Over the next month we'll be spreading the joy of the New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. Specifically, we'll be featuring the voices of the authors who have made it to the finalist list.
Today we're featuring the finalists for the Wright Family Foundation Esther Glen Award for Junior Fiction, and ask them the question:
Children have spent a lot of time confined by the four walls of their homes this year, but with reading there is no limit to where your imagination can take you. What did books offer you as a child?
The 2020 finalists for this award are:
#Tumeke!, Michael Petherick (Massey University Press)
Lizard's Tale, Weng Wai Chan (Text Publishing)
Miniwings Book 6 Moonlight the Unicorn's High Tea Hiccup, Sally Sutton, illustrated by Kirsten Richards (Scholastic NZ)
Prince of Ponies, Stacy Gregg (HarperCollins Publishers)
Time Machine and other stories, Melinda Szymanik (The Cuba Press)
Weng Wai Chan: As a child growing up in tropical Singapore, my first chapter book (Enid Blyton: Well Done Secret Seven) was a gateway to a mysterious land where the weather was cold and kids solved crimes, as well as being an introduction to exotic foods like anchovy paste, lashings of lemonade and something called a ‘smashing jam-sponge sandwich.’
Sally: As a child, books offered me more than just the magic of great stories: they taught me the language, the structures, the rhythms and rhymes of great sentences. They taught me how to write!
Melinda: I can so relate to being stuck at home. I was quite sickly as a child, especially having asthma which often meant days off school. Reading allowed me to be the active, adventurous, hero on a thrilling quest even when I was lying quietly in bed. I could never be bored for long with a good book at my fingertips.
To see the other finalists of this year's awards, click here.