2020 Award Winning Children’s Books!

2020 Award Winning Middle Grades Books!

Jump to an award: Newbery    Caldecott    Coretta Scott King     Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe     Schneider     Children’s Literature Legacy     Batchelder      Odyssey     Belpre     Sibert     Stonewall    Seuss    Asian/Pacific American Literature     Taylor     American Indian Youth Literature

The American Library Association names winners for book awards every January. In 2020, there were so many winners, we’ve had to divide them into 3 different lists: books for Children, for Middle Grades, and for Teens & Young Adults


Here are the books for children which won awards or received honors:

The John Newbery Medal is given for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature


The Undefeated, written by Kwame Alexander and illustrated by Kadir Nelson

The Randolph Caldecott Medal is given for the most distinguished American picture book for children

WINNER: The Undefeated, illustrated by Kadir Nelson, written by Kwame Alexander


Bear Came Along, illustrated by LeUyen Pham, written by Richard T. Morris
Double Bass Blues, illustrated by Rudy Gutierrez, written by Andrea J. Loney
Going Down Home with Daddy, illustrated by Daniel Minter, written by Kelly Starling Lyons

The Coretta Scott King (Illustrator) Book Award recognizes an African-American illustrator of outstanding books for children and young adults

WINNER: The Undefeated, illustrated by Kadir Nelson, written by Kwame Alexander


The Bell Rang, illustrated and written by James E. Ransome
Infinite Hope: A Black Artist’s Journey from World War II to Peace, illustrated and written by Ashley Bryan
Sulwe, illustrated by Vashti Harrison, written by Lupita Nyong’o

The Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Illustrator Award is given to affirm new talent and offer visibility to excellence in illustration at the beginning of a career as a published book creator of literature that best exemplifies African American life and culture.

WINNER: What Is Given from the Heart, illustrated by April Harrison, written by Patricia C. McKissack

The Schneider Family Book Award is given for books that embody an artistic expression of the disability experience in 3 different age categories.

WINNER, Young Children (age 6-10): Just Ask! Be Different, Be Brave, Be You, written by Sonia Sotomayor, illustrated by Rafael López


A Friend for Henry, written by Jenn Bailey, illustrated by Mika Song

The Children’s Literature Legacy Award honors an author or illustrator whose books, published in the United States, have made a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children through books that demonstrate integrity and respect for all children’s lives and experiences.

WINNER: Kevin Henkes, whose award-winning works include Kitten’s First Full Moon and The Year of Billy Miller.

The Mildred L. Batchelder Award is given for an outstanding children’s book originally published in a language other than English in a country other than the United States, and subsequently translated into English for publication in the United States

WINNER: Brown, originally published in Norwegian as Brune, the book was written by Håkon Øvreås, illustrated by Øyvind Torseter, and translated by Kari Dickson


When Spring Comes to the DMZ, originally published in Korean, written by Uk-Bae Lee, illustrated by the author, translated from the Korean by Chungyon Won and Aileen Won

The Odyssey Award is given for the best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States.


We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga, produced by Live Oak Media, written by Traci Sorell and narrated by Lauren Hummingbird, Agalisiga (Choogie) Mackey, Ryan Mackey, Traci Sorell, Tonia Weavel

The Pura Belpré Illustrator Award honors a Latino illustrator whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience.

WINNER: Dancing Hands: How Teresa Carreño Played the Piano for President Lincoln, illustrated by Rafael López, written by Margarita Engle


Across the Bay, illustrated and written by Carlos Aponte
My Papi Has a Motorcycle, illustrated by Zeke Peña, written by Isabel Quintero
¡Vamos! Let’s Go to the Market, illustrated and written by Raúl Gonzalez

The Pura Belpré Author Award honors a Latino author whose children’s books best portray, affirm and celebrate the Latino cultural experience.


Planting Stories: The Life of Librarian and Storyteller Pura Belpré, written by Anika Aldamuy Denise, illustrated by Paola Escobar
Soldier for Equality: José de la Luz Sáenz and the Great War, written and illustrated by Duncan Tonatiuh

The Robert F. Sibert Informational Book Award is given for the most distinguished informational book for children

WINNER: Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story, written by Kevin Noble Maillard and illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal


Hey, Water! written and illustrated by Antoinette Portis

The Stonewall Book Award—Mike Morgan & Larry Romans Children’s & Young Adult Literature Award is given annually to English-language children’s and young adult books of exceptional merit relating to the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender experience

WINNERS: When Aidan Became a Brother, written by Kyle Lukoff, illustrated by Kaylani Juanita

The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award is given for the most distinguished beginning reader book

Stop! Bot! written and illustrated by James Yang


Chick and Brain: Smell My Foot! written and illustrated by Cece Bell
Flubby Is Not a Good Pet! written and illustrated by J. E. Morris
The Book Hog, written and illustrated by Greg Pizzoli

The Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature promotes Asian/Pacific American culture and heritage and is awarded based on literary and artistic merit.

WINNER, Picture Book: Queen of Physics: How Wu Chien Shiung Helped Unlock the Secrets of the Atom, written by Teresa Robeson, illustrated by Rebecca Huang


Bilal Cooks Daal, written by Aisha Saeed, illustrated by Anoosha Syed

The Sydney Taylor Book Award is presented annually to outstanding books for children and teens that authentically portray the Jewish experience.

WINNER, Picture Book: The Book Rescuer: How a Mensch from Massachusetts Saved Yiddish Literature for Generations to Come, by Sue Macy, illustrated by Stacy Innerst


Gittel’s Journey, by Lesléa Newman, illustrated by Amy June Bates

The Key from Spain: Flory Jagoda and Her Music, by Debbie Levy, illustrated by Sonja Wimmer

The American Indian Youth Literature award is announced in even years and established to identify and honor the very best writing and illustrations by and about American Indians. Learn more at ailanet.org.

WINNER, Picture Book: Bowwow Powwow: Bagosenjige-niimi’idim, written by Brenda J. Child (Red Lake Ojibwe), translated into Ojibwe by Gordon Jourdain (Lac La Croix First Nation), illustrated by Jonathan Thunder (Red Lake Ojibwe)


Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story, written by Kevin Noble Maillard (Seminole Nation, Mekusukey Band), illustrated by Juana Martínez-Neal (Peruvian-American)
Birdsong, written and illustrated by Julie Flett (Cree-Métis)
At the Mountain’s Base, written by Traci Sorell (Cherokee), illustrated by Weshoyot Alvitre (Tongva/Scots-Gaelic)
We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga, written by Traci Sorell (Cherokee), illustrated by Frané Lessac
Raven Makes the Aleutians, adapted from a traditional Tlingit story and illustrated by Janine Gibbons (Haida, Raven of the Double-Finned Killer Whale clan, Brown Bear House)