Friday 15 June 2012

Congratulations to Patrick Ness and Jim Kay

By Candy Gourlay

A Monster Calls
My favourite image from this amazing novel.

A Monster Calls combines an extraordinary idea, a powerful story, and truly terrific illustration to create a winner. When I saw it listed for both the Carnegie AND the Greenaway, it obviously deserved both prizes and I wondered how CILIP where going to deal with it. Well they have - it's a double win for the book, and a second Carnegie in a row for Patrick. Patrick greeted the news with genuine disbelief.

Jealous? Well maybe I immediately had thoughts of putting illustration into my own forthcoming novel. But no other book so deserves both prizes. Congratulations, you two. I love A Monster Calls and weirdly feel like it was ME the reader who won! Additional bittersweet celebrations that yet again the wonderful Siobhan Dowd's voice sends echoes to us from the beyond.  And congratulations to Walker's Denise Johnson Burt, the editor who wouldn't let a good story go to waste.

To celebrate, here is some footage of Patrick Ness's recent appearance at the London Book Fair - I've been holding onto it for a future discussion of Young Adult writing. But there's no time like the present! You can also read this brilliant Guardian article on how they made the book.


  1. I am so delighted about this - great post and a well deserved win for all involved. This kind of book can only ever be good for writing, for readers, for the industry we're in. Fantastic.

  2. SO awesome. I love Patrick Ness - he makes it all sound so gallant and easy! Fab writer, fab guy.

  3. This is so well deserved. I've both Patrick and Jim, both such nice guys - AND they have both signed my copy and no it is never going to leave my house!

  4. This is a beautiful and moving book made all the more so by Jim's transcendent illustrations. Brilliant.

  5. So well deserved and it's on my read again shelf. When it first came out I was going to get it on the kindle but then a friend went 'Noooooooo! and showed me a copy. Needless to say - I bought the book.

  6. Thank you so very much for the post. Just finished brilliant Patrick Ness video. Still digesting. But it touched so many cords. Then off to the book shop ...


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