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Rosoff, Grey Win Carnegie, Greenaway Medals in U.K.

By Julia Eccleshare -- Publishers Weekly, 6/21/2007 10:03:00 AM

The 2007 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals were awarded at a ceremony in London earlier today. The Carnegie Medal was won by Meg Rosoff for Just in Case (Puffin) while the Kate Greenaway Medal was presented to Mini Grey for The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon (Jonathan Cape). Rosoff ‘s debut novel, How I Live Now, won three major prizes, including the Printz Award in the U.S., and became a bestseller on both YA and adult lists in Britain. Admitting that at times she had even considered killing her hero Justin off because he was so irritating, Rosoff said she had thought it unlikely that she would win the Medal. "Just in Case is the sort of book people either love or hate; that they either identify with it or they don’t." she said. "For a panel of librarians to agree that it deserves this historic medal is just amazing. I’m thrilled, honoured and astonished."

Grey has also won previous awards, including a Nestle Children’s Book Prize for The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon. Like Rosoff, Grey made a name for herself with her first book, Egg Drop and subsequent titles Biscuit Bear and Traction Man Is Here. Ian Dobbs, Chair of Judges for the Greenaway Medal, said, "The Adventures of the Dish and the Spoon was our unanimous choice for the Medal. It’s a book with a huge heart, which provides a fantastic visual experience and loads to enjoy for children and adults alike. This book is a triumph from beginning to end."

Unanimous approval greeted the announcement of the winners of the 70th anniversary Top Ten online poll competition to name the Carnegie and Greenaway Award winners of all time. As expected, Philip Pullman carried off the Carnegie of Carnegies for Northern Lights. Taking 40% of the votes cast in the U.K. and 36% of the votes worldwide, out of the 70 past winners in contention, Pullman was only seriously challenged by Philippa Pearce for Tom’s Midnight Garden. "This accolade is an enormous pleasure to receive," Pullman said in a statement. "I want to thank everyone who voted for Northern Lights and in particular to thank the librarians who awarded me the Medal in the first place. It is without any question the most important honour I have ever received, and the one I treasure the most."

Shirley Hughes’s scoop of the Greenaway of Greenaways for Dogger was a more surprising but just as popular choice. This one proved a closer contest in which Dogger polled 26% of the votes, just beating off competition from Janet and Allan Ahlberg’s Each Peach Pear Plum, which polled 25%. Hughes celebrates her 80th birthday later this year while Dogger turns 30. "I loved writing and illustrating the story of Dogger all those years ago, but I never dreamed that it would achieve any kind of longevity, let alone an honour like this one," said Hughes. "It is a staggering shortlist with work on it which I deeply admire and I am simply bowled over to have won."

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