Marcia Strykowski

American Library Association Awards 2018

Congratulations to all the winners for this year’s ALA awards! There are so many wonderful new books released each year and it’s certainly not easy to stand out in the crowd. Here are a few winners from the children’s books categories who did stand out.

John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature: Hello, Universe written by Erin Entrada Kelly, is the 2018 Newbery Medal winner. A funny and poignant neighborhood story about unexpected friendships. The book is published by Greenwillow Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

Randolph Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished American picture book for children: Wolf in the Snow, illustrated and written by Matthew Cordell is the 2018 Caldecott Medal winner. A heartwarming adventure about helping others. The book was published by Feiwel and Friends, an Imprint of Macmillan.

Coretta Scott King Book Awards recognizing African American authors and illustrators of outstanding books for children and young adults: Piecing Me Together, written by Renée Watson, is the King Author Award winner. A timely, important, and deeply moving novel. The book is published by Bloomsbury Children’s Books.

Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award to affirm new talent: The Stars Beneath Our Feet, written by David Barclay Moore, is the Steptoe Author Award winner. A debut novel that celebrates community and creativity–soon to be a movie. The book is published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC

Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in literature written for young adults: We Are Okay, written by Nina LaCour, is the 2018 Printz Award winner. A beautiful story about grief and the power of friendship. The book is published by Dutton Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers.

Schneider Family Book Award for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience:

Silent Days, Silent Dreams, written and illustrated by Allen Say and published by Arthur A. Levine Books, an Imprint of Scholastic Inc., wins the award for young children (ages 0 to 8).

Macy McMillan and the Rainbow Goddess, written by Shari Green and published by Pajama Press Inc., is the winner for middle grades (ages 9-13).

You’re Welcome, Universe, written and illustrated by Whitney Gardner and published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House LLC is the winner for teens (ages 14-18).

Each of the above mentioned prestigious prizes has honorable mentions, as well. There were also lifetime achievement awards and other honors announced today. For the complete listing, click here.

Congratulations again to everyone involved in the business of making beautiful books for children.



  1. Wow! These all look wonderful. I’m excited to check them out. Thanks, Marcia!


  2. WOW! Thanks for being the first to announce on my email feed! Every year I await to hear that children and young adults are asked to serve on the committees of the ALA Awards. I hope they agree with these award winner choices.


    • It must be so difficult to narrow down the top awards from the short list in each category. Thanks for your comment!


  3. Thanks for sharing these!


  4. Thank you for posting the winners, Marcia. Congratulations to all! My favorites, my hopefuls, were not winners. So many good books!


  5. Thanks for sharing these books, Marcia. What a joy that there are wonderful new books produced every year. I love them as much as my grandson. 🙂


  6. Some amazing books this year. So pleased for Shari Green. Congratulations to all the winners.


  7. I better get busy reading – haven’t read any of these, other than the Shari Green novel – happy to see a fellow Pajama Press author honored! Thanks for the summary.


    • I’ve read Wolf in the Snow and both Hello, Universe and The Stars Beneath Our Feet were already in my to-read pile. Time to add a few new ones!


  8. Colleen

    Wow! I wish I lived in your town – i would be at your library at least once a week. the children who are your library patrons are so lucky, Marcia! Helo, Universe resonates – i love the song by Mose Allison from the 60s.


    • Thanks, Colleen. We do have a great library with a lot of fun programs for all ages. I wasn’t familiar with Mose Allison, but now I’m listening to “Hello There Universe” as I type. 🙂


  9. mirkabreen

    I am eager to read this year’s medal winner, because “funny and poignant neighborhood story” is just my cup of tea. Doesn’t sound “high concept,” and frankly too many MG are pushed to be earth shattering save-the-world stories. Outstanding!


    • There have been a lot of save-the-world type stories, now that you mention it. 🙂


  10. Michelle Elder

    Some beautiful books mentioned. Great blog, as usual!


  11. clarehelenwelsh

    Thank you for bringing these interesting books to our attention, Marcia. Will definitely be adding ‘Wolf in the Snow’ to my reading pile.


  12. These look like great books with good stories. I don’t know if I’ll get the chance to read them but they look enticing. Maybe I’ll have to put them on a wish list so I don’t forget about them. Thanks for the list!


  13. Ashley

    Great!! I’m always curious who will win and be nominated for the Caldecott and Newbery awards!!


  14. Cool Marcia! Thanks for passing these along!! I’m not up on new books coming out!! So thankful you bring beautiful books to our notice. I’m off to amazon to read more summaries of the books you mentioned! How are you doing?? Happy weekend ahead– what are you up to?? and what are you reading?? hugs hugs!


    • Hi Rhonda! I’ve got kind of a work schedule going this weekend, working at the library on Saturday and meeting with my critique group on Sunday. But both are fun and I’ve got the next two weekends off. I’m reading “10% Happier” by Dan Harris, rather interesting. 🙂 I’m hoping to make your Balsamic & Rosemary chicken soon–looks delicious. Have a great weekend!


      • Hi Marcia– OK, what’s a “critique group?” I’m imagining a lot of smart friends sitting around the talking through new books for the library… Would love drop in on that to see how it works! I’ve heard of 10% Happier– I’ll have to put it on my library list! thanks. hugs hugs Marcia!


        • Oh, sorry, I shouldn’t assume everyone knows the lingo. 🙂 Critique groups (in my case) are groups of writers. We send each other our latest WIP (work-in-progress), carefully pour over it, read it aloud, analyze sentences, write in corrections/suggestions and then we meet and take turns sharing thoughts and feedback on everyone’s work. Currently I’m in two groups, each meets monthly. It can take a lot of time and effort but the rewards are worth every minute. Most authors would be nowhere without their critique groups! Have a great week, Rhonda!


  15. Bette Norton

    Congratulations to all the ALA award winners! I love children’s books! These all look very interesting. I will have to stop by my local library and pick out a few to read. Thank you for another great post! 🙂


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