January 2006 Archives

Steam Punk

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Scotland on Sunday - The Review - What to do with a Heliopolis prince with his head stuck in the clouds

A review of Cloud World, a debut novel by David Cunningham:

The world is richly imagined and is recognisable as "steam-punk", a sub-genre of speculative fiction where the setting may be anachronistic, but certain alternative mechanical inventions have developed within the period's limitations. The nephologists and ornithopters of Cunningham's universe put Cloud World in the same broad tradition as China Mi�ville's New Crobuzon Trilogy, and Michael Moorcock's A Nomad of the Timestreams.... ...

ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

Small Steps by Louis Sachar

Although slighter than Holes, Small Steps still has Sachar�s familiar ease, intelligence, humour, suspense and humanity.

Lotte #46

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

Something Entirely Different

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Guardian Unlimited Books | Review | Review: The Princess and the Pea retold by Lauren Child

Up until now the characters in Lauren Child's books have seemingly been free to wander at will. With her scrawly drawing, her skewed perspective, her riotous use of colour and her magpie habit of borrowing pattern snippets from all over the place, she has created some wonderfully entertaining spreads in which, as in a child's drawing, everything on the page vies for attention. But in her new book, The Princess and the Pea, she takes a new, more focused approach, and has come up with something entirely different....

Joanna Carey writing in Guardian Review about The Princess And The Pea.

Delightful Tale

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Books - reviews and literary news from The Times and The Sunday Times

Amanda Craig reviews A SIngle Shard by Linda Sue Park

And in The Guardain Julia Eccleshare writes: "There is a charming high-mindedness in A Single Shard as Linda Sue Park recreates the hardship and simplicity of the potter's life at a time when craftsmanship was valued but not rewarded."

This novel has a bleak, low-key opening that may put off impatient children, but an extraordinarily moving and delightful tale develops.

Low Status

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Haaretz - Israel News - Not a single shop sells only children s books

"We don't have writers that know how to write for children," says Amira Abul Magd, the head of the children's publishing unit in the large Egyptian publishing house of Dar El-Shorouk, in describing the main obstacle affecting the state of reading in Arab countries.

Recommended article about the low status of children's books in Arab countries.

Ottakar's Winner

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Julia Golding, a UN campaigner and former diplomat, has won the second Ottakar�s Children�s Book Prize with debut children's book. a historical novel set in Georgian London. The Diamond of Drury Lane is published by Egmont Press (�6.99). The Ottakar�s Children�s Book Prize was set up to reward exciting new or not yet established authors of children�s books. The award is unique in prizes for children�s books not only because it rewards relatively unknown authors but also because it is both booksellers and children together who select the shortlist and ultimate winner.

Julia Golding says of winning the award, �"It's a dream debut to win the Ottakar's Book Prize with my first novel - I feel like the chorus girl suddenly chosen as leading lady!"


Podcast

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ACHUKACAST

The pilot podcast continues to acquire new listeners. The next edition wil be available early February.

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Lotte #45

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

Odd And Getting Odder

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Independent Online Edition > Features

Russell Hoban : Odd, and getting odder

Independent Feature - Recommended

Lynne Rae Perkins

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USATODAY.com - Perkins, 'Criss Cross' come of age to win Newbery
Short news feature about Lynne Rae Perkins, winner of the Newbery Medal 2006 with her novel Criss Cross [see below].

Jan Mark Obit. - The Guardian

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Guardian Unlimited Books | By genre | Jan Mark

Guardian Obituary - Jan Mark

Jointly written by David Fickling, Philip Pullman and Jon Appleton

Recommended

Jan Mark - London Times Obit.

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Jan Mark - Comment - Times Online

London Times Obituary - Jan Mark

Recommended

ALA Awards

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ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

Cyrano by Geraldine McCaughrean

...This book�s strength lies in the poetry of McCaughrean�s language, the period flavour and the elaborate humou... NICOLETTE JONES

Bordering On Fable

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Guardian Unlimited Books | Review | Educating Bruno

Kathryn Hughes reviews John Boyne's The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas [see below for link to Boyne's explanation of how he came to wirite the novel]

One of the great triumphs of this book is the way that John Boyne manages the shift in register from the intensely concrete inner world of his child narrator - a place where an elder sister's pigtails or the corner of a bedroom window are branded on your inner eye - to something that borders on fable...

Most Original

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Books - reviews and literary news from The Times and The Sunday Times

Amanda Craig finds Uglies by Scott Westerfeld "one of the most original children�s novels, and SF thrillers, I�ve read for years."

Why I Wrote

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Books - reviews and literary news from The Times and The Sunday Times

The author of a controversial Holocaust novel explains why he felt he had to tell the story of the youngest victims... ...

Peter Pan In Scarlet

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Telegraph | News | Promise of adventure in Peter Pan follow-up

The new book, by Geraldine McCaughrean, will be called Peter Pan in Scarlet and will be published on Oct 5.

Geraldine McCaughrean: "Neverland was such a marvellous place to spend my year: I clean forgot Barrie's ghost might be reading my computer screen over my shoulder - forgot to worry whether the necessary people would like what I wrote. Mind you, that's a good sign. When a book's a joy to write, some of the fun often snags on the letters and gets trapped between the pages."

Liz cross, OUP Publisher: "I've visited Peter Pan IN Scarlet several times now. My first read was amazing but it somehow gets better each time I return. Geraldine is an incredible writer but she's outdone herself with Pan."

Steve Voake Interview

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CBBC Newsround | UK | Authors on the spot: Steve Voake

CBBC interview with Steve Voake, author of The Dreamwalker's Child and its sequel The Web Of Fire:

Peter Pan Duel

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Independent Online Edition > News

The title of Geraldine McCaughrean's sequel to Peter Pan will be revealed tomorrow. Meanwhile, as The Indpendent reports:

But to Great Ormond Street's irritation, all the time that McCaughrean has been conjuring up her new adventures, two fathers in America have been doing likewise. Ridley Pearson, asked by his young daughter, Paige, where Peter Pan had come from, embarked on writing a prequel to the story more than two years ago which has sold 500,000 copies and spent weeks in The New York Times bestseller list. That prequel, Peter and the Starcatchers, will be published in the UK next month...

Fashion Fad

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Victoria Beckham to write children's book

Victoria Beckham is writing a children's book. The singer and wife of David Beckham has revealed she is working on a story collection to tie in with a range of clothes she's designing. Last year she said, unashamedly, that her personal reading consisted entirely of fashion magazines.

Rare Book Chart

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Telegraph | News | 'Tosh' it may be, but this old book is now worth ?100,000

The Telegraph reporting a survey by Book & Magazine Collector magazine:

The magazine named the most valuable 20th-century children's book as The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter (?50,000). By contrast, a first edition of JK Rowling's first book, Harry Potter and The Philosopher's Stone, will fetch ?15,000. Jonathan Scott, editor of the magazine, said: "Although the Harry Potter is way down the chart, it is still amazingly high for such a young book."

Deakin Newsletter

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Deakin Newsletter January 2006

Andrea Deakin's Newsletter for January

Recommended

Jan Mark Obituary - The Independent

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Independent Online Edition > Obituaries

Jan Mark Obituary - Thge Independent (by Nick Tucker)

Lotte #44

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

Jan Mark 1943 - 2006

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normblog: Jan Mark 1943-2006

ACHUKA was shocked to receive this link from Adele Geras. As far as I can tell, at this present time, her husband's Blog is the only online notice of her death.

We will give links to the obituaries as they appear.

Mark was a prolific novelist and reviewer. Jake Hope uploaded a 5-star review of one of her recent novels Useful Idiots just today on ACHUKAREVIEWS. The Electric Telepath was one of my Top Ten Teen Reads of 2005.

Scholatic Press Release

Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler sign up to Scholastic UK Ltd

Alison Green Books, the new eponymous imprint of Scholastic UK Ltd, is delighted to announce the acquisition of TIDDLER, the latest picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler. Julia and Axel are the best-selling and award winning picture book team behind many favourite books for children, including THE GRUFFALO and ROOM ON THE BROOM.

In TIDDLER, Julia Donaldson has created a hugely appealing character - a little fish with a very big imagination. It�s a story about the importance of story-telling and is written in rhyme, with loads of opportunities for children to join in. Axel Scheffler loves the story and is looking forward to the challenge of creating a new and distinctive visual world for it.

Alison Green joined Scholastic UK in 2005 to set up her own imprint, publishing picture books and novelty books. Regarding this latest acquisition for her list, she says:

�I have worked with Axel and Julia for over ten years and I'm thrilled to be working with them again. They are an extraordinary team - every book they make is a classic. I love the story of TIDDLER; it is packed full of the warmth and humour that only Julia can create. Children of all ages are going to love it.�

Publication is set for September 2007, and Scholastic look forward to continuing their relationship with Julia and Axel into the future.

Meanwhile, Julia Donaldson will carry on writing a variety of books for Macmillan Children�s Books, which will be illustrated by, amongst others, Nick Sharratt and Lydia Monks.

Blue Peter Response To Darren Shan

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ACHUKA received today the following response to Darren Shan's announcement (blogged January 13th) of his withdrawal from the Blue Peter Wolrd Book Day show:

RESPONSE FROM BLUE PETER: I'm sorry Darren Shan feels that Blue Peter isn't embracing World Book Day and that he mistakenly feels that he had originally been booked for the main programme, as no booking had as yet been confirmed.

An interview on our website is by no means a slight on any author, you may be interested to know that 1 and a half million viewers log on to our website every week. We now do all our book club chats on the website because we can devote far more time to children's questions than in our busy 24 minute programme. Over 1000 questions are normally sent into authors taking part in a web chat. Our last online book club with Terry Pratchett drew thousands of children into the webchat. This is not skipping back to the past.

Blue Peter has always been committed to promoting children's literature - most prominently with our annual Blue Peter Book Awards, 24 minutes of NEW BOOKS: Child judges choose the best children's books of the year. Michael Morpogo's Private Peaceful was the 2005 Book I couldn't Put Down. We also have a thriving monthly book club which has an extended life online where children expect to find it. This is not skipping back to the past.

WBD is indeed a fantastically exciting day which is why we decided not to run our usual studio but to dedicate our entire 24 minute programme to one of the best loved authors of all time. We did not take the decision to show our programme about Roald Dahl lightly. His work is still as relevant to children today as when he was writing - the enormous success of the Charlie and the Chocolate Factory film gives some indication of this. It's a shame Darren Shan no longer wishes to engage with our audience on that day, we'll miss the chance to promote his book to young readers.

Karen Ackerman
Forward Planning Producer Blue Peter

Pilot Podcast

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ACHUKACAST

The pilot podcast's circulation is rising fast. Have you listened yet?

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Lotte #43

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

Girsl & Sci-Fi

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Teen Angels - Arts Extra - Newsweek - MSNBC.com

Teen Angels
A bestselling novelist on why boys aren�t the only ones who like sci-fi, and how writing helped her survive a tough adolescence.

An interview with Libbie Bray author of A Great and Terrible Beauty and Rebel Angels.

Kellaway Corrected

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The Observer | Review | Your letters

Kate Kellaway corrected in The Observer letters page:

Not so novel Kate Kellaway is misinformed in claiming that The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (Details, 8 January) is the first novel ever written for children about the Holocaust.

ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week


Blood Fever by Charlie Higson

This is an action adventure with lots of fights but, to Higson�s credit, death, even for the villains, is never trivial, and violence has lingering consequences. Many of the characters are more than stereotypes, with complicated motives and particular eccentricities....

Beijing Bookstore

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The Japan Times Online

When people look through "Little Brother Mouse's Waistcoat" at the Poplar Kid's Republic Picture Book Shop in Beijing, they often ask why the pages have so much blank space...

Intersting feature about the Chinese attitude towards picture books...

Newbery & Caldecott Webcast

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American Library Association announces live webcast of their annual awards announcements, due January 23rd:


For the first time ever, the American Library Association (ALA) will pilot a live Webcast of its national announcement of the top books and video for children and young adults - including the Caldecott, King, Newbery and Printz awards - on January 23 at 7:55 a.m. CST. The award announcements are made as part of the ALA Midwinter Meeting, which will bring together more than 12,000 librarians, publishers, authors and guests in San Antonio from January 20 to 25.

Online visitors will be able to view the live Webcast the morning of the announcements by following the links that will be on the ALA home page, www.ala.org, and at news.ala.org. High-speed access will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Next Big Fang

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Books - reviews and literary news from The Times and The Sunday Times

Amanda Craig reflects on the vogue for vampires in recent children's fiction, with special reference to Twilight by Stephanie Meyer and Demons Of The Ocean by Justin Somper, with comments from both authors...

Recommended


VAMPIRES ARE STALKING the charts after a rest in their tombs. With Stephanie Meyer�s debut novel, Twilight, poised for bestsellerdom with its chaste yet intensely erotic description of a teenager�s love-affair with a vampire, Darren Shan�s 12-volume Saga of Darren Shan � of which the latest volume is Sons of Destiny � racing to the big screen and Demons of the Ocean, part of Justin Somper�s Vampirates series one of the top-selling titles of 2005, vampires are suddenly the next big thing.

Movie Portal

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Books - reviews and literary news from The Times and The Sunday Times

David Baddiel on Where The Wild Things Are

ALL GREAT CHILDREN�S STORIES begin with a portal: a wardrobe, a rabbit hole, King�s Cross platform 93/4. This is because children want a mixture of the magic and the mundane � they want Harry to live in Privet Drive but to go to Hogwarts � and they need to know how to pass between the two. They want to be able to go, but they also want to be able to come back. The most obvious portal, however � a child�s bedroom, the place where they go to dream � has been used significantly only once in my memory � in Maurice Sendak�s picturebook Where The Wild Things Are, which has been commissioned as a movie this week, to be directed by Spike Jonze with a script by Dave Eggers... ...

Disconsolate Narrative

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Guardian Unlimited Books | Review | Conspiracy of girl and gander

Jan Mark finds much to admire in Frances Hardinge's debut novel, Fly By Night, but thinks it lacks narrative drive:

Hardinge is a hugely talented writer of tireless invention and vivid prose. Her scenarios are wonderfully realised, as is the cod history which is not always as hilarious as it first appears, but it is this undisciplined talent which gets in the way of the action. Every incident and description is so embellished with similes and dependent clauses that the narrative is left hanging about like a disconsolate bloke in Miss Selfridge, abandoned outside the fitting rooms while the style lingers to admire itself in the mirror. At best Hardinge's writing puts her up there with Aiken and Leon Garfield in the recreation of an England that never was, but these writers peaked at a time when it was believed that children were not equal to the demands of long books. Now it has been established beyond doubt that they are, it need not be forgotten that they can still appreciate short ones.

For a more positive take on the book, read Mai Lin Li's achukareview...

Shan's WBD Protest

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Darren Shan Blog

Darren Shan has pulled out of participation in a World Book Day Blue Peter programme in protest against the decision of the programme editors to focus on Roald Dahl. Shan had originally benn booked to appear in the main Blue Peter programme, but yesterday he heard that the programme would now feature Roald Dahl and that he, Shan, would only be required to do a brief, live interview for the CBBC website.

why, if they're celebrating World Book Day, are they doing a programme about a dead writer who has absolutely nothing to do with this year's WBD crop of books?!? Frankly, I think it stinks. There are 6 WBD books being published and I think they should be focusing on those or other current authors, not dragging out Roald Dahl. Don't get me wrong -- I love Dahl, as I've often said in interviews and on my web site -- I just don't think he's relevant to WBD in 2006, and I don't want to be part of a programme which pretends to pay homage to WBD but unimaginatively skips back into the past to focus on a dead writer. I don't think that's the way forward...

Read the full explanation on his Blog.

What do YOU think? Send your thoughts to ACHUKACHAT or, better still, TELL us what you think in a voice message for the next edition of the podcast.
Podcast messages can be sent as sound attachments to podcast@achuka.co.uk, or by voicemail to 07803605045 (leave number for callback), or by Skype (if we're online) to 'borrowfield'.

Small Steps Review

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Philadelphia Inquirer | 01/11/2006 | With 'Small Steps,' author stumbles

An online review of Louis Sachar's Small Steps

the book crashes headfirst into ABC Afterschool Special territory

Newbery & Caldecott Speculation

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Scripps Howard News Service

,

It's that time of year again, when children's-book lovers get a gambler's gleam in their eyes, weighing the chances for their favorites, and feverishly checking rumors about dark-horse candidates.

Lotte Klaver #41

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

Pratchett Film

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The Wee Free Men to be directed by Sam Raimi? - Insomniac Mania

A movie is going to be made of Terry Pratchett's The Wee Free Men

Director Sam Raimi will helm "The Wee Free Men," an adaptation of Terry Pratchett's bestselling young-adult novel. Sony Pictures Entertainment has acquired the book and set Pamela Pettler to write the script.

JKR Feature

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Telegraph | News | 'There would be so much to tell her...'

J KRowling on fame and her mother... a Telegraph feature by Geordie Greig

She is disarmingly normal. Her favourite drink is gin and tonic, her least favourite food tripe. Her heroine is Jessica Mitford and her favourite author, Jane Austen. She gave up smoking five years ago and has spent most of the past three years pregnant or caring for a small baby. She is a Christian (Episcopalian) and "like Graham Greene, my faith is sometimes about if my faith will return. It's important to me".

Recommended

Small Steps

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USATODAY.com - For Sachar, childhood is perilous


Small Steps by Louis Sachar

Sachar has just completed a companion book to his best-known work, Holes (1998), winner of the Newbery Medal and National Book Award before being made into a movie in 2003. The new title is Small Steps and features a character nicknamed Armpit who appeared in Holes. Sachar's publisher, Delacorte Press, has high hopes: 500,000 copies go on sale today, and Sachar is off on a 17-bookstore tour through January.

Kennedy's Dog

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Scholastic Corporation :: First-Time Children's Book Author, Senator Edward M. Kennedy, to Pen the Story of His Canine in Congress for Scholastic

Senator Edward Kennedy to publish picture book:

Scholastic, the world's largest publisher and distributor of children's books, announced today that it has signed a publishing deal with Senator Edward M. Kennedy to publish his first children's book. A 56-page picture book illustrated by Caldecott-winning artist David Small, My Senator and Me: A Dog's-Eye View of Washington, D.C. is not only a charming pet story, but also engages children in understanding how government works. The book will be published in May 2006.

Lotte Klaver #40

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

David Roberts Interview

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Dogmatika :: books >> culture >> stuff

David Roberts, illustrator, interviewed

Recommended

Undecided

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The Observer | Review | Kate Kellaway: The stuff of nightmares

Kate Kellaway is unsure how children will react to The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne

after reading, I felt ambivalent. The Holocaust as a subject insists on respect, precludes criticism, prefers silence. It will be interesting to see what children make of it. One thing is clear: this book will not go gently into any good night.

ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

When A Zeeder Met A Xyder by Malachy Doyle ill. Joel Stewart

The Zeederzoo is female, small, bald and blue; the Xyderzee is male, tall, green and hairy. Both are lonely. This quaintly stylish picturebook is the romantic story of their search for a friend...

The Evil Is Still Out There

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Plus Unconditional Love

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Books - reviews and literary news from The Times and The Sunday Times

Amanda Craig promotes a love of reading with various suggestions for parest:

Apart from unconditional love, a love of reading is the single most important thing you can give as a parent. Children will know more, have more inner resources, more curiosity, more sympathy, more delight in being alive....

Charlie Higson Interview

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James Bond 007 :: MI6 - The Home Of James Bond

A Charlie Higson interview focusing on his new book Blood Fever

Lotte Klaver #39

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

Heavy Heavy

| 1 Comment

Publishing News - News Page

Publishing News carries the following report, which we take the liberty of quoting in full:

RANDOM HOUSE IS taking steps to prevent the sale of manuscripts, proofs, advance copies and free finished books on Internet sites such as eBay. It has issued a warning to staff that �the unauthorized sale of company property� is taken very seriously and may be a disciplinary matter, and copies distributed externally will carry a �clear notice� as to their use, stressing that they are not for sale. �The unauthorized sale of manuscripts, proofs and advance copies can at the least cause embarrassment to us and at worst ruin a serialisation or publicity campaign,� said a company notice, adding: �It may also cause financial harm to us and our authors. Any member of staff who buys books on the Group staff discount scheme must do so for their own use or as gifts, and not for sale or re-sale to, or by, any third party.� The publisher says advance copies should only be given to people who have a genuine interest in using the book for publicity and sales purposes, and it will be monitoring eBay and will move to have any advance copies, proofs or sales material on the site taken down.

ACHUKA sells proof copies on eBay, so here is our response to this:

1. We openly offer proof copies and sundry other items to collectors on eBay and the proceeds are extremely helpful in contributing to the running costs of this free-access website. All proceeds from our auctions are fully accounted for and included in our tax return.

2. We do not list an advance proof copy until after the book has been officially published.

3. We offer items for auction, rather than for sale, although we regard this as a fairly irrelevant distinction.

4. The description 'not for re-sale' is there to prevent such a title being sold across the counter in a regular bookshop. It cannot be considered a catch-all sale embargo. In a free trade environment every article has an exchange value. Proof copies are no exception, and recently have been prized by collectors as the first bound incarnation of a title.

5. Down the ages it has been a recognized perk of the literary hack's trade that review copies (proofs and first editions) could be exchanged for cash at the local second-hand bookshop. ACHUKA disposes of large numbers of 'review copies' to local schools and charity shops. The charity shops 'sell' such 'free finished books', and why not.

6. Random House say they 'will be monitoring eBay and will move to have any advance copies, proofs or sales material on the site taken down.' This is a draconian attack on freedom of activity and we hope eBay will have nothing to do with it.

Lotte Klaver #38

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

Pullman Grounded

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Philip Pullman, in his 'New Year Message' for 2006 (sent to subscribers of his newsletter*) has, as part of a personal contribution to the effort to decrease global warming, decided to ground himself.


So I've decided that I'm not going to be one of them [air travellers] any more. From now on I stay on the ground. This means no long-distance travel unless I can find a ship going where I want to; no flying within Europe, and certainly none inside Britain. All unnecessary. I can't think of a single reason that would make it more important for me to go to the other side of the world quickly than to save all that fuel by going slowly, or better still by not going at all. Festivals? Conferences? The days when we could thoughtlessly get on a plane and fly across the Atlantic to deliver one lecture are over. Tours to publicise a new book? Only by ship and by train.

The full message can be read on the author's website - http://www.philip-pullman.com/

Whitbread Category Winner

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The New Policeman by Kate Thompson has won the Whitbread Book Award 2005 in the children’s category.

There were a record 109 entries in children’s category this year and the judges described the book as ‘A fabulous mix of Irish music and magic, The New Policeman is an enchanting story of a fiddle-playing fifteen-year-old, a family secret and a lost flute. Kate Thompson's engaging and amusing writing style keeps you turning page after page until its wonderful conclusion.’


The other four successful authors who will now contest for the Whitbread Book of the Year are:


* Ali Smith who, after missing out on the Man Booker and Orange Prizes, finally triumphs with her first full-length novel, The Accidental, in the Novel Award category



* University of East Anglia graduate, Tash Aw for The Harmony Silk Factory,
who wins the First Novel Award



* Hilary Spurling claims the Biography Award with the second part of her masterful biography of Matisse, Matisse the Master, a work which took her 15 years to complete



* Christopher Logue with the fifth and penultimate instalment of his celebrated account of the Iliad, Cold Calls, in the Poetry category



The five Whitbread Book Award winners, each of whom will receive £5,000, were selected from 476 entries, the highest total ever received in one year. The five books are now eligible for the ultimate prize - the 2005 Whitbread Book of the Year.


The winner will be announced at The Brewery in central London on Tuesday 24th January 2006 by a panel of judges chaired by the author and former Children's Laureate Michael Morpurgo MBE.



The five Whitbread Book Award winners, each of whom will receive �5,000, were selected from 476 entries, the highest total ever received in one year. The five books are now eligible for the ultimate prize - the 2005 Whitbread Book of the Year.

The winner will be announced at The Brewery in central London on Tuesday 24th January 2006 by a panel of judges chaired by the author and former Children's Laureate Michael Morpurgo MBE.

Once again, members of the public can vote via the Whitbread Book Awards website - www.whitbread-bookawards.co.uk - for which of the five books they would select as Whitbread Book of the Year. Everyone who votes will be entered into a free prize draw to win a set of the five category winners. A chart showing the most hotly-tipped book according to the public vote will also be available on the website.


Since the introduction of the Whitbread Book of the Year award in 1985, it has been won seven times by a novel, three times by a first novel, four times by a biography, five times by a collection of poetry and just once by a children's book.

Final judging panel announced for the 2005 Whitbread Book Awards Mother and daughter, actresses Joanna David and Emilia Fox, will join the final judging panel which selects the overall winner of the 2005 Whitbread Book of the Year.

The panel, chaired by the author and former Children's Laureate Michael Morpurgo MBE, will comprise ITN journalist and newscaster Alastair Stewart; actress Joanna David and her daughter actress Emilia Fox; and five writers representing the five category judging panels - Philippa Gregory (Novel), Linda Newbery (Children's Book Award), Ciaran Carson (Poetry), Margaret Drabble (Biography) and Arabella Weir (First Novel). The final judges will meet on Tuesday, 24th January 2006 to select the winner of the 2005 Whitbread Book of the Year which will be announced at a ceremony later that evening.

Touching Tale

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The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas - Book Reviews - Books - Entertainment

Australian review of John Boyne's The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas

Irish writer John Boyne's fourth novel is the first he has written for children. It's a touching tale of an odd friendship between two boys in horrendous circumstances and a reminder of man's capacity for inhumanity.

Lotte Klaver #37

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Lotte's sketchbook

One of Lotte's latest:

Lotte Klaver is a young Dutch illustrator. ACHUKA is continuing to feature her work because we are convinced she has a bright future as an illustrator generally, and as an illustrator of children's books in particular.

ACHUKA Podcast

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2006 is the year ACHUKA gets into podcasting.

Look out for the pilot ACHUKACAST, currently in preparation.

New webspace, and a new domain www.achukacast.com, has been established to hold the podcasts and all other mediafiles associatied with the main ACHUKA website.

Happy New Year.

Anyone interested in advertising on the podcast should mail podcast@achuka.co.uk

ST Book Of The Week

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Children's book of the week - Sunday Times - Times Online

Sunday Times Children's Book Of The Week

Spud Goes Green, The Diary Of My Year As A Greenie by Giles Thaxton

This is a book to inspire new year�s resolutions. It is a comic account of one boy�s resolve to be environmentally friendly, starting with a day in bed on January 2, and graduating over the year to more practical ways of saving the planet. It is rare for good advice to make you laugh... .... NICOLETTE JONES

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This page is an archive of entries from January 2006 listed from newest to oldest.

December 2005 is the previous archive.

February 2006 is the next archive.

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