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‘Hello, Universe’ and ‘Wolf in the Snow’ top American Library Association awards for books for young readers

By Colette Bancroft, Times Book Editor
Published: February 16, 2018

The American Library Association announced its 2018 Youth Media Award winners Monday during its midwinter meeting in Denver.

The annual awards honor books, video and audio for children and young adults and are highly regarded guides for booksellers, teachers, librarians and parents who help to choose books for young readers.

The John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature went to Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly, a funny and poignant novel about unexpected friendships.

The Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children was awarded to Matthew Cordell’s Wolf in the Snow, a wordless picture book about a little girl and a wolf cub lost in a snowstorm.

The Coretta Scott King Book Awards recognize African-American authors and illustrators of outstanding books for children and young adults. Piecing Me Together by Renée Watson received the author award. Out of Wonder: Poems Celebrating Poets, illustrated by Ekua Holmes, was the illustrator award winner.

Eloise Greenfield (The Great Migration) is the recipient of the Coretta Scott King-Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement.

The Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults went to We Are Okay by Nina LaCour.

The Laura Ingalls Wilder Award honors an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children. The 2018 winner is Jacqueline Woodson, whose works include Brown Girl Dreaming.

The winner of the Odyssey Award for best audiobook for children or young adults is The Hate U Give, written by Angie Thomas and narrated by Bahni Turpin.

The Pura Belpré Awards honor Latino writers and illustrators whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience. La Princesa and the Pea, illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal, is the Belpré Illustrator Award winner. Lucky Broken Girl by Ruth Behar is the Pura Belpré Author Award winner.

For a complete list of these and many other winners, and information about the books and authors, go to ala.org/yma.