OAF News

Thunder Bay School Kids Pick Winning Books

Toronto, June 3, 2005 ó Students from Claude E. Garton Public School in Thunder Bay today announced the 2005 winners of the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards.  Every year, student juries from a selected Ontario school present these national awards in two categories: children's picture book, which is split between the author and illustrator, and the young adult book/middle reader category.

Author/illustrator Wallace Edwards receives the $5,000 prize for Monkey Business (Kids Can Press Ltd.)while Kenneth Oppelreceives the $5,000 prize for Airborn (HarperCollins Canada)    The announcement was made at the school during a ceremony that included a reading by Thunder Bay author Charlie Wilkins.  

Five students in grade 3 and 4 chose Monkey Business as the best picture book because it was ìoriginal and funnyî and because they ìloved the realistic and detailed illustrations.î  Five students in grades 7 and 8 chose Airborn as the best young adult/middle reader book, saying that it had ìall the elements of a good book – a great mix of fantasy, adventure and romance.î

The Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards recognize Canadian writers and illustrators who demonstrate excellence in children's literature.  They were established in 1976 by Sylvia Schwartz in memory of her sister, Ruth Schwartz, a respected Toronto bookseller. In 2004, their family renamed the awards to honour both sisters. The first award went to Mordecai Richler for Jacob Two-Two Meets the Hooded Fang in 1976.

The administration of these awards is shared annually by the Ontario Arts Council, which selects the school and the juries, the Ontario Arts Foundation, the Ruth Schwartz Foundation and the Canadian Booksellers Association, whose members select the short list of books.

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For more information, please contact:
Kirsten Gunter,
Communications Manager,
Ontario Arts Council  (416) 969-7403 or
toll-free in Ontario at 1-800-387-0058 ext.7403 or email kgunter@arts.on.ca

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