Regular visitors to this blog will know that each Saturday I collate a Reading Matters roundup of the children’s book news from the previous week or so. The announcement of this year’s winners of the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals is the big children’s news story of the week so I have collected a range of items linked to the award itself and the winning author and illustrator separately here for you to browse at your leisure.
Firstly I have to confess that this year the book that I desperately wanted to win the Carnegie did just that! Lark by Anthony McGowan is a stunning, powerful and moving book. The writing, the characters and the themes combine to great effect in this thoughtful novella published by one of my favourite publishers, Barrington Stoke. A ‘reluctant’ teen reader is a reader who hasn’t found the right book yet. Lark is probably that book. Best of all as it is published by Barrington Stoke it is accessible to so many. I wrote about the series of four books telling the story of brothers Nicky and Kenny of which Lark is the finale here.
Shaun Tan is an illustrator whose work I have admired for many years. The Arrival, I am sure, needs no introduction, a remarkable book that has much to offer both children and adults. The Lost Thing is another that I have shared with children in the school library, often prompting thoughtful discussion. Unfortunately I don’t have my own copy of Tales from the Inner City yet which I intend to correct immediately. It is wonderful that this highly regarded author and illustrator has received this recognition.
Links to news items and interviews…
CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medal Winners 2020– the official announcement on the award website highlights the fact that “Two ‘extraordinary’ books exploring survival and our relationship with nature through short stories win UK’s most prestigious book awards for children and young people”.
Anthony McGowan Winner of the Carnegie Medal – this video is a lovely introduction to Lark and a winner’s speech from author Anthony McGowan.
Shaun Tan becomes first BAME author to win Kate Greenaway medal – Alison Flood’s article for the Guardian on the two first time winners of this year’s awards and their remarkable books.
Libraries Champion Bobby Seagull interviews Anthony McGowan – a chat about life during lockdown, engaging reluctant readers and the importance of children seeing themselves in books.
Books for Keeps Interview with Shaun Tan, winner of Kate Greenaway Medal 2020 – Shaun talks to Jake Hope about his work and describes the relationship between the urban and the wild which lies at the heart of the book.
Carnegie shortlist 2020: Q&A with Anthony McGowan – Peters Books published this article in March when the shortlist was announced and it provides a fascinating insight to the writing of Lark.
Shaun Tan: ‘We’re not being mean to animals – but there is evil in obliviousness’ – The author-illustrator of Tales from the Inner City discusses animal rights, veganism and winning the Kate Greenaway medal in this Guardian article by Sian Cain.
Booklings Chat with Anthony McGowan – school librarian Lucas Maxwell runs a brilliant book club in his school and his Booklings regularly interview authors. This one made during lockdown features Lucas with this year’s award winner.
Reading Between the Lines: influences and inspirations from Carnegie and Kate Greenaway shortlisted authors and illustrators – if you missed the Twitter takeover on Sunday here is a write-up by Jake Hope of recommendations that were made by the brilliant authors and illustrators throughout the sessions.
Lark wins the 2020 Carnegie Medal – a blogpost by the publishers Barrington Stoke on why the win by this particular book is so important to them and how “it shows that accessibility doesn’t have to mean compromising on quality or depth!”
Thank you for reading this celebration of the best of children’s books.