Thursday, April 30, 2015

The Hull Book Awards

Congratulations to Chris D'Lacey who was voted the winner for his teen thriller A Dark Inheritance at The James Reckitt Hull Book Awards yesterday. A Dark Inheritance is a must-read for fans of The X Files, and those with more than a passing interest in dragons.

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Jeff Norton was there for his most recent book, Memoirs of a Neurotic Zombie, and on the way to the ceremony, he regaled me with the insane and amazing plots and premises to his many novels. If you know any youngsters that love ponies, go out and buy them a Princess Pony book immediately (Jeff writes these with a partner under the pseudonym Chloe Ryder).

Sam Angus moved everyone deeply with her speech about the role and treatment of donkeys in the First World War, of which I previously knew nothing about. Those with friends interested in the First World War should pick up her most recent book Captain for them, it has lots of crossover appeal, and would suit adults as well as sensitive, intelligent teens.

Martyn Bedford was shortlisted for Never Ending, a beautifully written, emotional read, which would appeal to Jenny Downham and Gayle Foreman fans. It has parallels with Infinite Sky too, featuring a sudden act of violence and the death of a beloved sibling.

Unfortunately, Sarah Moore Fitzgerald couldn't make it, though she sent us a message over Twitter.

It was great to see the warm and hard working team in Hull again and to catch up with some of the students that voted for Infinite Sky last year.

The teens were enthusiastic about all of the books, with lots being bought and signed, and I wasn't sure who was going to win right up until it was announced (more tense than the X Factor, with two rounds of drum rolls). Chris seemed truly delighted to hear his name called out, and gave a heartfelt speech, which was lovely to hear. Martyn had talked to me earlier about the importance of regional book prizes, and how much of a difference they can make to an author's career, and he's right. 

The event is a real celebration of reading and books and authors, and it was lovely to return as mistress of ceremonies. It's a great thing the team at Hull Libraries are doing, and it's been a pleasure being involved.

Finally, I checked in with Larkin, he sends his regards.

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6 comments:

  1. Sounds exciting! America has a lot fewer "regional" book prizes. : (

    I dislike Jenny Downham. I think Judy Upham books are tons better!

    Here's a music video from your homeland:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2yGudJ_BQ0

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    1. Tell me a book by Judy Upham! Also, who are you? I like the video very much... And yes, the UK is good for regional prizes, we have loads.

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    2. Judy Upham wrote the Huey Lewis Dragon Adventures fantasy series, a little-known series that published in the '80s. It features Huey Lewis as the main protagonist. It’s amazing and the romance parts are as good as the fantasy aspects of the storylines. The best one is 'Huey Lewis and the Dragon’s True Soul.' This is the best one because it’s where he first meets Hazanual, an abandoned dragon in the purple forest near his castle that had been terrorizing his village while he was away on tour. I’ll spoil the ending by saying they become close friends and every book afterwards features Hazanual as Huey’s sidekick (and background vocal singer). It’s the best one.

      These books are out of print and hard to find and very seldom mentioned on the Internet.

      I am a writer (on extended break from writing) from America.

      That's cool you get so many regional prizes. We pretty much only have the Nobel Prize for Literature, which is very selective and very hard to win, but it is also very famous.

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  2. I loved catching up with you! I hope we can meet again at some point in the near future. :-)
    Ally-mai x

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  3. Me too, Ally-mai! Thanks for all you've done to promote Infinite Sky, I will send you a signed copy of the new book when it's ready. Dm me your address on Twitter x

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