Pink

Lili Wilkinson has had quite a year so far, winning three tributes for her work. And this is for three different books, not just three accolades for the one book.

I may have blogged somewhere about Pink (Allen & Unwin, 2009) being highly commended in the 2010 Barbara Jefferis Award. I don’t often read books more than once, but Pink was so wickedly luscious I had to. I think the Barbara Jefferis Award is the most important offered in Australia because it’s for

“the best novel written by an Australian author that depicts women and girls in a positive way or otherwise empowers the status of women and girls in society.”

Why can’t every book do this!? The judges said of Pink,

“As a novel written for young adults, Pink deals in some refreshing and witty ways with the stock themes of confusion over sexuality, peer group pressure, and what not to wear. While Ava’s parents have no problems with her lesbianism or goth attire, she is not so sure. She dons a pink cashmere jumper and switches schools. But rather than just inverting a conventional coming-out plot to produce something more conservative, Pink complicates the simple trajectory of this kind of narrative. It depicts young women, gay and/or straight, positively, and offers a far from neat conclusion. Ava, having learnt several Emma-esque lessons about tolerance and judgment, still remains undecided.”

Angel Fish Angel Fish (Black Dog Books, 2009) was listed as a Notable Book in the 2010 CBCA Book of the Year Awards: Older Readers. Angel Fish is about the Children’s Crusade and Lili Wilkinson blogged a funny blurb about it, not in quite the same vein as her book.

Scatterheart (Black Dog Books, 2007) with a tantalizingly different cover, just won the 2010 Ena Noël Award. This biennial award encourages a young Australian creator of children’s books and commemorates IBBY Australia’s first President, Ena Noël. The judges said,

“The amalgam of styles and stories revealed in Scatterheart engages, informs and entertains and is indicative of Wilkinson’s versatility. Such skill is worthy of encouragement in an emerging young writer.”

Scatterheart I’m confused as to why Scatterheart is winning this award now, not that I don’t think it doesn’t deserve it, but it was published in 2007. Black Dog Books says the new cover is a 2nd ed. I don’t know if this means the content is changed and this 2nd ed is what won or if all that’s changed is the cover. The new cover is stunning. I almost bought it recently just for this cover. Sadly I didn’t, so I don’t know the designer, but I plan on making a purchase soon. The font of the title is gorgeous, like looking through a rippling pool which only distorts Scatter.

When she’s not winning awards, Lili Wilkinson manages Inside a Dog, where the longlist for the Inky Awards will be announced next week. I dream of being a judge for the Inkys, but I’m a little old.