The Boston Globe–Horn Book Awards were established in 1967; here are some fun facts from the BGHB’s forty-six-year history. How well do you know the honorees? Click here to see the full list of all winners and Honor Books; find more on this year’s winners here.
Q: Two books have won the Boston Globe–Horn Book Fiction Award, the National Book Award, and the Newbery Medal. Can you name them?
A: Virginia Hamilton’s M.C. Higgins, the Great (Macmillan) was the first book to win all three awards, receiving the Fiction Award in 1974 and both the National Book Award and the Newbery in 1975. Holes (Foster/Farrar) by Louis Sachar followed suit, winning the NBA in 1998 and the Fiction Award and the Newbery in 1999.
Q: Five books (in addition to M.C. Higgins, the Great and Holes) have won both a BGHB Award and the Newbery Medal. What are the five double winners?
A: The Westing Game by Ellen Raskin (Dutton; 1978 BGHB Fiction Award and 1979 Newbery)
Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli (Little, Brown; 1990 BGHB Fiction Award and 1991 Newbery)
A Visit to William Blake’s Inn: Poems for Innocent and Experienced Travelers written by Nancy Willard, illustrated by Alice and Martin Provensen (1982 BGHB Picture Book Award and Newbery)
Missing May by Cynthia Rylant (Jackson/Orchard; 1992 BGHB Fiction Award and 1993 Newbery)
When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead (Lamb/Random; 2010 BGHB Fiction Award and Newbery)
Q: Besides M.C. Higgins, the Great and Holes, which three BGHB–winning books also won a National Book Award?
Outside Over There by Maurice Sendak (Harper; 1981 BGHB Picture Book Award and 1982 NBA)
The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume I: The Pox Party by M.T. Anderson (Candlewick; 2006 NBA and 2007 BGHB Fiction Award)
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian written by Sherman Alexie, illustrated by Ellen Forney (Little, Brown; 2007 NBA and 2008 BGHB Fiction Award)
Q: Three BGHB Picture Book Award winners also won the Caldecott Medal. What are they?
Lon Po Po: A Little Red Riding Hood Story from China translated and illustrated by Ed Young (Philomel; 1990 BGHB Picture Book Award and Caldecott)
Grandfather’s Journey written and illustrated by Allen Say (Houghton, 1994 BGHB Picture Book Award and Caldecott)
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers written and illustrated by Mordicai Gerstein (Roaring Brook; 2004 BGHB Picture Book Award and Caldecott)
Q: Only one author has won three Boston Globe–Horn Book Awards. Who is it?
A: Virginia Hamilton won the Fiction Award twice: in 1974 for M.C. Higgins, the Great (Macmillan) and in 1983 for Sweet Whispers, Brother Rush (Philomel). She also won the 1988 Nonfiction Award for Anthony Burns: The Defeat and Triumph of a Fugitive Slave (Knopf).
Note: as of 2016, Steve Sheinkin became the second author with this distinction. He has won Nonfiction Awards: for The Notorious Benedict Arnold: A True Story of Adventure, Heroism & Treachery (Flash Point/Roaring Brook) in 2011; The Port Chicago 50: Disaster, Mutiny, and the Fight for Civil Rights (Roaring Brook) in 2014; and Most Dangerous: Daniel Ellsberg and the Secret History of the Vietnam War (Roaring Brook) in 2016.
Q: Who is the youngest author to be honored by the Boston Globe–Horn Book committee?
A: Kate Lied wrote 1997 Nonfiction Honor Book Potato: A Tale of the Great Depression at age eight.
Q: What four picture books illustrated with photographs have received BGHB Awards?
The Weaver’s Gift written by Kathryn Lasky, illustrated with photographs by Christopher G. Knight (Warne; 1981 Nonfiction Award)
1,2,3 written and illustrated with photographs by Tana Hoban (Greenwillow; 1985 Special Citation)
A Drop of Water: A Book of Science and Wonder written and illustrated with photographs by Walter Wick (Scholastic; 1997 Nonfiction Award)
Red-Eyed Tree Frog written by Joy Cowley, illustrated with photographs by Nic Bishop (Scholastic; 1999 Picture Book Award)
Q: What BGHB Award–winning book was originally published as an adult book?
A: The Circuit: Stories from the Life of a Migrant Child by Francisco Jiménez (University of New Mexico Press), which received the 1998 Fiction Award, was originally published for adults.
Q: What beloved author/illustrator won a BGHB Honor but never received a Caldecott?
A: Bernard Waber received a BGHB Picture Book Honor in 1971 for A Firefly Named Torchy (Houghton) but was never honored by the Caldecott committee.