Association of Jewish Libraries Announces 2019 Sydney Taylor Award Winners

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JANUARY 28, 2019

2019 Sydney Taylor Book Award Winners Announced

Winners of the annual Sydney Taylor Book Award were announced by the Association of Jewish Libraries today in Seattle, WA at the Youth Media Awards press conference of the American Library Association. Named in memory of Sydney Taylor, author of the classic All-of-a-Kind Family series, the award recognizes books for children and teens that exemplify high literary standards while authentically portraying the Jewish experience.

2019 marks the first time the Sydney Taylor Book Awards have been included in the American Library Association Youth Media Award announcements.

GOLD MEDALISTS

All-of-a-Kind Family Hanukkah by Emily Jenkins, illustrated by Paul Zelinsky, published by Schwartz & Wade, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, won the Sydney Taylor Book Award in the Younger Readers category. In this meticulously researched Hanukkah story based on the classic children’s book All-of-a-Kind Family, poetic language and exuberant illustrations perfectly capture the emotions of each of the iconic sisters as they prepare latkes and celebrate the holiday in New York’s Lower East Side in 1912.

Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier, published by Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams, won the Sydney Taylor Book Award in the Older Readers category. Auxier masterfully weaves Jewish themes and characters into the story of Nan Sparrow, a chimney climbing girl in Victorian London, and her remarkable friendship with Charlie, the soot golem who saves her life.

What the Night Sings by Vesper Stamper, illustrated by the author, published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, won the Sydney Taylor Book Award in the Teen Readers category. This beautifully illustrated novel tells the story of teen Holocaust survivor Gerta as she struggles to reconcile her identity and desires in the wake of tragedy.

SILVER MEDALISTS

Five Sydney Taylor Honor Books were also recognized. For Younger Readers, the Honor Books are A Moon for Moe and Mo by Jane Breskin Zalben, illustrated by Mehrdokht Amini, published by Charlesbridge, and Through the Window: Views of Marc Chagall’s Life and Art by Barb Rosenstock, illustrated by Mary Grandpré, published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books.

For Older Readers, the Honor Books are All Three Stooges, by Erica S. Perl, published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, and The Length of a String by Elissa Brent Weissman, published by Dial Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House.

For Teen Readers, the Honor Book is You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone by Rachel Lynn Solomon, published by Simon Pulse, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing.

In addition to the medal winners, the Award Committee designated nine Notable Books of Jewish Content for 2019. More information about the Sydney Taylor Book Award and a complete listing of the award winners and notables can be found at www.sydneytaylorbookawards.org.

Winning authors and illustrators will receive their awards at the Annual Conference of the Association of Jewish Libraries, to be held in Los Angeles, California, from June 17–19, 2019. Gold and silver medalists will also participate in a blog tour February 10-14, 2019. For more information about the blog tour please visit www.jewishlibraries.org/blog. An exclusive interview with the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee Chair Susan Kusel may be heard on The Book of Life podcast at www.bookoflifepodcast.com.

Members of the 2019 Sydney Taylor Book Award committee are: Chair, Susan Kusel, Temple Rodef Shalom Library, Falls Church, Virginia; Rena Citrin, Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School, Chicago, Illinois; Shoshana Flax, The Horn Book, Inc., Boston, Massachusetts; Rebecca Levitan, Baltimore County Public Library, Baltimore, Maryland; Sylvie Shaffer, Capitol Hill Day School, Washington, DC; Marjorie Shuster, Congregation Emanuel, New York, New York; and Rivka Yerushalmi, Jewish Women International Libraries, Silver Spring, Maryland.

The Association of Jewish Libraries (AJL) promotes Jewish literacy through enhancement of libraries and library resources and through leadership for the profession and practitioners of Judaica librarianship. The Association fosters access to information, learning, teaching and research relating to Jews, Judaism, the Jewish experience and Israel. AJL is an affiliate of the American Library Association. More information is available at www.jewishlibraries.org.

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2019 Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award Winner Chosen

The Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award Competition committee is pleased to announce the recipient of the 2019 award. Jessica Littmann, author of A Corner of the World, will receive the award at the annual conference of the Association of Jewish Libraries to be held in Los Angeles, California from June 17-19, 2019. The Award is offered annually to an unpublished manuscript that has broad appeal to readers aged 8-13 and presents Jewish life in a positive light. The committee members felt that A Corner of the World had the perfect amount of Jewish content and values combined with complex contemporary themes.

A Corner of the World tells the story of two unlikely friends, Maya and Sam, who team up to make a difference in their community. Maya and Sam are both students at a Jewish day school who, like many middle school students, struggle with personal challenges that make them feel alone. When violence affects a member of their school’s staff, Maya and Sam find common cause in a mitzvah project which brings healing and hope to a Chicago neighborhood in the spirit of tikkun olam.

In writing A Corner of the World, Ms. Littmann was inspired by a news story she had read about two teenagers who raised money to build a playground for disadvantaged children in Chicago. She said further that she “tried to provide a snapshot of the issues that contemporary Jewish kids face in the classroom and in their lives as part of the great community.”

Having grown up reading and loving Sydney Taylor’s All-of-a-Kind Family books, Ms. Littmann is thrilled to have been selected for this award and feels “as if she’s traveling in her own personal rainbow.” Ms. Littmann, who lives in Evanston, Illinois, is a teacher by training. She is currently working as a freelance writer and serves as a member of the board of Beth Hillel B’nai Emunah Academy. A Corner of the World is her first novel.

Members of the 2019 Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award Committee are: Chair, Aileen Grossberg, Lampert Library, Congregation Shomrei Emunah, Montclair, New Jersey and Jacobs Library, Oheb Shalom Congregation, South Orange, New Jersey; Toby Harris, Seattle Public Library and Temple Beth Am, Seattle, Washington; Heidi Rabinowitz, Feldman Children’s Library and Howard Computer Lab, Congregation B’nai Israel, Boca Raton, Florida; Jill Ratzan, Temple B’nai Abraham, Bordentown, New Jersey; Rachel Simon, Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown, Massachusetts; and Debbie Steinberg, Learning Commons, Ida Crown Jewish Academy, Chicago, Illinois. More information about the Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award may be found at www.tinyurl.com/stmanuscript.

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The 2019 Sydney Taylor Book & Manuscript Awards
Association of Jewish Libraries

Winner for Younger Readers

All-of-a-Kind-Family Hanukkah by Emily Jenkins, illustrated by Paul Zelinsky,
published by Schwartz & Wade, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books

Winner for Older Readers

Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier,
published by Amulet Books, an imprint of Abrams

Winner for Teen Readers

What the Night Sings by Vesper Stamper, illustrated by the author,
published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books

~~~~~~

Honor Books for Younger Readers

Through the Window:Views of Marc Chagall’s Life by Barb Rosenstock, illustrated by Mary GrandPré,
published by Alfred A. Knopf, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books

A Moon for Moe and Mo by Jane Breskin Zalben, illustrated by Mehrdokht Amini, published by Charlesbridge

Honor Books for Older Readers

All Three Stooges by Erica S. Perl, published by Alfred A. Knopf,
an imprint of Random House Children’s Books

The Length of a String by Elissa Brent Weissman, published by Dial Books for Young Readers,
an imprint of Penguin Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House

Honor Book for Teen Readers

You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone by Rachel Lynn Solomon, published by Simon Pulse,
an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing

Notable Books for Younger Readers

Irving Berlin: The Immigrant Boy Who Made America Sing by Nancy Churnin,
illustrated by James Rey Sanchez, published by Creston Books

Write On, Irving Berlin! by Leslie Kimmelman, illustrated by David C. Gardner,
published by Sleeping Bear Press

French Toast Sundays by Gloria Spielman, illustrated by Inbal Gigi Bousidan,
published by Apples and Honey Press, an imprint of Behrman House

The Passover Parrot by Evelyn Zusman, illustrated by Kyrsten Brooker,
published by Kar-Ben Publishing, a division of Lerner Publishing Group

Notable Books for Older Readers

Anne Frank’s Diary: The Graphic Adaptation adapted by Ari Folman, illustrated by David Polonsky,
published by Pantheon Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House

12 Before 13 by Lisa Greenwald, published by Katherine Tegen Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers

Light the Menorah: A Hanukkah Handbook by Jacqueline Jules, illustrated by Kristina Swarner,
published by Kar-Ben Publishing, a division of Lerner Publishing Group

The Sound of Freedom by Kathy Kacer, published by Annick Press

Notable Book for Teen Readers

Resistance by Jennifer A. Nielsen, published by Scholastic Press, an imprint of Scholastic

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Manuscript Award Winner

A Corner of the World by Jessica Littman

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For more information contact:
Susan Kusel, Chair, Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee, Association of Jewish Libraries
sydneytaylorbookaward@jewishlibraries.org
www.sydneytaylorbookawards.org

Aileen Grossberg, Chair, Sydney Taylor Manuscript Committee, Association of Jewish Libraries
STMACAJL@aol.com
www.tinyurl.com/stmanuscript

About Barbara Krasner

History writer and award-winning author Barbara Krasner writes Jewish-themed poetry, articles, nonfiction books, and novels for children and adults.
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1 Response to Association of Jewish Libraries Announces 2019 Sydney Taylor Award Winners

  1. Pingback: Association of Jewish Libraries Announces 2019 Sydney Taylor Award Winners | Jewish Books Are Awesome

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