The big news today is that the new Children’s Laureate for 2013 – 2015, taking over from Julia Donaldson, has been announced: Malorie Blackman, author of novels including the Noughts and Crosses series (for teens), Hacker and Pig Heart Boy (for younger children), and, out this week, Noble Conflict.
Blackman is a really fantastic choice, I think – not just because she represents a number of “firsts” for the laureateship (she’s very notably the first “Y.A.” Laureate and the first person from an ethnic minority to hold the post), but more importantly because she is a truly brilliant writer whose work spans a number of audiences and genres, and who will be a great advocate for reading and literacy. There’s certainly plenty to admire about someone who announced the news on her Facebook page in the following manner:
Here’s what she said about the appointment:
“I am honoured to have been chosen as the eighth Children’s Laureate. A love of books has opened so many doors for me. Stories have inspired me and taught me to aspire. I’ve been a professional author for over 20 years, so I feel now is the time to give something back. I hope to instil in every child I meet my love and enthusiasm for reading and stories. And as I would never have become an author if it hadn’t been for my local library as a child, I intend to continue Julia Donaldson’s amazing, indefatigable work advocating for our nation’s public library service.”
You can read more about the official announcement at the Booktrust Children’s Laureate website here. And this piece by Martin Chilton of the Telegraph, on why Blackman is a great choice, is also well worth reading.
(Kate added a personal postscript to this blog post)