THE SEARCH for the Borough’s favourite children’s book will be launched at the inaugural Stockton Book Festival this Saturday (October 15).
The Stockton Children’s Book of the Year 2017 is now in its twentieth year and the shortlist will be announced during the free festival, which takes place in a marquee on Stockton High Street and in Stockton Central Library, from 10am to 4pm.
Around 500 children aged between nine and 12 will then read all the shortlisted books and vote for their winner which will be announced in March 2017.
The festival will also feature a specialist market, including famous children’s authors Ellie Irving and Kes Gray, who will be reading from their books.
Ellie won Stockton Children’s Book of the Year 2016 with The Mute Button and she will be offering workshops on poetry and life as an author.
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Arts, Leisure and Culture, Councillor Norma Wilburn, said: “The Children’s Book of the Year shortlist features some fantastic authors and books – the children are certain to have a great time reading them. The fact the award is now in its twentieth year shows how popular and successful it is.
“Stockton Book Festival is also among the first in the UK to feature live Skype sessions with popular authors and this is a unique opportunity for book lovers to see and hear readings as part of a bespoke session taking place only for those present in the audience.
“The festival will provide a great chance to be in the presence of some excellent authors and is part of our year round programme of family friendly events based in and around Stockton High Street. The packed line-up means there is fun for adults and children alike, including face painting and a chance to meet Tinkerbell, Alice in Wonderland and Horrid Henry. There is even a treasure hunt through Parish Gardens where children can find some rhyming characters.”
The specialist market aims to get more people reading and will feature a Skype session from adult crime author Elizabeth Haynes.A pre-recorded reading with author Peter James is also on offer.
DRAKE – The Bookshop on Silver Street will also be running Skype sessions featuring readings from well-known children’s authors including Richard Byrne and Bethan Woollvin.
For more information on the festival, visit www.stockton.gov.uk/events