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HarperCollins Children’s Books Receives Honors From The American Library Association at 2016 Midwinter Meeting

NEW YORK, NY  HarperCollins Children’s Books announced today that four titles have been honored at the 2016 ALA Midwinter Meeting held yesterday in Boston, Massachusetts. Kevin Henkes earned a Randolph Caldecott Honor and a Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor for Waiting. The Randolph Caldecott Medal is awarded annually by the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association, to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children. The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award celebrates the most distinguished book for beginning readers.

Laura Ruby was given the Michael L. Printz Award for Bone Gap. The Michael L. Printz Award annually honors the best book written for teens, based entirely on its literary merit, each year. 

Rita Williams-Garcia was given the Coretta Scott King Author Award for Gone Crazy in Alabama. The Coretta Scott King Awards are given annually to outstanding African American authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values.

Becky Albertalli earned the William C. Morris Award for Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. The William C. Morris Award, first given in 2009, honors a debut book published by a first-time author writing for teens and celebrating impressive new voices in young adult literature. 

Weston Woods Studios, Inc. was also awarded the Andrew Carnegie Medal for That Is Not a Good Idea! byMo Willems (first published in 2013 by Balzer + Bray). The Carnegie Medal honors an outstanding American video production for children released during the previous year.

Suzanne Murphy, President and Publisher of HarperCollins Children’s Books, said, “We congratulate the authors and illustrators on their well-deserved accolades and we thank the ALA for recognizing each of these outstanding books.” 

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Timeless, beautiful, and deeply heartfelt, Waiting, by Kevin Henkes (Randolph Caldecott Honor, Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor), is about five friends sitting happily on a windowsill, waiting for something amazing to happen. Containing themes of imaginative play, the seasons, friendship, and surprises, this New York Timesbestseller received five starred reviews and huge national media attention, with the Boston Globe calling Henkes “the stealthiest master of kids’ lit around.”

Kevin Henkes is the author and illustrator of close to fifty critically acclaimed and award-winning picture books, beginning readers, and novels. He received the Caldecott Medal for Kitten’s First Full Moon in 2005. Kevin Henkes is also the creator of a number of picture books featuring his mouse characters, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Lilly’s Big Day and Wemberly Worried, the Caldecott Honor Book Owen, and the beloved Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse. His most recent mouse character, Penny, was introduced in Penny and Her Song (2012); her story continued in Penny and Her Doll and Penny and Her Marble (a Geisel Honor Book). Bruce Handy, in a New York Times Book Review piece about A Good Day, wrote, “It should be said: Kevin Henkes is a genius.” Kevin Henkes has received two Newbery Honors for novels—one for his newest novel for young readers, The Year of Billy Miller, and the other for Olive’s Ocean. Also among his fiction for older readers are the novels Junonia, Bird Lake Moon, The Birthday Room, and Sun & Spoon. Kevin Henkes has been published by Greenwillow Books since the release of his first book, All Alone, in 1981. He lives with his family in Madison, Wisconsin. You can visit him online at www.kevinhenkes.com.  

BONE GAP (Michael L. Printz Award) is the critically acclaimed, powerful, and wholly original teen novel about a beautiful girl who is kidnapped from a quiet midwestern town and imprisoned by a mysterious man, and a boy, the only witness, who cannot forgive himself for being unable to identify her kidnapper. The novel received four starred reviews, appeared on numerous “Best of” lists for 2015, and was a National Book Award finalist in the Young People’s Literature category. School Library Journal wrote, “[Bone Gap] deserves to be read and reread. It is powerful, beautiful, extraordinary.” The New York Times Book Review raved, “It’s a novel about actual changes in worldview, and all its science and myth and realism and magic are marshaled, finally, to answer crucial questions about empathy and difference, and the way we see people we love.” 

Laura Ruby is the author of books for adults, teens, and children. Her titles for children include the Edgar-nominated middle grade mystery Lily’s Ghosts as well as the fantasy The Wall and the Wing and its sequel,The Chaos King. Her debut young adult novel, Good Girls, was a Book Sense Pick for fall 2006; she followed this with the acclaimed novels Play Me and Bad Apple. She is a professor of writing at Hamline University’s MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults program and lives in the Chicago area. You can visit her online at www.lauraruby.com.

Gone Crazy in Alabama (Coretta Scott King Author Award), the third and last book about the Gaither sisters from Newbery Honor and New York Times bestselling author Rita Williams-Garcia, is a companion to the award-winning One Crazy Summer and P.S. Be Eleven. It has been named a best book of the year byKirkus Reviews, ALA Booklist, School Library Journal, the Washington Post, and Shelf Awareness. Rita Williams-Garcia’s Newbery Honor–winning novel, One Crazy Summer, was a winner of the Coretta Scott King Author Award, a National Book Award finalist, the recipient of the Scott O’Dell Award for Historical Fiction, and a New York Times bestseller. The sequel, P.S. Be Eleven, was also a Coretta Scott King Author Award winner and an ALA Notable Children’s Book. She is also the author of six distinguished novels for young adults: Jumped, a National Book Award finalist; No Laughter Here, Every Time a Rainbow Dies (a Publishers Weekly Best Children’s Book), and Fast Talk on a Slow Track (all ALA Best Books for Young Adults); Blue Tights; and Like Sisters on the Homefront, a Coretta Scott King Honor Book.

Rita Williams-Garcia lives in Jamaica, New York, is on the faculty at the Vermont College of Fine Arts in the Writing for Children & Young Adults program, and has two adult daughters, Stephanie and Michelle, and a son-in-law, Adam. You can visit her online at www.ritawg.com.

SIMON VS. THE HOMO SAPIENS AGENDA (William C. Morris Award) by debut author Becky Albertalli was a breakout success this year, most notably being longlisted for the National Book Award in the Young People’s Literature category and named a Publishers Weekly Flying Start. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is an incredibly funny and poignant twenty-first-century coming-of-age, coming-out story—wrapped in a geek romance. Earning high praise from national media everywhere, Entertainment Weekly gave it a grade A, raving, “Albertalli paints a stunningly three-dimensional, cliche-free world for Simon that bursts with unforgettable characters. Savor it, because you’ll read it for the first time only once.”  

Becky Albertalli is a clinical psychologist who has had the privilege of conducting therapy with dozens of smart, weird, irresistible teenagers. She also served for seven years as coleader of a support group for gender nonconforming children in Washington, DC. She now lives in Atlanta. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is her first novel. You can visit Becky online at www.beckyalbertalli.com.

HarperCollins Children’s Books is one of the leading publishers of children’s and teen books. Respected worldwide for its tradition of publishing quality, award-winning books for young readers, HarperCollins is home to many timeless treasures and bestsellers, such as Charlotte’s Web, Goodnight Moon, Where the Sidewalk Ends, Where the Wild Things Are, and The Graveyard Book and series including The Chronicles of Narnia, Ramona, Warriors, Pete the Cat, Fancy Nancy, Divergent, and The Selection. Consistently at the forefront of digital innovation, HarperCollins Children’s Books delights readers through engaging storytelling in all formats, including ebooks and apps. HarperCollins Children’s Books is a division of HarperCollins Publishers, which is the second largest consumer book publisher in the world, has operations in 18 countries, and is a subsidiary of News Corp (NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV). You can visit HarperCollins Children’s Books at www.harpercollinschildrens.com and www.epicreads.com and HarperCollins Publishers at corporate.HC.com.

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