Just Back From

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Just back from the first session of judging the Branford Boase first children's novel award, and what a thrillingly strong shortlist we've arrived at. Can't reveal it yet, but it will be released very shortly. There are six books on it. And, in a strong year when the number of submissions was over thirty (the highest ever), quite a few really good books didn't quite make it. It's a shortlist that would flatter any award, let alone a first novel award. The judges (Kevin Brooks, Sarah Wilkie, Lesley Agnew, Julia Eccleshare and me - chaired by Anne Marley) meet later in May to pick the winner.

We each had to take half a dozen of the submitted novels to the judging, which meant there was no room in my bag for unread ACHUKA reading, which I am inevitably much behind with. So I slipped into Smiths on Victoria station, had a quick scan of the adult fiction shelves, and selected I'm Not Scared by Niccolo Ammaniti, which comes with five pages of rave review clippings, and has been made into a movie. I didn't quite finish it on the train, but it is transfixing, once I had overcome my annoyance at frequent comma splices, which might be the fault of the translator, not the author.

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This page contains a single entry by achuka published on April 28, 2004 8:08 PM.

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