The Disability in Kidlit guide to ALA Midwinter 2016

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This weekend is the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting. Since many dedicated Disability in Kidlit readers are attending, we thought we’d list titles featuring disabled characters you’ll be able to pick up on the con floor—including some #ownvoices titles!—as well as highlight other interesting events.

YMA logo#alamw16 means fascinating panels, author signings, ARC giveaways, and more. What’s even better: it means the announcement of the ALA Youth Media Awards. On Monday morning, we’ll find out who won this year! We’re happy to see there are several titles featuring disabled characters nominated, and several others are buzzed about as likely recipients.

Two of these books that we’ve seen award buzz for are Kimberly Brubaker Bradley’s The War That Saved My Life and Lynda Mullaly Hunt’s Fish in a Tree, and so we’re very excited to share reviews for these titles on January 9 and 10 as part of our second ever themed weekend!

Examples of other buzzed titles are Laura Ruby’s Bone Gap and Neal Shusterman’s Challenger Deep, both of which we’re hoping to review in the not-too-distant future. The former was nominated for the National Book Award, and the latter even won, so we wouldn’t be surprised if they picked up another award here!

William C. Morris Debut Award sealThe nominees for the William C. Morris Debut Award were revealed in November, and we’re incredibly curious about the winner, since out of five nominated titles, three feature disabled protagonists: Anne-Marie McLemore’s The Weight of Feathers, Stephanie Oakes’s The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly, and Leah Thomas’s Because You’ll Never Meet Me (our review).

Schneider Family Book Award sealFinally, to no one’s surprise, we’re incredibly eager to find out who won this year’s Schneider Family Book Award for disability representation. Do you have any guesses? Let us know on Twitter—we’re very curious to see which titles stuck in people’s minds the past year.

For those wandering the con floor, we decided to put together a list of the ARCs and finished copies of titles featuring disabled characters you might be able to pick up. Even better—some of the authors are attending and signing books.

Please note that we have not read the vast majority of these titles. These are not recommendations or even suggestions, as we can’t vouch for the quality of the book or portrayal of disability. We’re listing this purely to provide information.

We’re missing an awful lot of books—either we don’t know of it or we haven’t been able to confirm its presence at the show. If you know of a title with a disabled protagonist not listed that will be present at the show, let us know via Twitter or leave a comment here. We would love to fill out the list!

ABRAMS, booth #1825

Penguin, booth #1831

Flux, booth #2041

Pop Top Stage

  • Bounders by Monica Tesler
    (note: the author will be signing books after the Fantasy in Middle Grade panel, which takes place on Saturday from 11am-11.50am)
  • Run by Kody Keplinger (full disclosure: Disability in Kidlit co-founder)
    (note: the author will be signing books after the We Need Diverse Books panel, which takes place on Sunday from 11am-11.50am)



  1. Actually, Challenger Deep won the NBA, and Bone Gap was one of the finalists. Congratulations to the DiKL’ers with new books, and I hope all of you have a great time at ALA! Wish I could be there!

    • Disability in Kidlit

      Whoops! I knew that. I had CD listed first and BG second originally, then swapped them around to order them alphabetically and forgot to update the rest of the paragraph. Thank you for pointing that Out, Lyn!

      Kody is the only one of us at ALA, and the rest of us are SUPER JEALOUS. 🙂

      – Corinne