Behind the book

Port Chicago

Back on October 10th, I had the privilege of attending the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award ceremony. During the celebration, honorees and winners came to the podium to receive their awards and address the audience. Needless to say, I was star struck to be in the room with the likes of Steve Jenkins, Gene Luen Yang, […]

2014 Boston Globe-Horn Book speeches

Boston Globe-Horn Book Award winners, 2014

For your kind consideration: here are the complete 2014 Boston Globe-Horn Book Awards speeches. Click on the tag BGHB14 for timelines, pictures, and more. Photos, judges’ intros, and other information can be found in the January/February 2015 Horn Book Magazine. And look to the March/April 2015 Horn Book Magazine for Vaunda Micheaux Nelson’s unforgettable keynote […]

Boxers & Saints: Author Gene Luen Yang’s 2014 BGHB Fiction Honor Speech

boxers & saints

Thank you to the Horn Book and the Boston Globe. This is an incredible, incredible honor. Boxers & Saints is a two-volume graphic novel about the Boxer Rebellion, a war that was fought in China in the year 1900. On one side of the conflict were the Europeans, the Japanese, and the Chinese Christians. On […]

The Port Chicago 50: Author Steve Sheinkin’s 2014 BGHB NF Award Speech

Port Chicago

A few years ago I was researching a book on the making of the atomic bomb, and my brother-in-law Eric, who loves wacky conspiracy theories, as I do, hit me with a great one. “You know when the first atomic bomb was tested, right?” he asked. “Sure,” I said, falling into his trap. “New Mexico […]

Rose Under Fire: Author Elizabeth Wein’s 2014 BGHB Fiction Honor Speech

wein_rose under fire

Greetings to Roger Sutton, the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award judges, and everyone at the awards ceremony, from Elizabeth Wein in Warsaw, Poland. Between you and me today stretches a distance of over four thousand miles, and I do “mind the gap.” I am both grateful and utterly stunned that Rose Under Fire has been named […]

Rules of Summer: Author Shaun Tan’s 2014 BGHB PB Honor Speech

tan_rules of summer

Thank you very much for this fantastic honor, and for an award that so generously includes far-flung Australians such as myself, currently ten thousand miles away and probably asleep, or else unsuccessfully trying to settle a teething infant. It never fails to amaze me how books can travel, find an audience, and touch imaginations across […]

Grasshopper Jungle: Author Andrew Smith’s BGHB 2014 Fiction Award Speech

smith_grasshopper jungle

I feel very connected being here tonight. I suppose my books — Grasshopper Jungle in particular — are all about connections. I have a cousin who lived with my family of four boys when I was very young. Her name is Renata, she has gentle Italian hands, and she lives near Phoenix now. I’ve never […]

Mr. Tiger Goes Wild: Author Peter Brown’s 2014 BGHB PB Award Speech

brown_mr tiger goes wild

First, I have to thank my editor, Alvina Ling, who has become a great friend of mine. She lives two blocks away from me, so that’s pretty sweet. We get to go for the occasional cocktail on the company. It’s a totally legitimate business expense. Alvina gives me lots of room to fall flat on […]

The Animal Book: Author Steve Jenkins’s 2014 BGHB NF Honor Speech

jenkins_animal book

I’ve been interested in the science of the natural world for as long as I can remember. As a child, I read anything and everything about animals that I could get my hands on, even if I didn’t always understand it. At the time — this was in the late 1950s — the children’s nonfiction […]

Josephine: Author Patricia Hruby Powell’s 2014 BGHB NF Honor Speech


Thank you to the Boston Globe-Horn Book committee for loving Josephine and putting me in this fine company. Thanks to my critique group who saw this as a picture book, middle grade, and young adult manuscript. Thanks to the group of unfocused preteen girls who frequented the Urbana Free Library, where I work as a […]