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Young Reader Award (Ages 6-8)
A Nation's Hope: The Story of Boxing Legend Joe Louis
Written by Matt de la Pena, Illustrated by Kadir Nelson
Published by Penguin Books for Young Readers
On the eve of World War II, African American boxer Joe Louis fought German Max Schmeling in a bout that had more at stake than just the world heavyweight title; for much of America their fight came to represent America’s war with Germany.
This elegant and powerful picture book biography centers around the historic fight in which Black and White America were able to put aside prejudice and come together to celebrate our nation’s ideals.
Older Reader Award (Ages 9-12)
The Blood Lie: A Novel
Written by Shirley Reva Vernick
Published by Cinco Puntos Press
Latent hostility against the Jews erupts in a blood lie when Daisy, a young Gentile girl, disappears in the woods.
It’s September 22, 1928, Jack Pool’s 16th birthday. It's the Sabbath. In the synagogue that morning, he feels restless, stuck in a remote little whistle-stop town in upstate New York. But he doesn’t realize exactly how stuck he is until his little sister’s Gentile friend Daisy gets lost in the woods and he's accused of killing her.