Monday, January 22, 2007

ALA Conference

So I'm here in Seattle at the American Library Association. In between meetings, I get to go to the vendors booths talking to the publishers and picking up galley copies of the Spring and Summer releases. There are some really great books coming out--including a new Holly Black book (Don't worry Karen--I got the galley of it!). I get to see all my friends in the Graphic novel pavillion (A big row of GN publishers all together talking up their products). I got a great piece from Dark Horse: A limited hardback signed edition of A tale of One bad rat. Pretty sweet....

But the highlight of this conference for me is when I get my butt out of bed way too early for my liking and attend the ALA Media Award announcement ceremony. This is it: when all the big literary awards are announced for youth and teen services. The best part of the ceremony is the announcement of the Printz award, an award given for literary merit for teen literature.

This year's honor books are: The Pox Party by M.T. Anderson; An Abundance of Katherines by John Green; Surrender by Sonya Hartnett; and The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak

This last was a surprise, since I totally thought Book Thief was going to win for sure. In fact, there was no doubt in my mind that it would win.

I was blown away by the announcement of the winner. American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang. A graphic novel!!! (The summary: "Alternates three interrelated stories about the problems of young Chinese Americans trying to participate in the popular culture.")

I am so impressed by the Printz committee for awarding this deserving graphic novel the highest prize in teen literature. Maybe now some teachers and parents will see that there are a lot to value in graphic novels.

So congratulations to the honor and winners of this year's Printz. I can't wait for the Annual conference in June to hear the acceptance speeches!

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