So yesterday was the big day in kidlit land - the announcement of the ALA's Youth Media Awards. It's already been pointed out that I was way off on YALSA's nonfiction award, but how did the other awards shape up?
Now, if I ran through every single award and honor presented yesterday, we'd be here all day. So instead, I'm going to comment on the most notable (to me) awards for the YA contenders, as well as link to my reviews when applicable, but direct you to the list of all the winners.
Big winner: One Crazy Summer. I clearly made a mistake in not writing up a full review for One Crazy Summer because that was the book to beat this year. A National Book Award honoree, Scott O'Dell award for historical fiction winner, Coretta Scott King Author award winner, and Newbery honoree. It's a small book - where on earth are all of those medals going to fit?!
Awards that made me squee at my desk: Five Flavors of Dumb winning the teen Schneider award and Almost Perfect winning the Stonewall award. I totally didn't expect either of these titles to get any awards attention - Five Flavors of Dumb because of its November publishing date and Almost Perfect because it's actually a 2009 book (and was on the 2010 Best Fiction for Young Adults list). So these were both very pleasant surprises because of my absolute love for both of these books.
Award that made me fistpump: Ship Breaker winning the Printz award. In movie-land, science fiction gets the short end of the stick. Thankfully, YA book people know an awesome book when they see one and gave this epic environmental dystopian tale the top award in the field. SO EXCITING. Also awesome? Our collective excitement got both Ship Breaker and Printz to be trending topics on Twitter. The #alayma hashtag also ended up trending for awhile near the end of the ceremony. Book geeks are loud and proud on Twitter.
The only other award I'm on record predicting and getting right: Firefly Letters getting a Pura Belpre honor. Over at Reading in Color I predicted that The Red Umbrella and Efrain's Secret would be recognized and Firefly Letters would get at least an honor, since she won in both 2008 and 2009. The Belpre committees clearly enjoy Engle's work!
Award that seemed to come out of left field: Moon Over Manifest winning the Newbery. I'm far from an expert on MG fiction, but I hadn't even heard of this one (despite its three starred reviews). I don't think I even saw it on any mock-Newbery lists, and no one mentioned it in last week's Twitter kidlitchat!
Was the National Book Award a predictor for ALA awards? Well, half of the NBA honors won big prizes, and a third honor was also honored at ALA (Lockdown by Walter Dean Meyers is a Coretta Scott King award honoree). Dark Water was completely left out, as was the actual NBA winner, Mockingbird. In the kidlitchat, it was mentioned that the NBA winner never wins the Newbery, and that has held true for another year - seems like it's almost preferable to just get the NBA honor!
Book that left Angela alone in the cold: Stolen. Clearly I'm alone in how this title underwhelmed me (and I still haven't found anyone who can adequately explain why Ty is at all desirable for anyone not suffering from Stockholm Syndrome), given that it received two starred reviews before getting a Printz Honor. I don't want to be unnecessarily negative here, but I just had to say something on this one.
Wait, what didn't win an award?! Out of My Mind. Seriously. Nothing. What on Earth happened there? I acknowledged in my favorite books of 2010 post that some MG experts had problems with the title...but were so many opposed that it didn't get any love? Hopefully it's a book that will get enough word-of-mouth attention to keep it finding new readers for a long time.
This week we should also be seeing what the longer book lists selected as the top books of the year. I can't wait to see what the Best Fiction for Young Adults and Amelia Bloomer lists come out with!