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Monday, January 11, 2016

ALA Midwinter Adult Award Winners

While all eyes were on the Youth Media Awards this morning [even mine], there were many adult awards and lists unveiled last night that have gotten lost in the shuffle. Let’s not forget about our adult readers today.

In this post today I have gathered all of lists and awards, with direct links, all in one place. And while I am a huge proponent of using all awards lists as a RA tool, these lists, from our colleagues, are among the most useful.

The Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction went to The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen and the Nonfiction award went to Hold Still by Sally Mann. Click here for the full short list of nominees.

The 2016 Listen List for Outstanding Audiobook Narration for Adult Listeners:
The Listen List Council of the Collection Development and Evaluation Section (CODES) of the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) has announced the 2016 selections of the Listen List Committee. The list was announced Sunday during the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in Boston. 
The Listen List highlights extraordinary narrators and listening experiences that merit special attention by a general adult audience and the librarians who advise them. Adhering to established criteria, committee members select 12 recordings that are benchmarks of excellence and are available for purchase by libraries. Titles are named to the list because the narration creates a new experience, offering listeners something they could not create by their own visual reading; and because the narrator achieves an outstanding performance in terms of voice, accents, pitch, tone, inflection, rhythm and pace. This juried list, designed for both avid listeners and those new to the pleasures of stories read aloud, includes fiction and nonfiction and features voices that enthrall, delight, and inspire, making one reluctant to stop listening.
The list not only includes the winners but also, three listen alikes for each. This list is a treasure trove of audio book recommendations.

The 2016 Reading List-- the only list for genre fiction. The list is broken up into eight different fiction genres for adult readers. This is the first year that the Council did not include readalikes for the winners. I am not sure why that decision was made [there might be a good reason] but I do think not having those readalikes is a missed RA opportunity. The short list of runner up titles is still included, however.

The 2016 Alex Awards, 10 adult books that would appeal to teen readers. I use this list for adults as much as teens, however. These are award winning books that I know have wide appeal and are great for my adult patrons who want to try a “best” book but are afraid it might be too “hard” for them.  The “hard” is their own insecurity coming through; I do not make that judgement. By suggesting an Alex book, I can feel confident I have given them an excellent book that they will not be overwhelmed by.

And finally, the RUSA 2016 Notable Books List. This list has a very long and storied history which you can read here, but I want to highlight its purpose statement:
Since 1944, the goal of the Notable Books Council has been to make available to the nation’s readers a list of 25 very good, very readable, and at times very important fiction, nonfiction, and poetry books for the adult reader.
This purpose statement is the reason why ALL of the lists and awards given out by our colleagues last night are so useful to us as we help patrons.  Librarians, like you and I, volunteer their time to help all of our patrons to find the best, readable books. They are both critically acclaimed AND fun to read. The same can be said for all of the lists and awards in this post.

So go out today and suggest one of these titles to a reader.

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