Posted on 17th Mar, 2017 by Sally Campbell & Martha Greengrass
As any prize-winner knows, getting back to the desk again after the celebrations die down can be a challenging business, even more so when that book is your first. For Lisa Williamson, winning the older category award in the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize for her sensational debut, The Art of Being Normal, left her with some pretty big expectations to live up to. Now back with her second novel, All About Mia, she talks to us about life after winning and the joy of finding her own voice again.
Maggie Harcourt garnered high praise for her debut Young Adult novel, The Last Summer of Us, a sun-bleached road-trip tale that balances levity with much darker content. Harcourt's follow up, the newly published Unconventional, tackles fandom and first love; it is a slow-burning romance whose main character, a highly efficient events organiser named Lexi, must learn that love rarely follows a plan. Bestselling author Miranda Dickinson has described the book as, 'romantic, unashamedly geeky, smart and funny.' Harcourt explores the kinship reading can bring in ardent book fans.
As a current affairs television director, Vic James has had unique access to some of the world's most prominent and influential political figures. A lover of story-telling in all its forms, she is also a two-time judge of the Guardian's Not The Booker Prize. It is unsurprising therefore that her debut young adult novel, Gilded Cage, is underpinned by politics; the book is a dystopian fantasy set in an Orwellian Britain where the aristocracy are endowed with magical powers and the 'commoners' are poised on the edge of rebellion. Here, James explores five key experiences that inspired Gilded Cage, the first instalment in the Dark Gifts series.
The winners of two of the most prestigious children's fiction prizes, Brian Conaghan (winner of the 2016 Costa Children's Book Award) and Sarah Crossan (winner of the 2016 CILIP Carnegie Medal), have joined forces to create an ambitious and heartbreaking young adult novel, We Come Apart. The book is a modern tale of star-crossed lovers, Nicu and Jess, two teens with troubled homes and hidden secrets. If they are to succeed as a couple, they must navigate complex issues of cultural difference, parental expectation and their own frayed self-image.
Conaghan won the 2016 Costa Children's Book Award for his dark, powerful story of survival, The Bombs That Brought Us Together,and Crossan was awarded last year's CILIP Carnegie Medal for her astonishing YA novel entirely in verse, One. The following extract is exclusive to Waterstones.
Posted on 25th Aug, 2015 by Jonathan O'Brien
Enough about the 'Chosen One', what about the 'Unchosen One'?
Posted on 4th Jul, 2015
How a teenage sleuth set me on a reading path I never quite got off
Posted on 8th Apr, 2015 by Becky Albertalli
Becky Albertalli, author of Simon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, introduces the diverse music behind her equally diverse novel.
Posted on 26th Feb, 2015 by Helena Coggan
Helena Coggan wrote her first draft of The Catalyst when she was 13. Two years later and it's now the first in a three-book publishing deal. Below she rallies against what she perceives as the female stereotypes within YA fiction and how she's taking steps to make a difference.
Posted on 8th Apr, 2015 by Jasmine Warga
Jasmine Warga, author of My Heart and Other Black Holes, on the taboo of talking about depression and mental health.
Posted on 29th Jan, 2015 by Gayle Forman
Gayle Forman is the bestselling author of If I Stay, now a Major Motion Picture. Here she talks about friendship, something that is central to Gayle’s fantastic and heartbreaking new novel, I Was Here.
Posted on 6th Aug, 2014 by Huw Powell
Huw Powell, author of Spacejackers, gives us his take on what the next 'big' genre in children's fiction could be...
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