Children to vote on best books

THE shortlist has been announced for the Lincolnshire Young People's Book Awards.

The awards are in their sixth year and schoolchildren across the county are being encouraged to vote for their favourite book from the shortlist.

This year's shortlisted books are: 9-11 year olds - The Legend Worst Boy in the World by Eoin Colfer; The Great Escape by Natalie Haynes; Ottoline and the Yellow Cat by Chris Riddell; The Truth Sayer by Sally Prue; My Dad's a Birdman by David Almond; 12-14 year olds - The Swan Kingdom by Zoe Marriott; Here Lies Arthur by Phillip Reeve; Sundae Girl by Cathy Cassidy; Hurricane Gold by Charlie Higson; The Black Book of Secrets by F E Higgins.

Every library in Lincolnshire, including mobiles, will have a copy of each of the shortlisted books and will also have voting boxes.

Special groups within the county's primary schools will be working with the books until spring 2009. These groups will also be able to visit libraries to contribute by writing reviews or submitting artwork for their favourite book.

Voting for the awards is split into two categories, for children aged nine to 11 and those aged 12 to 14.

Voters will also be entered into a prize draw, where a full set of shortlisted books could be won for each age category. Entry details can be filled-in on the voting forms.

John Pateman, Lincolnshire County Council's head of libraries, learning and inclusion, said: "The Lincolnshire Young Peoples Book Awards are a great way of encouraging young people to read books.

"The schoolchildren that are involved in voting will have a chance to get to grips with the books, be analytical and challenge themselves with themes. It is sure to be a really close contest."

The winners will be announced next May.