The Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence were established in 2012 to recognize the best fiction and nonfiction books for adult readers published in the U.S. during the previous year, and are ALA's first single-book awards for adult trade fiction and nonfiction.
The strong library connection is what distinguishes the Andrew Carnegie Medals from other book awards. The finalists and eventual winners reflect the expert judgment and insight of the seven member selection committee of library professionals and independent booksellers who work closely with adult readers.
For additional book awards and lists for adults, please visit RUSA's Book and Media Awards and Booklist's Editors' Choice.
Help promote the awards
The 2016 medal winners were announced on Sunday, January 10 at the Reference and User Services Association’s Book and Media Awards event at ALA Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits in Boston. Winning authors, Viet Thanh Nguyen for The Sympathizer and Sally Mann for Hold Still: A Memoir with Photographs, each will receive $5,000, and the four finalists each receive $1,500. The award ceremony and celebratory event will take place in Orlando on Saturday, June 25 as part of the ALA Annual Conference with keynote speaker and distinguished poet, Billy Collins. Author speeches, the medal presentations, and a cocktail reception make for a most memorable night!
Follow @ALAlibrary for live tweets of the announcements and use the hashtag #ala_carnegie to join the conversation on social media.
Use your social media channels, websites, newsletters, and other communications to share the news of the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction. Link to ala.org/carnegieadult where people can find useful background on the awards as well as the latest information.
Making the most of the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in your library, bookstore, and reading group. The Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction offer great programming opportunities, help you highlight outstanding titles, and can encourage your patrons to read books recognized for their excellence by a selection committee of library professionals.
There’s huge general national interest in these awards—ALA and Carnegie Corporation’s initial announcement in March 2012 was picked up by more than 100,000 news, general media, and social media outlets, and the awards garnered over half a million web mentions in 2015.
The two winners are picked by library professionals who work with adult readers from a shortlist of six titles. These lists in themselves offer a wealth of further reading suggestions to keep you busy!
Call attention to the shortlist and finalist titles with award seals for the covers of winning and finalist books. Seals are available at the ALA Store.
For questions regarding other uses of the images of the seals or medals in displays, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or Mary Jo Bolduc, 312-280-5416.
Create displays in your library or bookstore
Use the free bookmark, postcard and display handout in the “Resources” tab where you found this overview to enhance your displays. You can also use the annotations for each title as listed below and quotes from the Booklist reviews.
Want to enhance your summer reading program? Our experts have compiled a list of read alikes for the 2015 shortlist for readers to enjoy! Not enough time to read? Don’t forget the audiobook editions!
The 2015 shortlist read alikes were selected by the Reference and User Services Association’s (RUSA) Notable Books Council, which is comprised of expert readers’ advisors and librarians that work closely with adult readers.
Promotional tools from previous years
Library display poster: print this 11" x 17" poster to show off the 2016 winning and finalist titles at your library!
Library display postcard: print out the 2015 shortlist postcard for expert recommended reading for your patrons!
Library display handout: showcase the 2015 shortlist with this 8.5" x 11" display sign!
Resource Guide: Making the most of the Andrew Carnegie Medals for Excellence in Fiction and Nonfiction in your library, bookstore, and reading group.
Discussion Guides: Need a new title for your book group?
Stay tuned for the 2016 discussion guides!
The American Library Association offers resources on how to form a book group, how to structure a meeting, how to select books and how to facilitate a meaningful literary discussion. For more information visit ala.org/tools/atoz/book-discussion-grps.
Andrew Carnegie Medals, author videos: Watch finalists and winners comment on their shortlist nominations, speak on the importance of libraries, and extol the power of librarians.
- Junot Díaz, author of This Is How You Lose Her and Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction 2013 finalist
- Louise Erdrich, author of The Round House and Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction 2013 finalist
- Anne Enright, author of The Forgotten Waltz and Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction 2012 winner
- Russell Banks, author of Lost Memory of Skin and Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction 2012 finalist
- Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia! and Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction 2012 finalist
- James Gleick, author of The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood and Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction 2012 finalist