YoungMinds Award 2010

YoungMinds is the UK's leading charity committed to improving the emotional well being and mental health of children and young people and empowering their parents and carers.

 

The YoungMinds Award was sponsored by Booktrust to help young people (12+) deal with the pressure and the stresses of growing up.

Winner

Siobhan Curham's Dear Dylan narrowly beat off tough competition from the Sun's David Yelland to be crowned winner of the YoungMinds Book Award 2010.

 

Dear Dylan tells the tale of 14-year-old Georgie Harris. Georgie feels as if the summer holidays are over before they have even begun. Banned from going to the drama workshop by her racist bully of a step-dad and her increasingly fragile mum, she is consigned to six long weeks of looking after her tooth-fairy obsessed kid sister. Sick of feeling like the outsider at home and at school, she starts emailing the one person she thinks might understand; Dylan Curtland, star of the popular soap opera Jessop Close. And when Dylan starts emailing back, Georgie finally feels a tiny spark of hope.....


David Yelland's book, The Truth about Leo, which came a close second and was highly commended, tells the story of Leo, since his mum died, Leo's dad has changed and he's drinking a lot. Lost, not knowing where to turn or what to do, Leo can no longer pretend it's OK. Leo needs his old dad back because dad is all Leo has left.

 

Siobhan Curham said:

I am absolutely thrilled to have won this award as I think the work that Young Minds do is invaluable. I am particularly honoured that young readers play such a key part in the judging of this award - to get such a ringing endorsement for my first book for young adults from the readers themselves is incredible.

Young reviewer Lauran aged 13 commented:

I felt like I was in the story, that I was Nancy and Georgie was emailing me. The book was impossible to put down, so I finished it in two days. Overall it was a brilliant book.

About the shortlist

Throughout the summer young people from book groups, and schools reviewed books to whittle down a shortlist for the YoungMinds Book Award 2010.

 

Following young people's feedback, YoungMinds announced the 2010 shortlist:

 

  • Dear Dylan by Siobhan Curham (AuthorHouse)

 

Consigned to six long weeks of feeling like an outsider in her own home and banned from venturing out, 14-year-old Georgie Harris starts e-mailing the only person she thinks might understand. But in the faceless world of e-mail all is not as it seems....

This is the best book I have read in a long time so I highly recommend it to other people.

Nicola, aged 12

 

  • Ember Fury by Cathy Brett (Headline Publishing Group)

 

As the neglected child of celebrity parents, Ember knows that the smallest spark of anger can ignite a whole heap of trouble.

This book is really amazing and I read it straight through in one day.

Bhavini, aged 14

 

  • Inside by J A Jarman (Andersen Press)

 

Lee is in prison for a crime he did commit. Struggling to decide whose rules to follow, Lee's real struggle is within himself. Is he destined to be a 'career con' or can he choose to change his life?

This exciting book was very well written, and has an amazing storyline.

Oliver, aged 12

 

  • The Truth about Leo by David Yelland (Puffin)

 

Since his mum died, Leo's dad has changed and he's drinking a lot. Lost, not knowing where to turn or what to do, Leo can no longer pretend its ok. Leo needs his old dad back because dad is all Leo has left.

...keeps you hooked, making the book irresistible...

Matt, aged 14

 

  • Them and US by Bali Rai (Barrington Stoke)

 

After spending life with his mum, running from an abusive father, David thinks he can deal with anything. Now he is the only white boy at his new school and some people have a problem with that. Can David beat the bullies and avoid his dad?

I found this book extremely interesting.... it definitely opened my eyes to see how racism really is.

Holly, aged 13

 

  • Zelah Green, Queen of Clean by Vanessa Curtis (Egmont UK)

 

When Zelah's stepmother packs her off to a hospital in the middle of nowhere, 'There's Alice who's anorexic. Caro who cuts herself. Silent Sol who has the cutest smile. And then there's me.... My name is Zelah Green and I'm a cleanaholic.'

... when I began to read it, I could not put it down. It is very well written and describes the ups and downs of a young girls life.

Caroline, aged 12

 

Sarah Brennan, YoungMinds Chief Executive, said:

Books can play a vital role in promoting good emotional health and well being in young people. They can help to break the isolation felt by individuals and show that their experience and problems are not unique.

Viv Bird, Booktrust Chief Executive, said:

This shortlist not only tackles a range of situations and emotions that young people may experience, but also showcases the excellence and vibrancy in writing for this age group currently being published.  Booktrust is delighted to be sponsoring the 2010 YoungMinds Book Awards which highlight the important role that books can play in helping young people to understand and deal with some of the issues that they face.

About the YoungMinds Award 2010

YoungMinds is the UK's leading charity committed to improving the emotional well being and mental health of children and young people and empowering their parents and carers.

 

The YoungMinds Award, sponsored by Booktrust, was a £2,000 prize to help young people (12+) deal with the pressure and the stresses of growing up.