Two Brazilian LGBTQ novels awarded 2021 GLLI Translated YA Prize

Today is International Children’s Book Day, celebrated annually on April 2, the birthday of Hans Christian Andersen, and it’s also the day that the GLLI Translated YA Prize is announced. And the winners are…

Here the Whole Time by Vitor Martins and Where We Go from Here by Lucas Rocha, both translated from the Portuguese by Larissa Helena!

We’re thrilled to see these two teen novels celebrating contemporary gay life in Brazil as the co-winners of the 2021 GLLI Translated YA Book Prize!

Both are published by Scholastic Press in USA, and Here the Whole Time is also published in the UK by Hodder.

Here the Whole Time is a touching coming-of-age story that expresses the vulnerability of an overweight gay teen, with humor, heart, and authenticity.

Where We Go from Here, set in Rio de Janeiro, tackles the taboo subject of prejudice against those who are HIV positive with joy and humanity.

In World Kid Lit Month last year (September), Lawrence Schimel interviewed Larissa about her work on these two brilliant books here on the blog, and Here the Whole Time was one of our 2020 Best Young Adult picks.

In-depth interviews with the authors and translators of this year’s and last year’s winners of the GLLI Translated YA Book Prize will be featured in an online presentation to be released on April 14 at 2:30pm CDT as part of the University of Southern Mississippi’s Fay B. Kaigler Children’s Book Festival. The festival is free and open to the public (registration required).

More about the GLLI Translated YA Prize

Launched two years ago with the inaugural prize presented in 2019, the prize was created to raise the profile of translated literature for teens. Fewer young adult (YA) books are translated into English than any other type of children’s literature. The Global Literature in Libraries Initiative (GLLI) prize aims to focus attention on the gems of world literature for 12-to-18-year-olds.

GLLI Executive Director Karen Van Drie said, “Submissions have increased by more than a third this year. That suggests growing publisher interest and commitment to global literature and their recognition of the importance of sharing perspectives from abroad.”

The committee also selected two honor books: Almond by Won-pyung Sohn (translated from Korean by Sandy Joosun Lee and published by HarperVia), the gritty story of a Korean teen born with a condition that leaves him unable to identify or express emotion, and The End by Mats Strandberg (translated from Swedish by Judith Kiros and published by Arctis Books), in which Swedish teens have 4 months to come to grips with the fact that world will be ending.

The winning books were selected from a field of titles translated from 16 languages and representing 21 countries or regions from Bangladesh to Belgium. Works published within three years of the submission deadline were considered.

GLLI regularly showcases and reviews world literature and the blog focused on Brazilian literature most recently in April 2020. Check out GLLI on Facebook, Twitter (@GlobalLitin), as well as at the GLLI website.

The 2021 Shortlist

The shortlist of 13 titles contains a diversity of themes and subject matter of interest to every teen imaginable: from a horror story about a Halloween-like event gone wrong, the true voices of immigrants crossing the US southern border, and a graphic novel of friendship amid a zombie apocalypse, to a magical, fable-like tale of a stereotype-busting woman from Palestine.

Abigail by Magda Szabó, translated from the Hungarian by Len Rix (New York Review Books, 2020) — HUNGARY

Almond by Won-pyung Sohn, translated from the Korean by Sandy Joosun Lee (HarperVia, 2020) – SOUTH KOREA

The Blue Wings by Jef Aerts, translated from the Flemish by Laura Watkinson (Levine Querido, 2020) — BELGIUM

A Castle in the Clouds by Kerstin Gier, translated from the German by Romy Fursland (Henry Holt, 2020) – GERMANY

The End by Mats Strandberg, translated from the Swedish by Judith Kiros (Arctis Books, 2020) –SWEDEN

Ever After written, illustrated and translated from the German by Olivia Vieweg (Lerner, 2020) – GERMANY

The Forgotten Book by Mechthild Gläser, translated from the German by Romy Fursland (Feiwel & Friends, 2018) — GERMANY

Fright Night by Maren Stoffels, translated from the Dutch by Laura Watkinson (Delacorte, 2020) – THE NETHERLANDS

Here the Whole Time by Vitor Martins, translated from the Portuguese by Larissa Helena (Scholastic, 2020) – BRAZIL

The Other Side by Juan Pablo Villalobos, translated from the Spanish by Rosalind Harvey (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2019) – MEXICO

Run for Your Life by Silvana Gandolfi, translated from the Italian by Lynne Sharon Schwartz (Restless Books, 2018) – ITALY

Where We Go from Here by Lucas Rocha, translated from the Portuguese by Larissa Helena (Scholastic, 2020) – BRAZIL

Wondrous Journeys in Strange Lands by Sonia Nimr, translated from the Arabic by Marcia Lynx Qualey (Interlink Publishing, 2020) – PALESTINE