Wednesday 6 March 2013

Happy World Book Week! And an amazing Crystal Kite Shortlist

By Candy Gourlay

Happy World Book Week, everyone! And as luck would have it, the Crystal Kite Shortlist for Europe 2013 has been announced by SCBWI - and it's packed with friends of the Slushpile. The Crystal Kite Award is the only peer-nominated children's book award in the world. It is run by SCBWI region. Congratulations, all!

I personally believe shortlists are as important as the awards themselves, so since it's a trial to find the Crystal Kite shortlists on the main SCBWI website, here is the shortlist for our region, Europe ... and if you're a SCBWI member, do go and vote!

The Kite Princess by Juliet Clare Bell

Princess Cinnamon Stitch is a tomboy who has no interest in courtly life. To her parents' dismay, she cartwheels through puddles and dances with flea-ridden cats. How can she teach the king and queen that there are more important things in life than decorum and show?

15 Days Without a Head by Dave Cousins

Fifteen-year-old Laurence Roach just wants a normal life, but it's not easy when your mum is a depressed alcoholic, and your six-year-old brother thinks he's a dog. When Mum fails to come home one night, Laurence tells nobody, terrified he and his brother will be taken into care if anyone finds out. Instead, he attempts to keep up the pretence that Mum is still around: dressing up in her clothes to trick the neighbours and spinning an increasingly complicated tangle of lies.

The Secret Hen House Theatre by Helen Peters

Ignored by their dad, who’s absorbed as much by his grief as by the challenges of running their hopelessly dilapidated farm, Hannah and her brothers and sisters are left to fend for themselves. Hannah decides she wants to do something special, something that connects her to her theatre-loving mum. She’s going to write and put on a play in the overgrown hen house she’s found in a remote corner of the farm.

Slated by Teri Terry

Kyla's memory has been erased, her personality wiped blank, her memories lost for ever. She's been Slated. The government claims she was a terrorist, and that they are giving her a second chance - as long as she plays by their rules. But echoes of the past whisper in Kyla's mind. Someone is lying to her, and nothing is as it seems.

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein

Two young women become unlikely best friends during WWII, until one is captured by the Gestapo. A vital mission goes wrong, and one of the friends has to bail out of a faulty plane over France. She is captured by the Gestapo and becomes a prisoner of war. The story begins in "Verity's" own words, as she writes her account for her captors. Truth or lies? Honour or betrayal? Everything they've ever believed in is put to the test...

Het grote opa - en omaboek (short story: Grandpa's Lost)
by Mina Witteman

A sweet little story about Pilou and her grandpa who is suffering from Alzheimer’s. Published in The Big Grandpa and Grandma Book - a read-aloud anthology by Ploegsma Children’s Book Publishers.

Congratulations to all the shortlisted authors!


  1. Thanks for the helpful little blurbs, Candy. Off to vote now!

    1. But even so, it's such a good shortlist. I've read almost everything here and trying to decide which one to vote for has given me a headache.

  2. This is a great list! Pleased to see a book that's not in English, too. Looks a lovely book. Congrats, everyone.

  3. I already voted but what a list!

  4. What an excellent and varied list. It was tough picking just one, as they would all be worthy winners.


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