Atlanta – Listening Library, an imprint of the Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Groups, producer of the audiobook, “Anna and the Swallow Man,” has won the 2017 Odyssey Award for Excellence in Audiobook Production. The award announcement was made today during the American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits held Jan. 20 – 24 in Atlanta, Georgia.
The Odyssey Award is given to the producer of the best audiobook produced for children and/or young adults, available in English in the United States. The award is jointly administered by the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) and the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), both divisions of the ALA, and is sponsored by Booklist magazine.
“Anna and the Swallow Man” is written by Gavriel Savit, narrated by Allan Corduner and produced by Listening Library. In the shadow of the Nazi invasion of Poland, Anna finds herself alone and follows a tall, mysterious stranger. Together, they embark on a journey of survival and self-discovery. Told in elegant language, this heartbreaking story explores a child’s coming-of-age in a war-torn landscape where nothing is as it seems.
“Narrator Allan Corduner masterfully voices the complex characters, erasing the boundary between listener and story in a virtuoso performance.” said Odyssey Award Committee Chair Lynn Piper Carpenter.
The Odyssey Committee selected three Honor Audiobooks.
“Ghost” written by Jason Reynolds, narrated by Guy Lockard and produced by Simon and Schuster Audio. Ghost reconciles his troubled past and sprints into newfound friendship, confidence, and self-awareness. Guy Lockard’s energetic narration captures Ghost’s emotional sway, humor and transformation and authentically depicts a wide variety of character accents, tones, and vernacular.
“Dream On, Amber” written by Emma Shevah, narrated by Laura Kirman and produced by Recorded Books. For Amber Alessandra Leola Kimiko Miyamoto, navigating school is not as challenging as discovering her role in her unconventional family. Amber’s audacious imagination leads to both trouble and a satisfying resolution. Laura Kirman becomes this spirited tween in a dynamic performance that highlights Amber’s humor, heart and multicultural heritage.
“Nimona” written by Noelle Stevenson, narrated by Rebecca Soler, Jonathan Davis, Marc Thompson, January LaVoy, Natalie Gold, Peter Bradbury, and David Pittu, and produced by HarperAudio. A villain, a hero, a shapeshifting teen tell a story of adventure, danger... and Science! This full cast production brings to life the story, reminiscent of radio dramas. The addition of a narrator goes beyond the text, enhancing the listener's experience, and setting a new standard for audio graphic novels.
Audiobooks constitute a fast-growing area of usage in libraries. The award is named after the epic poem titled, “The Odyssey,” that was told and retold in the oral tradition and eventually ascribed by the poet Homer on the tales of Ulysses as he returns to his kingdom after the Trojan War. The Odyssey Award allows us to return to the ancient roots of storytelling, while living in our modern world.
Members of the 2017 Odyssey Award Committee are Chair Lynn Piper Carpenter, Birmingham Public Library, Birmingham, Ala.; Kelley Beeson, Western Allegheny Community Library, Pittsburg, Pa.; Roxanne Hsu Feldman, The Dalton School, New York; Sarah Hashimoto, Jackson District Library, Jackson, Mich.; Christina Keasler, Glen Ellyn Public Library (Ill.); Natalie Marshall, Flint River Regional Library, Griffin, Ga.; Amanda L. S. Murphy, Warren-Trumbull County Public Library (Ohio); Lizzie Nolan, San José Public Library (Calif.); Toby Rajput, National Louis University Library, Skokie, Ill.; and Award Administrative Assistant Mariela Siegert, Westfield Middle School, Bloomingdale, Ill.
ALSC is the world’s largest organization dedicated to the support and enhancement of library service to children. With a network of more than 4,000 children’s and youth librarians, literature experts, publishers, and educational faculty, ALSC is committed to creating a better future for children through libraries. To learn more about ALSC, visit their website at www.ala.org/alsc.
The mission of the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) is to support library staff in alleviating the challenges teens face, and in putting all teens ‒ especially those with the greatest needs ‒ on the path to successful and fulfilling lives. For more information about YALSA or to access national guidelines and other resources go to www.ala.org/yalsa, or contact the YALSA office by phone, 800-545-2433, ext. 4390; or e-mail: email@example.com.
For information on the Odyssey Award and other ALA Youth Media Awards, please visit www.ala.org/yma.