Thursday, April 20, 2006
British Children's Book Prizes
So a bit of news . The British Children's Book of Year was announced with Ark Angel by Anthony Horowitz (Walker Books) taking the prize. The winner is one that I don't know, but will have to look for as they are almost always really good including the short-list which follows: Eldest by Christopher Paolini (Doubleday), SilverFin by Charlie Higson (Puffin), Wizardology by Dougald Steer (Templar), I, Corriander, by Sally Gardner (Orion), and "...and that's when it fell off in my hand" by Louise Rennison (Harper Collins). Of these titles, I have only read two. Wizardology is great, but not my cup of tea, although much loved by legions of young boys. I, Corriander was incredible though, with a convincingly smooth blend of history and fanstasy. I enjoyed following the main character, Corriander and her family through a series of misadventures that include: her fairy mother's untimely and suspicious death, her father's second marriage to a horrible woman who pretends piety yet only wants his worldly goods and schemes with an evil man who pretends to be a priest, her father having to go into hiding when he is accused of being a loyalist at a time when loyalists are losing their property if not their lives, the rescue of her battered step-sister, and an trip into fairy land where she must outwit the wicked fairy queen. I know, I know... it all sounds so dramatic and over the top, and I suppose it is, but then again it is soooo good. I, Corriander is one of those books that you will have a hard time putting down.
The W H Smith Book of the Year is J. K. Rowlings Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. No need to comment on Rowlings success except to say "Don't I wish..."