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Presenting the 2015 IBBY SA Honour Roll

IBBY SA Honour List 2015-2016

 
Alert! IBBY SA have revealed their honour list for 2015-2016.

The South African section of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) announced the six titles on their 2015-2016 honour list – which will all be presented at the IBBY World Congress in New Zealand next year – during an event held in Pinelands, Cape Town yesterday afternoon.

IBBY is a non-profit organisation which represents an international network of people from all over the world who are committed to bringing books and children together. The biennial IBBY congress brings together IBBY members and other people involved in children’s books and reading development from all over the world. The congresses are excellent occasions to make contacts, exchange ideas and open horizons. Being showcased there opens up a world of possibilities for the South African authors, translators and illustrators who are selected.

The six books chosen by IBBY SA – during a very democratic and fair process, executive committee member Lona Gericke assured those present at the announcement – are:

UitMiscastHoe om jou draak te temUmcelo Neentsomi Zase-AfrikaBaile Le MoketaRhinocephants on the Roof

 
Both the titles selected in the English and Afrikaans categories address issues relating to teenage sexual identity in ways never before seen in South African youth literature. The Afrikaans translation brings the joys of the popular How to Train Your Dragon series to local kids, while the isiXhosa and seSotho translations make classic South African narratives available to children in their mother tongues. The illustrations in the chosen picture book brings a new dimension to local stories, offering a fresh way of looking at things from a child’s perspective. Read the press release below for more information on each of these precious books.

These books will now go on to be exhibited around the world at conferences and book fairs, and form part of permanent collections in some of the biggest international youth libraries.

Congratulations to those selected!

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Helené Prinsloo tweeted live from the announcement:


 

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Press release

IBBY SA is the South African national section of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY), an international body with 74 national sections around the world.

IBBY SA is pleased to announce that the following books have been selected for the IBBY Honour List to be presented at the IBBY World Congress in Auckland, New Zealand, in 2016 as having made a special contribution to recent South African literature for children and young people:

Author: Afrikaans
Fanie Viljoen: Uit (LAPA Uitgewers, Pretoria) – for making it easy for all teenagers to experience and emphathise with a young man’s growing realisation of his sexual orientation

Author: English
Charmaine Kendal: Miscast (Junkets Publisher, Cape Town) – for its sensitive exploration of the inner journey of a trans boy; probably the first South African teen novel about transgender

Translator: into Afrikaans
Kobus Geldenhuys: Hoe om jou draak te tem (Protea Boekhuis, Stellenbosch) translated from Cressida Cowell’s How to Train Your Dragon – for capturing the spirit and sense of the fantastical in his translation

Translator: into isiXhosa
Sindiwe Magona: Umculo neentsomi zase-Afrika (University of KwaZulu-Natal Press, Pietermaritzburg) translated from Gcina Mhlophe’s Stories of Africa – for transmitting the magic of the original folktales so faithfully

Translator: into seSotho
Selloane Khosi: Baile le Moketa (Jacana Media, Johannesburg), translated from Gerard Sekoto’s Shorty and Billy Boy – for a clear and lively version of the 1973 story of Sekoto’s, only recently published for the first time.

Illustrator:
Dale Blankenaar: Olinosters op die dak / Rhinocephants on the roof by Marita van der Vyver (NB Publishers, Cape Town) – for his rendering of the eerily atmospheric world of the writing

The above announcements were made at an event hosted by IBBY SA at the SASNEV building in Pinelands, Cape Town, on Thursday 17 September 2015.

The announcements were made by Lona Gericke, former children’s librarian, former chair and vice-chair of IBBY SA, and a former member of the international Hans Christian Andersen Award Jury. She holds the Awards portfolio on the Executive Committee of IBBY SA. IBBY SA’s current Chairperson Professor Genevieve Hart handed over the certificates.

Five of the six people nominated were able to attend the event and receive their IBBY SA certificates in person. Likewise, five of the six publishers involved were the happy recipients of IBBY SA certificates.

“We are really glad that the six categories were spread among six different publishers,” said Lona Gericke. “It means that more and more publishers are doing excellent work in the field of literature for children and young people.”

Is there anything especially noteworthy about this year’s Honour List nominees? “Isn’t it striking,” commented Genevieve Hart, “that the two ‘Author’-category nominees have both written books about sexual diversity? It is a very significant area of teenager experience, and one welcomes such careful and sensitive treatments.”

What lies ahead for these six books? Copies have been despatched to the head office of IBBY in Basle, Switzerland. At next year’s IBBY World Congress they will be on display, will appear in the Honour List of Books brochure, and will be the subject of a screened presentation in a plenary session of the Congress, after which they will move on to be displayed at the famous Bologna Children’s Book Fair.

So, the recognition and the exposure for these writers, translators and illustrators could be very significant for their careers.

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