Mildred L. Batchelder Award
Arthur A. Levine Books, an imprint of Scholastic Inc.
The book tells the story of Balsa, a skilled female warrior, who accepts the task of protecting a young prince from otherworldly demons and his father’s assassins. Prince Chagum is the Moribito, the guardian of the sacred spirit. If Balsa is unsuccessful in protecting the prince, the country will suffer years of devastating drought so together they must find in each other the source of strength they need to prevail.
“This sophisticated and complex Japanese epic is filled with political intrigue, mystery and danger,” said Batchelder Committee Chair Sandra Imdieke.
Amulet Books, an imprint of Harry N. Abrams, Inc.
A betrayed woman facing death, a most unlikely hero, and a sarcastic talking white tiger in colonial-era India come together in a magical story within a story. Antonia Michaelis’ masterfully crafted tale moves seamlessly from reality to fantasy as it reveals the profound power of story.
“‘Stories are an excellent way to escape,’says Safia, who in this tale literally proves this to be true,” said Imdieke.
Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co.
Hole introduces us to six-year-old Garmann during his last summer before starting school. The humorous and poetic text, combined with surreal and multi-layered artwork, creates a truly unique and complex look at the universality of fear and uncertainty.
“This is a book rich with literary and visual complexity, but it will be Garmann who readers remember,” said Imdieke.