26 June 2019
School children in Jersey and Guernsey have nominated and voted for their favourite book published within the last year. The winning story, The Explorer by Katherine Rundell, was announced in a ceremony at Jersey Library, compèred by the Story Beast, John Henry Falle.
The awards, sponsored by Ravenscroft, are a joint initiative between Jersey Library and Guernsey School Library Service and aim to encourage children in years 5, 6 and 7 (ages 9-12) to think about their favourite stories and develop a love of reading for pleasure. Fourteen books were nominated by local children. A judging panel of library staff from both islands then reviewed then shortlisted four titles. The shortlisted titles were: Ella on the Outside by Cath Howe, Kid Normal by Greg James and Chris Smith, Sky Song by Abi Elphinstone.
A creative writing competition was then launched. Children were invited to enter their own writing, in the form of a blurb for a potential sequel for any of the shortlisted titles. The winners were, Joe Griffiths in Jersey for his sequel to Kid Normal and Thomas Kent in Guernsey for his blurb for a sequel for the same title.
Cathy Bithell, Principle Librarian for Young People, said: “The students have really engaged with the competition and selected a fantastic story by Katherine Rundell. I’d like to thank everyone who nominated and voted as we had a great selection of shortlisted books which all have proven incredibly popular.”
Nominations for the 2020 award will open in September 2019 and close in January 2020. Nominated books must have been published in the UK in 2019. The shortlisted and winning titles from this year’s award are available to borrow from the library and online.