Sarah Ardizzone's translation from French of Toby Alone by Timothée de Fombelle, published by Walker Books, has won the 2009 Marsh Award for Children's Literature in Translation
The Award was presented last night at The English-Speaking Union, London, by Anthony Horowitz.
More information about the translator:
Accepting the award and a cheque for £2000, Sarah Ardizzone responded:
"I am flabbergasted and delighted to be receiving the Marsh Award 2009. I truly hope the prestige associated with this prize will help bring Timothée de Fombelle's extraordinary miniature world set in a tree, with its contemporary eco-flavour, as well as its timeless themes of friendship, epic adventures and unconventional families, to as wide a readership as possible. To my mind this is the greatest gift of the Marsh Award: shining the spotlight on world class literature for children, so that not only the deliciously shrunk perspective of Toby Alone but also the sheer diversity of the 2009 shortlisted books, translated from a wider range of languages than ever before, might travel into the hands and classrooms and libraries of young people across the UK."
Sarah Ardizzone (née Adams) was born in Brussels in 1970 and lives in London with her husband, documentary film-maker Simon Ardizzone. Having originally trained in physical theatre at the Jacques Lecoq School in Paris, Sarah first began translating books in 1997. From 2007-2008, Sarah was Literary Events Director of International PEN, where she curated the inaugural edition of a world literature festival along London's south bank, Free the Word!
Sarah won the Scott Moncrieff Prize (2007) for Just Like Tomorrow by Faïza Guène and the Marsh Award for Children's Literature in Translation (2005) for Eye of the Wolf by Daniel Pennac. Her translation of Timothée de Fombelle's sequel to Toby Alone, entitled Toby And the Secrets of the Tree, will be published by Walker Books in June 2009. Outside In, the children's world literature charity, hopes to bring Timothée de Fombelle to the UK in June 2009 to run national workshops with author and translator.
Sarah is currently translating a Tim Burton-esque gothic fairytale, The Boy With the Cuckoo Clock Heart, by indie rock star Matthias Malzieu, to be published by Chatto & Windus in June 2009 (and currently being made into a feature animation by Luc Besson), as well as Daniel Pennac's Prix Renaudot-winning masterpiece, School Blues, a history of 'dunces' and a personal reflection on being a 'dunce', to be published by MacLehose Press later this year. After that, she will re-connect with her passion for translating urban slang by embarking on Les Gens du Balto, the third novel by twenty-three year old French-Algerian writer, Faïza Guène. She also hopes to start translating graphic novels this year.
Sarah's recent translations include The Rights of the Reader by Daniel Pennac, illustrated by Quentin Blake (Walker Books) and endorsed by the National Literacy Trust ("Every parent in the country should read this book"), Dreams from the Endz by Faïza Guène (Chatto & Windus) which won a Writers in Translation Award from English PEN, and the zany picture book My House by Delphine Durand (Winged Chariot Press).