Young readers in Lancashire have crowned the winners of two book awards.
The Fantastic Book Awards and the Brilliant Book Award recognise the best newly-published fiction titles for primary-aged children.
Thousands of children from 170 schools have chosen their favourite stories to win the awards, and their teachers voted for their selections online. The winners of the 15th annual Fantastic Book Awards have been announced today (Thursday 10 September):
James Bishop – Iguana Boy Saves the World with a Triple Cheese Pizza
Pamela Butchart – There’s a Yeti in the Playground!
Christopher Edge – The Infinite Lives of Maisie Day
Kita Mitchell – Grandma Dangerous and the Dog of Destiny
Tom Palmer – Armistice Runner
To take part in the Fantastic Book Awards, pupils aged nine to eleven across the county read six books from a list of 30.
The main aim of the awards, organised by Lancashire County Council’s School Library Service, is to support reading for pleasure and enjoyment by introducing new fiction to nine to eleven year-old pupils.
County Councillor Peter Buckley, Lancashire County Council’s cabinet member for community and cultural services, said: “The awards involve thousands of children from primary schools across Lancashire avidly reading books. They then get the chance to vote on the books that they like the best at the end of the spring term.
“This is a fun way to engage with our children to encourage them to read and importantly help us to maintain the county’s high levels of literacy.
“I’m delighted that the Fantastic Book Awards and the Brilliant Book Award have enjoyed a successful year, and that more children have been encouraged to discover the pleasure of a good book. This year has been a really tough one due to coronavirus, and I hope that reading has been able to help some children.”
The winner of the Brilliant Book Award, a new book award for six and seven-year-olds, was also announced today.
Hotel Flamingo by Alex Milway was voted as the winner by hundreds of primary school children across the county.
The new award, developed by Lancashire’s School Library Service, involves thousands of children from Lancashire primary schools reading new books and voting for their favourite. The main aim of the award is to encourage children aged six and seven years to develop a love of reading.
County Councillor Phillippa Williamson, cabinet member for children, young people and schools, said: “These really are great initiatives. They should get children reading, as well as making reading fun for younger children, and it is also something they can do with their families and friends.
“I hope that it helps us to get more children reading for pleasure more regularly, and feeling more enthusiastic about reading.
“Ultimately we hope that it is an engaging way to raise literacy levels and to embed reading for pleasure into formal education.
“I’m keen that we do all we can to encourage children to read. Even better if we can promote a love of books that remains for life.
“We are fully committed to maintaining the high levels and standards of literacy in Lancashire.
“As we all know, this has been a very difficult year so far, and importantly this award demonstrates the impact of schools working with our School Library Service to run effective schemes.”