I’m honoured that Punch Like a Girl is one of two runners-up for the 2017 Joan F. Kaywell Books Save Lives Award.
This award – presented to young-adult authors who write to save lives and honor diversity – is named after University of South Florida professor Dr. Kaywell. A faculty member of the Department of Secondary English Education for more than two decades, Dr. Kaywell has championed young-adult literature throughout her career, focusing on books that uplift the downtrodden. She’s the author of a book I adore – Dear Author: Letters of Hope, in which top young-adult authors respond by letter to kids’ toughest issues. She’s also a book reviewer and past president of the Assembly on Literature for Adolescents of the National Council of Teachers of English (ALAN).
Through the Florida Council of Teachers of English (FCTE), an award committee selects “the book that best represents an adolescent’s overcoming a situation – not of his or her own making – in such a way to provide significant insight and hope to a reader.”
Laurie Halse Anderson received the 2016 Joan F. Kaywell Books Save Lives Award for The Impossible Knife of Memory. In 2017, Paige Rawl will receive the award for Positive: A Memoir. Punch Like a Girl is in excellent company.