STATE LIBRARY ANNOUNCES 2009 LA YOUNG READERS' CHOICE AWARDS -- 03/12/2009
Office of State LibraryFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 12, 2009
STATE LIBRARY ANNOUNCES 2009 LA YOUNG READERS' CHOICE AWARDS
Students From Across the State Choose Their Favorites
Baton Rouge, La. - More than 19,000 students across the state in grades three through five and six through eight have chosen two books as winners of the 2009 Louisiana Young Readers' Choice Award. "The Diary of a Killer Cat" by Anne Fine (Macmillan Publishing Company, 2006) was the top choice of third, fourth and fifth graders. "Secrets of My Hollywood Life" by Jen Calonita (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2006), received the most votes from middle school students in grades six, seven and eight. The second place winners, or Honor Books for 2009 were "Rotten Richie and the Ultimate Dare" by Patricia Polacco (Penguin Group, 2006) for grades three through five and "Storm Thief" by Chris Wooding (Scholastic, 2006) for grades six through eight.
The Louisiana Young Readers' Choice Award, now in its 10th year, is a reading enrichment program of the State Library of Louisiana underwritten by Capitol One with additional support by PermaBound Books. It is a model collaborative reading program involving students, teachers and public librarians in all regions of the state. Students in grades three through eight are encouraged to read the high-quality books that are on carefully selected ballots: one ballot for grades three through five and another ballot for grades six through eight. Using specially prepared study guides, teachers incorporate the books into the curriculum. Voting day is an exciting time in many schools and libraries throughout Louisiana as the students cast their votes, sometimes using the voting booths supplied by the Secretary of State's Voter Outreach Division.
"The Louisiana Young Readers' Choice Award project has been an important part of our efforts to promote literacy across Louisiana. Through this public-private partnership, we are helping our kids develop a love of reading, which will prepare them for a life of learning," said Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu. Landrieu oversees the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism, which includes the State Library.
A committee of school and public librarians chooses the 15 recent children's titles for each age group that comprise the annual LYRCA ballots. The lists offer a well-balanced array of excellent, enjoyable books in various genres, including fiction, nonfiction, folklore and poetry.
"One of the critical missions of the State Library is to foster a culture of literacy. We know that if we encourage a child to read for pleasure, then that child is much more likely to excel at reading and succeed in school," said State Librarian Rebecca Hamilton. "The Louisiana Young Readers' Choice Award program has proven to be excellent way to encourage students to read by enabling them to participate in selecting the winning book."
Information about the program is available on the State Library website at www.state.lib.la.us by clicking on Center for the Book, then on Louisiana Young Readers' Choice Award. The list of nominees for 2010 is now available on the State Library's website.
Previous winners of the award are "Once Upon a Cool Motorcycle Dude" by Kevin O'Malley (2008 Grades 3-5) and "The Lightning Thief" by Rick Riordan (Grades 6-8). "Gator Gumbo" by Candace Fleming (2007 Grades 3-5); "So B. It: A Novel" by Sarah Weeks (2007 Grades 6-8); "Alligator Sue" by Sharon Arms Doucet (2006 Grades 3-5); "Skeleton Key" by Anthony Horowitz (2006 Grades 6-8); "Dear Mrs. LaRue: Letters from Obedience School" by Mark Teague (2005. Grades 3-5); "Coraline" by Neil Gaiman (2005 Grades 6-8); "Petite Rouge: A Cajun Red Riding Hood" by Mike Artell (2004); "My Dog, My Hero" by Betsy Byars, Laurie Myers and Betsy Duffey (2003); "Weslandia" by Paul Fleischman (2002); "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" by J.K. Rowling (2001); and "Verdi" by Janell Cannon (2000).