Judge 'just glued to books'
Marlborough Girls' College librarian Colleen Shipley had to read her way through more than 100 books in six weeks as a judge in an annual national children's book awards contest.
Mrs Shipley was selected alongside Gisborne District Libraries manager Pene Walsh and Dunedin City Libraries Kathy Aloniu to pick the winning book in six categories for the 2012 Library and Information Association of New Zealand Children's Book Awards.
The librarians were the principal judges at the book awards.
Each received about 110 books by New Zealand authors to read at the beginning of March.
During that time, every spare moment in the day was spent reading - a book and her notebook were never far from her side, Mrs Shipley said.
"I'd have a book with me in the car in case I had to wait when I was picking someone up, in waiting rooms, while I was having a coffee - any spare time I had I read.
"My eyes were just glued to the books."
Although an enjoyable challenge, it wasn't as difficult as it appeared, she said.
"There were a lot of picture books."
It was the second time Mrs Shipley had judged the awards, the last time being in 2009, and hopefully not the last, she said.
Her favourite book was the Young Adult Fiction category winner, Pyre of Queens, by David Hair, which had stood out for the judges particularly because of its widespread appeal, originality, action-packed storyline and coverage of Indian mythology.
The awards were announced during a ceremony in Wellington on Monday last week.
New Zealand author and awards MC Kate De Goldi dedicated the awards ceremony to the late Margaret Mahy.
Junior Fiction Award - Esther Glen Medal, The Travelling Restaurant by Barbara Else; Young Adult Fiction Award, Pyre of Queens by David Hair; Illustration Award - Russell Clark Award, Rāhui by Chris Szekely and Malcolm Ross; Non-Fiction Award - Elsie Locke Medal, Nice Day for a War by Chris Slane and Matt Elliott, illustrated by Chris Slane; Te Kura Pounamu (te reo Māori), Ngā Taniwha i te-Whanga-nui-a-Tara by Moira Wairama and Bruce Potter.
- The Marlborough Express
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