annual literary award for writing a children's book published and under-recognized 20 years ago
The Phoenix Award annually recognizes one English-language children's book published twenty years earlier that did not then win a major literary award. It is named for the mythical bird phoenix that is reborn from its own ashes, signifying the book's rise from relative obscurity.The award was established and is conferred by the Children's Literature Association (ChLA), a nonprofit organization based in the United States whose mission is to advance "the serious study of children's literature". The winner is selected by an elected committee of five ChLA members, from nominations by members and outsiders. The token is a brass statue.The inaugural, 1985 Phoenix Award recognized The Mark of the Horse Lord by Rosemary Sutcliff (Oxford, 1965). Beginning 1989, as many as two runners-up have been designated "Honor Books", with 34 named for the 29 years to 2017.A parallel award for children's picture books, the Phoenix Picture Book Award was approved in 2010 and inaugurated in 2013. There are two awards if the writer and illustrator are different people. "Books are considered not only for the quality of their illustrations, but for the way pictures and text work together to tell a story (whether fact or fiction). Wordless books are judged on the ability of the pictures alone to convey a story."
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