How to Read a Book written by Kwame Alexander, illustrated by Melissa Sweet, and published by HarperCollins Children’s Books.
Award Ceremony & Presentation
Featuring 2020 Winner: Kwame Alexander
Recorded: Thursday, October 22, 2020
Click here to watch!
Open the pages of Kwame Alexander’s How to Read a Book and taste the irresistible allure of words. In this poetry for the palate, the author takes you page by page through the joys of reading. Melissa Sweet’s captivating and complex collage illustrations add visual appetizers, desserts, and midnight snacks as you discover treat after added treat along the way. Get ready for a feast! Your eyes and ears will thank you.
The poem itself was very evocative and touched me as a book lover, but this was a case where the art didn't just enhance the poetry, but became part of it. The entire book was like one concrete poem.
Kwame Alexander’s poetry and Melissa Sweet's incredible collages and lettering take readers on a poetic journey where they will experience the joy of discovery and the wonder of reading.
Elegant, imaginative, and enticing. Kwame Alexander’s lush poetry is brought alive by Melissa Sweet’s neon-colored collages, and both blend into an exhilarating experience that reminds us of the intricacies and delights of how to read a book. This is one to be read and relished over and over again, word by word, morsel by morsel.
You Are Home: An Ode to the National Parks, written and illustrated by Evan Turk, published by Atheneum Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Simon & Schuster
With powerfully lyrical language and gorgeous illustrations, You Are Home: An Ode to the National Parks sounds an inclusive message of welcome, hope, and affirmation, while celebrating the diverse habitats, creatures, and individuals of these United States. On many levels, this book is an inspiration in troubled times.
Evan Turk’s breathtaking illustrations of national parks across the United States and his thoughtful texts inspire a sense of place and belonging, and celebrate nature and life.
Especially when read aloud, this poem was strong and powerful, evoking images beyond those on the page.
Immersive illustrations and welcoming verses celebrate and affirm nature, heritage, and belonging in this ode to our national parks. Turk celebrates animals, landscapes, immigrants, Indigenous groups and families, and includes information about the national parks in later pages. This is a gorgeous book to be shared and read aloud together.
Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga, published by Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollins Children’s Books.
Jasmine Warga’s Other Words for Home calls all of us—native and refugee alike—to examine, discuss, and reaffirm our own voices through what we hold dear and where we call home.
This beautifully written verse novel by Jasmine Warga showcases a young Syrian girl, Jude, who loves her family and home but has to leave Syria for the United States. Jude's perseverance and strength overcome her struggles with a new language, culture, and identity labels—refugee and Middle Eastern.
This story worked in verse for me, I think, because Jude was speaking and thinking in two languages and from two worlds. The verse gave space for me to share that experience.
This breathtaking verse novel untangles and weaves together the complexities of Jude, who deals with leaving home during the war in Syria and settling in the USA, while facing challenges related to family, language, culture, prejudice, and race. This sensitive story about resilience is a must read.