TRANSLATED YA PRIZE: PURPOSE & CRITERIA

The purpose of the GLLI Translated YA Book Award is to recognize publishers, translators, and authors of books in English translation for young adult readers. The award has been established to honor the most outstanding translated work that was originally written and published (or simultaneously published) in a language other than English. For at least the first few years of this prize, works published within three years of the submission deadline will be considered. For the 2021 prize, books must be published in 2018, 2019, or 2020. 

Terms 

1. This award – a winner and up to three honor books — will be granted to an author, a translator, and a publisher, the location of any of which is not a factor in the awarding of this prize. 

2. The award, in the form of a citation, shall be made annually, unless no book of that particular year is deemed worthy of the honor. 

Definitions 

1. “YA book” means a trade publication intended for readers between the ages of 12 and 18 inclusive. Books for this entire age range are to be considered. 

2. “Book” means the work was published in book format both in its country of origin and in translation. The translated book is neither a condensation, excerpt, nor abridgement of the original book. 

3. “Unless no book of that particular year is deemed worthy of the honor” indicates that a committee may choose not to select an Award winner if no book is judged to have met the terms and criteria established for the award. 

Criteria

1. Focus of attention: 

Primary attention must be directed to the text. Illustrated books, such as graphic novels and picture books, should contain a minimum of approximately 500 words of text. Fiction, nonfiction, and poetry are eligible for the award. 

2. Relationship to original work: 

The translation should be true to the substance (e.g., plot, characterization, setting) and flavor of the original work, and should retain the viewpoint of the author. 

3. Quality of the Translated Book: 

The textual qualities to be evaluated will vary depending on the content and type of the book being considered. Each book should be evaluated only on the elements pertinent to it. These include: 

● Interpretation of the theme or concept
● Presentation of information, including accuracy, clarity, and organization 
● Development of plot and characters
● Appropriateness of style 

4. In all cases, committee members must consider the book’s manner of presentation for and the potential appeal to a YA audience. 

5. Aspects of the overall design of the book should be considered when they significantly enhance or detract from the text, thus making the book more or less effective as a YA book. Such aspects might include: illustration, typeface, layout, back matter, book jacket, etc. In the instances of graphic novels and other illustrated works, consideration should be given to the retention of the original illustrator’s work in the translated edition. 

NOTE: Often it will be impossible for the committee members to read the book in its original language. Therefore, the committee must use its best judgment in evaluating the quality of the translation (see point 2 above), keeping in mind that a translated book is distinct from the originally published work.