"People of the Books" Blog

Launch of The Sydney Taylor Shmooze

The Sydney Taylor Shmooze

The Association of Jewish Libraries is proud to announce the launch of The Sydney Taylor Shmooze, a mock book award blog that will offer critical discussion of Jewish books for children and teens. The blog will examine titles that may become contenders for the next Sydney Taylor Book Award. Check it out at SydneyTaylorShmooze.com!

 

AJL 2020 Conference Update #2

Your AJL Conference Update #2

by Marcie Eskin & Rachel Kamin

February 5, 2020

Announcing the Opening Keynote Address:

Portrait of Dr. Daniel GreeneDr. Daniel Greene, President and Librarian at the Newberry Library and Adjunct Professor of History at Northwestern University, will deliver the opening keynote address at the Association of Jewish Libraries Conference on Monday, June 29 at 12:00pm. Before taking on his current role at the Newberry, Greene curated Americans and the Holocaust, an exhibition at the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC. A traveling version of this exhibition, produced in cooperation with the American Library Association, will be mounted at fifty public and university libraries across the United States between 2020 and 2022. Greene has been a Distinguished Lecturer for the Organization of American Historians since 2015. He earned his PhD in history at the University of Chicago. 

In 2016, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum launched a crowdsourcing project called History Unfolded. This digital initiative asks students, teachers, and others with an interest in researching local history to search their local newspapers for coverage of Nazism. To date, more than 20,000 newspaper articles have been uploaded to the History Unfolded site. Greene will address how this community-based research project upended conventional wisdom about American newspapers coverage of Nazism between 1933 and 1945. He also will consider the opportunities associated with incorporating crowdsourced research into both the Americans and the Holocaust exhibition and projects at the Newberry Library in Chicago.

Conference Registration Is Open!

Click here and scroll down for Registration How-Tos

The full conference Early Bird Rate for AJL members is $450 (by April 30). This includes all conference sessions and meals (lunch on Monday; breakfast, lunch & dinner on Tuesday; and breakfast & lunch on Wednesday). Per diem and other special rates will also be available.

To read previous weekly conference updates, go to the  55TH ANNUAL CONFERENCE 2020 page of the AJL website.

AJL 2020 Conference Update #1

logo for AJL's 2020 conferenceYour AJL Conference Update #1

by Marcie Eskin & Rachel Kamin

January 30, 2020

Shalom Safranim & Friends! You are reading the first in a series of conference updates to keep you informed about the upcoming Association of Jewish Libraries Conference in Evanston, Illinois, June 29-July 1, 2020.

In each update we will highlight information to help you make your conference plans.

The local Chicago planning committee, supported by the Judaica Library Network of Metropolitan Chicago, is hard at work. Here are some updates from our recent meeting hosted by Debbie Steinberg at the Ida Crown Jewish Academy:

  • The 2020 AJL Conference will be held at the Hilton Orrington, a 4-star hotel in the heart of downtown Evanston, a block away from the Northwestern University campus. The conference rate is $159/night (plus taxes and fees). Click here to reserve a room. After you select the dates you want, click on “MORE OPTIONS” and then on “Add Special Rate Codes.” Enter the code AJL20 in the box marked "Group Code." To reserve by phone, call 1-800-HILTONS referencing  “AJL Annual Conference, Chicago Vicinity June 2020” to receive the group rate. The cut-off date for this rate is Friday, June 5.
  • Our Conference will kick off with lunch and a keynote address on Monday, June 29 at 12:00pm. However, we encourage you to attend the ALA Conference the day before which is taking place in downtown Chicago (more information will be forthcoming). There will be some committee meetings on Monday morning as well as the Newcomer’s Welcome at 10:30am. Registration will open at 8:30am and the Exhibit Hall will open at 11am.
  • The Conference will conclude with lunch and the annual Feinstein Lecture on Wednesday, July 1, 12:15-1:45pm. Optional tours will be offered on Wednesday afternoon, departing from the Orrington at 2pm. Stay tuned for more information and plan to extend your stay.
  • The full conference Early Bird Rate for AJL members is $450 (by April 30). This includes all conference sessions and meals (lunch on Monday; breakfast, lunch & dinner on Tuesday; and breakfast & lunch on Wednesday). Per diem and other special rates will also be available.
  • We received more than 70 presentation proposals on a wide range of topics related to various aspects of librarianship, Judaism, the Jewish experience and Israel that will be relevant to library professionals working in academic and research institutions, archives, synagogues, day schools, and Jewish community centers as well as public schools and libraries serving Jewish communities. Acceptance letters will be going out the first week of February. Twenty-eight sessions will be offered – it’s going to be a great conference!
  • Several special programs during the conference are being planned, including an author showcase at the Evanston Public Library (right across the street from the hotel) on Monday, June 29 at 7:00pm. Plus, invitations have The AJL Chicago conference planning teambeen extended to the award-winning authors of the AJL Fiction Award and the Sydney Taylor Book Awards.

In the coming weeks and months, we will be posting additional information about registration, travel, vendors, tours, session details, volunteer opportunities and more. The 2020 AJL Conference promises to be innovative, exciting, and interesting plus it’s always "Cooler by the Lake"!

Marcie Eskin and Rachel Kamin, Local Conference Co-Chairs

Lisa Silverman, National Conference Chair

2020 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour

2020 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour

The Sydney Taylor Book Award will be showcasing its 2020 gold and silver medalists with a Blog Tour, February 9-13, 2020! Interviews with winning authors and illustrators will appear on a variety of Jewish and kidlit blogs. Interviews will appear on the dates below, and will remain available to read at your own convenience.

Below is the schedule for the 2020 Sydney Taylor Book Award Blog Tour. Please follow the links to visit the hosting blogs on or after their tour dates, and be sure to leave them plenty of comments!

SUNDAY FEBRUARY 9, 2020

Sue Macy and Stacy Innerst, author and illustrator of The Book Rescuer
Sydney Taylor Book Award in the Picture Book Category
at 100 Scope Notes at School Library Journal

R.J. Palacio, author of White Bird
Sydney Taylor Book Award in the Middle Grade Category
at The Paper Brigade Daily at The Jewish Book Council

MONDAY FEBRUARY 10, 2020

Rachel DeWoskin, author of Someday We Will Fly
Sydney Taylor Book Award in the Young Adult Category
at Out of the Box at The Horn Book

Debbie Levy author of The Key from Spain
Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Picture Book Category
at Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast

TUESDAY FEBRUARY 11, 2020

Lesléa Newman and Amy June Bates, author and illustrator of Gittel's Journey
Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Picture Book Category
at Mr. Schu Reads

All Authors and Illustrators on The Children's Book Podcast

WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 12, 2020

Hannah Moskowitz, author of Sick Kids in Love
Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Young Adult Category
at Good Reads with Ronna

Andrew Maraniss, author of Games of Deception
Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Middle Grade Category
at A Fuse #8 Production at School Library Journal

THURSDAY FEBRUARY 13, 2020

Sofiya Pasternack, author of Anya and the Dragon
Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Middle Grade Category
at From the Mixed-Up Files of Middle Grade Authors

Victoria Ortiz, author of Dissenter on the Bench
Sydney Taylor Honor Book in the Young Adult Category
at Jewish Books for Kids

Blog Tour Wrap-Up at The Whole Megillah

2020 Sydney Taylor Book Awards Announced

award stickerBuy award stickers and other STBA products here.

For More Information Contact:

Rebecca Levitan, Chair
Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee
Association of Jewish Libraries

www.sydneytaylorbookawards.org
[email protected]

January 27, 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

2020 Sydney Taylor Book Award Winners Announced

Winners of the annual Sydney Taylor Book Award were announced by the Association of Jewish Libraries today in Philadelphia, PA at the Youth Media Awards announcement at the American Library Association. Named in memory of Sydney Taylor, author of the classic All-of-a-Kind Family series, the award recognizes books for children and teens that exemplify high literary standards while authentically portraying the Jewish experience. 

2020 is the first year the Sydney Taylor Honor Books have been included along with the winners  in the announcements at the American Library Association Youth Media Awards press conference.

GOLD MEDALISTS

The Book Rescuer: How a Mensch from Massachusetts Saved Yiddish Literature for Generations to Come by Sue Macy, illustrated by Stacy Innerst, published by Paula Wiseman Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster, is the winner in the Picture Book category. The Book Rescuer celebrates the power of an individual to preserve history and culture, while also exploring timely themes of identity and immigration. In a folksy voice, this biography tells the story of Yiddish Book Center founder Aaron Lansky’s commitment to rescuing Yiddish language books and ensuring that despite all odds, Yiddish language and culture will stay alive for future generations. 

White Bird: A Wonder Story by R. J. Palacio, published by Knopf Books for Young Readers, an Imprint of Alfred A. Knopf,  a division of Penguin Random House, is the winner in the Middle Grade category. This beautifully illustrated graphic novel connects the Holocaust to familiar contemporary characters, as Julian from the Wonder series learns his grandmother’s powerful story of rescue in Vichy-occupied France.

Someday We Will Fly by Rachel DeWoskin, published by Viking, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House, is the winner in the Young Adult category. In this lushly written historical novel, Lillia and her father and sister flee Warsaw during the Holocaust and take refuge in Shanghai, China. There, Lillia’s need to support her family, her relationships with others, and her awareness of her privilege even as a refugee all contribute to her growth. 

Lesléa Newman is the winner of the Sydney Taylor Body of Work Award. As the author of 70 books for all ages, she has helped broaden the scope of Jewish children’s books over her prolific career. She has received the Sydney Taylor Award for Ketzel, the Cat Who Composed, a Sydney Taylor Honor this year for Gittel’s Journey: An Ellis Island Story and four Sydney Taylor Notables

SILVER MEDALISTS

Six Sydney Taylor Honor Books were recognized. 

For Picture Books, the Honor Books are Gittel’s Journey: An Ellis Island Story by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Amy June Bates, published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Abrams Books and The Key from Spain: Flory Jagoda and Her Music by Debbie Levy, illustrated by Sonja Wimmer, published by Kar-Ben Publishing, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group. 

For Middle Grade, the Honor Books are Anya and the Dragon by Sofiya Pasternack, published by Versify, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and Games of Deception: The True Story of the First U.S. Olympic Basketball Team at the 1936 Olympics in Hitler’s Germany by Andrew Maraniss, published by Philomel Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House.

For Young Adult, the Honor Books are Dissenter on the Bench: Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s Life and Work by Victoria Ortiz, published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt,  and Sick Kids in Love by Hannah Moskowitz, published by Entangled Teen, an imprint of Entangled Publishing.

In addition to the medal winners, the Award Committee designated eight Notable Books of Jewish Content for 2020. More information about the Sydney Taylor Book Award and a complete listing of the award winners and notables can be found at www.sydneytaylorbookawards.org

The Sydney Taylor Manuscript Award Committee did not designate a winner for 2020.

Winning authors and illustrators will receive their awards at the Annual Conference of the Association of Jewish Libraries, to be held in Evanston, IL, from June 29 to July 1, 2020. Gold and silver medalists will participate in a blog tour from February 9 to 13, 2020. For more information about the blog tour, please visit www.jewishlibraries.org. For an exclusive interview with Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee Chair please visit The Book of Life Podcast at www.bookoflifepodcast.com.

Members of the 2020 Sydney Taylor Book Award committee are Chair Rebecca Levitan, Baltimore County Public Library; Baltimore, MD; Rena Citrin, Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School, Chicago, IL; Shoshana Flax, The Horn Book, Inc., Boston, MA; Marjorie Ingall, Freelance Writer, New York, NY; Sylvie Shaffer, Capitol Hill Day School, Washington, DC; Marjorie Shuster, Congregation Emanuel, New York, NY; and Rivka Yerushalmi, Jewish Women International Libraries, Rockville, MD.

The Association of Jewish Libraries, the leading authority on Judaic librarianship, promotes Jewish literacy through enhancement of libraries and library resources and through leadership for the profession and practitioners of Judaica librarianship. The Association fosters access to information, learning, teaching and research relating to Jews, Judaism, the Jewish experience and Israel.


Sydney Taylor Book Award gold seal

The 2020 Sydney Taylor Book Awards

Association of Jewish Libraries

 

Picture Book Winner

The Book Rescuer: How a Mensch from Massachusetts Saved Yiddish Literature for Generations to Come by Sue Macy, illustrated by Stacy Innerst, published by
Paula Wiseman Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing

 

Middle Grade Winner

White Bird: A Wonder Story by R.J. Palacio, illustrated by the author, published by
Knopf Books for Young Readers, a division of Random House Children’s Books

 

Young Adult Winner

Someday We Will Fly by Rachel Dewoskin, published by  Viking, an imprint of
Penguin Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House

~~~~~~

Picture Book Honors

Gittel’s Journey: An Ellis Island Story by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Amy June Bates, published by Abrams Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Abrams Books.

 

The Key from Spain: Flory Jagoda and Her Music by Debbie Levy, illustrated by
Sonja Wimmer, published by Kar-Ben Publishing, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group

 

Middle Grade Honors

Games of Deception: The True Story of the First US Olympic Basketball Team at the 1936 Olympics in Hitler’s Germany by Andrew Maraniss, published by Philomel Books,
an imprint of Penguin Young Readers, a division of Penguin Random House

 

Anya and the Dragon by Sofiya Pasternack, published by Versify,
an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

 

Young Adult Honors

Dissenter on the Bench by Victoria Ortiz, published by Clarion Books,
an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

 

Sick Kids in Love by Hannah Moskowitz, published by Entangled Teen, 

an imprint of Entangled Publishing LLC

 

Picture Book Notables

Doctor Esperanto and the Language of Hope by Mara Rockliff,  

illustrated by Zosia Dzierzawska, published by Candlewick Press

 

A Scarf for Keiko by Ann Malaspina, illustrated by Merrilee Liddiard,
published by Kar-Ben Publishing, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group

 

Parrots, Pugs and Pixie Dust: A Book about Fashion Designer Judith Leiber by
Deborah Blumenthal, illustrated by Masha D’yans, published by Little Bee Books

 

Middle Grade Notables

Masters of Silence by Kathy Kacer, published by Annick Press

 

A Boy is Not a Bird by Edeet Ravel, published by Groundwood Books

 

Rachel’s Roses by Ferida Wolff, illustrated by Margeaux Lucas, published by Holiday House

 

Young Adult Notables

In the Neighborhood of True by Susan Kaplan Carlton, published by Algonquin Young Readers, an imprint of Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, a division of Workman Publishing

A Light in the Darkness: Janusz Korczak, His Orphans, and the Holocaust by Albert Marrin, published by Knopf Books for Young Readers, a division of Random House Children’s Books

 

~~~~~~

Body-of-Work Award Winner
Lesléa Newman

 

~~~~~~

 

Manuscript Award Winner

There was no Manuscript Award Winner awarded for 2020.

 

~~~~~~

 

For more information contact:

Rebecca Levitan, Chair

Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee, Association of Jewish Libraries

[email protected]
www.sydneytaylorbookawards.org