Youngsters pick the winner in local literary award
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The Concorde Book Award, supported by The Post, is a long-running prize for children’s literature run by South Gloucestershire schools and public libraries.
The scheme aims to promote a love of reading among 11-13 year olds and is unique in involving young people at every stage, from selecting the initial ‘longlist’ to voting on the final winner.
This year’s winner was announced yesterday evening (12 March) at a special ceremony at The Forum at the Bristol and Bath Science Park attended by hundreds of local young people. The coveted prize was awarded to The Fury, by Alexander Gordon-Smith. Described as a ‘rollercoaster ride of excitement, mystery and supernatural terror’ the book was singled out for praise by one Concorde reader as an ‘awesome, fast-paced read that you can’t put down’.
Welcoming the award, Alexander Gordon-Smith said: “Thanks a million to everyone who voted for The Fury. The Concorde Award is a wonderful prize and it genuinely is a huge honour to be named this year’s winner. I’m particularly thrilled because there were so many amazing books on the shortlist. At a challenging time for school and public libraries nationally, it’s truly brilliant to see such enthusiasm and support for books and for reading by schools and library services within South Gloucestershire. I’m very proud, and extremely grateful, to be a part of the award this year."
Vice-Chair of South Gloucestershire Council Cllr Ian Boulton said: “This fantastic scheme has inspired thousands of our youngsters to carry on reading at an age when many tend to fall out of the habit of picking up a book. I’m really pleased to see that so many took part in the Awards again this year and my congratulations go to Alexander on a well-deserved win.”
The Concorde Book Award was first launched in 2007 as a joint project between South Gloucestershire Council’s library and schools services and has seen thousands of young people take part over the years.
Shortlisted books are made available from South Gloucestershire public and school libraries, and voting takes place on World Book Day in March each year.
This year’s shortlisted titles were The Fury by Alexander Gordon-Smith, Space Crime Conspiracy by Gareth P. Jones, Bullet Boys by Ally Kennen, Justin Thyme by Panama Oxridge, The Demon Collector by Jon Mayhew and The Devil’s Triangle by Mark Robson.
Twelve local schools took part in the scheme this year, along with four library reading groups.
Further information about the district’s library services is available at www.southglos.gov.uk/libraries
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