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.

7 Coretta Scott King Award Winning and Honored Books for 2013


Click for a larger image of Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America

Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America
by Andrea Davis Pinkney and Brian Pinkney

Publication Date:
Format: Hardcover
Classification: Nonfiction
Age: 9 - 12
Page Count: 243
ISBN13: 9781423142577
Imprint: Disney-Hyperion
Publisher: Disney Publishing Worldwide
Parent Company: The Walt Disney Company

Read a Description of Hand in Hand: Ten Black Men Who Changed America


Book Description: 

HAND IN HAND presents the stories of ten men from different eras in American history, organized chronologically to provide a scope from slavery to the modern day. The stories are accessible, fully-drawn narratives offering the subjects' childhood influences, the time and place in which they lived, their accomplishments and motivations, and the legacies they left for future generations as links in the "freedom chain." This book will be the definitive family volume on the subject, punctuated with dynamic full color portraits and spot illustrations by two-time Caldecott Honor winner and multiple Coretta Scott King Book Award recipient Brian Pinkney. Backmatter includes a civil rights timeline, sources, and further reading.






Click for a larger image of Each Kindness

Each Kindness
by Jacqueline Woodson

Publication Date:
Format: Hardcover
Classification: Children’s
Age: 5 - 8
Page Count: 32
ISBN13: 9780399246524
Imprint: Nancy Paulsen Books
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Parent Company: Bertelsmann and Pearson PLC

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Book Description: 

Each kindness makes the world a little better

This unforgettable book is written and illustrated by the award-winning team that created The Other Side and the Caldecott Honor winner Coming On Home Soon. With its powerful anti-bullying message and striking art, it will resonate with readers long after they've put it down.

Chloe and her friends won't play with the new girl, Maya. Every time Maya tries to join Chloe and her friends, they reject her. Eventually Maya stops coming to school. When Chloe's teacher gives a lesson about how even small acts of kindness can change the world, Chloe is stung by the lost opportunity for friendship, and thinks about how much better it could have been if she'd shown a little kindness toward Maya.




Click for a larger image of No Crystal Stair

No Crystal Stair
by Vaunda Micheaux Nelson

Publication Date:
Format: Hardcover
Classification: Children’s
Age: 12 - 17
Page Count: 188
ISBN13: 9780761361695
Imprint: Carolrhoda Books
Publisher: Lerner Publishing Group
Parent Company: Lerner Publishing Group

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Book Description: 

A documentary novel of the life and work of Lewis Michaux, Harlem bookseller

"You can't walk straight on a crooked line. You do you'll break your leg. How can you walk straight in a crooked system?"

Lewis Michaux was born to do things his own way. When a white banker told him to sell fried chicken, not books, because "Negroes don't read," Lewis took five books and one-hundred dollars and built a bookstore. It soon became the intellectual center of Harlem, a refuge for everyone from Muhammad Ali to Malcolm X.

In No Crystal Stair, Coretta Scott King Award-winning author Vaunda Micheaux Nelson combines meticulous research with a storyteller's flair to document the life and times of her great uncle Lewis Michaux, an extraordinary literacy pioneer of the Civil Rights era.

"My life was no crystal stair, far from it. But I'm taking my leave with some pride. It tickles me to know that those folks who said I could never sell books to black people are eating crow. I'd say my seeds grew pretty damn well. And not just the book business. It's the more important business of moving our people forward that has real meaning."






Click for a larger image of I, Too, Am America

I, Too, Am America
by Langston Hughes, Illustrated by Bryan Collier

Publication Date:
List Price: $16.99 (store prices may vary)
Format: Hardcover
Classification: Children’s
Age: 4 - 8
Page Count: 40
ISBN13: 9781442420083
Imprint: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, Inc.
Parent Company: CBS Corporation

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Book Description: 

I, too, sing America. I am the darker brother. They send me to eat in the kitchen When company comes, But I laugh, And eat well, And grow strong.

Langston Hughes was a courageous voice of his time, and his authentic call for equality still rings true today. Beautiful paintings from Barack Obama illustrator Bryan Collier accompany and reinvent the celebrated lines of the poem "I, Too," creating a breathtaking reminder to all Americans that we are united despite our differences.

This picture book of Langston Hughes’s celebrated poem, "I, Too, Am America," is also a Common Core Text Exemplar for Poetry.




Click for a larger image of Ellen’s Broom

Ellen’s Broom
by Kelly Starling Lyons, Illustrated by Daniel Minter

Publication Date:
List Price: $16.99 (store prices may vary)
Format: Hardcover
Classification: Children’s
Age: 5 - 8
Page Count: 32
ISBN13: 9780399250033
Imprint: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Parent Company: Bertelsmann and Pearson PLC

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Book Description: 

A young girl learns a new meaning for freedom during the time of Reconstruction

Ellen always knew the broom resting above the hearth was special. Before it was legal for her mother and father to officially be married, the broom was what made them a family anyway. But now all former slaves who had already been married in their hearts could register as lawful husband and wife.

When Ellen and her family make the long trip to the courthouse dressed in their best, she brings the broom her parents had jumped so many years before. Even though freedom has come, Ellen knows the old traditions are important too. After Mama and Papa's names are recorded in the register, Ellen nearly bursts with pride as her parents jump the broom once again.

Ellen is a wonderfully endearing character whose love for her family is brought to life in Daniel Minter's rich and eye-catching block print illustrations.






Click for a larger image of H.O.R.S.E.: A Game Of Basketball And Imagination

H.O.R.S.E.: A Game Of Basketball And Imagination
by Christopher Myers, Illustrated by Christopher Myers

Publication Date:
List Price: $18.99 (store prices may vary)
Format: Hardcover
Classification: Children’s
Age: 5 - 9
Page Count: 40
ISBN13: 9781606842188
Imprint: Egmont USA
Publisher: Lerner Publishing Group
Parent Company: Lerner Publishing Group

Read a Description of H.O.R.S.E.: A Game Of Basketball And Imagination


Book Description: 

One day at the basketball court, two kids, a familiar challenge—H.O.R.S.E.?

But this isn’t your grandmother’s game of hoops.

Not when a layup from the other side of the court standing on one foot with your eyes closed is just the warm-up.

Around the neighborhood, around the world, off Saturn’s rings, the pair goes back and forth.

The game is as much about skill as it is about imagination.

A slam dunk from multi-award-winning author/illustrator Christopher Myers, H.O.R.S.E. is a celebration of the sport of basketball, the art of trash-talking, and the idea that what’s possible is bounded only by what you can dream.




Click for a larger image of I Have a Dream

I Have a Dream
by Martin Luther King, Jr., Illustrated by Kadir Nelson

Publication Date:
Format: Hardcover
Classification: Children’s
Age: 5 - 9
Page Count: 40
ISBN13: 9780375858871
Imprint: Random House Children’s Books
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Parent Company: Bertelsmann and Pearson PLC

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Book Description: 

From Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s daughter, Dr. Bernice A. King: “My father’s dream continues to live on from generation to generation, and this beautiful and powerful illustrated edition of his world-changing "I Have a Dream" speech brings his inspiring message of freedom, equality, and peace to the youngest among us—those who will one day carry his dream forward for everyone.”

On August 28, 1963, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington, Martin Luther King gave one of the most powerful and memorable speeches in our nation's history. His words, paired with Caldecott Honor winner Kadir Nelson's magnificent paintings, make for a picture book certain to be treasured by children and adults alike. The themes of equality and freedom for all are not only relevant today, 50 years later, but also provide young readers with an important introduction to our nation's past. Included with the book is an audio CD of the speech.