Great excitement here, as today’s the day my new book, Flying High! Discover the poetry in British birds is published! I hope you enjoy it!
Quick – time to grab your copy of my award-winning book Buzzing! at a mere £5! That’s the cheapest the book has ever been! It’s part of my publisher, Brambleby Books’ Black Friday 50% off weekend sale – which ends tonight (Sunday 27 Nov 2016).
Buy your copy here – while stocks last!
A perfect present for any nature-loving/giggle-loving/rhyme-loving primary children (and all young-at-heart grown-ups too!) And the perfect antidote to nature deficiency disorder!
Whilst you’re at Brambleby’s site, check out the discounts on their other great natural history books too!
Anneliese Emmans Dean – theBigBuzz – Bringing poetry to life
Looking for ‘the best literature on offer for use in the primary classroom’? Look no further! The NS Teachers’ Book Award was set up this year with the aim of finding just that. Since October, teachers, teaching assistants and school librarians across the country have been voting for the shortlisted titles. And the winners were announced at a ceremony on Saturday.
I’m thrilled to announce that the winner in the Poetry category was … my book Buzzing!
The award ceremony was a fantastic occasion, with home-made buns and cakes aplenty, including book buns!
I was very pleased to meet there 12-year-old Tayler, who had interviewed me about my book back in September.
And it was fabulous to meet so many other talented children’s authors who had been shortlisted in the other award categories, i.e. Picture Books, Quality Fiction, Read Aloud and Information.
I also thoroughly enjoyed meeting the members of the ‘Just About Books’ group (linked to the Federation of Children’s Book Groups), who had set up this award. They had put so much time, effort and dedication into the whole enterprise, from book selection through book reviews, interviews, photographs and website creation, to shortlisting, selecting the winners and putting on the ceremony. It was hugely uplifting to see so much commitment to the importance of books in children’s – and teachers’ – lives.
The group’s website is an excellent resource for anyone looking for quality children’s fiction. I really recommend a visit. You’ll see there that they state ‘Children’s literature is our passion’. That certainly came across at the award ceremony.
The Just About Books group said that this award was ‘born out of a desire to celebrate the very best in children’s literature’. It is a huge honour to have been recognised by them as offering ‘the very best in children’s literature’.
Congratulations to the authors of the other winning books, which are:
- Picture book – Shifty McGifty and Slippery Sam by Tracey Corderoy & Steven Lenton
- Quality fiction – The River Singers by Tom Moorhouse
- Read aloud – Hercufleas by Sam Gayton
- Information – Maps by Aleksandra Mizielinska and Daniel Mizielinski.
Thank you to everyone at the Just About Books group (especially powerhouse Sue Wilsher) for a fabulous journey. And thank you, too, to my publishers Brambleby Books, without whom there would be no Buzzing! book. It was a real treat to have Nicola and Hugh Loxdale of Brambleby Books with me at the ceremony.
I’m delighted to be able to announce that the first print run of Buzzing! has sold out! So, whereas my Buzzing! book used to look like this:
It now looks like this:
Yes, the second print run has a slightly different front (and back) cover, and now proudly bears the logo of the Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize.
I first got to see this new impression at the Hay Festival, where halfway through my book signing the books changed from old to new covers.
I’d like to guarantee anyone who bought a copy of the first print run that – if they keep it in pristine condition – it will one day be worth as much as a first edition of the first Harry Potter. However, although I’ll do my best, I don’t think that’s a guarantee I can guarantee!
Instead, I suggest you take your copy of Buzzing! outside with you and start putting it through its paces as you enjoy looking for the creatures that appear in its pages. That’s what the book is for. Enjoy!
If you’d like me to sign a copy of the new-look Buzzing! for you, then come along to the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition in London on Saturday (5 July), where I’ll be performing my Buzzing! show at 1pm and signing books afterwards. Entry is free! See you there …
And if you can’t make London on Saturday, you can always order signed copies (with a personal dedication, if you’d like) from my website.
I was thrilled to discover this week that South Africa is Buzzing! Take a look:
These two gorgeous girls, Aaliyah and Zawadi, were photographed with my Buzzing! book in a garden in the Gauteng province of South Africa. Gosh, that’s a long way from my garden in North Yorkshire, England, where I wrote the poems and took the photos for the book. I hope the girls are enjoying Buzzing! in the spring sunshine down there!
A big Thank You to Madeleine for sending me this lovely photo – which has put such a huge smile on my face!
When I was at school I did maths and arts A levels. At Cambridge University I started off studying in the Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and ended up in the Department of Engineering. I enjoyed analysing a poem just as much as I enjoyed doing spectrographic analyses of speech signals. And so when it came to creating my Buzzing! book, it was entirely natural to me to mix science and amusing poetry, entomology and etymology, to create a colourful, fizzing, ‘edu-taining’ experience.
I was thrilled to discover yesterday that the Royal Society, that august scientific body founded over 350 years ago, recognised what I set out to do by shortlisting Buzzing! for this year’s Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize.
I was particularly pleased about this as I had had a hard job convincing publishers that mixing science and poetry was a good idea. But in the end I was very lucky to find Brambleby Books, who immediately ‘got’ what I wanted to do, and who went on to produce the handsome tome that is Buzzing!
The Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize is a prestigious prize that ‘celebrates the best English-language books that communicate science to young people up to the age of fourteen’.
Buzzing! was one of six books shortlisted for the Prize by a judging panel that consisted of five eminent scientists, science communicators and educationalists. They described my book as being:
‘buzzing with interesting science facts and wonderful poetry. Each page features a different British minibeast that you might find in your back garden, with a funny poem about them.’
The Chair of the panel was Professor John Goodby FRS, who said:
‘This year’s books have shown how science can become the subject of beautiful poems, be the object of wonderful works of art, and all the time stretching minds, young and old, into the “realms of imagination” and down-to-earth “model building” … Our eclectic collection of books have been truly enthralling, and our decisions on six candidates for “book of the year” have been incredibly difficult.’
Copies of all six shortlisted books are now being sent out to groups of young people up and down the country. It is they who will be the final judges. The book they choose as the winner will be announced on 11 November …
STOP PRESS: Find out how the award ceremony went and who won here!
Many thanks to Lynsey Evans of Book a Poet for her wonderful review of my Buzzing! book. The review begins:
‘Buzzing! is a brilliant book that will enthral and delight children, and it is easy to see why it has been nominated for this year’s Carnegie Medal!’
The review continues:
‘There is potential for hours of fun, whether that be reading the poems or the facts, studying the pictures or getting out into your garden or park to hunt for the wildlife depicted in the book – it offers lots of opportunities for learning and having fun as a family or with friends.’
You can read the review in full here.
And if you want ‘hours of fun’, then order your (signed) copy of Buzzing! here.