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Salt Lake Tribune Newbery Medal Party

The Newbery Award, given to encourage "original creative work" in children's literature, was the first children's book award in the world. We'll be celebrating past favorites and the 2017 winner, The Girl Who Drank the Moon, at this party co-hosted with The Salt Lake Tribune. Our panelists will pitch favorite Newbery winners to the audience — think of it as book speed-dating — and then chat about books, the award and what makes the Newbery special (and sometimes controversial) with moderator Jennifer Napier-Pearce, editor of The Salt Lake Tribune.

Meet the panelists

Ally Condie is the Utah author of Matched, a three-volume, best-selling dystopian young adult series. Her latest book, a middle-grade contemporary novel titled Summerlost, is set in a town much like her native Cedar City. It tells the story of a girl who learns to negotiate her grief over the loss of her father and brother as she falls into a fast friendship with the quirky boy who lives on her street. The pair work and play around a theater company that resembles the Utah Shakespeare Festival. Learn more about Ally on her website.

She'll be pitching Where the Mountain Meets the Moon during the event's speed-dating round.

Lauren Liang is an associate professor in educational psychology at the University of Utah who teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in children’s and young adult literature and reading instruction. She served on this year's Caldecott committee, and is the author of a widely used children’s literature textbook "Literature and the Child."

She'll be pitching The Giver during the event's speed-dating round.

Gene Nelson is director of the Provo City Library. He read hundreds of books in 2016 as a member of the 2017 Newbery Award Selection Committee. Nelson is forbidden from revealing details about precisely why this year's winners were chosen over other great children's books, but he can — and will — talk about how much he loves the 2017 Medal winner, The Girl Who Drank the Moon, and give insight into what it takes to be on the committee, and how it makes its decision.


This is a ticketed event and seating is limited. Please click here to purchase your tickets to the party!


Event date: 
Tuesday, February 21, 2017 - 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Event address: 
The King's English Bookshop
1511 South 1500 East
Salt Lake City, UT 84102