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Tuesday, February 28, 2023

CBCA Night Of The Notables 2023

 Tonight I went to this year’s Night Of The Notables in which the Children’s Book Council of Australia(CBCA) announced this year’s long list for the CBCA Awards. It was held in the North Fitzroy library.

It was a pleasant event as always, though a bit shorter than when they were doing it on Zoom. They fed us and I met a friend, George Ivanoff, who is actually making a living out of his writing, something very unusual here.

I think it’s sponsored by Walker Books Australia, so there was a panel with two Walker authors. One was a new picture book author I hadn’t heard of and they only gave us her first name, but the other was an old favourite of mine, Rebecca Lim. Among other things, she wrote the Mercy series, which she mentioned tonight as having done well - and no wonder! Mercy is an angel who was stupid enough to hang out with the angels who led the rebellion in heaven. A small group of other angels are hiding her on Earth, where she bounces from body to body, a la Quantum Leap

There was also some discussion of the current situation with the editing of the Ronald Dahl books. Rebecca pointed out that it was done years ago to Enid Blyton and nobody made a fuss, or at least nobody who wasn’t around at the time remembers. I do remember and there was some fuss, just not as much as there is about Ronald Dahl. And it was over much more quickly.

Then there was a video of this year’s long listed books in all categories from Older Readers to picture books. It was pretty, but didn’t go for very long and though I too, photos, I really couldn’t make out what was on the list. In the end, I had to go to the CBCA web site to find out, and there was no link to anything that could tell you what the books were about, but there were some of my favourites on the list, such as Pamela Rushby, who writes very good historical fiction, and Ellie Marney, who did a series about a young Australian Sherlock Holmes type boy and his Watson, a girl called Rachel.

 I don’t think I will be able to catch up with anywhere near all of them, but will buy some of those that look interesting.

If you’re curious, here is a link to the long list.