2001 Batchelder Award honors Arthur A. Levine

Contact: Larra Clark



ALA News Release

For Immediate Release

January 2001

2001 Batchelder Award honors Arthur A. Levine

Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic Press was named winner of the 2001 Mildred L. Batchelder Award for the most outstanding children's book originally published in a foreign language and subsequently translated into English for publication in the United States for "Samir and Yonatan."

Originally published in Israel in 1994, the book was written by Daniella Carmi and translated by Yael Lotan.

Samir, a Palestinian boy, enters an Israeli hospital for surgery. At first he is fearful and antagonistic, but he develops a bond with Yonatan, an Israeli youngster. The relationship of the children in the ward grows as they face their own physical and emotional trials. Carmi's lyrical text and Lotan's smooth translation leave readers with hopeful possibilities.

Carmi was born in Tel Aviv and now lives in Jerusalem. She writes drama, television scripts and books for adults and children. Her book, "Samir and Yonathan on the Planet Mars," was awarded Honorable Mention in the 1997 UNESCO Prize for Children's and Young Adult People's Literature in the Service of Tolerance.

One Batchelder Honor Book was selected. David R. Godine's "Ultimate Game," originally published in 1996, was written in French by Christian Lehmann, and translated by William Rodarmor for the U.S. edition.

Lehmann's novel relates moments in the lives of three teens who purchase a computer game that recreates a virtual reality of a time machine of history's evils: war after war. Eric and Charles are pitted against Andreas, the oldest, whose need for power propels him to play the game as judge, jury and finally, prey.

Members of the Batchelder Award Committee include Amy Kellman, chair, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh; Marilyn Ackerman, Brooklyn (N.Y.) Public Library; Marie E. Bindeman, Nioga Library System, Lockport, N.Y.; Ruth I. Gordon, Cloverdale, Calif.; and Junko Yokota, National-Louis University, Evanston, Ill.

More information about the
Batchelder Award is available online.