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Friday, January 20, 2012

SYDNEY TAYLOR BOOK AWARDS ANNOUNCED!



Tuesday, January 17, 2012

2012 Sydney Taylor Book Awards Announced by the Association of Jewish Libraries

Michael J. Rosen and Robert Sabuda, author and artist of Chanukah Lights, Susan Goldman Rubin, author of Music Was It: Young Leonard Bernstein, and Robert Sharenow, author of The Berlin Boxing Club, are the 2012 winners of the prestigious Sydney Taylor Book Award. The awards were announced at the mid-winter meeting of the School, Synagogue and Community Center Division of the Association of Jewish Libraries.The Sydney Taylor Book Award honors new books for children and teens that exemplify the highest literary standards while authentically portraying the Jewish experience.


The award memorializes Sydney Taylor, author of the classic All-of-a-Kind Family series. The winners will receive their awards at the Association of Jewish Libraries convention in Pasadena, California this June.


Rosen and Sabuda will receive the 2012 gold medal in the Sydney Taylor Book Award’s Younger Readers Category for Chanukah Lights, published by Candlewick Press. This exquisite book celebrates Jewish history by pairing poetic prose with intricate paper cut pop-up art. Barbara Bietz, Chair of the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee, said: “From the shtetl to skyscrapers, the white pop-up scenes against a background of deep rainbow colors illuminate Jewish life for the eight nights of Chanukah. Together, children and adults will marvel at the stunning scenes that magically unfold with each turn of the page.”


The gold medal in the Sydney Taylor Book Award’s Older Readers Category will be presented to Susan Goldman Rubin for Music Was It: Young Leonard Bernstein, published by Charlesbridge Publishing. This biography shares the inspiring story of the young musician and his commitment to succeed in spite of his family’s opposition. Through hard work, determination and a spirit that won’t quit, Bernstein’s dream is realized as he takes the stage as a conductor at Carnegie Hall. Numerous photos help bring Bernstein’s journey to life. Committee member Barbara Krasner commented: “Music Was It" shows the struggle between the old and new worlds - the immigrant generation and the American generation. Susan Goldman Rubin's well-researched and polished narrative was filled with tension that today's kids can relate to.”In 2000, Goldman Rubin received the Sydney Taylor Honor Award for Fireflies in the Dark: The Story of Friedl Dicker-Brandeis. Her book, The Cat with the Yellow Star: Coming of Age in Terezin, was a 2006 Sydney Taylor Honor Book.

Robert Sharenow will receive the 2012 gold medal in the Sydney Taylor Book Award’s Teen Readers Category for The Berlin Boxing Club, published by HarperTeen, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishing. This historical novel reveals the history of Nazi Germany through the eyes of Karl Stern, a typical 14-year-old German boy. Karl never gave much thought to being Jewish and had little connection with any religious life. When classmates bully Karl, he is forced to face the dangers in his own community. Given the opportunity to learn boxing from German champion Max Schmeling, Karl jumps at the chance. He grows strong and learns to defend himself. But as the Nazi’s gain power and his family is in peril, Karl questions who he can trust. Aimee Lurie, incoming Chair of the Award Committee noted: “The superb writing, meticulous research, and dramatic look into the world of boxing pack a punch that will leave teens mesmerized! Readers will be captivated and inspired by Karl's transformation from being the victim of anti-semitic violence to a strong, confident young man who is able to protect his family.”

For complete list of winners, honors, and notables please visit:

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