Yesterday was Book Awards Day! We’d like to congratulate all of the winners of the 2012 ALA Youth Media Awards but especially to the YALSA section of the honorees, particularly the 2012 Michael L. Printz Award Winner: “In Darkness” by Nick Lake. I know that I was not the only one expecting “The Fault in Our Stars” to win, so when “Code Name Verity” was named an Honor title, I thought, well, YALSA President Jack Martin is going to say John’s name next. When he didn’t, there was a bit of confusion, particularly on Twitter. But I haven’t read the other books that the committee selected, so I can only say that if they were all chosen, they must be damn, damn good, and I for one can’t wait to read them. The four Printz Honor books are:
- “Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe” by Benjamin Alire Sáenz (Simon & Schuster)
- “Code Name Verity” by Elizabeth Wein (Disney/Hyperion)
- “Dodger” by Terry Pratchett (HarperCollins)
- “The White Bicycle” by Beverley Brenna (Red Deer Press)
According to Goodreads, “In Darkness” is about the following:
In darkness I count my blessings like Manman taught me. One: I am alive. Two: there is no two. In the aftermath of the Haitian earthquake a boy is trapped beneath the rubble of a ruined hospital: thirsty, terrified and alone. ‘Shorty’ is a child of the slums, a teenage boy who has seen enough violence to last a lifetime, and who has been inexorably drawn into the world of the gangsters who rule Site Soleil: men who dole out money with one hand and death with the other. But Shorty has a secret: a flame of revenge that blazes inside him and a burning wish to find the twin sister he lost five years ago. And he is marked. Marked in a way that links him with Toussaint L’Ouverture, the Haitian rebel who two-hundred years ago led the slave revolt and faced down Napoleon to force the French out of Haiti. As he grows weaker, Shorty relives the journey that took him to the hospital, a bullet wound in his arm. In his visions and memories he hopes to find the strength to survive, and perhaps then Toussaint can find a way to be free …
As for the other awards, we’re excited that our recent Selective Collective pick, “Love and Other Perishable Items” by Laura Buzo, was selected as a William C. Morris Honor Book for debut books. Congratulations to Laura and to her U.S. publishers at Random House for the big honor!
Highlights from the ALA YMA winners (and what we plan to read in 2013):
2. Schneider Family Book Award for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience. The teen winner is “Somebody, Please Tell Me Who I Am” by Harry Mazer and Peter Lerangis.
3. Alex Awards for the 10 best adult books that appeal to teen audiences: This year I’m going to read “The Round House” by Louise Erdrich; Diana and I have both read “Pure” by Julianna Baggott.
4. Margaret A. Edwards Award honors an author for significant and lasting contribution to YA Lit: Tamora Pierce is this year’s honoree. I’ve never read any of her books — which ones do you readers recommend?
5. Pura Belpré Award for Text honoring a Latino writer and illustrator whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience: “Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe” by Benjamin Alire Sáenz. Benjamin was a big winner of the day, accumulating three awards/honors. This was the first book I sought out to request from my library during the awards’ announcement! I know our contributor Jenn is a big fan of the author’s, so I imagine she’s delighted by the news that her city’s native son represented El Paso at the ALA YMAs!
6. Mildred L. Batchelder Award for an outstanding YA book translated from a language other than English and subsequently published in the United States: “My Family for the War” by Anne C. Voorhoeve is the winner. Originally published in Germany in 2007 as “Liverpool Street,” translated by Tammi Reichel.
7. Stonewall Children’s and Young Adult Literature Award -young adult book of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered experience. The winner is the same as the Pura Belpré honoree, “Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe,” by Benjamin Alire Sáenz.
8. William C. Morris Award for a debut book by a first-time author writing for teens: “Seraphina” by Rachel Hartman (which Jessica loved), and we plan to read all three honor books we haven’t read yet — “Wonder Show” by Hannah Barnaby; “After the Snow” by S. D. Crockett; and “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” by emily m. danforth.
9. YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults honors the best nonfiction book published for young adults: “Bomb: The Race to Build—and Steal—the World’s Most Dangerous Weapon” by Steve Sheinkin. This book was also awarded the Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award for most distinguished informational book for children.
10. Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award recognizing an African American author and illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults: “Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America” by Andrea Davis Pinkney and illustrated by Brian Pinkney
11. Odyssey Award for best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults: “The Fault in Our Stars” produced by Brilliance Audio. The book is written by John Green and narrated by Kate Rudd.
Checking with our post from last year, I can admit that we fell a bit short of our goal to read a title from every award, but we did read the following 2012 winners:
- Michael L. Printz Award winner “Where Things Come Back” by John Corey Whaley, as well as all the honorees: “Jasper Jones” by Craig Silvey; “The Returning” Christine Hinwood; and “Why We Broke Up” by Daniel Handler and Maira Kalman; (we had already read “The Scorpio Races”)
- William C. Morris Award winner “Where Things Come Back” by John Corey Whaley and honor books “The Girl of Fire and Thorns” by Rae Carson; “Paper Covers Rock” by Jenny Hubbard; and “Between Shades of Gray” by Ruta Sepetys (we had already read “Under the Mesquite” by Guadalupe Garcia McCall).
- Stonewall Young Adult Literature Award honor book “Pink” by Lili Wilkinson
- Schneider Family Book Award winner “The Running Dream” by Wendelin Van Draanen
So which of this year’s titles are you planning to add to your must-read list this year?