Coretta Scott King Book Award Winners 1970 to Present

coretta_scott_kingThe Coretta Scott King Awards are presented annually by the American Library Association to honor African-American authors and illustrators who create outstanding books for children and young adults. “… an excellent start on your quest for the best in African-American literature for children.”

csk winner seal
The CSK Book Awards seal and award names are owned by the American Library Association.

The award was established in 1969 to recognize authors. In 1979 it was expanded to include a separate award for illustrators. There are five categories of book awards; Author, Author Honor, Illustrator, Illustrator Honor, and the John Steptoe Award for New Talent.

These awards are given to commemorate the life and work of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and to honor Mrs. Coretta Scott King for her continuing efforts in working for peace and civil rights issues. In 2015 The Coretta Scott King Awards became part of the Youth Media Awards. Here is a printable list of all the award winning books.

You may learn more, about this award, at the American Library Association’s website. Also check out our list of Top 100+ Recommended African-American Children’s Books, some are also CSK Award winning titles.

6 Coretta Scott King Award Winning and Honored Books for 2002


Click for a larger image of The Land

The Land
by Mildred D. Taylor

Publication Date:
List Price: $7.99
Format: Mass Market Paperback, 400 pages
Classification: Children’s
Age: 12 - 17
ISBN13: 9780142501467
Imprint: Penguin Young Readers Group
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Parent Company: Bertelsmann and Pearson PLC
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Read a Description of The Land


Book Description: 
The son of a prosperous landowner and a former slave, Paul-Edward Logan is unlike any other boy he knows. His white father has acknowledged him and raised him openly-something unusual in post-Civil War Georgia. But as he grows into a man he learns that life for someone like him is not easy. Black people distrust him because he looks white. White people discriminate against him when they learn of his black heritage. Even within his own family he faces betrayal and degradation. So at the age of fourteen, he sets out toward the only dream he has ever had: to find land every bit as good as his father’s, and make it his own. Once again inspired by her own history, Ms. Taylor brings truth and power to the newest addition to the award-winning Logan family stories.


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Carver: A Life in Poems
by Marilyn Nelson

Publication Date:
List Price: $16.95
Format: Hardcover, 112 pages
Classification: Poetry
Age: 12 - 14
ISBN13: 9781886910539
Imprint: Highlights Press
Publisher: Boyds Mills Press
Parent Company: Boyds Mills Press
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Read a Description of Carver: A Life in Poems


Book Description: 
George Washington Carver was born a slave in Missouri about 1864 and was raised by the childless white couple who had owned his mother. In 1877 he left home in search of an education, eventually earning a master’s degree. In 1896, Booker T. Washington invited Carver to start the agricultural department at the all-black-staffed Tuskegee Institute, where he spent the rest of his life seeking solutions to the poverty among landless black farmers by developing new uses for soil-replenishing crops such as peanuts, cowpeas, and sweet potatoes. Carver’s achievements as a botanist and inventor were balanced by his gifts as a painter, musician, and teacher. This Newbery Honor Book and Coretta Scott King Author Honor Book by Marilyn Nelson provides a compelling and revealing portrait of Carver’s complex, richly interior, profoundly devout life.


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Money Hungry
by Sharon G. Flake

Publication Date:
List Price: $8.99
Format: Paperback, 192 pages
Classification: Children’s
Age: 10 - 18
ISBN13: 9781423103868
Imprint: Disney-Hyperion
Publisher: Disney Publishing Worldwide
Parent Company: The Walt Disney Company
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Book Description: 

Thirteen-year-old Raspberry Hill is starved for money. She will do just about anything legal to get her hands on the almighty dollar--wash cars, sell rotten candy, skip lunch, clean houses. She is obsessed. She is driven. She is afraid. Memories of being homeless, sleeping in the streets, and eating handouts keep Raspberry's eye on the only prize that matters to her: cold, hard cash. When the green stuff greases her palm, she gets comfort from feeling its crinkly paper power. And, when money is your best friend, there's more to do than hold it. Raspberry kisses her cash. She smells it. She loves it.

But even money can't answer the questions that keep Raspberry awake at night. Will she and Momma ever move out of the projects? What did Ja'nae do with the two hundred bucks Raspberry loaned her? And what's really going on with Momma and that rich doctor?

A haunting story of greed and forgiveness by the award-winning author of The Skin I'm In, this unforgettable novel will keep you glued to every page. Bank on it.




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Goin’ Someplace Special
by Patricia C. McKissack and Fredrick McKissack, Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney

Publication Date:
List Price: $7.99
Format: Paperback, 40 pages
Classification: Children’s
Age: 4 - 8
ISBN13: 9781416927358
Imprint: Aladdin
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, Inc.
Parent Company: CBS Corporation
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Book Description: 
There’s a place in this 1950s southern town where all are welcome, no matter what their skin color…and ’Tricia Ann knows exactly how to get there. To her, it’s someplace special and she’s bursting to go by herself.
When her grandmother sees that she’s ready to take such a big step, ’Tricia Ann hurries to catch the bus heading downtown. But unlike the white passengers, she must sit in the back behind the Jim Crow sign and wonder why life’s so unfair.
Still, for each hurtful sign seen and painful comment heard, there’s a friend around the corner reminding ’Tricia Ann that she’s not alone. And even her grandmother’s words — "You are somedbody, a human being — no better, no worse than anybody else in this world" — echo in her head, lifting her spirits and pushing her forward.
Patricia C. McKissack’s poignant story of growing up in the segregated South and Jerry Pinkney’s rich, detailed watercolors lead readers to the doorway of freedom.


Click for a larger image of Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
by Doreen Rappaport, Illustrated by Bryan Collier

Publication Date:
List Price: $7.99
Format: Paperback, 40 pages
Classification: Children’s
Age: 5 - 8
ISBN13: 9781423106357
Imprint: Disney-Hyperion
Publisher: Disney Publishing Worldwide
Parent Company: The Walt Disney Company
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Read a Description of Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


Book Description: 

This picture-book biography is an excellent and accessible introduction for young readers to learn about one of the world’s most influential leaders, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Doreen Rappaport weaves the immortal words of Dr. King into a captivating narrative to tell the story of his life. With stunning art by acclaimed illustrator Bryan Collier, Martin’s Big Words is an unforgettable portrait of a man whose dream changed America-and the world-forever.


Click for a larger image of Freedom Summer

Freedom Summer
by Deborah Wiles

Publication Date:
List Price: $7.99
Format: Paperback, 32 pages
Classification: Children’s
ISBN13: 9780689878299
Imprint: Aladdin
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, Inc.
Parent Company: CBS Corporation
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Read a Description of Freedom Summer


Book Description: 
John Henry swims better than anyone I know.
He crawls like a catfish,
blows bubbles like a swamp monster,
but he doesn’t swim in the town pool with me.
He’s not allowed.
Joe and John Henry are a lot alike. They both like shooting marbles, they both want to be firemen, and they both love to swim. But there’s one important way they’re different: Joe is white and John Henry is black, and in the South in 1964, that means John Henry isn’t allowed to do everything his best friend is. Then a law is passed that forbids segregation and opens the town pool to everyone. Joe and John Henry are so excited they race each other there…only to discover that it takes more than a new law to change people’s hearts.



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