The 2021 Sydney Taylor Book Awards, Revealed



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      🕮    Rebecca Levitan is the chair of the Sydney Taylor Book Award committee of the Association of Jewish Libraries. She joined us to discuss the 2021 winners of the award, which annually recognizes the best Jewish literature for children and teens. 

AJL is an affiliate of the American Library Association, so the Sydney Taylor Book Awards are announced at ALA's Youth Media Awards press conference, being held virtually this year on January 25, 2021. You can watch a recording of the announcement on ALA's YouTube channel.

Here's the official 2021 Sydney Taylor Book Award press release and the printable list of winners, honors, and notable books.

The Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour will take place February 8-12, 2021. Details will appear soon at JewishLibraries.org.

We also spoke about AJL's Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award. The 2021 winner is Cats and Honey Cake by Sonja Spear.

We mentioned AJL's new Holiday Highlights recommended reading list, which recognizes the best juvenile Jewish holiday books as they are coming out. The inaugural list has been published, recognizing four titles being published in Spring 2021. You can read the press release HERE.

You can watch a YouTube video of Rebecca Levitan, Susan Kusel, and Heidi Rabinowitz on AJL Presents: The  Sydney Taylor Real and Mock Book Awards.

In the introduction I brought up Susan Kusel's interview on Kidlit These Days with Matthew Winner, in which she offers guidance for teaching children about the Holocaust. You can hear the episode Remembrance on Book Riot.


2021 SYDNEY TAYLOR BOOK AWARDS
(affiliate links to Bookshop.org benefit the podcast)

Picture Book Winner: Welcoming Elijah: a Passover Tale with a Tail by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Susan Gal, published by Charlesbridge. Podcast appearances by Lesléa: 2020, 2016, 2015

Middle Grade Winner: Turtle Boy by M. Evan Wolkenstein, published by Delacorte Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House. Podcast appearance by Evan: 2020

Young Adult Winner: Dancing at the Pity Party: A Dead Mom Graphic Memoir by Tyler Feder, published by Dial Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Random House

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Picture Book Honors

I Am the Tree of Life: My Jewish Yoga Book by Mychal Copeland illustrated by André Ceolin, published by Apples and Honey Press, an imprint of Behrman House

Miriam at the River by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Khoa Le, published by Kar-Ben Publishing, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group. Podcast appearance by Jane: 2019

Middle Grade Honors:

The Blackbird Girls
by Anne Blankman, published by Puffin Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Random House

No Vacancy by Tziporah Cohen, published by Groundwood Books. Podcast appearance by Tziporah: 2020

Anya and the Nightingale by Sofiya Pasternack, published by Versify, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Podcast appearance by Sofiya: 2020

Young Adult Honor:

They Went Left by Monica Hesse, published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Hachette Book Group

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Picture Book Notables:

The Eight Knights of Hanukkah by Leslie Kimmelman, illustrated by Galia Bernstein, published by Holiday House. Podcast appearances by Leslie: 2020, 2017

The Polio Pioneer: Dr. Jonas Salk and the Polio Vaccine by Linda Elovitz Marshall, illustrated by Lisa Anchin, published by Knopf Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House

The Ninth Night of Hanukkah by Erica Perl, illustrated by Shahar Kober, published by Sterling Children’s Books, an imprint of Sterling Publishing

Middle Grade Notables:

Letters from Cuba by Ruth Behar, published by Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Random House

A Place at the Table by Saadia Faruqi and Laura Shovan, published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Podcast appearance by Saadia and Laura: 2020

We Had to Be Brave: Escaping the Nazis on the Kindertransport
by Deborah Hopkinson, published by Scholastic Focus, an imprint of Scholastic

Beni's War by Tammar Stein, published by Kar-Ben Publishers, a division of Lerner Publishing Group.

Young Adult Notables:

The New Queer Conscience by Adam Eli, published by Penguin Workshop, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group, a division of Penguin Random House

The Way Back by Gavriel Savit, published by Knopf Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House

Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon, published by Simon Pulse, an imprint of Simon and Schuster Publishing

The Assignment by Liza Wiemer, published by Delacorte Press, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, a division of Penguin Random House

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Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award Winner: Cats and Honey Cake by Sonja Spear


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