Best Book Award Committee




The CALA Annual Best Book Award is to heighten awareness of the best books of Chinese topics or literature written by authors of Chinese descent. The Award is to honor English or Chinese language books originally published in North America. Winners of the Award will be announced by CALA and published in the ALA Cognotes during the ALA annual conference.

Composition & Term(s) o f Office

Chair: Appointed for a one-year term and cannot serve a consecutive term. Committee chair can be re-appointed for consecutive terms.
Member: Appointed by the President with the advice of the Board. One-year term.


The Best Book Award ad hoc Committee was formed in June, 2005.
Each category of the Award consists of an award certificate that will be presented at the CALA Annual Award Banquet. A press release will be sent to various national publications.
Honor books may be named in addition to the winning titles. If no books are found to meet the selection criteria, no awards will be given.

Major Responsibilities

• Members of the Committee must agree to read, and contribute opinions for as many nominated books assigned as possible.
• (2) The requirement to vote does require to have read all e-mails in regards to reviews, debates, critics, correspondence, etc.
• Find books about general and modern life in China and Chinese-American life in the United States . English translations of books originally in Chinese_ may be considered.
• Publishers should be contacted to send books to all committee members so there is less of a burden on members to search for and obtain books.

o To responding to newly nominated book for its qualification,
o To acquired books approved by the Committee as candidate through sellers, or borrowing from a member or a local library,
o To offer reviews, to critic members reviews via,
o To settle Issues that arise among members.


• The qualification of a work should strictly follow the CALA guidelines of the year.

Eligible Work

• Works eligible must have had premier publication during the previous calendar year from January 1 to December 31, and must have been published for general commercial release in the United States. Nominations may be accepted from the field and Committee up to April 19.
• Works must be related to Chinese culture heritage and deal with Chinese subject matters, or written by authors of Chinese descent.
• Works must have been published by a publishing house, trade or small press/publisher located in the North America or one of its territories. Self-published works and exclusive Internet publications are not eligible.
• Anthologies or books containing the work of more than one author are not eligible.
• Works must be in Chinese or English. This requirement does not limit the use of words or phrases in another language where appropriate in context. Translations of original works may be considered by the committee.
• Works that have previously won other prizes or recognition are eligible.

Entry of Works

• Entries may be submitted by an author, publisher, agent, publicist or individual.
• A self-addressed, stamped postcard should be submitted with each entry. Upon receipt of entry, the Award Committee members will return the postcard to the sender for notification of receipt of entry.
• The Award Committee is not responsible for lost submissions.
• An author, publisher, publicist, agent or individual may submit more than one entry per author, but not more than one entry per work.

Submission of Entry

Nominations must be submitted on the official form, which is available on the CALA web site at under online forms. Send all completed nomination forms (Please include publisher's e-mail, address, tel., agent) to the Yahoo BestChineseNewBookAward Group by April 19. Please label on the envelope "CALA Best Book Award" when mailing book(s).


• The committee shall send out the "Call for Nomination" to CALA members via CALA listserv.
• The committee shall announce the list of nominees in the CALA Newsletter or CALA Web.

Communication and Consultation

• Executive Director
• President.


• January

o Complete awards' criteria discussion; advertise the CALA Best Book Award at ALA Mid-Winter

• February

o Collect applicant forms from 2007. Committee Chair arranges an electronic discussion list for exclusive use by the committee so that discussions and nominations can take place throughout the selection year.

• March-April

o The chairs of the committee will assist in obtaining copies of the nominated titles for committee members; all nominated titles must be discussed. Committee members or nominators who have contact with publishers will also help in obtaining copies for review.

• May

o Conduct votes and report result sent to CALA Board. A written report will be submitted by the Committee Chair. It will be announced in the CALA listsery once the result is available, then posted in CALA website. Press release will be issued to various agencies, such as ALA Office for Literacy and Outreach Services, major Chinese language newspapers in North America, et al.

Report DueDates

Interim: Two weeks before the board meeting at mid- winter meeting.
Annual: Two weeks before the board meeting at annual conference.