The Carnegie Medal—judged by librarians in the United Kingdom is 77 years-old, this year! Past winners have included Rosemary Sutcliff as well such classic authors of children’s literature as Arthur Ransome and C.S. Lewis. The shortlist of eight books for 2014 has just been announced:
- All the Truth That’s in Me by Julie Berry (Published by Templar)
- The Bunker Diary by Kevin Brooks (Puffin)
- The Child’s Elephant by Rachel Campbell-Johnston (David Fickling Books)
- Ghost Hawk by Susan Cooper (Bodley Head)
- Blood Family by Anne Fine (Doubleday)
- Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell (Faber & Faber)
- Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead (Andersen Press)
- The Wall by William Sutcliffe (sic) (Bloomsbury)
Rosemary Sutcliff (1920-92) won the Library Association Carnegie Medal in 1959 for her historical novel for children The Lantern Bearers (she wrote for children ‘aged 8 to 88’, she said). She was runner-up with Tristan and Iseult in 1972.
First awarded to Arthur Ransome for Pigeon Post, the medal is now awarded by The Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals. The winner receives a golden medal and £500 worth of books to donate to a library. Both the Carnegie Medal and its sister award, the Kate Greenaway Medal for illustrated books, are awarded every year.
Originally the Library Association started the prize in 1936 in memory of the Scottish-born philanthropist Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919). He was a self-made industrialist who made his fortune in the steel industry in the USA and who was a great supporter of libraries. He once said ”if ever wealth came to me that it should be used to establish free libraries”.
Rosemary Sutcliff also won or was nominated for many other awards in the UK and USA. (She won other awards in translation).
- Boston-Globe Horn Book Award for Tristan and Iseult in 1972
- Highly commended by the Hans Christian Andersen Award in 1974
- The Other Award for Song for a Dark Queen in 1978
- The Phoenix Children’s Book Award for The Mark of the Horse Lord in 1985, and The Shining Company in 2010 (posthumously)