Children's Literature and Reading Special Interest Group of the International Reading Association

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Notable Books for a Global Society
(Outstanding K-12 Multicultural Literature)

About the Book Selection Program
Book Lists: What Books Have Been Selected?
Committee Members
Annotated Reprints
Book Award Stickers
Nominating Books

About the Book Selection Program

This program is a guide to multicultural literature for all of those seeking excellent selections for readers ranging from kindergarten through high school.

The Notable Books for a Global Society (NBGS) Committee, part of the IRA CL/R SIG, selects each year a list of outstanding trade books for enhancing student understanding of people and cultures throughout the world. Winning titles include fiction, nonfiction, and poetry written for students in grades K-12.

The winning titles each year are announced at the International Reading Association Convention. An article describing the selections is included in the fall issue of The Dragon Lode.

The first list was published in 1996. Dr. Yvonne Siu-Runyan is the IRA CL/R SIG member who conceived the idea and shepherded the creation of this award list.



To be eligible for selection, a trade book must have been published in the United States for the first time during the year of copyrights under consideration. For example, books selected for the 2007 list must have a 2006 copyright date.

Part I
(Meet one or more criteria from this section.)

• Portray cultural accuracy and authenticity of characters in terms of (a) physical characteristics,
(b) intellectual abilities and problem solving capabilities, (c) leadership and cooperative dimensions, and (d) social and economic status;
• Be rich in cultural details;
• Honor and celebrate diversity as well as common bonds in humanity;
• Provide in-depth treatment of cultural issues;
• Include characters within a cultural group or between two or more cultural groups who interact substantively and authentically;
• Iinclude members of a “minority” group for a purpose other than filling a “quota.”

Part II
(Meet all criteria from this section.)

• Invite reflection, critical analysis, and response;
• Demonstrate unique language or style;
• Meet generally-accepted criteria of quality for the genre in which they are written; and
• Have an appealing format and be of enduring quality.


Book Lists: What Books Have Been Selected?
Twenty-five (25) books are selected each year. Click on a year to reach the list of books honored as Notable Books for a Global Society.

2007 (selected from books published in 2006)
2006 (selected from books published in 2005)

2005 (selected from books published in 2004)
2004 (selected from books published in 2003)
2003 (selected from books published in 2002)

2002 (selected from books published in 2001)
2001 (selected from books published in 2000)
2000 (selected from books published in 1999)
1999 (selected from books published in 1998)
1998 (selected from books published in 1997)
1997 (selected from books published in 1996)
(selected from books published in 1995)


Committee Members

There are nine (9) members of the Notable Books for a Global Society (NBGS) Committee, including the Chair and the Co-Chair. Additionally, the past Chair serves as an advisor and the President-Elect is the Executive Committee liaison. Three new members are appointed annually at the beginning of each calendar year by the President of the IRA CL/R SIG and the incoming NBGS Chair from among candidates who respond to the call for members for the Committee published in the fall issue of The Dragon Lode and on the website. The Co-Chair, selected by the incoming Chair and the current President, becomes Chair in the succeeding year.

As far as possible, the Committee members are representative of the SIG’s membership through gender, regions of residence, and professional positions (classroom teachers, teacher educators, etc.) Preference is given to applicants who have not served previously on the committee.

Committee members are obligated to attend meetings of the Committee both at the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) Convention in November and the International Reading Association (IRA) Convention in May.

Each committee member reads over 500 books in preparation for the selection of books for the Notables list.

The NBGS Committee solicits nominations for the award, prepares annotated lists of the winners for publication in The Dragon Lode and other related publications, orally presents the books at the annual Convention of IRA, notifies publishers when their books have won, and conducts other activities to promote this award. In our lists of committee members, two lists of NBGS Committee members are included because in a given year committee members are busy with tasks related to more than one award year.

Comprehensive list of those serving on this committee.

Annotated Reprints

Each year The Dragon Lode publishes the list of Notable Books for a Global Society. Included in the article are annotations for each winning book, teaching ideas for each title, and related books for each of the 25 selections.

Reprints of the articles are available for $2.50 per list. Order your reprints today!

Also use the Subscription and Membership Form so you can subscribe to The Dragon Lode and not miss forthcoming lists in this excellent series!


Book Award Stickers

Distinctive seals for the Notable Books for a Global Society books are available for a modest fee. Obtain your set of distinctive Notable Seals to affix to the books in your collection to easily identify them as well as to assist in publicizing this award collection.


Nominating Books

Nominations for a forthcoming list of Notable Books for a Global Society are welcomed! The committee seeks very recent titles to read to consider for this award, and you may know of a highly deserving new book. Please let us know about it.

To nominate a book which you believe meets the criteria, please send to the chair of the appropriate committee the title, author, publisher, and ISBN number if possible.

Nominations must be received by November 15.

Please remember that books which are announced in May as Notable Books for a Global Society for that year have a copyright date of the preceding year (therefore, for books selected for the 2006 list must have a 2005 copyright date).



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Dr. Kaye West, Webmanager
Date modified: May 17, 2007 . Feedback