Listening Library wins 2016 Odyssey Award for ‘The War that Saved My Life’

Macey Morales
Deputy Director
mmorales@ala.org

BOSTON – Listening Library, an imprint of the Penguin Random House Audio Publishing Group, producer of the audiobook “The War that Saved My Life,” has won the 2016 Odyssey Award for Excellence in Audiobook Production. The award announcement was made today during the American Library Association (ALA) Midwinter Meeting & Exhibits held Jan. 8 – 12 in Boston.

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), divisions of the ALA, and is sponsored by Booklist magazine.

“The War that Saved My Life” is written by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley and narrated by Jayne Entwistle. Hoping to escape an abusive parent, a lame but determined girl follows her younger brother when he is sent to safety during WWII. The children find that leaving the city may not only have saved them from a bomb, but also changed their lives forever.

 “Entwistle effectively captures the emotions of Ada, Jamie and reclusive Susan in this powerful story filled with quiet moments, intense feelings and the struggle for self-acceptance and love,” said Odyssey Award Committee Chair Cindy Lombardo.

 The Odyssey Committee selected one Honor Audiobook.

 “Echo” is written by Pam Muñoz Ryan, narrated by Mark Bramhall, David de Vries, MacLeod Andrews and Rebecca Soler, with music by Corky Siegel and produced by Scholastic Audio / Paul R. Gagne. In “Echo,” an enchanted harmonica travels the globe spanning time to change the lives of three children in haunting and unimaginable ways. An ensemble cast and original score masterfully weave the various threads of the story into a compelling whole.

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 2016 Odyssey Award Committee are: Chair Cindy Lombardo, Cleveland Public Library; Sue Abrahamson, Waupaca (Wis.) Public Library; Krista Britton, Prince William County (Va.) Schools; Stephanie Charlefour, Wixom (Mich.) Public Library; Chris Durr, Sacramento (Calif.) Public Library; Maren Ostergard, King County (Wash.) Library System; Joella Peterson, Provo City (Utah) Library; Katie Richert, Bloomingdale (Ill.) Public Library; and Heather Stout, Lewiston City (Idaho) Library.

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.

For more than 50 years, YALSA has worked to build the capacity of libraries and librarians to engage, serve and empower teens. 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, yalsa@ala.org.

For information on the Odyssey Award and other ALA Youth Media Awards, please visit www.ala.org/yma.  

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