November 2010 Archives

Telegraph Children's Books of the Year

as chosen and briefly described by Toby Clementd

After The Snow deal for Greenhouse

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After The Snow Deal for Greenhouse

Macmillan's Children's Books has won world rights to AFTER THE SNOW by SD Crockett following a hotly contested auction. The titles were bought in conjunction with Jean Feiwel of Macmillan US-owned publisher Feiwel and Friends.

AFTER THE SNOW tells the story of 15-year-old Willo as he tries to survive, alone, in an endlessly wintery environment.

Crockett said: "The winter of 2009 was extremely hard. I asked myself: what would happen if winter never ended?".

Macmillan is to publish in hardback in the first half of 2012, with the US to publish simultaneously.

Susan Copper Interviewed

Short interview with Susan Cooper on Paul Magrs' blog

Dylan Thomas Shortlist [adult]

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There are six shortlisted titles for the £30,000 biannual literary award named after writer Dylan Thomas, the richest cash prize in the world for young writers. The winner will be announced at the final awards ceremony in Swansea, Wales on December 1st, 2010 at Brangwyn Hall.
Of the shortlisted titles the only one I have read is The Rehearsal - impressive, but ultimately rather odd and somewhat heartless.

Matched - Book Trailer

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published Nov 30th 2010

Nosy Crow has just announced that it has appointed Allen & Unwin as its representative for printed books in Australia and New Zealand effective immediately.
Nosy Crow's first books will be published in the UK in January 2011, and in May in Australia and New Zealand. Allen & Unwin has been voted Australian Publisher of the Year nine times, is Australia's leading independent publisher, and represents and distributes important UK lists including Bloomsbury, Faber & Faber and Profile.The deal was negotiated in Sydney this month.

Kate Wilson, MD of Nosy Crow, says:
"We've taken our time to investigate our options carefully. Though I hadn't had any experience of working with Allen & Unwin before, their excellent reputation preceded them, and I feel very proud that they chose to include Nosy Crow in their portfolio of clients. In all these things - and particularly for Nosy Crow given our scale and culture - a sense of affinity is important: I felt confident that everyone I met at Allen & Unwin understood Nosy Crow and our goals. And the fact that they're based in Crows Nest in Sydney is an additional happy omen!"

Robert Gorman, CEO of Allen & Unwin, says:
"At Allen & Unwin we love partnering with clever independent publishers. That is why we are delighted to be representing Nosy Crow in Australia and New Zealand. We greatly look forward to helping them grow their business in the ANZ market."

Liz Bray, Children's Book Director of Allen & Unwin, says:
"We've been following Nosy Crow's activities with great interest since they announced their establishment in the UK earlier this year and admired the energy, savvy and passion of their team as well as the books they're producing. We're thrilled to have the opportunity to work with them in Australia and New Zealand on books from much-loved creators like Axel Scheffler as well as new stars including S.C. Ransom. Nosy Crow's innovative, child-focused books have great potential in our markets and will be a fantastic complement to our own publishing and the wonderful children's lists we distribute."

The Kids Lit Quiz

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The Kids Lit Quiz

Excellent illustrated blog post about the motivational Kids Lit Quiz, as created by Wayne Mills.

The UK finals of this event will be this coming Tuesday, 30th November, 1.30pm at the Oxford Town Hall. The event will be attended by 30 authors.

Guardian Review

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Guardian Review

by Jennifer Donnelly, reviewed by Lynda Buckley-Archer

This is a great example of young adult fiction: beautifully written and thoroughly researched yet not, to borrow Patrick Ness's phrase, "an adjective novel". There is an emotional vividness and a delight in story that will speak strongly to teenagers. LYNDA BUCKLEY-ARCHER

Anthony Browne chooses...

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Anthony Browne chooses...

in The Guardian's Books of the Year feature...

Anthony Browne

I was fascinated by the fattest book I read, Freedom by Jonathan Franzen (Fourth Estate), an epic novel that tells a funny and moving story of an American family unravelling in the first few years after 9/11. It's about the problems that come with liberty, seen through the lives of what at first seems like the perfect couple.

In contrast, my second choice is a small, exquisite picture book, Eric by Shaun Tan (Templar). This is the tale of a strange foreign exchange student, told from the point of view of the host family. Eric is drawn as a tiny, shadowy figure living in a world of giants. The narrator hints at the "cultural things" that divide them. This is a true picture book in that the illustrations tell as much as the words do, and is that relatively rare thing: a picture book appealing equally to both adults and children.

kenneth Grahame And The Suicide Of His Son

clumsily worded Daily Mail headline, but worth-reading feature by Harry Mount:

this sad tale of tortured paternal love has come to the surface once more, with this week's sale of a signed first edition of The Wind In The Willows for £40,000 -- five times the estimate.

The dedicatee of the book is Ruth Ward, a childhood friend of Mouse. Also in this week's sale is a rare picture of Mouse -- a chubby-cheeked cherub of a boy -- and several letters to Ruth Ward from the writer's wife, Elspeth.

Hodder Seal Tonya Hurley Deal

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Hodder Children's Books have acquired an epic, new paranormal romance sequence THE BLESSED by Tonya Hurley. Publication will run simultaneously with Simon & Schuster US in Spring 2012.

Tonya Hurley is the New York Times bestselling author of the Ghost Girl sequence.

Cathryn Summerhayes brokered the deal on behalf of Andy McNicol at William Morris Entertainment. She says: 'It was very exciting to be given the opportunity to sell Tonya Hurley's fabulous new sequence THE BLESSED in the UK. I couldn't be more thrilled to have closed the deal with Emily Thomas at Hodder Children's Books who I know will publish Tonya with the creativity and energy she so deserves.'

New Reid Banks Title for Harper Collins

The Bookseller reports:

HarperCollins Children's Books has bought the rights to a new title by Lynne Reid Banks and illustrator Tony Ross.

Harriet Wilson, editorial director of HC Children's Books, acquired world rights from Caspian Dennis of Abner Stein Literary Agency for Bad Cat, Good Cat. The title is aimed at readers aged five and over and will be published in July 2011


Deakin Newsletter November-December 2010

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Deakin Newsletter Nov-Dec 2010

A seasonal theme to Andrea Deakin's latest and always eagerly anticipated Newsletter...

John Llewellyn Rhys Prize 2010

The winner is Amy Sackville for her debut novel, The Still Point.
The prize is open to British and Commonwealth writers of fiction, non-fiction and poetry, aged 35 or under, at the time of publication. The prize is worth £5,000 to the winner, with the other shortlisted authors receiving £500 each.

The full shortlist was:

Hypocrisy from Ofsted

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Telling It Like It Is

a short piece of oratory by Alan Gibbons

Literary Agent Twitter Listing

A list maintained by the Galleycat blog...

Russell Hoban Q & A

Short Q&A feature from the FT with 85 yr-old Russell Hoban:

What does it mean to be a writer?

It's the highest form of living I can think of.

Guardian Review

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Guardian Review

Firebrand by Gillian Philip, reviewed by Mary Hoffman

Philip has created an utterly believable other world, where male and female are equals in arms. It is often stark and brutal but with moments of heartbreaking beauty. I haven't enjoyed a book in this genre so much since Susan Price's The Sterkarm Handshake. MARY HOFFMAN

ah, The Sterkarm Handshake: thanks for the reminder, MH

The 25 best children's books - Telegraph

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25 Best Children's Books

for what it's worth (Daily Telegraph)

YA / Teen Slideshow

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Some of the notable Young Adult titles published in the UK during 2010...
[slideshow plays in a different sequence each time the page is loaded - also, if you hover at top of the book-jackets you can click forwards and backwards]

Michelle Paver Abandons Orion for Puffin

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Paver To Leave Orion For Puffin

from The Bookseller:

Puffin has acquired world rights to the series set during the Bronze Age in the Mediterranean. The deal will also see Paver published by Penguin in the US and Penguin group companies in Australia, New Zealand, Canada, India and South Africa.

Elv Moody, editorial director for Puffin Books, secured the global deal for five books from Peter Cox of Redhammer Management. The first title will be published by Puffin in the autumn of 2012.

eBook Sales Up 190%

In early 2011, The New York Times will launch both fiction and nonfiction bestseller lists for e-books. These will be published in addition to its 14 other bestseller book lists for hardcover, paperback, children's books and graphic books.

This move reflects the increase in e-book sales with e-readers such as Amazon's Kindle and Apple's iPad. According to the Association of American Publishers, US e-books sales in 2010 have risen 190% compared to 2009.

Governor General Award Winners

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Governor-General's Awards for Children's Literature

TEXT: Wendy Philips: Fishtailing: Coteau Books

ILLUSTRATION : Jon Klassen : text by Caroline Stutson: Cat's Night Out: Simon and Schuster

Costa Book Award Shortlists - Children & Poetry

Costa Children's Book Award

Flyaway by Lucy Christopher
Annexed by Sharon Dogar
Bartimaeus: The Ring of Solomon by Jonathan Stroud
Out of Shadows by Jason Wallace

Costa Poetry Award

Standard Midland by Roy Fisher (more...)
The Wrecking Light by Robin Robertson (more...)
Of Mutability by Jo Shapcott (more...)
New Light for the Old Dark by Sam Willetts (more...)

Roald Dahl Funny Prize Winners

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Dahl Funny Prize Winners

Louise Rennison and Louise Yates have won this year's Roald Dahl Funny Prizes with 'Withering Tights' (7-14 year-olds) and 'Dog Loves Books (0-6) respectively.

Chinese YA Authors Are Top Earners

from Shanghai Daily:

WRITING for teenagers is the best way for China's authors to make big money, according to a list of the country's wealthiest writers.

The 2010 "China's 25 Richest Writers" list, published yesterday, revealed a sharp reduction in the commercial performance of serious writers and a corresponding increase in sales of literature for teenagers.

Topping the 2010 list were Yang Hongying, a children's book writer, Guo Jingming, a teenage icon and Zheng Yuanjie, another author for children.

Carousel - The Guide to Children's Books

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Carousel Issue #46

The Autumn/Winter 2010 issue of Carousel was received by subscribers this week.

As always, much to relish, including (amongs other things and in addition to all the reviews):

  • a profile of the 2010 Kate Greenaway medal winner, Freya Blackwood
  • Jane Ray, "Working from Home"
  • an article about Daniel Pennac's School Blues
  • a short feature on David Almond
  • a page about school librarians
  • a double page spread on Lewis Carroll

plus the Christmas 201 Supplement

David Blanch comments in his editorial: "It's a topsy-turnvy world where sure-fire bestsellers are marketed at half-price and yet corporate owners lament the lack of profits." Quite so.

Roald Dahl Funny Prize - The Shortlists

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Roald Dah Funny Prize - The Shortlists


Angelica Sprocket's Pockets by Quentin Blake (Jonathan Cape, £10.99)

Dogs Don't Do Ballet by Anna Kemp, illustrated by Sara Ogilvie (Simon & Schuster, £5.99)

Dog Loves Books by Louise Yates (Jonathan Cape, £5.99)

The Nanny Goat's Kid by Jeanne Willis, illustrated by Tony Ross (Andersen, £10.99)

One Smart Fish by Chris Wormell (Jonathan Cape, £10.99)

The Scariest Monster in the World by Lee Weatherly, illustrated by Algy Craig Hall (Boxer Books, £11.99)


The Clumsies Make a Mess by Sorrel Anderson, illustrated by Nicola Slater (HarperCollins, £4.99)

Einstein's Underpants and How They Saved the World by Anthony McGowan (Yearling, £5.99)

The Incredible Luck of Alfie Pluck by Jamie Rix, illustrated by Craig Shuttlewood (Orion, £5.99)

Mr Stink by David Walliams, illustrated by Quentin Blake (HarperCollins Children's Books, £6.99)

The Ogre of Oglefort by Eva Ibbotson (Macmillan, £9.99)

Withering Tights by Louise Rennison (HarperCollins, £10.99)

The winners will be announced on 17 November.

Inaccessible Attic

School Blues by Daniel Pennac, reviewed by Michael Rosen

The familiar way to say in French that you don't care is "je m'en fous". It approximates to "I don't give a fuck about it", but it's lower than that on the obscenity gradient - more "I don't give a toss". When his students say this, what does Pennac do? He gets them to question the grammar of what they're saying. The word "en" encapsulates our "about it". What is this "en", he asks them. What is the "it", that you say pisses you off? In his analysis, wrapped up in this "it" is the "record of daily failures", "grown-ups' opinions", the student's "feeling of humiliation which he converts into his hatred for his teachers and contempt for good students". Pennac makes a contract with his students to break out of this "absurd universe", and they do it by labelling this "it" grammatically, but also emotionally - they call it an "inaccessible attic", a "suitcase you never open".  MICHAEL ROSEN

US Sales Decline

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US Sales Figures Show Marked Decline

as tracked by the Association of American Publishers (AAP)

The children's book category showed decreases over September of last year, with Hardcover Children's/YA sales down 17.4 percent for the month with sales of $76.6 million in September, and year-to-date sales are down by 15.1 percent. Children's/YA Paperback sales decreased 1.6 percent in September with sales totaling $53.3 million; sales fell 6.8 percent for the year to date.

Galaxy National Book Awards Winner

Best children's book:
Zog by the creators of The Gruffalo, Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

2010 TD Canadian Children's Literature Award

The Canadian Children's Book Centre (CCBC) and TD Bank Financial Group today awarded Arthur Slade the 2010 TD Canadian Children's Literature Award for his thrilling book, The Hunchback Assignments. Slade received a $25,000 award, one of the largest cash prizes for children's literature at a gala event at The Carlu Tuesday evening in Toronto. In addition, HarperCollins Canada Ltd., the book's publisher, received an additional $2,500 for further promotional purposes.

Gifts Updated

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ACHUKA's gift ideas, updated:

Jean Adamson: Topsy and Tim Audio Slideshow

from The Guardian's 'Old Masters' series. Quite wonderful!

Fifty years after Topsy and Tim first clambered onto bookshelves, Jean Adamson talks about how she and her late husband quit their jobs to create these stories of ordinary children, draws the duo for us and meets their latest incarnation as an iPhone app

Noah Barleywater Runs Away

reviewed by Joy Lawn in The Australian...

John Boyne Interview

from the Irish Independent

Best Illustrated Books 2010, NYT

The judges of the 10 best Illustrated Children's Books of 2010 this year were:

  • Robert Sabuda, a co-creator of the best-selling "Encyclopedia Prehistorica" series and twice the recipient of a Times Best Illustrated award

  • Elizabeth Bird, a children's librarian with the New York Public Library, whose first picture book, "Giant Dance Party," is due out next year

  • David Barringer, a novelist and designer who is the author of "There's Nothing Funny About Design."

Terry Pratchett Masterclass

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Terry pratchett Masterclass

When ARMINTA WALLACE heard that Terry Pratchett was giving a masterclass in creative writing she jumped at the chance to learn from the famously outspoken author, who, after a slightly awkward start, recalled how he got into the fantasy business... (from The Irish Times)

"Keep your vocabulary as wide as you can. I have some difficulty with the word 'cool', and I'm not too bothered about the word 'awesome'. People like me are looking to people like you guys of the next generation to deal with this s**t. It's like seeing a rock guitarist pick up a Fender Stratocaster and hold it the wrong way." TERRY PRATCHETT

Irish Times - Children's Books Reviews

From an Oliver Jeffers book that's full of heart to the inventiveness of Niamh Sharkey's new tale, ROBERT DUNBAR rounds up some recent picture books while ANNA CAREY picks fiction for seven- to nine-year-olds, including Kate Thompson's exciting 'Wanted!'

Guardian Review

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Guardian Review

The Double Life of Cassiel Roadnight
by Jenny Valentine, reviewed by Josh Lacey

With its crisp paragraphs, short chapters and tense storyline, The Double Life of Cassiel Roadnight will immediately capture the attention of its intended teenage readership, but the witty tone and warm characterisation will give them more than they might expect. JOSH LACEY

Carnegie Medal Nominations

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Carnegie Medal Nominations

... the longlist

A shortlist for each Medal will be announced on Friday 8 April 2011. The winning titles will be announced at an awards ceremony on Thursday 23 June 2011.

Greenaway Medal Nominations

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Greenaway Medal Nominations

in effect the Greenaway longlist...

A shortlist for each Medal will be announced on Friday 8 April 2011. The winning titles will be announced at an awards ceremony on Thursday 23 June 2011.

Puffin Sales Up

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For Eva

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For Eva

A wonderfully heart-felt tribute to Eva Ibbotson, by Laura Amy Schlitz, from The Horn Book...

Booktrust teenage Prize 2010

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Gaurdian Review

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Guardian Review

Artemis Fowl and the Atlantis Complex by Eoin Colfer, reviewed by Linda Buckley-Archer

After a two-year absence, the razor-tongued, criminally-minded, Irish boy-genius is back - to a degree. For Artemis Fowl is not himself. He obsesses about the number four; he is paranoid and delusional; he has developed a split personality. So what's going on? Not only is our gold-loving anti-hero personally funding a project to slow down global warming by seeding snow clouds with smart nano-flakes, but he has also decided that he can no longer trust his bodyguard and friend, the inimitable Butler, whom he has sent to Mexico. Worse still, his alter ego, Orion, is love-struck: "I'm just a teenager with hormones running wild," he blurts out to Captain Holly Short. "And may I say, young fairy lady, they're running wild in your direction." LINDA BUCKLEY-ARCHER

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