08 October 2009

Guardian Children's Fiction Prize

Well, after the Forward Prize for poetry (to Don Patterson), and the Booker (to Hilary Mantel) and the Nobel (to Herta Müller), all announced in the last 24 hours, it's only fair that we get at least one big children's book prize announcement tonight too. And so we do. The winner of the 2009 Guardian Children's Fiction Prize has just been named a few moments ago, and I'm absolutely delighted to say that the book the judges have chosen is Exposure by Mal Peet.

A great choice. Chosen from a strong shortlist - alongside it were Terry Pratchett's Nation, Morris Gleitzman's Then and Siobhan Dowd's Solace of the Road - Mal's re-working of the Othello story is a terrific teen book - pacy, clever, impeccably written. (I know I've mentioned in an earlier post how much I loved it...)

I should mention one quibble only - I'm currently reading Marcus Sedgwick's longlisted Revolver and rather baffled that it didn't make the shortlist... But of the ones I've read those that did are all certainly fine books, I think, and Exposure is a very worthy winner. Huge congratulations to Mal!

[Exposure is included in the forthcoming U Teen B G, enthusiastically recommended by Patrick Ness, one of the Guardian judges and last year's winner.]

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