The Children’s Book Council of Australia recently announced the 2017 Book of Year winners as part of Book Week. In this post we will look specifically at the Winner and Honour Books within the Older Readers category which are guaranteed to make you shed a tear.
And the winner is ……“One would think the deep” by Claire Zorn. She can now certainly be considered a heavy weight in these awards, considering that she has won an Honour Book prize winner with the “Sky so heavy” in 2014 and won this same category in 2015 with “The protected” . All Claire’s books are available for borrowing from our library.
So what makes “One would think the deep” special? Basically it has a strong heart. Set in a coastal town in NSW in the late 90s this could have been a nostalgic and self indulgent book but instead it is gritty and heartfelt. The likeable main character Sam, is struggling to come to terms with his mother’s death and fit in with relatives he has not seen in years; namely his Aunt Lorraine and cousins Shane and Minty. This is one of those books that makes you fall in love with its characters and both cry and cheer for them.
The first Honour book is “Words in deep blue” by Cath Crowley. You may know her as the author of “Graffiti moon” which won several literary prizes and also “Chasing Charlie Duskin.”
Like our first novel, this is another book that may make you weep. The heroine Rachel, is recovering from the death of her brother. She is also a bit of a romantic and slowly falling in love with a bookshop owner named Henry. If you love stories of loss and hope – then this book is for you.
The other Honour book from this category is “The bone sparrow” by Zana Fraillon. It has been nominated for several literary awards including the Carnegie Medal and was one of the set books in this year’s Brisbane North Readers Cup competition.
The Library staff had predicted this as the winner. It will certainly pull on your heart strings while at the same time, increasing your knowledge of the plight of refugees and asylum seekers in Australia. Here we have the story of a girl named Jimmie and a boy named Subhi who forge a friendship through the wires of a permanent detention centre. They might both find comfort – and maybe even freedom -as their tales unfold. But not until each has been braver than ever before. A perfect book for fans of “The boy in the striped pyjamas.”