Facts and fantasy win Blue Peter Book Awards

Facts and fantasy win Blue Peter Book Awards
3 March 2016

The Epic Book of Epicness and The Nowhere Emporium have won the top children's book prize on World Book Day.

Two graphic artists turned authors are winners of the Blue Peter Book Awards 2016, chosen by schoolchildren across the UK.



Children's Laureate gives out awards

Scottish children's writer Ross MacKenzie, who is also a graphic designer for a national newspaper, has won Best Story with his latest title, The Nowhere Emporium.


Adam Frost from Essex, who creates fantastic, wacky information graphics that are often found in his books, has won Best Book with Facts for The Epic Book of Epicness.


Both are delighted to be crowned this year's winners.



Viewers will be able to see them receive their awards on Blue Peter tonight (5pm) from Children's Laureate Chris Riddell - who will also be sketching live throughout the show.


Blue Peter badges all round

Best Book with Facts winner Adam Frost, who believes illustrations in books are just as important as words, said:


I'm absolutely delighted to have won. I tried to fill my book with as many bizarre facts and funny pictures as possible. I loved writing it and am over the moon that kids are enjoying it.

Best Story winner Ross MacKenzie, who grew up watching Blue Peter, said: 'It's always a great moment to receive any sort of award, but to win the Blue Peter Book Award for Best Story is extra special.

'Firstly, because it's an award chosen by the readers. It's fantastic and important that children have a voice, and I'm so glad they liked The Nowhere Emporium enough to give it their vote.

'And secondly, it's special because Blue Peter was such a huge part of my childhood.

I'm delighted and stunned to become a tiny part of the show's history and I shall be humming that famous theme tune for the foreseeable future! And of course, I always wanted a badge.

Funny facts to make your head fizz

The Epic Book of Epicness, which schoolchildren described as having 'funny facts that made your head fizzle', is illustrated with Frost's infographics and designed by Simon Holland and Peter Clayman (Dutch&Dane).


The book reveals some extraordinary facts - from extreme weather to embarrassing toilet trouble - and makes learning fun for the reader.


The Nowhere Emporium tells the story of orphan Daniel Holmes, who stumbles upon a mysterious shop that suddenly arrives in Glasgow. Before long, the 'shop from nowhere' and its owner Mr Silver draw Daniel into a world of magic and enchantment.


When judging the Awards, children described the story as giving them a 'wonderful feeling' and the plot was like 'putting pieces into a jigsaw'.


Celebrity judges and schoolchildren

A panel of judges, including TV presenter Angellica Bell, winner of Blue Peter Best Story 2015 Pamela Butchart, National Literacy programme manager Jim Sells and Blue Peter editor [non-voting chair] Ewan Vinnicombe selected the shortlist from publishers' submissions.



These were then read and voted on by more than 200 children from ten schools across the UK, who decided the winners in each category.

The winners were announced on a special World Book Day morning bulletin of Newsround.


Love of reading and books

BookTrust manages the enormously popular Blue Peter Book Awards, which involve schools to get more children reading for pleasure. The awards celebrate the best authors, most creative illustrators and the greatest reads for children.


Ewan Vinnicombe said: 'It's fantastic that the Blue Peter Book Awards have given children across the UK the chance to vote for their favourite books.

'Adam and Ross should be really proud - and Blue Peter will continue to promote children's books, and our viewers' love of reading, throughout the year.'


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