The American Library Association (ALA) announced the winners of the 2021 Youth Media Awards, including the Newbery Medal, Caldecott Medal, Printz Award, and Coretta Scott King Awards, via a virtual broadcast this morning. Here is a full listing of the winners and honorees.
The most mentioned authors on the list are Christina Soontornvat, who is an honoree or finalist in three categories including two different books awarded Newbery honors, and author and illustrator Cozbi A. Cabrera, who is an honoree in three different categories with two books. Tae Keller was awarded Newbery Medal for When You Trap a Tiger, which also won the Asian/Pacific American Award for Children’s Literature.
The Randolph Caldecott Medal honors an artist of “the most distinguished American picture book for children.”
We Are Water Protectors by Michaela Goade and Carole Lindstrom
The Caldecott Medal went to this picture book inspired by the Indigenous-led movements across North America to protect the Earth’s water from being poisoned.
The John Newbery Medal is given every year to “the author of the most distinguished contribution to American literature for children.” This award kicks off the Newbery’s 100th anniversary celebration.
When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller
The 2021 Newbery Medal goes to this story about a girl who faces a magical tiger out of her grandmother’s Korean folktales, unlocks family secrets, and discovers the power of stories and the magic of family.
Michael L. Printz Award
First given in 2000, the Michael L. Printz Award is awarded to a book that “exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature.”
Everything Sad is Untrue by Daniel Nayeri
The 2021 Printz Award was given to this book about a boy named Khosrou (everyone calls him Daniel), trying to tell his story to his middle school classroom in Oklahoma. But no one believes the story that stretches back centuries, so Daniel weaves a story to stake his claim to the truth.
Coretta Scott King Awards
The Coretta Scott King Book Awards are given every year in three categories to African American authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults that “demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values.”
Coretta Scott King (Author) Book Award
Award: Before the Ever After by Jacqueline Woodson
Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award
Award: R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul illustrated by Frank Morrison, written by Carole Boston Weatherford
Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Author Award
Award: Legendborn by Tracy Deonn
Stonewall Book Award
The Stonewall Book Award — Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award is given each year to “English-language works of exceptional merit for children or teens relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience.”
Award: We Are Little Feminists: Families by Archaa Shrivastav and designed by Lindsey Blakely
The Alex Awards are awarded to ten crossover adult books that appeal to kids ages 12–18.
The Odyssey Award
This award honors the “best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States.”
Winner: Kent State by Deborah Wiles, narrated by Christopher Gebauer, Lauren Ezzo, Christina DeLaine, Johnny Heller, Roger Wayne, Korey Jackson, and David de Vries
William C. Morris Award
Since 2009, this award honors a debut book published by a debut author writing for teens.
Winner: If These Wings Could Fly by Kyrie McCauley
YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults
Winner: The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh by Candace Fleming
Pura Belpré Awards
Named after the first Latina librarian at the New York Public Library, this award is given each year to a Latinx writer and illustrator. This is the first year for the YA category.
Illustration Award: ¡Vamos! Let’s Go Eat illustrated and written by Raúl Gonzalez
Honor for Illustration:
Children’s Author Award: Efrén Divided by Ernesto Cisneros
Honor for Texts for Children:
Young Adult Award: Furia by Yamile Saied Méndez
Honor for YA:
Mildred L. Batchelder Award
This award is given to children’s books in translation.
Award: Telephone Tales by Gianni Rodari and Valerio Vidali, translated from Italian by Antony Shugaar
Honor: Catherine’s War by Julia Billet and Claire Fauvel, translated from French by Ivanka Hahnenberger
Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal
Medal: Honeybee: The Busy Life of Apis Mellifera by Candace Fleming and Eric Rohmann
Theodor Seuss Geisel Award
Named for Dr. Seuss, this award is given each year to authors and illustrators “of the most distinguished American book for beginning readers published in English in the United States.”
Award: See the Cat: Three Stories About a Dog by David LaRochelle and Mike Wohnoutka
Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature
Award for Best Picture Book: Paper Son: The Inspiring Story of Tyrus Wong, Immigrant and Artist by Julie Leung and Chris Sasaki
Honor for Picture Book:
Award for Children’s Literature: When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller
Honor for Children’s Literature:
Award for Youth Literature: This Light Between Us by Andrew Fukuda
Honor for Youth Literature:
Sydney Taylor Book
Since 1968, this award is presented to “outstanding books for children and teens that authentically portray the Jewish experience.”
Award for Picture Book: Welcoming Elijah: A Passover Tale with a Tail by Lesléa Newman and Susan Gal
Silver Medalists for Picture Book:
Award for Middle Grade: Turtle Boy by M. Evan Wolkenstein
Silver Medalists for Middle Grade:
Award for Young Adult: Dancing at the Pity Party by Tyler Feder
Silver Medalist for Young Adult:
Schneider Family Book Award
This award honors books that embody “an artistic expression of the disability experience for child and adolescent audiences”
Young Children’s (0–10): I Talk Like a River by Jordan Scott and Sydney Smith
Middle Grade (ages 11–13): Show Me a Sign by Ann Clare LeZotte
Teen (ages 13-18): This is My Brain in Love written by I.W. Gregorio
Coretta Scott King — Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement Award
The annual award is presented in odd years to a “practitioner for substantial contributions through active engagement with youth using award-winning African American literature for children and/or young adults.”
This year’s winner is Dorothy L. Guthrie, an award-winning retired librarian, district administrator, author and school board member. A respected children’s literature advocate, Guthrie promotes and affirms the rich perspectives of African Americans. Her work, “Integrating African American Literature in the Library and Classroom,” inspires educators with African American literature. Guthrie founded the first African American museum in her home, Gaston County, North Carolina.
Margaret A. Edwards Award
Since 1988, the Margaret A. Edwards Award honors an author and a specific body of their work, for “helping adolescents become aware of themselves and addressing questions about their role and importance in relationships, society, and in the world.”
Children’s Literature Legacy Award
This award is given to an author or illustrator in the U.S. for “a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children through books that demonstrate integrity and respect for all children’s lives and experiences.”
This year’s winner is Mildred D. Taylor, whose award-winning works include Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry, the 1977 Newbery Medal winner and a Coretta Scott King (CSK) Author honor; The Land, the 2002 CSK Author Award winner; and The Road to Memphis, the 1991 CSK Author Award winner.
Excellence in Early Learning Digital Media Award
Given for the first time in 2019, this award is given to a digital media producer for production of digital media for an early learning audience.
Award: The Imagine Neighborhood produced by Committee for Children
Honor: Sesame Street Family Play: Caring for Each Other produced by Sesame Workshop
You can see more information about each award, winners’ speeches, and previous winners at ALA’s site.