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2016 children's book award winners unveiled

POSTED: January 19, 2016 3:10 a.m.
Payton Davis/

The winners for acclaimed children's books are a diverse bunch. Here's why you might want to read them to your children.

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The American Library Association announced Monday the 2016 winners of awards for children's books — and there are a few rarities along the way.

Take, for instance, the John Newbery Medal recipient Matt de la Peña with his illustrated children's book "Last Stop on Market Street."

Education Week indicated picture books winning the organization's most prestigious award is "unusual." Most are novels or poetry books.

And The New York Times wrote what else make's de la Peña's victory notable.

"Diversity in children's books has been a hotly debated topic in the publishing world in recent years, and the ALA awards highlighted the issue by recognizing books that captured a wide range of experiences and featured more diverse characters," the Time's piece read. "(The book) centers on a boy who is grappling with poverty and questioning why his family has to take the bus instead of owning a car."

CNN noted other 2016 winners.

"Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World's Most Famous Bear," illustrated by Sophie Blackall and written by Lindsay Mattick, topped the Randolph Caldecott Medal category. Author Rita Williams Garcia for "Gone Crazy in Alabama" and illustrator Bryan Collier for "Trombone Shorty" received the Coretta Scott King awards prizes.

Other honorees underscored the "growing embrace" of graphic novels and memoirs, The Times indicated: Victoria Jamieson's graphic novel "Roller Girl" garnered a Newbery Honor award.

Along with honoring the best creators of media for children, the accolades can also give parents some guidance, CNN wrote.

"Parents can use these titles as a guide when considering what books to recommend to their children and teens, while teachers and librarians look to the titles as a helpful list for what to encourage children to read," the report read.
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