So proud to see Detention win the YABBA (VIC) and KOALA (NSW) Children’s Choice Book Awards alongside winners in other categories by Aaron Blabey, Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton, Anh Do and Jules Faber, Andy Lee and Heath McKenzie.
Thanks to the talented and tireless team at Puffin Books Australia and the extraordinary people at organisations like STARTTS NSW, Refugee Advice and Casework Service and the Refugee Council of Australia who assisted me in the research for this novel and who educated and encouraged me in the writing of it.
Thanks to all the kids of NSW and Victoria for reading and voting and to the teachers and booksellers who have helped get it into kids’ hands. Here’s my KOALA Awards acceptance speech…
I’ve been lucky enough to have Two Wolves and The Fall win the KOALA and YABBA Awards in 2015 and 2018 and each time I’ve been so happy to know that kids have read the book and then taken the time to vote. Writing is such a solo pursuit for years as the story comes together and I always wonder if it will. Then, when I send it to my publisher and editor, they help me push the story to the end of the line and make it as tight as it can possibly be, but, still, it’s such a thrill to know, once it’s out in the world, that it has found an audience and that, hopefully, it’s sparking some interesting conversations.
And you can watch the 2020 KOALA Awards here.