Dear children’s literature community –
We at the Children’s Book Council and Every Child a Reader sincerely appreciate your concerns about this year’s Children’s Choice Book Awards, and wanted to take a moment to clear up some confusion.
First, our finalist selection process for the past 7 years of the program, always posted here on bookweekonline.com, has been exactly the same. The Children’s Choice Book Awards comprises 6 categories: Kindergarten to Second Grade Book of the Year, Third to Fourth Grade Book of the Year, Fifth to Sixth Grade Book of the Year, Teen Book of the Year, Author of the Year, and Illustrator of the Year.
The finalists for the K-2, 3-4, and 5-6 Book of the Year categories are all selected by kids through the IRA-CBC Children’s Choices Program.
Teen Book of the Year finalists are chosen by teens through voting on Teenreads.com.
The Author of the Year and Illustrator of the Year finalists are determined solely based on titles’ performances on the bestseller lists – all titles in those categories are listed as a result of this protocol. Some of you have voiced concerns over the selection of finalists from bestseller lists, which you feel are potentially-manipulable indications of the success of a title. We can take this into consideration going forward, but cannot change our procedure for selecting finalists after the fact.
Ultimately, kids and teens (over one million of them if as many vote this year as did last year) will decide who wins in all 6 Children’s Choice Book Awards categories on May 14, so encourage them to vote starting March 25 at ccbookawards.com. We have procedures in place to eliminate duplicate, fake, and adult votes during the voting period as much as possible.
This program has never been about CBC or ECAR endorsing finalists. It has always been about CBC and ECAR endorsing young readers and giving them a choice and a voice on a national scale.
If you have further questions or concerns about the program, we are happy to discuss them with you. Please contact us directly at [email protected].
Every Child a Reader (ECAR) is a 501(c)(3) literacy organization dedicated to instilling a lifelong love of reading in children. ECAR creates and supports programs that: strive to make the reading and enjoyment of children’s books an essential part of America’s educational and social aims and enhance public perception of the importance of reading. ECAR’s national programs include Children’s Book Week, a nationwide celebration of books and reading, and the longest-running national literacy initiative in the country; the Children’s Choice Book Awards, the only national book awards program where the winning titles are selected by kids and teens of all ages; and the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Program, the country’s “Children’s Literature Laureate”.
The Children’s Book Council (CBC) — the national, non-profit trade association for children’s book publishers — is dedicated to supporting and informing the industry and fostering literacy. The CBC offers children’s publishers the opportunity to work together on issues of importance to the industry at large, including educational programming, literacy advocacy, and collaborations with other national organizations. The CBC is a proud sponsor and supporter of Every Child a Reader’s programs.