U.S. National
and Canadian Awards for Children's and YA Literature

(Links to National Awards for the U.S. and Canada)

Cyn NOTES: Cynthia Leitich Smith is an author, not an awards coordinator for any state program. If you find a broken link or have any suggestions, .

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U.S. National Awards

Alex Awards: "given to ten books written for adults that have special appeal to young adults, ages 12 through 18" from the Young Adult Library Services Association.

American Indian Youth Literature Awards: "created as a way to identify and honor the very best writing and illustrations by and about American Indians. Books selected to receive the award present Native Americans in the fullness of their humanity in the present and past contexts." Given by the American Indian Library Association.

American Institute of Physics Award: see children's category.

Américas Award for Children's and Young Adult Literature from The Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs (CLASP) at the Center for Latin America, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee: lists criteria and past winners.

Asian Pacific American Literature Award from the Asian Pacific American Librarians Association.

Bank Street Awards from the Bank Street College of Education.

The Mildred L. Batchelder Award: "a citation awarded to an American publisher for a children's book considered to be the most outstanding of those books originally published in a foreign language in a foreign country, and subsequently translated into English and published in the United States."

The Pura Belpré Award co-sponsored by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA) and the National Association to Promote Library Services to the Spanish Speaking (REFORMA), an ALA Affiliate.

Henry Bergh Children's Book Award: established to honor books that promote the humane ethic of compassion and respect for all living things, sponsored by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).

Best Books for Young Adults from the Young Adult Library Services Association.

Amelia Bloomer Project from the Feminist Task Force of the Social Responsibilities Round Table of the American Library Association.

Boston Globe-Horn Book Award: "Winners are selected in three categories: Picture Book, Fiction and Poetry, and Nonfiction. Two Honor Books may be named in each category. On occasion, a book will receive a special citation for its high quality and overall creative excellence. The winning titles must be published in the United States but they may be written or illustrated by citizens of any country. The awards are chosen by an independent panel of three judges who are annually appointed by the Editor of the Horn Book."

Caldecott Medal: "given [by the ALSC of the ALA] to the illustrator of the most distinguished picture book for children published in the United States the previous year."

Children's Book Awards from the International Reading Association.

Children’s Choice Book Awards: sponsored by the Children’s Book Council in conjunction with Children’s Book Week.

Children's Crown Award: national award sponsored by the National Christian School Association.

Children's Notable Books from the ALA ALSC.

Cybils: children's and YA bloggers' literary awards.

The Edgar Awards from the Mystery Writers of America. See the Best Young Adult and Best Juvenile categories.

Margaret A. Edwards Award: "honors an author as well as a specific body of their work for lifetime contribution in writing books of enduring popularity with teenagers."

ETHNIC BOOK AWARDS by Sherry York (Linworth Publishing, 2005). "A unique resource for Americas, Asian Pacific American, Carter G. Woodson, Coretta Scott King, Pura Belpre, Syndney Taylor, and Tomas Rivera Awards."

(Theodor Seuss) Geisel Medal: "honors the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished contribution to the body of American children’s literature known as beginning reader books published in the United States during the preceding year."

Golden Duck Awards for Excellence in Children's Science Fiction Literature.

Golden Kite from the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. SCBWI awards also include the Sid Fleischman Humor Award. Cyn Note: "Listen To That Inner Voice": A Conversation with Sid Fleischman from Olswanger.com.

Dolly Gray Award recognizes books offering positive depictions of children with developmental disabilities.

Great Graphic Novels for Teens from the Young Adult Library Services Association.

Green Earth Book Award: offered by the Newton Marasco Foundation to two books and their authors for their work in promoting environmental awareness and responsibility to America’s youth.

Growing Good Kids – Excellence in Children's Literature Award: "honors engaging and inspiring garden and ecology-themed books for children."

The Gryphon Award from the Center for Children's Books: "given annually to the author of an outstanding English language work of fiction or non-fiction for which the primary audience is children in Kindergarten through Grade 4. The title chosen best exemplifies those qualities that successfully bridge the gap in difficulty between books for reading aloud to children and books for practiced readers."

Hugo Awards from the World Science Fiction society (YA honored with adult books).

International Awards from the Horn Book.

IRA Lee Bennett Hopkins Promising Poet Award.

Jane Addams Children's Book Award: given annually to the children's books published the preceding year that effectively promote the cause of peace, social justice, world community, and the equality of the sexes and all races as well as meeting conventional standards for excellence.

Kind Award: an exceptional children’s book with a humane focus on animals or the environment. Awarded by the National Association for Humane and Environmental Education.

The Coretta Scott King Book Award from the American Library Association.

The Lacapa Spirit Prize: given annually in honor of the memory and legacy of children's book author-illustrator Michael Lacapa to the best illustrated children's book that focuses on the spirit of the peoples, culture and natural landscape of the Southwest. Books published in the two years prior to the award are eligible for consideration.

Lambda Literary Award: (highlighting books by and about the gay and lesbian community) from the Lambda Literary Foundation; see children's/young adult category.

Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award from the Pennsylvania Center for the Book.

Lee & Low New Voices Award: competition is open to picture book manuscripts no longer than 1,500 words by "writers of color" who are previously unpublished in the picture book field.

William C. Morris YA Debut Award: "honors a book written for young adults by a first-time, previously unpublished author" (the first award year is 2009).

Mythopoeic Awards from the Mythopoeic Society includes a children's division (from picture books through young adult novels).

National Book Awards: sponsored by the National Book Foundation.

National Outdoor Book Awards for outstanding outdoor writing and publishing.

Nebula Award from the Science Fiction Writers of America (YA honored with adult books).

New England Book Awards: representing 350 bookstores in New England and New York.

Andre Norton Award from the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.

The Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction: "goes to a meritorious book published in the previous year for children or young adults."

Odyssey Award: "given to the producer of the best audio book produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States.

Outstanding Books for the College Bound: "updated every five years, this comprehensive list provides reading recommendations to students who plan to continue their education beyond high school."

Outstanding Science Trade Books for Children: selected by a book review panel appointed by the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) and assembled in cooperation with the Children's Book Council (CBC).

Parents' Choice Award from the Parents' Choice Association.

(Michael L.) Printz Award for Excellence in Young Adult Literature from The American Library Association.

Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults from the Young Adult Library Services Association.

Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers from the Young Adult Library Services Association.

Reading The World Award: "presented at the annual conference, is given to an individual in recognition of outstanding contributions in making quality literature accessible to children and young adults. Our goal is to recognize and applaud those who have enriched the lives of children through multicultural literature."

RITA Award from Young Adult Romance from the Romance Writers of America.

Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Medal:“awarded annually [by the ALSC of the ALA] to the author(s) and illustrator(s) of the most distinguished informational book published in English during the preceding year.”

Schneider Family Book Awards: “honor an author or illustrator for a book that embodies an artistic expression of the disability experience for child and adolescent audiences.”

South Asia Book Award: sponsored by the South Asia National Outreach Consortium.

Spur Awards from the Western Writers of America.

Sydney Taylor Book Awards from the Association of Jewish Libraries.

Teens Top Ten: "teen choice award given to selected current publications that are of special interest to teens. Teens vote for their choices each Teen Read Week. The votes are tallied and the list is available each November."

Tomás Rivera Mexican American Children's Book Award from Southwest Texas State University. Includes listing of nominees, award winners, award information, and more.

United States Maritime Literature Award: "recognizes publishers and non-fiction maritime writers."

Amelia Elizabeth Walden Book Award for Young Adult Fiction from The Assembly on Literature for Adolescents (ALAN) of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE).

YourKidsLibrary.com: an ambitious site from journalist/teacher David Ross, who has been been collecting, reading and reviewing all the Newbery medalists and honor books since 1922. Includes the reviews and a subject, title, and author index. Written for teachers and librarians and includes curricular references.

Washington Post/Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award from the Children's Book Guild of Washington DC.

Western Heritage Awards from the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum.

E.B. White Read Aloud Award: established in 2004 by the Association of Booksellers for Children.

Whitney Awards: "an awards program for novels by LDS authors." Note: "honor novels in the following categories: General Fiction, Romance, Suspense/Mystery, Speculative Fiction, Youth Fiction, Historical, Best Novel of the Year, and Best Novel by a New Author. Novels can be nominated by any reader (via this website or by mail), and nominees are voted on by an academy of industry professionals, including authors, publishers, bookstore owners, distributors, critics, and others."

Laura Ingalls Wilder Award: "honors an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made, over a period of years, a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children."

Charlotte Zolotow Award: presented annually to the author of the best picture book text published in the preceding year.

Canadian Award Links

Canadian Children's Book Centre: Canadian Awards Index
Places For Writers

A site for Canadian writers. This link is to deadlines for and further information about Canadian literary awards.