The Curious Garden. As soon as we entered we checked out the competition:
Lulu the Big Little Chick written and illustrated by Paulette Bogan, as presented by Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs author Judi Barrett.
Next up was the award for Third Grade to Fourth Grade Book of the Year. And the winner (as presented by Jacqueline Woodson) is...
OMG, who is the next presenter?!
Tales from a Not-so-fabulous Life written and illustrated by Rachel Renee Russell
The next award was for the Teen Choice Book of the Year. Future Little, Brown author Libba Bray was the presenter, and announced the winner as...
Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins.
And finally, the big two awards, Author of the Year and Illustrator of the Year. First up was for author of the year. And the winner is (as presented by Newbery Award-winner Rebecca Stead)...
And the moment of truth...Caldecott Medal winner Jerry Pinkney was on hand to present the Illustrator of the Year award. And the children's choice is...
Peter gave a lovely, heartfelt speech. But the night wasn't over yet. Next on the stage was none other than our National Ambassador for Young People's Literature, Katherine Patterson,
First Book President and co-founder Kyle Zimmer:
Two mornings later, I attended an event with a very different feel, but with the same spirit. The Irma Black Award is sponsored by Bank Street College of Education:
The Award goes to an outstanding book for young children — a book in which text and illustrations are inseparable, each enhancing and enlarging on the other to produce a singular whole.Kids selected four finalists, and Sergio Saves the Game by Edel Rodriguez was one of the four. It wasn't ultimately the winner--that was Robot Zot by Jon Scieszka and illustrated by David Shannon. But I was happy to celebrate the Honor win with Edel at a breakfast ceremony.
Carmen Agra Deedy gave the keynote. She's an amazing storyteller, and I swear, I could listen to her forever. She made us laugh, she made us cry, she surprised us, she inspired us:
And there's the Scieszka guy again, making us all laugh as usual:
Congratulations to all the honorees, nominees, and winners. And a hip hip hurray for the REAL winners: the kids, of course!
P.S. Here's a video of Carmen speaking at TED:
P.P.S. Happy Birthday, Grace!!