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Newbery, Caldecott awards: Give those books a sticker!

January 19, 2010 |  7:35 am


On Monday, the biggest awards in children's literature were announced by the American Library Assn. The awards -- whose signature cover stickers predate Oprah's -- often help guarantee attention for the selected books.

The John Newbery Medal for most outstanding contribution to children's literature was awarded to "When You Reach Me" by Rebecca Stead. Four books received Newbery Honors: "The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate" by Jacqueline Kelly, "Where the Mountain Meets the Moon" by Grace Lin, "The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg" by Rodman Philbrick and "Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice" by Phillip Hoose, which won the 2009 National Book Award.

The Randolph Caldecott Medal, awarded to the most distinguished picture book, went to "The Lion and the Mouse" by Jerry Pinkney, an illustration-only retelling of Aesop's fable, which was one of our children's book columnist Sonja Bolle's favorite books of 2009. Two books received Caldcott Honors: "All the World," illustrated by Marla Frazee and written by Liz Garton Scanlon and "Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors," illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski and written by Joyce Sidman.

The Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in young adult literature was awarded to Libba Bray's "Going Bovine." In our pages, the former ambassador for young people's literature John Sciezska cited the book for its "killer storytelling."

The first-ever Coretta Scott King – Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement was presented to Walter Dean Myers, who has written more than 50 books, including the L.A. Times Book Award-nominated "What They Found: Love on 145th Street."

The Coretta Scott King Awards for author and illustrator went to "Bad News for Outlaws: The Remarkable Life of Bass Reeves, Deputy U.S. Marshal" by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson and to Charles R. Smith Jr. for his illustrations in "My People," with text by Langston Hughes. The Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Author Award went to Kekla Magoon for "The Rock and the River."

The complete list of award-winners and honorees is available on the ALA website.

-- Carolyn Kellogg