Winners announced!

The New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards winners were announced in a lavish ceremony in Christchurch last night.

We blogged about the finalist books here, and now we can tell you which ones won!


Best Non-Fiction:

100 Amazing Tales from Aotearoa by Simon Morton & Riria Hotere

Go behind the scenes at Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand and discover more than 100 treasured items from the Museum’s collection. 100 Amazing Tales From Aotearoa gives readers a special look at some of the surprising, wonderful, and significant items that Te Papa stores in trust for the nation. Learn the secrets of one of the first dinosaur fossil ever discovered, see new spider species, be inspired by famous paintings and quirky jewellery, encounter fearsome weapons from the Pacific, and uncover deep and personal stories of Māori taonga (treasures).

The book is based on the popular TV mini-documentaries Tales from Te Papa, and includes a DVD of the complete series – with a bonus 20 episodes


Best Junior Fiction:

My Brother’s War by David Hill

It’s New Zealand, 1914, and the biggest war the world has known has just broken out in Europe. William eagerly enlists for the army but his younger brother, Edmund, is a conscientious objector and refuses to fight. While William trains to be a soldier, Edmund is arrested. Both brothers will end up on the bloody battlefields of France, but their journeys there are very different. And what they experience at the front line will challenge the beliefs that led them there



Honour award, Junior Fiction:

The Queen and the Nobody Boy: A Tale of Fontania series by Barbara Else

Hodie is the unpaid odd-job boy at the Grand Palace in the Kingdom of Fontania. Fed-up, he decides to leave and better himself. The young Queen, 12-year-old Sibilla, is fed-up too. Sick of gossip about her lack of magical ability, she decides to run away with Hodie, whether he likes it or not.

Sequel to The Travelling Restaurant



Best Picture Book:

Mister Whistler by Margaret Mahy & Gavin Bishop

Absentminded Mister Whistler always has a song in his head and a dance in his feet. In a rush to catch the train, he is so distracted he loses his ticket. Is it in the bottom pockets of his big coat or the top pockets of his jacket? Perhaps he slipped it into his waistcoat. Where is Mister Whistler’s ticket?




Best First Book:

Reach by Hugh Brown

Young Adult Fiction.

Will Clark thinks he’s a socially inept bookworm who just happens to enjoy cross-country running and taekwondo. But then his mother returns after a five year absence overseas, and he has his first full contact taekwondo fight, and the gorgeous comic-reading Conway Jones asks if she can be his maths tutor… Will must reassess himself, and his past, as he reaches towards a new future and lets his dreams take flight.



Best Young Adult Fiction and New Zealand Post Margaret Mahy Book of the Year:

Into the River by Ted Dawe

When Te Arepa Santos is dragged into the river by a giant eel, something happens that will change the course of his whole life. The boy who struggles to the bank is not the same one who plunged in, moments earlier. He has brushed against the spirit world, and there is a price to be paid; an utu to be exacted. Years later, far from the protection of whanau and ancestral land he finds new enemies. This time, with no-one to save him, there is a decision to be made.. he can wait on the bank, or leap forward into the river




Children’s Choice Award:

Melu by Kyle Mewburn, Ali Teo & John O’Reilly,

Melu has always been different. While the other mules stubbornly clip-clop around the sun-baked hills, Melu dreams of swimming in the glittering green sea below. But it will take more than stubborness for Melu to reach the glittering green sea.


This is the award that you got to vote for. Did you vote for Melu?



Top 10 fiction for May

Here are the most popular fiction books for May:

1. Diary of a wimpy kid series by Jeff Kinney

2. Dirty Bertie series by Alan MacDonald

3. Conspiracy 365 series by Gabrielle Lord

4. Captain Underpants and the big, bad battle of the Bionic Booger Boy by Dav Pilkey

5. Where’s Wally? series by Martin handford

6. Judy Moody & Stink series by Megan McDonald

7. Captain Underpants and the revolting revenge of the radioactive robo-boxers by Dav Pilkey

8. Puzzle pirates by Susannah Leigh

9. Charlie and the chocolate factory by Roald dahl

10. James and the giant peach by Roald Dahl


(special mention to The Hobbit, which continues to be in the top 15 most popular books for children!)


Finalists announced for the LIANZA Children’s Book Awards

The LIANZA (Library and Information Association of New Zealand Aotearoa) children’s book awards finalists have been announced.

Basically these are New Zealand librarians recognising the best books that have been published for children and teens in the last year.

The awards are separated up into 5 categories: best junior fiction (the top book wins the Esther Glen Medal), best illustration (The winner gets the Russell Clark Award), best non-fiction (the winner gets the Elsie Locke Award), best book written in te reo Maori (Te Kura Pounamu Award), and there is also a prize for the top teen book too.

The finalists for each category have just been announced (check them out below). A winner will be chosen from the finalists in each category, which will be announced at a sparkly awards ceremony on August 5th in Wellington.

Hot fact: The Esther Glen Medal for Junior Fiction is the oldest book award in New Zealand. It was first awarded in 1945 – that’s 68 years ago!


LIANZA Junior Fiction Award – Esther Glen Medal

The Queen and the Nobody Boy: A tale of Fontania by Barbara Else

The Drover’s Quest by Susan Brocker

When Empire Calls by Ken Catran

Red Rocks by Rachael King

The ACB with Honora Lee by Kate de Goldi

Lightning Strikes: The Slice by Rose Quilter (We don’t have this in the libraries yet. Check back later)


LIANZA Illustration Award – Russell Clark Award

The Dragon Hunters by James Russell, illustrated by Link Choi

Mister Whistler by Margaret Mahy, illustrated by Gavin Bishop

Kiwi: The Real Story by Annemarie Florian, illustrated by Heather Hunt

Blue Gnu by Kyle Mewburn, illustrated by Daron Parton

Melu byKyle Mewburn, illustrated by Ali Teo and John O’Reilly

A Great Cake by Tina Matthews



LIANZA Non Fiction Award – Elsie Locke Medal

At the Beach: Explore & Discover the New Zealand Seashore by Ned Barraud and Gillian Candler

Eruption! Discovering New Zealand Volcanoes by Maria Gill

100 Amazing Tales from Aotearoa by Simon Morton and Riria Hotere,





Te Kura Pounamu (te reo Māori)

Hautipua Rererangi story by Julian Arahanga, illustrated by Andrew Burdan

Ngā Waituhi o Rēhua by Katerina Te Heikoko Mataira

Arohanui by Huia Publishers, illustrated Andrew Burdan (Sorry, we don’t have this one in our libraries yet)

Ko Meru by Kyle Mewburn, translated by Ngaere Roberts, illustrated by Ali Teo and John O’Reilly  (Sorry, we don’t have this one in our libraries yet)

Taea ngā whetū by Dawn McMillan, translated by Ngaere Roberts, illustrated by Keinyo White


Try some of our exciting new Fiction!

I am not a loser/ Barry Loser, spellchecked (i.e written by) Jim Smith by Jim Smith

“I’ve never minded that my name’s Barry Loser because my coolness has always cancelled it out, but ever since Darren Darrenofski joined school with his horrible little crocodile face he’s been completely ruining my life about it”–Back cover.



The Curse of the Bogle’s Beard By Siobhan Rowden

When Barnaby’s dad mysteriously disappears, Barnaby is forced to move in with his gruesome Granny Hogsflesh. And there are sinister things happening in Granny’s house: menacing noises in the night, a mysterious locked cellar, an old diary containing long-lost family secrets, and Granny herself, who is acting very suspiciously. Barnaby must unravel the truth if he wants to save his dad from a very sticky ending”–Back cover.


 Panda Panic by Jamie Rix

Sit around eating bamboo all day? No way! Ping wants to have wild adventures so when he hears that one lucky panda will get a chance to travel the world, he can hardly contain his excitement.But how to make sure it’s him that’s chosen? – Back cover




Trouble in Toadpool by Anne Fine

“Bliss! A lovely, quiet, nothing-to-do and nothing-on-the-calendar Sunday– Well, that’s until bossy Aunt Susan – an unstoppable force – is on the phone insisting that Harry and his family come down to help her at a local event she’s promised to organise: the Great Toadpool Show. It means swinging from a trapeze. Or walking on stilts. Or riding a unicycle…And that’s not counting the fortune-telling tent, the tombola, or the choir singalong. Aunt Susan has no idea of the mayhem she’s about to unleash.”– Publisher information.


A dog called Homeless by Sarah Lean

Cally saw her mum, bright and real and alive.  But no-one believes her, so Cally’s stopped talking.  Now a mysterious grey wolfhound has started to follow her everywhere.  Perhaps he knows that Cally was telling the truth…  – back cover.





NZ Post Book Awards

The shortlist for the annual New Zealand Post Children’s Book Awards have been announced.

The awards nominate the best NZ children’s books that have been published in the last year in 4 categories – Picture Book, Junior Fiction, Non-Fiction and Teen.

During the NZ Post Book Awards festival week, which is June 17th – June 24th, there will be fun events and the winners of each category will be announced. Watch this space for more info.

The best thing is that you get to vote for one of the winners! Every year children can vote for their favourite book from any of the categories. The Children’s Choice Award is the one that all the authors and illustrators want to win, and you could win too! By voting you could win $500 of book vouchers for yourself and for your school – cool! Get voting!


We’ll be profiling the shortlist here on the blog so you can find out about all these super cool books and get your hands on them.

Top 10 fiction for March

Here are the most popular children’s fiction books for March. How many have you read?

1. Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney

2. Conspiracy 365 series by Gabrielle Lord

3. Dirty Bertie by Alan MacDonald

4. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling (HP is still popular!)

5. Where’s Wally series by Martin Handford

6. Captain Underpants and the Big Bad Battle of the Bionic Booger Boy (part 1 and 2) by Dav Pilkey

7. Judy Moody and Stink series by Megan McDonald

8. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling

9. Fantastic Mr Fox by Roald Dahl
10. Ruby Redfort by Lauren Child





The Unicorn Riders

Do you like reading fabulous fantasy adventure books then check out this great series called The Unicorn Riders.

The Unicorn Riders live in a magical but dangerous kingdom called Avamay. There are four riders and they are each assigned to a Unicorn that is as unique as they are.

First there is Willow who rides Obecky a beautiful unicorn who has a black opal horn and has the gifts of healing and strength.

Then there is Ellabeth who rides Fayza who is very fast and can light the dark with her golden magic.

Next is Quin who rides Ula. These two can speak to each other using mind-messages and Ula can also sense danger.

Last there is Krystal who rides Estrella. Estrella has the gift of enchantment.

Working together these four ride as one to protect the people of Avamay with all their courage and skill.

I wish I had a unicorn!


Top 10: Fiction for February

Super-dooper February fiction! Here are the Top 10 fiction books:

  1. Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney
  2. Dirty Bertie series by Alan MacDonald
  3. Conspiracy 365 series by Gabrielle Lord
  4. The Girl in Blue by Margaret Beames (NZ Author!)
  5. The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
  6. Where’s Wally? series by Martin Handford
  7. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling
  8. Puzzle Pirates by Susannah Leigh
  9. Captain Underpants and the Big, Bad Battle of the Bionic Booger Boy by Dav Pilkey
  10. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling

Top Ten Fiction

Here are the most popular books for January 2013, based on the number of times they have been borrowed. Which ones have you read?

1. Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

2. Dirty Bertie by Alan MacDonald

3. Where’s Wally? by Martin Handford

4. Captain Underpants and the Big Bad Battle of the Bionic Booger Boy by Dav Pilkey

5. Ruby Redfort by Lauren Child

6. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling

7. Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days by Jeff Kinney

8. Judy Moody and Stink by Megan McDonald

9. Conspiracy 365 by Gabrielle Lord

10. Puzzle Adventure Omnibus

New Year’s Fiction !

 The council of Mirrors by Michael Buckley

Sabrina, Daphne, and the rest of the Grimms – except for Granny Relda, whose body has been hijacked by the Master – fight for the freedom of Ferryport Landing in the series’ grand finale. As war rips the town apart, Sabrina consults a team of magic mirrors, who prophesy that the only way the good guys will win is if she leads the army. Sabrina has always wanted to be taken seriously, and now she controls the fate of all the Everafters, the very people who have made her life so difficult since she and Daphne arrived in Ferryport Landing.

Will they listen to a Grimm? And can she really save them?

Check out this ninth and final book in the Sisters Grimm series!


The Little Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupery

A pilot forced to land in the Sahara meets a little prince. The wise and enchanting stories the prince tells of his own planet with its three volcanoes and a haughty flower are unforgettable.

The Little Prince is the most translated book in the French language. Both moral fable and spiritual autobiography, this new edition will leave you breathless !


The door in the tree, by William Corlett

It is spring and William, Mary and Alice Constant have returned to Golden House for the Easter holidays, anxious to see if the magic will work again. When they are drawn to the Magician’s hideout, through a door in a tree, they learn that the secret to magic is believing ; and through believing they can enter the magic and continue their great task.

Perfect book for every magical fantasy lover!


Captain Awesome and the new kid, by Stan Kirby

Captain Awesome and Nacho Cheese Man are up to their old tricks… saving the universe through the defeat of one bad guy at a time. From Mr. Drools to Dr. Spinach, evil doesn’t stand a chance in Sunnyview!

But when a new student, Sally Williams, joins Ms. Beasley’s class, the Superhero squad is forced to wonder if she is friend or foe. Eugene also contemplates inviting a new feline friend to join the squad, much to Turbo’s disapproval…

Accessible and enormously appealing for young readers!


Zac and the Dream Stealers, by Ross MacKenzie

Footsteps echoed outside in the passage, and someone rapped on the door.

“Come”, Raven ordored, and the door swung open. Zac gasped.

Four figures strode in, all cloaked in black. Their faces were hidden beneath terrifying silver skull masks, and their silver- plated arms crossed their chests. He’d seen an identical figure in his last nightmare!

If you like spooky, creepy, scary books, this one will be perfect for you!