Monday, August 17, 2015

Library to Host 2015 Americas Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature

WASHINGTON, DC (PR) - Author and illustrator Duncan Tonatiuh will be honored for his book “Separate is Never Equal: Sylvia Mendez & Her Family’s Fight for Desegregation,” (Abrams Books, 2014). Tonatiuh, whose roots are both Mexican and American, has won both the Pura Belpre Illustrator Award and the Tomás Rivera Mexican American children's book award for previous works.  

Authors Duncan Tonatiuh and Margarita Engle will receive the Americas Award for Children’s and Young Adult Literature during a special awards presentation on Friday, Sept. 18, at 3 p.m. in the Mary Pickford Theater, located on the third floor of the Library of Congress James Madison Building, 101 Independence Avenue, S.E., Washington, D.C. 

The award is co-sponsored by the Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs (CLASP) and administered by both Tulane University’s Stone Center for Latin American Studies and Vanderbilt University’s Center for Latin American Studies. The Library of Congress Hispanic Division and its Center for the Book host the event, which is free and open to the public. Reservations are required and can be made through the Library’s Special Events Office at (202) 707-5218.

Cuban-American novelist Margarita Engle was previously an Americas Award honoree for “The Surrender Tree” in 2007 and “Hurricane Dancers: The First Caribbean Pirate Shipwreck” in 2012. This year, she receives the Americas Award for “Silver People: Voices for the Panama Canal” (Houghton Mifflin, 2014).  

The Americas Award recognizes outstanding U.S. works of fiction, poetry, folklore or selected nonfiction published in the previous year that authentically and engagingly portrays Latin Americans, Caribbeans or Latinos in the United States. For more information about the award and CLASP, visit

Founded in 1800, the Library of Congress is the nation’s first-established federal cultural institution. The Library seeks to spark imagination and creativity and to further human understanding and wisdom by providing access to knowledge through its magnificent collections, publications, programs and exhibitions. Many of the Library’s rich resources can be accessed through its website at

The Hispanic Division, established in 1939, is the center for the study of the cultures and societies of Hispanic/Latinos in the United States and Latin America, the Caribbean, the Iberian Peninsula and other areas where Spanish or Portuguese influence have been significant. For more information about the Hispanic Reading Room and the Hispanic collections of the Library, visit

Since its creation by Congress in 1977 to “stimulate public interest in books and reading,” the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress ( has become a national force for reading and literacy promotion. A public-private partnership, it sponsors educational programs that reach readers of all ages, nationally and internationally. 

The center provides leadership for affiliated state centers for the book (including the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands) and nonprofit reading-promotion partners and plays a key role in the Library’s annual National Book Festival. It also oversees the Library’s website and administers the Library’s Young Readers Center.

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