Roald Dahl Funny Prize 2013 - winners announced!
Illustrations make a big impact for 2013’s winners, with comic style fiction and a sparsely worded picture book awarded the top accolades
I Am Still Not a Loser by Jim Smith has been crowned the funniest book for children aged 7-14, with Monkey Nut by Simon Rickerty winning for children aged 6 and under in this year’s Roald Dahl Funny Prize.
Smith and Rickerty were awarded £2,500 each, which was presented at an awards ceremony today at the Cambridge Theatre in London, home to the Royal Shakespeare Company’s multi award-winning production of Roald Dahl’s Matilda The Musical. The awards ceremony saw a special appearance from Lisa Davina Philip, who plays Mrs Phelps, the librarian in the show.
I Am Still Not a Loser is the second book in the Barry Loser series, with multi-talented author Jim Smith also behind the gift and card range Waldo Pancake, and the country-wide branding of coffee chain Puccino’s. I Am Still Not a Loser is a comic illustrated diary which follows the unfortunately-named Barry Loser as he battles against school bully Darren Darrenofski and documents his daily life with best friend Bunky.
Michael Rosen, chair of judges, commented on the 7-14 year olds’ winner:
The old adage that no one likes a loser is gloriously subverted with Barry who is both lovable and hilarious. The mix of words and drawings are a playful reminder of everyone's home-grown cartoons and the big nose motif has become a cult.
Monkey Nut is a unique picture book that tells its story in just 41 words, with the bold illustrations providing visual humour as two creatures battle it out to claim a monkey nut as their own. Author and illustrator Simon Rickerty has published five books with other authors, including Peas! by Andy Cullen, which was shortlisted for the Book Trust Early Years Award in 2009 and I Don’t Want to be a Pea by Ann Bonwill, which was shortlisted for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize in 2012. Monkey Nut is the first book both written and illustrated by Rickerty. Both winning books see illustration at the forefront, showing the power of visual humour for children.
Michael Rosen on the 0-6 year olds’ winner:
Just as Jonathan Swift told us about pointless battles over which way to put an egg in its cup, so Simon Rickerty has created a comically pointless struggle over a monkey nut (in its shell). With brio and inventiveness he fills the pages with splashes, squabbles, contrast and laughter.
The winner was decided with a combination of votes from the panel of judges, chaired by the prize’s creator Michael Rosen, and votes from over 400 school children from across the country.
Newchurch Primary School pupils from the Isle of Wight were involved in voting and were lucky enough to attend and perform at the winner’s ceremony.