Then again, I was long ago disabused of the notion that I am center of the universe, so you may very well not recognize my name. But I digress.
I read plenty of books outside of my library work, and I love to talk about them. As part of Summer Reading Challenge, today I will be discussing books that have major won national awards. During the month of June, reading a book that has won a national award is one of the activities that you can complete to win a prize. If you don't know where to start, start here!
Award Winning Books for Young Readers
Many of us are familiar with the big medals for children's literature, such as the Caldecott and the Newbery. They may be the best known children's book awards, but they are certainly not the only ones. If you are looking for award winning children's literature, be sure to check out the rest of the Youth Media Awards, which I wrote about earlier this year!
I couldn't write about every YMA winner in my earlier blog post (I had to exercise some self control), but here I want to highlight the young adult novel All My Rage, winner of The Michael L. Printz Award. It's an extraordinary, unforgettable book. In fact, it also won the National Book Award for Young People's Literature. If you have not yet read All My Rage, put it on hold now. It is worth however long you may have to wait.
National Book Awards
Presented by the National Book Foundation, the National Book Awards celebrate the best literature published in the United States. I already told you about 2022 winner for Young People's Literature All My Rage, but there also winners in Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, and Translated Literature to choose from. You can browse winners by year on the National Books Awards website. For a complete list of 2022 winners available in our catalog, check out this catalog widget.
National Book Awards 2022
The Pulitzer Prize
When you think about prestigious awards, the Pulitzer Prize may be among the first that come to mind. Named for journalist Joseph Pulitzer, the Pulitzer recognizes achievements in journalism, music, and literature. I am behind on reading the 2023 winners, but I can highly recommend Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival & Hope in an American City and Cuba: An American History from the 2022 winners. The latter is a highly readable history that demystifies the long history of U.S. American intervention in Cuba, while the former is perhaps the most gripping nonfiction text I have ever read. At 640 pages, Invisible Child is not brief by any means, but I read it in about three days. It was impossible to put down.
Pulitzer Prizes 2023
Award-Winning Science Fiction
As I am the one writing this post about national book awards, I would be remiss if I did not write about my favorite genre of literature, science fiction. In the United States, the most well known awards for science fiction are the Hugo Awards and the Nebula Awards. The 2023 winners for the Hugo have not yet been announced, but the 2023 Nebula Award winners were just announced this May.
More National Awards
There are plenty of other national awards from which to choose your next book. For more ALA Youth Media Award winners, check out the ALSC Awards Shelf and the YALSA Awards Shelf. In our NoveList database (which you can access free with your library card!) you can browse by Award Winners using the link on top left hand side of the page. You can even filter by Award Type, as listed in the column on the right hand side of the page. There are a bevy of awards to choose from!