2023 Youth Media Awards

The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) announced the 2023 Youth Media Awards in January, at the American Library Association's Midwinter Meeting. Read about the winning books below.

Summaries are from the publishers.

The John Newbery Medal

The Newbery Medal is awarded annually to the author of the most distinguished contribution for children published in the past year. In 1922, the Newbery Medal became the first children's book award in the world. Its terms, as well as its long history, continue to make it the best-known and most discussed children's book award in this country.

Freewater by Amina Luqman-Dawson

After fleeing the plantation where they were enslaved, siblings Ada and Homer discover the secret community of Freewater and work with freeborn Sanzi to protect their new home from the encroaching dangers of the outside world.

See current and past Newbery Medal winners and honorees available at CRRL here.

The Randolph Caldecott Medal

The Caldecott Medal was named in honor of 19th-century English illustrator Randolph Caldecott. It is awarded to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children.

Hot Dog by Doug Salati

A summery picture book about mindfulness, featuring an overheated - and overwhelmed - canine in need of sea, sand, and fresh air.

See current and past Caldecott Medal winners and honorees available at CRRL here.

The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award

The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award, established in 2004, is given annually to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished contribution for children published in the previous year.

I Did It! by Michael Emberley

A girl tries and tries again to learn to ride a bicycle, and all her friends provide words of encouragement.

See current and past Theodor Seuss Geisel Award winners available at CRRL here.

The Michael L. Printz Award for Excellence in Young Literature

The Michael L. Printz Award is given to the author of a book that exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature.

All My Rage by Sabaa Tahir

A family extending from Pakistan to California, deals with generations of young love, old regrets, and forgiveness.

See current and past Printz Award winners and honorees available at CRRL here.

The Coretta Scott King Author Book & Illustrator Awards

Designed to commemorate the life and works of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and to honor Mrs. Coretta Scott King for her courage and determination to continue the work for peace, the Coretta Scott King Book awards annually recognize outstanding books for young adults and children by African American authors and illustrators that reflect the African American experience.

Author Award: Freewater by Amina Luqman-Dawson

Illustrator Award: Standing in the Need of Prayer, illustrated by Frank Morrison, written by Carole Boston Weatherford

The popular spiritual, "Standing in the Need of Prayer," has been reworked to chronicle the milestones, struggles, tragedies, and triumphs of African American people and their history. The text and illustrations of this inspirational book are informative reminders of yesterday, hopeful images for today, and aspirational dreams of tomorrow.

New Talent Author Award: We Deserve Monuments by Jas Hammonds

When seventeen-year-old Avery moves to rural Georgia to live with her ailing grandmother, she encounters decades-old family secrets and a mystery surrounding the town's racist past.

Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Illustrator Award: Choosing Brave, illustrated by Janelle Washington, written by Angela Joy

The story of the mother of Emmett Till, and how she channeled grief over her son's death into a call to action for the Civil Rights Movement.

See current and past King Illustrator & Author Award winners and honorees available at CRRL here.

The Pura Belpré Author & Illustrator Awards

The Pura Belpré awards, established in 1996, are presented to Latino/Latina writers and illustrators whose work best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth. They are co-sponsored by the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking (REFORMA).

Children's Author Award: Frizzy by Claribel A. Ortega

Marlene loves three things: books, Her cool Tía Ruby and hanging out with her best friend Camila. But according to her mother, Paola, the only thing she needs to focus on is school and "growing up." That means straightening her hair every weekend so she could have "presentable good hair." But Marlene hates being in the salon and doesn't understand why her curls are not considered pretty by those around her. With a few hiccups, a dash of embarrassment, and the much-needed help of Camila and Tía Ruby - she slowly starts a journey to learn to appreciate and proudly wear her curly hair.

Young Adult Author Award: Burn Down, Rise up by Vincent Tirado

When an urban legend rumored to trap people inside subway tunnels seems to be behind mysterious disappearances in the Bronx, sixteen-year-old Raquel and her friends team up to save their city--and confront a dark episode in its history in the process.

Illustrator Award: Where Wonder Grows, illustrated by Adriana M. Garcia, written by Xelena González

Three girls follow their grandmother into her garden, where they examine her collection of rocks, crystals, shells, and meteorites and learn about the marvels they reveal.

See current and past Pura Belpré Illustrator Award winners available at CRRL here.

Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature

The goal of the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature is to honor and recognize individual work about Asian/Pacific Americans and their heritage, based on literary and artistic merit.

From the Tops of the Trees by Kao Kalia Yang, illus. by Rachel Wada

Young Kalia has never known life beyond the fences of the Ban Vinai Refugee Camp. The Thai camp holds many thousands of Hmong families who fled in the aftermath of the little-known Secret War in Laos that was waged during America's Vietnam War. For Kalia and her cousins, life isn't always easy, but they still find ways to play, racing with chickens and riding a beloved pet dog. Just four years old, Kalia is still figuring out her place in the world. When she asks what is beyond the fence, at first her father has no answers for her. But on the following day, he leads her to the tallest tree in the camp and, secure in her father's arms, Kalia sees the spread of a world beyond. Kao Kalia Yang's sensitive prose and Rachel Wada's evocative illustrations bring to life this tender true story of the love between a father and a daughter.

Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award

The Sibert Award honors the most distinguished informational book published in English in the preceding year for its significant contribution to children’s literature.

Seen and Unseen by Elizabeth Partridge, illustrated by Lauren Tamaki

Legendary photographers Dorothea Lange, Toyo Miyatake, and Ansel Adams all photographed the Japanese American incarceration camps, but with different approaches - and different results. This nonfiction picture book for middle grade readers examines the Japanese American incarceration - and the complexity of documenting it -  through the work of these three photographers.

See current and past Silbert Informational Book Award winners and honorees available at CRRL here.

YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adults

YALSA's Award for Excellence in Nonfiction honors the best nonfiction book published for young adults (ages 12-18) during a Nov. 1 – Oct. 31 publishing year. 

Victory. Stand! by Tommie Smith and Derrick Barnes, illustrated by Dawud Anyabwile

A groundbreaking and timely graphic memoir from one of the most iconic figures in American sports - and a tribute to his fight for civil rights. On October 16, 1968, during the medal ceremony at the Mexico City Olympics, Tommie Smith, the gold medal winner in the 200-meter sprint, and John Carlos, the bronze medal winner, stood on the podium in black socks and raised their black-gloved fists to protest racial injustice inflicted upon African Americans. Both men were forced to leave the Olympics, received death threats, and faced ostracism and continuing economic hardships. In his first-ever memoir for young readers, Tommie Smith looks back on his childhood growing up in rural Texas through to his stellar athletic career, culminating in his historic victory and Olympic podium protest.

See current and past YALSA Award for Excellence in Nonfiction for Young Adult Award winners and honorees available at CRRL here.

The Stonewall Book Awards - Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children's & Young Adult Literature Award

The Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award is given to children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender experience.

Children: Love, Violet by Charlotte Sullivan Wild

Shy Violet attempts to show another girl how she feels on Valentine's Day.

Young Adult: When the Angels Left the Old Country by Sacha Lamb

Uriel the angel and Little Ash (short for Ashmedai) are the only two supernatural creatures in their shtetl (which is so tiny, it doesn't have a name other than Shetl). The angel and the demon have been studying together for centuries, but pogroms and the search for a new life have drawn all the young people from their village to America. When one of those young people, Essie, goes missing. Uriel and Little Ash set off to find her. Along the way the angel and demon encounter humans in need of their help, including Rose Cohen, whose best friend (and the love of her life) has abandoned her to marry a man, and Malke Shulman, whose father died mysteriously on his way to America. But there are obstacles ahead of them as difficult as what they've left behind. Medical exams (and demons) at Ellis Island. Corrupt officials, cruel mob bosses, murderers, poverty. The streets are far from paved with gold. 

See current and past Stonewall Book Award winners and honorees available at CRRL here.

The Alex Awards

Presented annually in the U.S. by the Young Adult Library Services Association to authors of 10 adult books that have special appeal to young adults. See current and past Alex Award Winners available at CRRL here.