Waterstone’s Children’s Book Prize, is an annual award, now in it’s seventh year and celebrates new talent in children’s writing.
The award winner is voted for by booksellers across the country and all authors are eligible, who write for children in the 7 – 13 age group and have written no more than 2 fiction titles.
The award carries a £5,000 cash prize for the winner and in 2011 was presented by the current Children’s Laureate, Anthony Browne.
The winner of the award, in February 2011, is Sita Brahmachari, for her book ‘Artichoke Hearts’
Twelve-year-old Mira comes from a chaotic, artistic and outspoken family where it’s not always easy to be heard.
As her beloved Nana Josie’s health declines, Mira begins to discover the secrets of those around her, and also starts to keep some of her own.
She is drawn to mysterious Jide, a boy who is clearly hiding a troubled past and has grown hardened layers – like those of an artichoke – around his heart.
As Mira is experiencing grief for the first time, she is also discovering the wondrous and often mystical world around her.
An incredibly insightful, honest novel exploring the delicate balance, and often injustice, of life and death – but at its heart is a celebration of friendship, culture – and life.
About The Author:
Sita Brahmachari, was born in Derby, England, of an Indian father who is a doctor and an English mother, a nurse.
‘Artichoke Hearts’ is her debut novel, however, with a BA in English Literature and a MA in Arts Education, her numerous projects and writing commissions have been produced widely in venues both in the UK and US.
‘Artichoke Hearts’ is a story based on the real-life experience of her mother-in-laws death from cancer. It deals with death and grief in a way that children can understand and offers a positive portrayal of the relationship between grandchildren and their grandparents.
Sita, lives with husband and family in North London.
I don’t generally read children’s or YA books, but ‘Artichoke Hearts’ has had such rave reviews, from readers of all age groups, that this will definitely be another addition to my TBR mountain. I’m sure it will be quite an emotional read, although tempered with more than a little humour, as is any book which addresses areas of a child’s emotional development.