Coretta Scott King Book Award Winners

Each winter (in January or February), the Coretta Scott King Book Awards are given to outstanding African American authors and illustrators of books for children and young adults that demonstrate an appreciation of African American culture and universal human values. The committee that selects the awards is part of the American Library Association. The author or illustrator must live in the United States or maintain dual residency/citizenship, and the book must have been published in the preceding year. Check out our list, with the 2022 winners and honor books at the top. And for more excellent picks, try these Award-Winning African American Books.

Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre Poster Image
BOOK

Unspeakable: The Tulsa Race Massacre

age 8+

Illuminating retelling of a tragic American event.

See full review
Soul Food Sunday Poster Image
BOOK

Soul Food Sunday

age 5+

Warm story shows Sundays as time for family, love, food.

By: Winsome Bingham (2021)
See full review
Nina: A Story of Nina Simone Poster Image
BOOK

Nina: A Story of Nina Simone

age 6+

Bold story of famed singer's life and civil rights activism.

By: Traci N. Todd (2021)
See full review
The People Remember Poster Image
BOOK

The People Remember

age 7+

Emotional book ties 500-year history to Kwanzaa principles.

By: Ibi Zoboi (2021)
See full review
Revolution in Our Time: The Black Panther Party's Promise to the People Poster Image
BOOK

Revolution in Our Time: The Black Panther Party's Promise to the People

age 12+

Informative, inspiring history of the Black Power movement.

By: Kekla Magoon (2021)
See full review
R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul Poster Image
BOOK

R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul

age 4+

Dazzling art captures Aretha's career and activism.

See full review
Before the Ever After Poster Image
BOOK

Before the Ever After

age 10+

Tween copes with father's illness in touching verse novel.

By: Jacqueline Woodson (2020)
See full review
King and the Dragonflies Poster Image
BOOK

King and the Dragonflies

age 10+

Beautifully told coming-of-age tale full of grief and hope.

By: Kacen Callender (2020)
See full review
Lifting As We Climb: Black Women's Battle for the Ballot Box Poster Image
BOOK

Lifting As We Climb: Black Women's Battle for the Ballot Box

age 10+

Powerful history of Black women fighting for the vote.

By: Evette Dionne (2020)
See full review
Legendborn Poster Image
BOOK

Legendborn

age 14+

Riveting Arthurian legend retelling set in secret societies.

By: Tracy Deonn (2020)
See full review
The Undefeated Poster Image
BOOK

The Undefeated

age 6+

Poetic tribute to African American heroes and struggles.

By: Kwame Alexander (2019)
See full review
New Kid, Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

New Kid, Book 1

age 8+

Funny, heartfelt middle school tale explores race, class.

By: Jerry Craft (2019)
See full review
Sulwe Poster Image
BOOK

Sulwe

age 4+

Girl learns to embrace her dark skin in magical tale.

By: Lupita Nyong'o (2019)
See full review
What Is Given from the Heart Poster Image
BOOK

What Is Given from the Heart

age 4+

Lovely art, heartwarming story about the joy of giving.

See full review
Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky: Tristan Strong, Book 1 Poster Image
BOOK

Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky: Tristan Strong, Book 1

age 8+

Teen connects with African folklore in exciting fantasy.

By: Kwame Mbalia (2019)
See full review
Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks Poster Image
BOOK

Look Both Ways: A Tale Told in Ten Blocks

age 10+

Moving, interwoven stories of Black middle schoolers.

By: Jason Reynolds (2019)
See full review
Genesis Begins Again Poster Image
BOOK

Genesis Begins Again

age 11+

Teen learns to love herself in uplifting tale of misfits.

By: Alicia D. Williams (2019)
See full review
The Stars and the Blackness Between Them Poster Image
BOOK

The Stars and the Blackness Between Them

age 14+

Teen girls fall in love, face death in breathtaking tale.

By: Junauda Petrus (2019)
See full review
The Stuff of Stars Poster Image
BOOK

The Stuff of Stars

age 4+

Poetic book introduces big cosmic concepts to little humans.

By: Marion Dane Bauer (2018)
See full review
Finding Langston Poster Image
BOOK

Finding Langston

age 8+

In lovely, moving story, boy who lost mom discovers poetry.

By: Lesa Cline-Ransome (2018)
See full review