Friday, January 27, 2006

Friday news

Ciar Byrne reports (for the Independent) that Julia Golding has won the £1,000 Ottakar's Children's Book Prize for her debut novel, The Diamond of Drury Lane.

Golding, who is a former diplomat and UN campaigner, is committed to bringing back historical fiction for children. The Diamond of Drury Lane is, Byrne writes, "packed with colourful slang...[and] tells the story of Catherine Royal, Cat for short, who was found on the steps of the Theatre Royal on Drury Lane in January 1780 by the theatre owner, Mr Sheridan. Cat experiences the highs and lows of 18th-century society by hobnobbing with lords and ladies, actors and barrow boys."
Amanda Craig reviews Linda Sue Park's 2002 Newbery prize-winning novel A Single Shard for the Times.

Craig writes about The Single Shard, "This novel has a bleak, low-key opening that may put off impatient children, but an extraordinarily moving and delightful tale develops. Park won the Newberry [sic] Medal for other novels about the Korean identity, but this is as much about the patience and pain involved in creating a work of art as Philip Pullman’s classic The Firework-Maker’s Daughter."

I'm very happy A Single Shard has been published in the U.K.
Also in the Times...the results of Carol Ann Duffy's Winter Poetry competition for children.

The rules were simple, as Duffy explains: "The competition was judged in two sections: under 11 and 11 to 15. All the poems were read by Erica Wagner, literary editor of The Times, and Lucy Daniel Raby, the children’s author, and the shortlist was sent to me. My task was to choose a winner and two runners-up in both sections. "

Duffy was very impressed and writes, "The standard in all the work was fantastic. I shall have problems not stealing some of the similes. "

Check out the winning poems in the under 11 category ("Snowflakes" by Tasmin Charli Khin) and the 11-15 category ("Snowy Day" by Alice Marshall) at the end of the article.