Additional ALA Awards 2021


Alex Award

[for the ten best adult books that appeal to teen audiences]

  • Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse (Saga Press/Gallery Books/Simon)
  • The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune (Tor Books/Tom Doherty Associates/Macmillan)
  • The Impossible First: From Fire to Ice - Crossing Antarctica Alone by Colin O'Brady (Scribner/Simon)
  • Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio by Derf Backderf (Abrams Comicarts)
  • The Kids Are Gonna Ask by Gretchen Anthony (Park Row Books/Harlequin/HarperCollins)
  • The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones (Saga Press/Gallery Books/Simon)
  • Plain Bad Heroines by emily m. danforth (William Morrow/HarperCollins)
  • Riot Baby by Tochi Onyebuchi (Tordotcom/Tom Doherty Associates/Macmillan)
  • Solutions and Other Problems by Allie Brosh (Gallery Books/Simon)
  • We Ride Upon Sticks: A Novel by Quan Barry (Pantheon Books/Penguin Random House)


Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature

[for promoting Asian/Pacific American culture and heritage; awarded based on literary and artistic merit; administered by the Asian Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA)]

Picture Book winner: Paper Son: The Inspiring Story of Tyrus Wong, Immigrant and Artist by Julie Leung, illustrated by Chris Sasaki (Schwartz & Wade/Random)

Honor book: Danbi Leads the School Parade by Anna Kim (Viking)

Children's Literature winner: When You Trap a Tiger by Tae Keller (Random House)

Honor book: Prairie Lotus by Linda Sue Park (Clarion)

Young Adult Literature winner: This Light Between Us by Andrew Fukuda (Tor Teen)

Honor book: Displacement by Kiku Hughes (First Second/Macmillan)


Mildred L. Batchelder Award

[for an outstanding children's book originally published in a language other than English in a country other than the United States, and subsequently translated into English for publiation in the United States]

Winner: Telephone Tales, written by Gianni Rodari, illustrated by Valerio Vidali, translated from Italian by Antony Shugaar (Enchanted Lion)

Honor book: Catherine's War written by Julia Billet, illustrated by Claire Fauvel, translated from French by Ivanka Hahnenberger (HarperAlley/HarperCollins)


Children's Literature Legacy Award

[honoring an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made, over a period of years, a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children through books that demonstrate integrity and respect for all children's lives and experiences]

Mildred D. Taylor


Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award

[given by the Coretta Scott King Task Force to young authors or illustrators who demonstrate outstanding promise]

Steptoe Author Award winner: Tracy Deonn for Legendborn (McElderry/Simon)


Coretta Scott King — Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement

[given by the Coretta Scott King Task Force for lifetime achievement]

Dorothy L. Guthrie


Margaret A. Edwards Award

[for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults]

Kekla Magoon


Excellence in Early Learning Digital Media Award

[for distinguished digital media for an early learning audience]

Winner: The Imagine Neighborhood produced by Committee for Children

Honoree: Sesame Street Family Play: Caring for Each Other produced by Sesame Workshop


William C. Morris Award

[for a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens]

Winner: If These Wings Could Fly by Kyrie McCauley (Tegen/HarperCollins)


  • Black Girl Unlimited: The Remarkable Story of a Teenage Wizard by Echo Brown (Ottaviano/Holt)
  • The Black Kids by Christina Hammonds Reed (Simon)
  • It Sounded Better in My Head by Nina Kenwood (Flatiron)
  • Woven in Moonlight by Isabel Ibañez (Page Street)


Odyssey Award

[for best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States]

Winner: Kent State, written by Deborah Wiles, read by Christopher Gebauer, Lauren Ezzo, Christina DeLaine, Johnny Heller, Roger Wayne, Korey Jackson, and David de Vries (Scholastic Audio)

Honor audiobooks:


Schneider Family Book Award

[for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience]

Young Children (ages 0 to 10) winner: I Talk like a River by Jordan Scott, illustrated by Sydney Smith (Porter/Holiday)

Honor books:

  • All the Way to the Top: How One Girl's Fight for Americans with Disabilities Changed Everything by Annette Bay Pimentel, illustrated by Nabi H. Ali (Sourcebooks eXplore/Sourcebooks)
  • Itzhak: A Boy Who Loved the Violin by Tracy Newman, illustrated by Abigail Halpin (Abrams)

Middle Grades (ages 11-13) winner: Show Me a Sign by Ann Clare LeZotte (Scholastic)

Honor books:

  • Get a Grip, Vivy Cohen! by Sarah Kapit (Dial)
  • When Stars Are Scattered by Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed, illustrated by Victoria Jamieson, color by Iman Geddy (Dial)

Teen (ages 13-18) winner: This Is My Brain in Love by I.W. Gregorio (Little, Brown)


Stonewall Book Award — Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children's & Young Adult Literature Award

[given annually to English-language children's and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender experience]


  • We Are Little Feminists: Families by Archaa Shrivastav (Little Feminist)

Honor books:


Sydney Taylor Book Awards

[to outstanding books for children and teens that authentically portray the Jewish experience; presented by the Association of Jewish Libraries (AJL)]

Picture Book winner: Welcoming Elijah: A Passover Tale with a Tail by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Susan Gal (Charlesbridge)

Honor books:

  • I Am the Tree of Life: My Jewish Yoga Book by Mychal Copeland, illustrated by André Ceolin (Apples and Honey/Behrman)
  • Miriam at the River by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Khoa Le (Kar-Ben)

Middle Grade winner: Turtle Boy by M. Evan Wolkenstein (Delacorte)

Honor books:

  • No Vacancy by Tziporah Cohen (Groundwood)
  • Anya and the Nightingale by Sofiya Pasternack (Versify/Houghton)
  • Blackbird Girls by Anne Blankman (Viking)

Young Adult winner: Dancing at the Pity Party: A Dead Mom Graphic Memoir by Tyler Feder (Dial)

Honor book: They Went Left by Monica Hesse (Little, Brown)

For the complete list, including Notables, visit the AJL's website.


YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults

Winner: The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh by Candace Fleming (Schwartz & Wade/Random)



See the Horn Book's reviews of major 2021 ALA Youth Media Award winners.


For more, click on the tag ALA Midwinter 2021.

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