More than 1,000 librarians, teachers and publishing professionals gathered in Seattle's Washington State Convention Center yesterday for the American Library Association's announcements of the 2018 Youth Media Awards. After opening remarks from Association of Library Service to Children president Dr. Jamie Campbell Naidoo, ALA president Loida Garcia-Febo kicked off the celebration with the Asian/Pacific Librarians Association's Award for Literature. As announced last year, the APALA awards--as well as the American Indian Library Association's Youth Literature award and the Association of Jewish Libraries' (AJL) Sydney Taylor Book Award--are the newest additions to the Youth Media Awards program. Next was the Schneider Family Book Award, which honors an "author or illustrator for a book that embodies an artistic expression of the disability experience for child and adolescent audiences" and the Stonewall Book Award, which gave medals to two titles: Julián Is a Mermaid by Jessica Love (Candlewick Press) and Hurricane Child by Kheryn Callendar (Scholastic).
The Coretta Scott King Awards, which are celebrating their 50th anniversary under the slogan "50 years strong," bestowed the John Steptoe Awards for New Talent on Oge Mora (Thank You, Omu, Little, Brown) and Tiffany D. Jackson (Monday's Not Coming, HarperCollins); Ekua Holmes received the CSK for Illustration (The Stuff of Stars, Candlewick) and Claire Hatfield (A Few Red Drops, HMH) was chosen for the Author award. A bevy of Young Adult Library Services Association awards followed, culminating with the Michael L. Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature, given to Elizabeth Acevedo for The Poet X (HarperCollins). The ALSC named Neil Gaiman to deliver next year's May Hill Arbuthnot Lecture and announced the late Walter Dean Myers as the Children's Literature Legacy Award recipient, to be accepted by his son, Christopher Myers. The oldest and most famous awards, the Randolph Caldecott Medal and the John Newbery Medal, were saved for last: Sophie Blackall received the Caldecott for Hello, Lighthouse (Little, Brown); and Meg Medina received the Newbery for Merci Suarez Changes Gears (Candlewick).