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A Year of Books
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Young critics review Guardian children's fiction prize

6th October 2009

Young readers have been brought in to review the longlist of the Guardian children's fiction prize.

The winners of the newspaper's young critics competition were invited to its offices to submit their views on the eight contenders for the prize.

Yasmin Ramadan, 13, said that Julie Hearn's Rowan the Strange is 'a shocking yet gripping tale that will fill you with hope, sadness and distress'.

Meanwhile, 15-year-old Jemma Harrison declared Solace of the Road by Siobhan Dowd 'beautifully written' and Oliver Bellamy, 14, applauded the 'suspense and mystery' of Mal Peet's Exposure.

Sally Gardner's The Silver Blade was given a glowing review by 13-year-old Roshni Rabheru, who found it taught her 'that if you use your past or background as an excuse for not moving forward, you will regret it'.

Ten-year-old Florence Potkins also told the newspaper that Then by Morris Gleitzman made her laugh, cry and think about her opinions.

Other novels contending for the prize, which is announced on October 8th, are Genesis by Bernard Beckett, Marcus Sedgwick's Revolver and Nation by Terry Pratchett.

Last year, Patrick Ness won the Guardian children's fiction prize for his novel The Knife of Never Letting Go.

© W&G Foyle Ltd
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