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Fifth Annual Anna Dewdney Read Together Award Winner and Honor Books Announced

Tune in for a virtual reading of the winning title by the author and illustrator, followed by a Q&A

New York, NY – April 28, 2021 – Penguin Young Readers, the Children’s Book Council, and Every Child a Reader are proud to announce that Brown Baby Lullaby, written by Tameka Fryer Brown and illustrated by AG Ford (Macmillan Children’s Publishing), is the winner of the fifth annual Anna Dewdney Read Together Award.

This award is given annually to a picture book that is both a superb read-aloud and also sparks compassion, empathy, and connection. The award commemorates the life and work of author/illustrator Anna Dewdney, and celebrates her commitment to reading with young children and putting books into as many little hands as possible.

Tameka Fryer Brown’s picture books include Around Our Way on Neighbors’ Day and My Cold Plum Lemon Pie Bluesy Mood. Her work also appears in the anthology, We Rise, We Resist, We Raise Our Voices. She currently resides in Charlotte, North Carolina.

AG Ford is a New York Times bestselling children’s book illustrator and recipient of two NAACP Image Awards (for Our Children Can Soar and What Color is My World). He has over 30 published books for children. Mr. Ford grew up in Dallas, Texas and attended The Columbus College of Art and Design. He lives in Frisco, Texas with his family.

Join Tameka Fryer Brown and AG Ford for a live read-aloud event of their winning title, Brown Baby Lullaby, on May 7th at 3pm EST. This event will be hosted via Zoom. Please register here to receive the link for the event. We look forward to celebrating in recognition of Brown and Ford receiving the Anna Dewdney Read Together Award across many miles and households.

This live event is part of our Children’s Book Week celebrations. Explore all of our free resources and join in the celebration at your school, library, or bookstore, and at home. 

The Honor Books for 2021 are:

  • I am Every Good Thing, by Derrick Barnes, illus. by Gordon C. James (Penguin Young Readers)
  • If You Ever Want to bring an Alligator to School, Dont!, by Elise Parsley (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)
  • Nana Akua Goes to School, by Tricia Elam Walker, illus. by April Harrison (Random House Children’s Book)
  • Swashby and the Sea, by Beth Ferry, illus. By Juana Martinez-Neal (HMH)
  • You Matter, by Christian Robinson (Simon & Schuster)

Brown and Ford will be awarded a prize of $1,000 from the Children’s Book Council and Penguin will purchase and donate 250 copies of Brown Baby Lullaby to a school, library, or literacy organization of their choice.

The winner and honor books were chosen by voting over the last two months by librarians, teachers, booksellers and caregivers across America.

About Anna Dewdney

Anna Dewdney was the New York Times bestselling author and illustrator of Llama Llama Red Pajama. Other award-winning books in the Llama Llama series include Llama Lama and the Bully Goat, Llama Lama Time to Share, Llama Llama Misses Mama, Llama Llama Holiday Drama, and Llama Llama Mad at Mama. Llama Llama Loves to Read was released in May 2018. She was also the author/illustrator of Little Excavator, Nobunny’s Perfect, Roly Poly Pangolin, and Grumpy Gloria. Anna worked as a rural mail carrier and taught at a boys’ boarding school for many years before becoming a full-time author and illustrator. Anna was a committed advocate of literacy, speaking regularly on this topic and publishing articles in the Wall Street Journal and other national outlets.

About Penguin Young Readers

Penguin Young Readers is one of the leading children’s book publishers in the United States. The company owns a wide range of imprints and trademarks, including Dial Books, Dutton, Flamingo, Kokila, Nancy Paulsen Books, Penguin Workshop, Philomel, Puffin, G. P. Putnam’s Sons, Razorbill, Viking, and Frederick Warne. These imprints are home to such award-winning, New York Times- bestselling authors as, Laurie Halse Anderson, Max Brallier, Jan Brett, Eric Carle, Roald Dahl, Anna Dewdney, John Flanagan, John Green, Oliver Jeffers, Brad Meltzer, Ransom Riggs, Ruta Sepetys, Sabaa Tahir, Jacqueline Woodson, and dozens of other popular authors. Penguin Young Readers Group is also the proud publisher of perennial brand franchises such as The Little Engine That Could, the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys series, Peter Rabbit, Spot, the Classic Winnie the Pooh, the Very Hungry Caterpillar, Madeline, Mad Libs, the Last Kids on Earth, the Rangers Apprentice, and Who HQ among many others. Penguin Young Readers Group is a division of Penguin Random House LLC.

About Every Child a Reader

Every Child a Reader is a 501(c)(3) literacy charity dedicated to inspiring a lifelong love of reading in children and teens across America. Every Child a Reader’s major national programs include: Children’s Book Week, celebrating 100 years this year; the Children’s & Teen Choice Book Awards; Get Caught Reading; and the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature program, in partnership with the Library of Congress.


Penguin Contact:
Shanta Newlin, Senior Vice President, Executive Director, Publicity & Corporate Communications, Penguin Young Readers

CBC and Every Child a Reader Contact:
Carl Lennertz, Executive Director, The Children’s Book Council

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