2005

Author Award Winner

Remember: The Journey to School Integration Toni Morrison, j Award 379.2 MOR
Toni Morrison has collected a treasure chest of archival photographs that depict the historical events surrounding school desegregation. These unforgettable images serve as the inspiration for Ms. Morrison"s text—a fictional account of the dialogue and emotions of the children who lived during the era of "separate but equal" schooling. Remember is a unique pictorial and narrative journey that introduces children to a watershed period in American history and its relevance to us today.


Honor Books

The Legend of Buddy Bush By Shelia P. Moses, YA MOS
In 1947, twelve-year-old Pattie Mae is sustained by her dreams of escaping Rich Square, North Carolina, and moving to Harlem when her Uncle Buddy is arrested for attempted rape of a white woman and her grandfather is diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor

Who Am I Without Him?: Short Stories about Girls and the Boys in Their Lives  By Sharon G. Flake
Sharon Flake takes readers through the minds of girls trying to define themselves while struggling to remain relevant to the boys in their lives. This is a complex, often humorous, always on-point exposition of black youth resolving to find self-worth . . . any way they know how.

Fortune’s Bones: The Manumission Requiem By Marilyn Nelson, 811 NEL
Fortune was a slave who lived in Waterbury, Conn., in the late 1700s. When Fortune died in 1798, his master, Dr. Porter, preserved his skeleton to further the study of anatomy. Now the skeleton is in the Mattatuck Museum where it is still being studied.

Illustrator Award Winner

Ellington Was Not a Street Illustration by Kadir A. Nelson, written by Ntozake Shange j Award 811 SHA
In a reflective tribute to the African-American community of old, noted poet Ntozake Shange recalls her childhood home and the close-knit group of innovators that often gathered there. These men of vision, brought to life in the majestic paintings of artist Kadir Nelson, lived at a time when the color of their skin dictated where they could live, what schools they could attend, and even where they could sit on a bus or in a movie theater.

 

Illustrator Honor Books

God Bless the Child Illustration by Jerry Pinkney written by Billie Holiday and Arthur Herzog Jr. j E HOL
The song "God Bless the Child" was first performed by legendary jazz vocalist Billie Holiday in 1939 and remains one of her enduring masterpieces.  In this picture book interpretation, renowned illustrator Jerry Pinkney has created images of a family moving from the rural south to the urban north during the Great Migration that reached its peak in the 1930's  The song's message of self reliance still speaks to us today, but resonates even stronger in its historical context.  A free CD of Billie Holiday's timeless recording of "God Bless this Child" is  included to enjoy along with the book.

The People Could Fly: The Picture Book  Illustrations by Leo and Diane Dillon written by Virginia Hamilton j E HAM
In this retelling of a folktale, a group of slaves, unable to bear their sadness and starvation any longer, calls upon the African magic that allows them to fly away.

Jazzy Miz Mozetta Illustrated by Frank Morrison written by Brenda C. Roberts j E ROB
One fine evening, Miz Mozetta puts on her firecracker-red dress and heads outside to enjoy the moonlight.  When she hears the neighborhood kids' music, she is inspired to dance, but her old friends have too many aches and pains to join her.  The kids doubt that Miz Mozetta would be able to keep up with them.  So she retreats to her parlor, where she dreams about the old days at the Blue Pearl Ballroom.  Just when her feet are itching to get out there and do the jitterbug -- friends or no friends -- there's a knock on the door, and Miz Mozetta gets some welcome company.

 

2004

Author Award Winner

The First Part Last  Angela Johnson  YA JOH
With powerful language and keen insight, Johnson tells the story of a teen father's struggle to figure out what "the right thing" is and then to do it.

 

 

 

 

Honor Books

Days of Jubilee: The End of Slavery in the United States  by Patricia C. and Fredrick L. McKissack  YA 973.7 MCK
In this spirit-stirring journey, illustrated with stunning black-and-white photos, the McKissacks draw from slave narratives, letters, and diaries to document the days and weeks leading to freedom. Two color.

Locomotion by Jacqueline Woodson   j WOO
Told through his own poetry, 11-year-old Lonnie shares his heartbreak over his parents, killed in a fire four years ago, and his love for his younger sister Lili, separated from him when they were placed in foster care.

The Battle of Jericho  by Sharon M. Draper  YA DRA     
How far would 16-year-old Jericho go to fit in? When invited to pledge for the Warriors of Distinction, he is determined to do "anything" to become a member of the gang.

 

Illustrator Award Winner

 

 Beautiful Blackbird by Ashley Bryan j 398.2 BRY

With vibrant cut-paper collages, a Coretta Scott King Award-winner presents an adaptation of a folktale from Zimbabwe that celebrates the importance of appreciating one's own inner beauty. Full color.

 

Honor Books

Almost to Freedom
il. by Colin Bootman text by Vaunda Michaeux
Sally, a tattered rag doll, tells the story of a young girl and her parents as they escape from slavery and start the dangerous journey along the Underground Railroad to a place called Freedom. Full color

Thunder Rose il. by Kadir Nelson text by Jerdine Nolen j E NOL            
This new tall tale introduces a powerful new African-American heroine: Thunder Rose, who drinks her milk straight from the cow and prefers the company of her bull, Tater, to any puppy or kitten. Full color.