Award winning books @ your library
July 2, 2010
Your local library houses books to suit all moods and levels of taste. We don’t look down on your decision to read a novel that’s critically reviled and/or artistically suspect and/or the owner of gaping plot holes. In fact, we encourage reading books of all kinds. However, on the occasions when you do want your books to be of high quality, award winners are an excellent place to start.
Apart from searching Wikipedia or googling lists of winners, the Grand County Library District does offer a helpful online resource that consolidates hundreds of award winners in many categories.
NoveList is an incredible knowledge center that helps readers discover new authors. It cross-references its database to show writers with similar styles and subject matter. The site also provides an impressive list of award winners for both children and adult books.
The database can be accessed by visiting the GCLD homepage (www.gcld.org) and selecting online resources. Choose NoveList Plus, enter your card number, then click NoveList Plus once more. Click on the award winners link on the left beneath any of the following category headings: adult, teens, older kids, and younger kids.
The award categories are numerous.
If you don’t know where to start, the Pulitzer Prize is one of the best known writing awards (it’s listed under the literary category). The organization lauds journalism as well as creative works.
The fiction award this year went to Paul Harding’s “Tinkers,” a copy of which is owned by the Granby Library. The winners of the 2010 general non-fiction and biography categories are also available through our lending network. Browse through these and past winners, including Harper Lee, Ernest Hemingway, Cormac McCarthy and William Faulkner.
The National Book Award also highlights literary achievement in myriad categories, including a young adult category started in 1996. Sci-fi fans can turn to the Hugo and Nebula awards, two of the genres most well respected.
Numerous authors have won both awards in the same year with the same novel, including Michael Chabon (who also won a Putlizer for an earlier novel), Neil Gaiman (who also won a Newbery), Orson Scott Card, William Gibson, Arthur C. Clarke, and Ursula Le Guin. Christian authors have their Christy Awards, mysteries their Agatha Awards, and westerns their Spur Awards.
Children’s book awards most famously include the Caldecott and Newbery. These two have bolstered the reading lists of many a young reader for a number of years. But kids’ books awards are also presented in countless categories.
Book awards are not simply a way for well read individuals to prove how obscure their taste can be. They are a jumping off point to new writers and new genres. They’re also great sources of reading lists, so during this summer reading season, browse and enjoy.