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Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award Given to Children's Book Author Soyung Pak
The New York Public Library and the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation Will Present the Award at a Ceremony on April 27New York City, February 25, 2000: The New York Public Library and the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation are pleased to announce that first-time children's book author Soyung Pak has won the 2000 Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award. The Award, which recognizes and celebrates promising new children's book authors, goes to Ms. Pak for her picture book Dear Juno (Viking Children's Books).
The Award will be presented to Ms. Pak on Thursday, April 27, at 5:00 p.m., at a ceremony to be held at the Hudson Park Branch's Early Childhood Resource and Information Center (ECRIC), 66 Leroy Street in Manhattan. Ms. Pak will receive the Ezra Jack Keats silver medallion and a $1,000 cash prize, made possible through the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation. The winning book's publisher will also receive a handsome gold seal identifying it as the 2000 Ezra Jack Keats Award Winner. The Award is named in honor of children's book author/illustrator Ezra Jack Keats (The Snowy Day), winner of the Caldecott Medal. The ceremony is open to the public.
Dear Juno, which is illustrated by Susan Kathleen Hartung, tells a tale of creative communication across barriers of language, age, culture, and distance. Young Juno cannot read the letter he receives from his Korean grandmother, and his parents are just too busy to translate. However, when he opens the envelope, Juno discovers that enclosed are a dried flower and a photo of her cats, which tells the quick-witted Juno that his grandmother has acquired a new cat and is planting a flower garden. Now Juno decides to "write" back without his parents help. Although his grandmother can't read English, Juno knows just what to say and how to say it, finding playful solutions to show his love.
The Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award is given annually to an outstanding new writer of picture books for children (age 9 and under) and is presented jointly by The New York Public Library and the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation. A selection committee consisting of early childhood education specialists, librarians, and experts in children's literature, review entries, seeking books that portray the universal qualities of childhood, a strong and supportive family, and the multicultural nature of our world. As of 1999, the Award is now being given annually rather than the previous biannual cycle. To be eligible, writers must have published no more than six books, and candidates need not have also done the illustrations. For additional information as to how to apply for next year's award, publishers may contact The New York Public Library's Early Childhood Resource and Information Center, at 212-929-0815.
The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation
The Early Childhood Resource and Information Center
jbertrand: pro: 02-28-00