Annal: 2000 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature

Results of the National Book Award in the year 2000.

Book:Homeless Bird

Homeless Bird

Gloria Whelan

Leaving Home…forever. Like many girls her age in India, thirteen-year-old Koly is getting married. When she discovers that the husband her parents have chosen for her is sickly boy with wicked parents, Koly wishes she could flee. According to tradition, though, she has no choice. On her wedding day, Koly’s fate is sealed.

In the wake of her marriage, however, Koly’s life takes an unexpected turn, and she finds herself alone in a strange city of white-sari-clad windows. Her only choice seems to be to shed her name and her future and join the hopeless hordes who chant for food.

Even then, cast out in a current of time-worn tradition, this rare young woman sets out to forge her own exceptional future. And a life, like a beautiful tapestry, comes together for Koly— one stitch at a time.

Book:The Book of the Lion

The Book of the Lion

Michael Cadnum

Edmund, an apprentice, is seized by the king’s men and thrown in jail for his master’s crime of counterfeiting. Then Edmund is unexpectedly released into the custody of Sir Nigel, a knight in search of a squire. Edmund will train as a squire and accompany the knight on a journey to fight alongside Richard the Lionheart on the Crusades. As they travel across Europe, Edmund is fascinated by all he sees, but he fears for his safety in the days that lie ahead. How can he possibly prepare for the untold horrors of war? “This is a pulse-pounding tale, vivid and visceral.” -Booklist

“Fans of history and adventure will devour this well-crafted, dramatic quest.”

Book:Forgotten Fire

Forgotten Fire

Adam Bagdasarian

Based on the true story of an Armenian boy who survives the near-extermination of his race.

It is 1915 and Vahan Kendarian, the pampered youngest son of one of the most influential Armenian families in Turkey, is confident that his privileged world will always include the house he loves, the laughter of his brothers and sisters, a sense of belonging. But when his uncle disappears and his father is taken away, when two brothers are shot before his eyes in the family garden, Vahan’s world shatters. “Be steel,” his father had always said when something tested his son’s character. “Steel is made strong by fire.” What is about to occur is Vahan’s fire. In the next three weeks he will lose his home and know hunger and thirst for the first time. In the next three years he will become an orphan, a prisoner, a beggar, a servant, a stowaway in order to survive. He will meet and be befriended by the Horseshoer of Baskale, a Turkish governor famous for his practice of nailing…[more]

Book:Hurry Freedom

Hurry Freedom

Jerry Stanley

Here for the first time in a book for young readers is the story of the African American forty-niners who went west to seek fortunes and freedom in the California Gold Rush.

Among the thousands drawn west by the California Gold Rush were many African Americans. Some were free men and women in search of opportunity; others were slaves brought from the slave states of the South. Some found freedom and wealth in the gold fields and growing cities of California, but all faced the deeply entrenched prejudices of the era.

To tell this story Hurry Freedom! focuses on the life of Mifflin Gibbs, who arrived in San Francisco in 1850 and established a successful boot and shoe business. But Gibbs’s story is more than one of business and personal success: With other African American San Franciscans, he led a campaign to obtain equal legal and civil rights for Blacks in California.

Book:Many Stones

Many Stones

Carolyn Coman

Sixteen-year-old Berry Morgan lives with her mother in Rockville, Maryland, where her mother works as a reading tutor. Berry’s father, a lobbyist, lives in San Francisco with his girlfriend. He comes in and out of Berry’s life unpredictably. A year and a half ago, he showed up at her school with shocking news: Berry’s sister was dead. While working as a volunteer at a school in Capetown, South Africa, Laura had been brutally murdered. Now Berry sets out on a two-week trip to South Africa with her father to attend a memorial service for Laura. He has arranged some other activities as well: a business meeting in Johannesburg during which Berry awaits him at a posh hotel; a guided tour of Soweto by minivan; and three days at Krueger National Park, where they live in round huts and go out spotting giraffes by day and elephants, leopards, and lions by night. Berry and her father’s painful journey forces them to look beyond their own grieving and bear witness to a country’s tortured search for truth and reconciliation.

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