WE ARE NOT FREE is a 2021 Walter Honoree!!! 🎉 Established in 2016, the Walter Dean Myers Award celebrates diversity in children’s literature in two categories, Teens and Younger Readers, and I am just so blown away that this year’s judging committee chose We Are Not Free as one of their honor books! ✨ We Need Diverse Books does such incredible work promoting inclusive literature, creating opportunities for marginalized creators, and building a more equitable industry, so this is such a huge, huge honor. 🌸 Thank you so much to WNDB and the judges, and congratulations to the winners and my fellow honorees!
Winner, Teen Category: PUNCHING THE AIR by Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam (illus. by Omar T. Pasha)
Honors, Teen Category: WE ARE NOT FREE by Traci Chee, ALMOST AMERICAN GIRL by Robin Ha
Winner, Younger Readers Category: WHEN STARS ARE SCATTERED by Victoria Jamieson and Omar Mohamed (color by Iman Geddy)
Honors, Younger Readers Category: KING AND THE DRAGONFLIES by Kacen Callender, EVERYTHING SAD IS UNTRUE by Daniel Nayeri
This means I also have the pleasure of taking part in the We Need Diverse Books sixth annual Symposium on diversity in children's literature, co-hosted by the Library of Congress. From WNDB: The Symposium, titled “Listening, Learning, Creating Communities,” will be moderated by Deborah D. Taylor, Coretta Scott King/Virginia Hamilton Lifetime Achievement award-winning librarian and educator, and will include panelists Traci Chee, Robin Ha, Daniel Nayeri, and Kacen Callender.
The Symposium will be held on Friday, March 12, 2021, followed by the Walter Dean Myers Awards for Outstanding Children’s Literature Ceremony. The Symposium and Ceremony will be held virtually. Award-winning author Laurie Halse Anderson will serve as Ceremony’s Emcee. The event will begin at 1:00 PM EST and will appear on the Library’s Facebook page and its YouTube site.