OTHER PLACES, OTHER WORLDS, OTHER TIMES
This year's Carnegie Medal shortlist sees two former winners vying with other prize-winning writers and one of the nation's best-selling authors, for Britain's most prestigious children's book award.
The shortlist demonstrates the quality, scope and sophistication of contemporary children's writing. The range of subjects tackled is diverse: pioneering in 19th century America; adventure in the Amazon basin; life in Khublai Khan's China; a child's perspective on an abusive relationship; fantasy adventure and a personal journey into poetry.
"The variety on this year's list is quite extraordinary," says Karen Usher, Chair of the judges. "This list represents the quality of books published for young people in 2001 and the depth and breadth of writing available. Deciding on the final eight from the 43 titles nominated by librarians across the UK, was both challenging and exciting."
Shortlist: The CILIP Carnegie Medal 2001
SHARON CREECH Love That Dog
PETER DICKINSON The Ropemaker
EVA IBBOTSON Journey to the River Sea
ELIZABETH LAIRD Jake's Tower
GERALDINE McCAUGHREAN The Kite Rider
GERALDINE McCAUGHREAN Stop the Train
TERRY PRATCHETT Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents
VIRGINIA EUWER WOLFF True Believer
The Carnegie Medal is Britain's oldest and most prestigious children's book award. Founded in 1936 when the first winner was Arthur Ransome, it is awarded annually by CILIP: the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals for "outstanding writing in a children's book".
Its sister award, the Kate Greenaway Medal is awarded for "outstanding illustration in a children's book" and was instituted in 1956. In 2000 the linked Colin Mears Award was introduced: a sum of £5000 which goes to the Greenaway winner each year.
Shortlist: The CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2001
JEZ ALBOROUGH Fix-it Duck
RUSSELL AYTO The Witch's Children
NICOLA BAYLEY Katje The Windmill Cat
CAROLINE BINCH Silver Shoes
HELEN COOPER Tatty Ratty
CHARLES FUGE Sometimes I Like to Curl Up in a Ball
BOB GRAHAM Let's Get A Pup!
CHRIS RIDDELL Pirate Diary
"This year's shortlist offers a kaleidoscopic feast of illustrated books for children and young people," says Karen Usher, Chair of the judges. "It exemplifies the enormous variety of subjects and styles available. Picture books have an important role to play; they are instrumental in entertaining, educating and inspiring children."
The styles of illustration range from photo-realism, to cartoon, to meticulously researched historical illustration. It offers comedy, a story of loss and redemption, and three vivid animal tales: the stories of a wombat, a heroic cat, and a DIY duck.
The winners of both medals will be announced at a special ceremony at The British Library on Friday 12 July. Both the shortlists and the winners are decided by a panel of 12 children's librarians from CILIP's Youth Libraries Group. They work in public and school libraries and this year's panel has a cumulative 218 years professional experience of children's books.
Thousands of Children Await Shortlist Announcement
Now in its sixth year, the Carnegie/Greenaway shadowing scheme continues to expand with over 20,000 children across the UK expected to take part in 2002. The scheme is used by library-based reading groups and schools to support young people's enjoyment of reading and development of literacy skills.
The groups will be 'shadowing' the judging process, reading and working on the short-listed books, and deciding which they think should win. The scheme's web site has been redesigned and offers a dynamic springboard for lively debate and interaction between groups around the country. The site is easy to use and participants can post their reviews and view other peoples. It is estimated that there will be up to 4,000 reviews on the site before the winners are announced on 12 July. For more details, see the web site at www.ckg.org.uk