriam at the River by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Khoa Le (Kar-Ben); in the Middle Grade category, No Vacancy by Tziporah Cohen (Groundwood), Anya and the Nightingale by Sofiya Pasternack (HMH/Versify), and The Blackbird Girls by Anne Blankman (Viking); and in the Young Adult category, They Went Left by Monica Hesse (Little, Brown)
The Schneider Family Book Awards, for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience, went to I Talk Like a River, written by Jordan Scott, illustrated by Sydney Smith (Holiday House/Neal Porter Books) in the young children category; Show Me a Sign by Ann Clare LeZotte (Scholastic Press) in the middle grade category; and This Is My Brain in Love by I.W. Gregorio (Little, Brown) in the teen category.
Two Schneider honor books for young children were selected: All the Way to the Top: How One Girl’s Fight for Americans with Disabilities Changed Everything, written by Annette Bay Pimentel, illustrated by Nabi H. Ali (Sourcebooks eXplore), and Itzhak: A Boy who Loved the Violin, written by Tracy Newman, illustrated by Abigail Halpin (Abrams). Two middle grade honor books for middle grade were selected: Get a Grip, Vivy Cohen! by Sarah Kapit (Dial), and When Stars Are Scattered, written by Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed, illustrated by Jamieson, color by Iman Geddy (Dial). No honor books for teens were selected.
The Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, which promotes Asian/Pacific American culture and heritage, announced three winners in three categories: picture book, children’s literature and youth literature. The picture book winner is Paper Son: The Inspiring Story of Tyrus Wong, Immigrant and Artist, written by Julie Leung, illustrated by Chris Sasaki (Random House/Schwartz & Wade), and there was one honor title: Danbi Leads the School Parade, written and illustrated by Anna Kim (Viking). The children’s literature winner is When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller (Random House), and there was one honor title: Prairie Lotus by Linda Sue Park (Clarion). The youth literature winner is This Light Between Us by Andrew Fukuda (Tor Teen), and there was one honor title: Displacement by Kiku Hughes (First Second).
The Odyssey Award for best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults went to Kent State (Scholastic Audio), produced by Paul R. Gagne, written by Deborah Wiles, narrated by Christopher Gebauer, Lauren Ezzo, Christina DeLaine, Johnny Heller, Roger Wayne, Korey Jackson, and David de Vries. Four Odyssey Honor audiobooks were selected: Clap When You Land (HarperAudio), produced by Caitlin Garing, written by Elizabeth Acevedo, narrated by Elizabeth Acevedo and Melania-Luisa Marte; Fighting Words (Listening Library), produced by Karen Dziekonski, written by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley, narrated by Bahni Turpin; Stamped: Racism, Antiracism, and You (Hachette Audio), produced by Robert Van Kolken, written by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi, narrated by Jason Reynolds; and When Stars Are Scattered (Listening Library), produced by Kelly Gildea and Julie Wilson, written by Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed, narrated by Faysal Ahmed, Barkhad Abdi and a full cast.
The Excellence in Early Learning Digital Media Awards, given to a digital media producer that has created distinguished digital media for an early learning audience, went to The Imagine Neighborhood, produced by Committee for Children. The committee selected one honor title: Sesame Street Family Play: Caring for Each Other, produced by Sesame Workshop.
This story has been updated with more information.