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Newbery centennial roundup

All summer we've been celebrating the Newbery Award with our May/June Horn Book Magazine special issue dedicated to the Newbery centennial (featuring this amazing Newbery cover by honoree Grace Lin), plus our annual July/August ALA Awards special issue, which featured "The Year in Words and Pictures—and Stories" along with the...
      

Newbery Knowledge

Trivia about Newbery Award winners: At the Banquet When Marguerite Henry came to the 1949 ALA convention in Grand Rapids, Michigan, to accept the Newbery Medal for King of the Wind, she brought her horse, Misty, the subject of 1948 honoree Misty of Chincoteague. The publicity stunt was a surprise...
      

The Year in Words and Pictures—and Stories

As the speeches and profiles arrived for this year’s ALA Awards special issue, we noticed a theme: so many of them address the idea of learning from others, especially those who came before. That’s part of the work of acceptance speeches, of course, as creators give credit to their influences....
      

ALA Annual 2022

July/August cover by Jason Chin and May/June cover by Grace Lin. Copies available for purchase; see below.  Martha V. Parravano, Book Review Editor: I was in DC for a scant 30 hours, but they were packed ones. My primary purpose in going to ALA was to reestablish contact with colleagues...
      

Profile of 2022 Newbery Medal winner Donna Barba Higuera

This has been a notorious year of attempts to ban children’s books by authors of color. But 2022 is also the year that Donna Barba Higuera’s middle-grade novel The Last Cuentista won the Newbery Medal. Celebrating a novel that explores stories as a human imperative is the perfect counterpoint to...
      

2022 Newbery Medal Acceptance by Donna Barba Higuera

"It could never happen for a kid like me." Photo courtesy of Donna Barba Higuera. If someone had told me as a child that not only would I one day write a book, but that book would sit alongside those “golden-sticker books” like A Wrinkle in Time or Mrs. Frisby...
      

After the Call: Something Magical

What did winning the Newbery Medal mean to me? It has taken some time to wrap my head around this question. The Last Cuentista won the Newbery Medal! I’ve texted my editor, Nick Thomas, a few times with, “We won the Newbery” and “Did that really happen?” just to help...
      

Sick-day reading, Newbery Special Issue-style

A sick-day photo, only slightly staged. Kid was already reading Newbery honoree Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, and I couldn't resist dropping in the May/June 2022 Horn Book Magazine: Special Issue: The Newbery Centennial, with cover art by WTMMTM author/illustrator Grace Lin.   Single copies of this special issue are available for...
      

A Place for Poetry

Poetry has so much to offer young readers: beautiful language, musical rhythms, creative formats, powerful emotions, and so much more. Yet, when it comes to award recognition, poetry has rarely had a place at the Newbery table. Just sixteen books of poetry have been recognized with Newbery Medals or Honors...
      

After the Call: Nothing Short of Life-Changing

In 2021, "the call" was a Zoom call. Photo: Tae Keller. As soon as the 2021 Youth Media Awards were announced, I started hearing from other writers, from friends, from family: The Newbery will change your life. This felt fairly accurate, considering I hadn’t slept for thirty-six hours, I had...
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