Announcing 2017 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Winning and Honor Titles

Announcement of the 2017 Jane Addams Children’s Book Award Winners


Congratulations to the 65th Jane Addams Children’s Book Awardees Deborah Hopkinson, Ron Husband, Debbie Levy, Elizabeth Baddeley, Susan E Goodman, E.B. Lewis, Caren B. Stelson, Russell Freedman, and Lauren Wolk.

Press Release Word and PDF

Video Announcement

The Jane Addams Model


Our antipoverty efforts tend to be systematized and bureaucratized, but Hull House was intensely personalistic. She sought to change the world by planting herself deeply in a particular neighborhood. She treated each person as a unique soul.

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Sonic Spirituality: Louise Erdrich on Postcommodity’s Ceremonial Transformation of LRAD


The effect of LRAD, Long Range Acoustic Device, on people is devastating. But in a moving act of cultural transformation, the art collective Postcommodity is using LRAD in a radically different manner. The innocuous-looking gray LRAD speakers are installed in Athens, Greece, and the more softly pitched acoustical beam is directed at the archeological site of Aristotle’s Lyceum. Here, LRAD is used to speak to the origins of western civilization, not in weaponized tones, but in the language of the human spirit.

Postcommodity’s work is to heal that damage, to inflict, instead of pain and loss, complexity, meaning, and gorgeous sound.

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The Birchbark House by Louise Erdrich 2000 Awardee

South Dakota Children’s Book Awards


The Winners Are…

Praire Pasque 2017 Winner

The Whispering Town By Jennifer Elvgren

Runner Up: Stubby the War Dog: The True Story of World War I’s Bravest Dog by Ann Bausum

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Whispering Town written by Jennifer Elvgren and illustrated by Fabio Santomauro 2015 Awardee

Marching to the Mountaintop: How Poverty, Labor Fights and Civil Rights Set the Stage for Martin Luther King Jr’s Final Hours, written by Ann Bausum 2013 Awardee

Evenings with an author: Jacqueline Woodson on race, gender, and cultural identity in her work

Visiting fellow Jacqueline Woodson, a 2014 National Book Award winner for Brown Girl Dreaming and author of some three dozen books for children and adults, is spending the month at the Library. Her talk is about racial, sexual and cultural identity in her work. She also has a Q&A session for ages 8+ on 29 April at 17h.

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The Thread Live: 2017 authors announced

June 14: Jacqueline Woodson on the friendships that leave a mark


The event is free, but tickets are required. Writers will bring discussions of identity, equality, friendship, hardship and buried history to the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul.

Kerri Miller interviews National Book Award-winner Jacqueline Woodson about her latest novel, “Another Brooklyn,” an autobiographical exploration of childhood friendships in 1970s New York City.

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Each Kindness written by Jacqueline Woodson, illustrated by E.B. Lewis 2013 Awardee

From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun by Jacqueline Woodson 1996 Awardee

I Hadn’t Meant to Tell You This by Jacqueline Woodson 1995 Awardee

‘TERABITHIA’ REVEALED: Author Katherine Paterson reflects on the magical worlds of literature in advance of Blount visit


“Terabithia and Beyond: Celebrating the Life and Work of Katherine Paterson” will include several events in Maryville and Knoxville, all of them free and open to the public.

“People say, ‘how can you write for the young when you’re as old as you are?’ Well, I was young, and that child and young person are still inside of me,” Paterson said. “They didn’t go anywhere. I don’t go snooping around kids to see how they talk; I go inside myself to remember how I felt. The books are not autobiographical in any sense except emotional, and I think I have a good emotional memory, and that’s very helpful.”

“We may want to shield our children from it, but we can’t. It’s a part of the world. I’d like to think ‘Bridge to Terabithia’ is preparation for that. I think the best children’s books are rehearsals for what we’re going to experience in the world.”

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The Same Stuff as Stars by Katherine Paterson 2003 Awardee

The Great Gilly Hopkins by Katherine Paterson 1979 Awardee

Edwidge Danticat lecture explores the art – and heart – of death


Author and MacArthur Genius Edwidge Danticat on Thursday night spoke at length about death as the center of her past and recent work, including her forthcoming book “The Art of Death.” She reflected movingly about the death from ovarian cancer of her mother, a Haitian immigrant with a wicked sense of humor, and who insisted Danticat and her three brothers learn and speak Creole in their home.

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Mama’s Nightingale: A Story of Immigration and Separation written by Edwidge Danticat, illustrated by Leslie Staub 2016 Awardee

Basquiat for kids: Caldecott winner Javaka Steptoe brings ‘Radiant Child’ to LitFestKC


Steptoe was more intrigued by Basquiat’s early life as a creative kid who loved to draw and dreamed of becoming a famous artist. Basquiat’s mother, Matilde, took him to theaters and museums, brought him books and taught him that art lived all around him.

Steptoe says young readers help him understand the meaning they pull from his stories. Many children who have read “Radiant Child,” he explains, connect to Basquiat because his mother struggles with depression.

Steptoe says almost everyone he knows has a relative who struggles with mental illness: “This is something that really needs to be talked about, you know?”

He hopes “Radiant Child” helps children talk about the issue and also see art in their everyday lives. In the book, he writes that art is in “the street games of little children, in our style and the words that we speak.”

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Hot Day on Abbott Avenue by Karen English, with collage art of Javaka Steptoe 2005 Awardee

Since 1953, the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award annually acknowledges
books published in the U.S. during the previous year. Books commended by the
Award address themes of topics that engage children in thinking about peace,
justice, world community and/or equality of the sexes and all races. The books
also must meet conventional standards of literacy and artistic excellence.

A national committee chooses winners and honor books for younger and older children.

Read more about the 2017 Awards.

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