I am so grateful to say Up To This Pointe is a finalist for this beautiful award presented annually by The Oklahoma Library Association. The Sequoyah Book Award is given in honor of the Native American leader Sequoyah, for his unique achievement in creating the Cherokee syllabary. Sequoyah chose eighty-five symbols to represent all spoken sounds of the Cherokee language. In so doing, he created a way to preserve his people's language and culture.
The Sequoyah program, sponsored by the Oklahoma Library Association (OLA), is the third oldest youth-choice literary award in the nation and was developed to encourage young people to read books of literary quality. The award’s name honors the creator of the Cherokee syllabary that allows the tribe to write and read its language.
OLA has sponsored the award since 1959, when the now-classic Old Yeller by Fred Gipson was selected by children. Intermediate and High School award categories were added in 2010. Students from across the state—who read three or more titles on their Sequoyah list of age-appropriate books—are eligible to cast their votes. More than 14,000 young readers participated in the vote last year.
Thank you so much to Oklahoma Library Association, and to the readers, teachers and librarians who keep the magic of books and imagination alive. And congratulations to all the nominees!