Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Society of Authors events

two SoAvents that you may like to attend.

Adventures in the real world: factual books and reading for pleasure
19 July, 5.45-8pm,  Waterstones Piccadilly, 203-206 Piccadilly, London, W1J 9HD

Children love reading about pirates, animals, robots, space, monsters... anything and everything wondrous and exciting. They love adventurous stories and bizarre inventions. And they don't love it any less if what they read is true - so why does Reading for Pleasure so often focus on fiction? 

Our panel of experts discusses the huge benefits of reading factual books for pleasure, engaging young readers who might not enjoy fiction, and broadening the horizons of those who do. 
Jenny Broom is a publisher at Quarto, producers of the award-winning Atlas of AdventuresDawn Finch is President of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, a vociferous library campaigner, trained librarian and children’s author; Nicola Morgan, Society of Authors’ Children’s Writers and Illustrator Group Chair, author of award-winning novels, factual books and an expert in the science of readaxation and reading for wellbeing; and Zoe Toft of the Federation of Children’s Books Groups, an independent children’s book consultant who oversees Non-Fiction November. Chaired by Anne Rooney, author of around 150 children’s information books on many subjects and Chair of the Society of Authors’ Educational Writers Group.

The talk will be followed by a drinks reception. Tickets for Carousel subscribers cost £10 
online booking as SoA members using an offer code SOA16 or £12 offline by calling the Society of Authors on 0207 373 6642. Please quote event code 571.
Diverse voices:  children's literature in translation 
20 October 2016, 2-4pm,  English Speaking Union, Dartmouth House, 37 Charles Street, London, W1J 5ED.

Some of the most loved children’s books in the UK have been translated into English from their original language - Pippi LongstockingEmil and the DetectivesHeidi, as well as Tintin and Asterix. Despite this, translated  literature makes up a very small percentage of the total number of children’s books published in the UK each year. In an globalised world, where intercultural exchange is widespread and multi-faceted, this lack of access to children’s literature which has been produced outside the English-speaking world could be seen as a problematic gap in young people’s cultural education; as Skellig author David Almond puts it: "children need to read the best books by the best writers from all parts of the world… (or) our children are missing out."

After the discussion with panellists Annie Eaton (Penguin Random House), Gill Evans (Walker Books), Sarah Odedina (Pushkin Press) and chair  Joy Court (Schools Library Services) the shortlist for the 2017 Marsh Award for Children’s Literature in Translation will be announced. 

Refreshments (tea and cakes) will be served. Tickets are £10, with a concession of £5 available for students. Book now

Saturday, July 09, 2016

BookTrust Lifetime Achievement Award 2016 Winner - Judith Kerr

Tiger Who Came to Tea and Mog author wins
BookTrust Lifetime Achievement Award 2016

Author and illustrator Judith Kerr, who escaped from Hitler’s Germany as a child and went on to write over 30 children’s books, including one of the best-selling of all time, The Tiger Who Came to Tea, has been named BookTrust Lifetime Achievement Award Winner, 2016.

The award, which BookTrust set up to celebrate the body of work of an author or illustrator who has made an outstanding contribution to children’s literature, is being presented to Judith at a ceremony hosted by former Children’s Laureate and BookTrust President, Michael Morpurgo, at London Zoo on Wednesday 6 July 2016. {For more information on this please see contact details.}

The judges of the Book Trust Lifetime Achievement Award were:

·         Nicolette Jones, writer, critic and broadcaster, specialising in literary and arts journalism
·         Shami Chakrabarti, human rights campaigner and chair of the Baileys Prize for Womens’ Fiction in 2015
·         Cressida Cowell, author and illustrator of twelve books in the popular How to Train Your Dragon series which has sold over seven million copies worldwide
·         Chris Riddell, prolific writer and illustrator, Children’s Laureate
·         John Agard, one of the most exciting poets writing in the English language today and winner of the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry in 2013
·         Diana Gerald, BookTrust chief executive.

Judith Kerr said: “I am honoured and delighted that I have been chosen to receive the BookTrust’s Lifetime Achievement Award. I thank them very much, and as the presentation is to be at London Zoo, I’ll also be able to thank the tigers in the tiger enclosure who started it all.”

Judith is best known for her children's books, including the 17-strong Mog series and The Tiger Who Came to Tea, and her biographical trilogy Out of the Hitler Time, that tells the story of her family’s flight from Nazi Germany, and travel through Switzerland, France and eventually settling in England. She has sold more than nine million books world-wide and her works have been translated into 25 different languages.

Mog has featured on bestseller lists for the past 30 years and sold more than four million copies. In December 2015 Mog’s Christmas Calamity was published in association with Sainsburys and was the subject of their Christmas advertising, raising over one million pounds for Save the Children’s literacy campaign. On the week of publication, it was the fastest selling book in the industry reaching No. 1 in the overall book charts for four weeks, making it the bestselling picture book of 2015.

Judith’s first picture book, The Tiger Who Came to Tea, was published in 1968 and became a classic, selling over 5 million copies, making it one of the best- selling children’s books of all time.

In September this year Judith will travel to Berlin for the publication of Mister Cleghorn’s Seal in Germany by Fischer-Verlag, the publishers of her father Alfred Kerr’s books in Germany.

In 2012, Judith was awarded the OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for her services to children's literature and Holocaust Education.

As Britain’s largest reading charity, BookTrust is keen to see children’s authors acknowledged for their part in getting children to adopt a lifelong love of reading, so they can reap the many benefits that reading for pleasure can bring.

Book Trust CEO, Diana Gerald, says:

“Great authors and illustrators bring children to books and books to children. We know that books can be the life-changing milestone in children’s lives and we want to celebrate the work of authors whose books have that kind of impact.
“Judith is one of those people. Her fantastic stories and illustrations have enthralled children and their parents over several generations, and continue to do so to this day. Her remarkable life is only eclipsed by the remarkably enduring tales of her characters and creatures:  Mog, the adventurous and engaging cat, and the tiger who came into so many of our lives when gatecrashing tea-time in Sophie’s household. We are truly thrilled to be here today to honour Judith’s life’s work with this award.”

Lifetime Achievement Award judge chairperson, Nicolette Jones said:
“Judith Kerr created one of our most enduringly loved picture books in The Tiger Who Came to Tea, continuously in print since 1968. In her stories of Mog the cat, who thinks like a child in a grown-up world, in all her picture books, and in her astonishing new departure into illustrated young fiction in her 90s, Mr Cleghorn’s Seal, Judith has shown charm, skill, humour and empathy, while her trilogy beginning with When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit has had a significant impact on a generation’s understanding of the Holocaust, wartime Europe, and the experience of refugees. She is an important witness to history and has made a huge contribution to illustration and to our reading culture.”

·         Comments from some other judges below.

·         Judith Kerr biography here: https://www.harpercollins.co.uk/cr-100004/judith-kerr


UKLA Book Awards

The unique UKLA Book Awards are the only awards to be judged entirely by teachers. Their choice of winning books which, according to the criteria, can “enhance all aspects of literacy learning” clearly demonstrates the fresh perspective that class teachers bring to the judging of book awards.   They are able to share the books with their classes and discover what genuinely works with young readers in each of the three age categories.  As well as endorsing the brilliance of Frances Hardinge’s overall Costa Winner, The Lie Tree for 12-16’stheir 7-11 winner reflects once again the importance of illustration to this age group. The Imaginary by A.F Harrold was double Greenaway medal winner Emily Gravett’s first foray into illustrating a full length novel. The 12 judges who made up the final panel showed the strength and depth of the three shortlists by also Highly Commending books in both the 7-11 and 3-6 categories with Alex. T Smith’s vividly illustrated and wittily diverse twist on a familiar nursery tale, Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion, winning the 3-6 category.
For UKLA, giving classroom practitioners the opportunity to read a number of new quality children’s books is as important as finding an overall winner. Research carried out by members of UKLA (Cremin et al 2008) clearly demonstrated the links between teachers’ knowledge of children’s books and the likelihood of pupils becoming successful readers. Despite this evidence, teachers are seldom given time to read new books or funding to purchase them when they do. As Awards Chair Lynda Graham said:
I am so impressed by the level of commitment shown by teacher judges from Bristol this year.  Work in classrooms based around our shortlisted books has been thoughtful, imaginative, creative and in many instances, quite stunning. It was very moving to hear them describe how being involved in this judging process has had a real impact in their schools and upon their pupils’ enthusiasm for reading”.
This makes these awards particularly useful for co-sponsor Peter Crawshaw, Director and Co-founder of Lovereading4kids, who said:
“Lovereading4schools and its sister site Lovereading4kids are delighted to support the UKLA Book Awards. The fact that the teacher judges reflect on their students’ responses to the books gives the award huge credibility and trust that schools use to know the books will be loved by their own pupils. The awards are equally valuable for parents looking for books their children will enjoy.”
The Award winners for the book categories 3 to 6, 7 to11 and 12 to16+ years will be announced and presented at a wine reception at the UKLA International Conference at the Mercure Bristol Holland House Hotel and Spa in Bristol on July 8th.
Andrew Lambirth, President of UKLA said “I am delighted that the UKLA Book Awards continue to highlight some of the best children's literature available to children and young people. I'm proud that the process of selection of the winners is undertaken within a real spirit of community, involving so many people from within education. Congratulations to all the winners and runners up this year”
The winning book in the 12 to16 + category is the Lie Tree by Francis Hardinge, published by Macmillan.
It is the brilliant powerful language of Frances Hardinge’s wholly compelling, dark mystery that so impressed the judges. The perfectly portrayed Victorian period with the themes of science, religion and the role of women stimulated really interesting class discussion. Despite the fantastically weird story of the Lie Tree itself this is an intensely human novel with young readers able to really relate to Faith and feel her anger and frustration and her growing realization of parental fallibility.

The winning book in the 7 to 11 category is The Imaginary by A.F. Harrold and Emily Gravett, published by Bloomsbury

A beautifully written and perfectly illustrated tale that has clever elements of observational comedy and refreshingly candid, engaging characterisation set within a deliciously scary story that completely won over the judges. A.F. Harrold’s poetic language takes readers to the dark heart of imagination where the very nature of friendship is tested. This is a very moving, accessible and yet challenging book which certainly stimulates young readers to use their own imagination.

The judges also presented a Highly Commended 7-11 Award to The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel, published by David Fickling

Judges commended this adventure on a huge scale, with hurtling action beautifully complemented by an unusually reflective hero and a wonderfully vivid supporting cast and setting. A much faster paced read than the length would suggest, helped by the use of present tense, with young readers also stimulated by the imaginative use of language and fascinated by the moral dilemmas portrayed.

The winning book for the 3 to 6 category is Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion by Alex.T.Smith, published by Scholastic

Little Red Riding Hood transposed to an African town setting where a lion is really no match for a clever small girl delighted the judges with its exuberant original twisting of the traditional story. The inventive layout of the text and its relationship to the witty, beautifully coloured illustrations really enhance the child friendly storytelling. The empowering portrayal of different cultures and a heroine who is not a naive victim ensure that this will become a classroom classic.
The judges also presented a Highly Commended 3-6 Award to On Sudden Hill by Linda Sarah and Benji Davies, published by Simon & Schuster
Judges commended this poignant tale which approaches difficult areas for children and does so with sensitivity and a real understanding of childhood relationships with each other. Emotive imagery in both the poetic language and the subtle, gentle pictures can prompt useful discussion of restorative justice as well as inspiring imaginative use of cardboard boxes!
The Shortlists in full
This Book Just Ate My Dog! by Richard Byrne (author/illustrator)(Oxford University Press)
The Something by Rebecca Cobb (author /illustrator) (Macmillan Children's Books)
I am Henry Finch by Alexis Deacon (author) and Viviane Schwarz (illustrator)(Walker Books)
The Dad with 10 Children by Bénédicte Guettier (author/Illustrator) (Scribblers Books)
On Sudden Hill by Linda Sarah (author) and Benji Davies (illustrator) (Simon & Schuster Children's Books)
Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion by Alex T Smith (author/illustrator) (Scholastic Children's Books)

The Fish in the Bathtub by Eoin Colfer (author) and Peter Bailey (illustrator)(Barrington Stoke)
Hercufleas by Sam Gayton and Peter Cottrill (illustrator)     (Andersen Press)
The Imaginary by A.F Harrold(author) and Emily Gravett(illustrator)(Bloomsbury)
The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel (David Fickling Books)
The Pilot and the Little Prince by Peter Sís (Pushkin Press)
Atlas of Adventures by Rachel Williams (author) and Lucy Leatherland (illustrator)(Wide Eyed Editions)

The Door that Led to Where by Sally Gardner (Hot Key Books)
The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge (Macmillan Children's Books)
There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake (Bloomsbury)
An Island of Our Own by Sally Nicholls (Scholastic Children's Books)
All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven (Puffin)
The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgewick (Orion Indigo)

Full details of the Awards and the winners (from 7.15pm on 8 July), the shortlist, and reviews of the winning and shortlisted books, are on https://ukla.org/awards/ukla-book-award

Saturday, July 02, 2016

DK findout! Series

What do you want to find out?
***New children’s series from the creators of the DKfindout! website***
Publication Date: 1st July 2016       Price: £5.99 each
In January 2015 DK launched DKfindout! - a global education website for children, parents and teachers that brought DK’s distinctive visual approach to the internet.  The website saw over 400,000 sessions in May this year and this number continues to grow rapidly. Due to the website’s rich content, engaging visuals and core educational information, the site has seen 1.7 million sessions this year alone, with close to 2 million users, and more than 11.4 million page views.  
This summer, DK will launch the DKfindout! brand in print, with six brand new DKfindout! books on key educational and high interest homework  topics for children aged 6-9. The new titles are: DKfindout! Ancient Rome, Solar System, Animals, Dinosaurs, Science and Volcanoes.
Each book is bursting with cool facts, amazing images, quizzes and key information bringing each topic to life. Throughout the process of making the new series, parents and educators have been asked for feedback and most importantly, children have been consulted to ensure the content is exactly right for the readership.
Not only are these books engaging and attention-grabbing, this innovative series will provide children with a unique learning experience when it comes to homework support. Each book has been designed in a way that allows readers to navigate their way through the content in a way that suits them, similar to how dkfindout.com works. The graphics are fresh and simple and sit perfectly alongside new photography and illustrations. Traditional subjects have been made fun, exciting and inspirational, providing an alternative way for children to learn through the use of flaps, child friendly charts, quizzes, diagrams and exclusive interviews with key experts which give a first-person insight into each subject.
Sarah Larter, Publisher for DKfindout! says, “2016 marks the start of this new, exciting  series. We have 12 new titles planned for 2017 and will continue to grow the series further, creating a colourful library of pocket-money priced books on topics that children love. Not only will the series provide a huge offering to children looking for support and information on homework assignments, the DKfindout! series will help kids become experts on their favorite topics. The books are vibrant, shiny and glossy and not an inch of the inside pages or the cover is wasted.”
Titles coming in 2017: Stone Age, Sharks, Pirates, Ancient Egypt, Human Body, Earth, World War II and Amphibians and Reptiles.

DKfindout! Enjoyed by children, trusted by parents, recommended by teachers, made by DK.