American Library Association Announces Newbery and Caldecott Winners

Posted on January 19, 2000

Christopher Paul Curtis, author of Bud, Not Buddy, and Simms Taback, illustrator of Joseph Had a Little Overcoat, are the 2000 winners of the prestigious John Newbery and Randolph Caldecott Medals. Curtis is also the recipient of the Coretta Scott King Author Award recognizing excellence by African American authors. They were among the award winners announced by the American Library Association (ALA) during its Midwinter Meeting in San Antonio. The Newbery and Caldecott Medals honor outstanding writing and illustration of works published in the U.S. during the previous year.

In Bud, Not Buddy, published by Delacorte Press, 10-year-old Bud Caldwell runs away from a foster home and begins an unforgettable journey in search of his father. His only clues are old flyers left by his dead mother that point to a legendary jazz bandleader.

"This heartfelt novel resonates with both zest and tenderness as it entertains questions about racism, belonging, love, and hope," said Carolyn S. Brodie, chair of the Newbery Award Selection Committee. "Bud's fast-paced, first-person account moves with the rhythms of jazz and celebrates life, family and a child's indomitable spirit."

Joseph Had a Little Overcoat, published by Viking, is based on a Yiddish folktale of a resourceful and resilient tailor who transforms his worn-out overcoat into smaller and smaller garments. The book is illustrated in watercolor, gouache, pencil, ink and collage.

"Vibrant rich colors, playful details, and skillfully-placed die cuts contribute to the book's raucous merriment that takes this Yiddish folk song far beyond the simple words," said Barbara Z. Kiefer, chair of the Caldecott Award Selection Committee. "The patchwork layout of the pages, the two-dimensional paintings, and the exaggerated perspectives reminiscent of the folk art tradition, are the fabric that turn this overcoat into a story."

Three Newbery Honor Books were named: Getting Near to Baby, by Audrey Couloumbis, published by G. P. Putnam's Sons; 26 Fairmount Avenue, written and illustrated by Tomie dePaola, published by G. P. Putnam's Sons; and Our Only May Amelia, by Jennifer L. Holm, published by HarperCollins.

Four Caldecott Honor Books were named: Sector 7, illustrated and written by David Weisner, published by Clarion Books; The Ugly Duckling, adapted and illustrated by Jerry Pinkney, based on the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen, published by Morrow; When Sophie Gets Angry - Really, Really Angry, illustrated and written by Molly Bang, published by Scholastic; and A Child's Calendar, illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman, written by John Updike and published by Holiday House.

Christopher Paul Curtis, author of Bud, Not Buddy, and Brian Pinkney, illustrator for In the Time of the Drums are the 2000 winners of the Coretta Scott King Awards honoring African American authors and illustrators of outstanding books for children and young adults.

The awards jury named three King Author Honor Books: Francie by Karen English, published by Farrar Straus Giroux; Black Hands, White Sails: The Story of African-American Whalers by Patricia C. and Frederick L. McKissack, published by Scholastic Press; and Monster by Walter Dean Myers, illustrated by Christopher Myers and published by HarperCollins.

Two Honor Books were selected for illustration: My Rows and Piles of Coins, illustrated by E.B. Lewis, written by Tololwa M. Mollel and published by Clarion Books; and Black Cat illustrated and written by Christopher Myers, published by Scholastic.

The Coretta Scott King Awards are administered by the Coretta Scott King Task Force of the American Library Association's (ALA) Social Responsibilities Roundtable. Information about all the awards can be found on the American Library Association website located at:

More from Writers Write

  • New York Publishers Not Rushing Workers Back to the Office Despite City Reopening

  • James Bennet Resigns as New York Times Editorial Page Editor

  • Melania Trump Reads The Little Rabbit by Nicola Killen for Easter

  • Katy Perry Wins Dark Horse Copyright Case After Federal Judge Overturns Jury Decision

  • London Book Fair Canceled Over Coronavirus