Newbery, Caldecott pay tribute to ‘The Last Cuentista’ and ‘Watercress’ : NPR

The Last Cuentista by Donna Barba Higuera

American librarians gave top honors to their favorite children’s books of the year on Monday. The Newbery – celebrating its 100th anniversary – and Caldecott medals, as well as several other honors, were among those awards.

The John Newbery Medal for best children’s book this year went to The Last Waiter by Donna Barba Higuera. In the book, a girl named Petra must travel to another planet to pursue the human race after the destruction of Earth.

The Randolph Caldecott Medal, awarded by the American Library Association to the best American picture book for children, was awarded to Cress by Andrea Wang and illustrated by Jason Chin. It was also a Newbery Honor Book. The story centers on a little girl who comes to discover her heritage after her family stops the car at the side of a road to pick watercress.

Other Newbery Honor Books were red, white and whole; A serpent falls to Earth; and Too bright to see.

Caldecott’s other honor books were: Have you ever seen a flower? Mel fell; Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre; and Wonder Walkers.

The ALA Youth Media Awards include many other accolades, such as the Coretta Scott King Award, which was presented to Carole Boston Weatherford for Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre. Illustrator Floyd Cooper also won the Illustrator Award for this book – and the book also won a Silber Award. Nikki Grimes received a Coretta Scott King Lifetime Achievement Award.

Last night at the Telegraph Club by Malinda Lo and firefighter girl by Angeline Boulley were among those who won numerous awards.

In 2021, the Newbery was awarded to When you trap a tiger by Tae Keller. The central character of the book is a girl, Lily, whose family moves in with her dying grandmother, and a tiger from Korean folklore shows up looking for something that has been stolen.

Last year, the Caldecott Medal was awarded to We are water protectors illustrated by Michaela Goade and written by Carole Lindstrom. The book emphasizes the urgent need to take care of the Earth’s water.


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