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Los Angeles Resident Susan Patron Wins the Newbery Medal

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As we’ve pointed out, it is awards season in Los Angeles in more ways than one. While the Academy Award debating will rage on for weeks, bookish types can ante up their betting losses or collect their winnings now – some awards have already been given. Los Angeles resident Susan Patron has won the 2007 John Newbery Medal for the most outstanding contribution to children’s literature for her young adult novel The Higher Power of Lucky.

Mayor Villaraigosa announced his praise for Susan today and offered her congratulations for both the award and her ongoing commitment to Los Angeles as a devoted public servant approaching 35-years of service as a librarian for the Los Angeles Public Library. “I am pleased to acknowledge Ms. Patron for her contribution to the lives of children through her work in the City of Los Angeles and through her books read by young people and their parents throughout the world.”

When asked why this book was chosen over the other nominees, Newbery Medal Committee Chair Jeri Kladder said, “Lucky is a perfectly nuanced blend of adventure, survival (emotional and physical) and hilarious character study... as well as a blueprint for a self-examined life. Through Lucky’s experiences, we are reminded that children support one another just as needy adults do.” Read an excerpt of the book.

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Visit the ALA for a full list of the other nominees – all excellent young adult books for discerning readers of all ages.