Roehampton Readers

Roehampton Readers – the NCRCL Carnegie Reading Group

By Kay Waddilove, PhD Student with NCRCL and Organiser of the Roehampton Readers

For the second year running we have held a very successful Carnegie Reading Group, open to any member of the NCRCL community. MA and PhD students past and present, as well as NCRCL staff, have met in the LRC at weekly twilight sessions from April to June, and enjoyed in-depth discussion of the two shortlists, while remote access to the discussions has been available via Skype and Twitter.

Carnegie Greenway MedalsThe Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals are the UK’s oldest and most prestigious children’s book awards. Initiated in 1936, and often described by authors and illustrators as ‘the one they want to win’, they are the gold standard in children’s literature. The Carnegie Medal is awarded for an outstanding book for children and young people, while the Kate Greenaway Medal is for an exceptional book in terms of illustration.

Schools and public library reading groups started to ‘shadow’ the awards in the early 1990s as a way of encouraging children to discover the best modern writing for young people, and our adoption of this opportunity seems entirely appropriate for a department dedicated to high-quality research in the field of children’s literature. Not only can we widen our awareness of the latest high quality books published (titles already judged ‘outstanding’ by the Carnegie/Greenaway shortlist selectors), but it has also been hugely enjoyable reading and discussing these texts with like-minded (but very differently-opinionated!) peers. And while not having to write an essay is definitely a bonus, the group have produced some fascinating and authoritative reviews which will be appearing on the NCRCL blog over the summer. We hope you will enjoy reading these. Have a look at the Carnegie website for details of the shortlists – and this year’s winners!

Check the shadowing part of the site to find our group – we are the Roehampton Readers:

And now read the books – they’re worth it!!

For a reminder of the Roehampton Readers review series from 2014, see the Roehampton Reader archive on this blog. 

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About Erica Gillingham

Academic, Writer, Craft. LGBT Children's Literature. London, UK, via California · www.ericagillingham.com

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