Future Doctor Who writer and brilliant fantasy author Neil Gaiman has won the prestigious children’s fiction prize – the Cilip Carnegie Medal – for his fantasy tale The Graveyard Book.
The novel about a small boy brought up by ghosts achieved a literary double by also picking up the Newbury medal – the US equivalent of the Carnegie, reports the BBC.
The author whose Doctor Who script is being filmed this summer as a possible third episode in season six, commented on the night:
“For my seventh birthday I was given a boxed set of the Narnia Books by CS Lewis. The last of them, The Last Battle, had the words ‘Winner of the Carnegie Medal’ on it. I did not know what the Carnegie Medal was, but I knew it was something important.
“It was the first literary award I had ever heard of. And if the Narnia books had won it, then it had to be the most important literary award there ever was.”
Gaiman, who is best know for The Sandman, American Gods and Stardust, was inspired to write the novel after his son rode his tricycle into a graveyard.
The book echoes the plot of The Jungle Book, the collection of short stories published in 1894 and written by Rudyard Kipling where a young boy Mowgli is brought up by animals. The book itself was turned into the famous Disney movie in 1967 (all together now: â€œOh, oobee doo! I wanna be like yoooouu-hooo-hoo!â€)
Gaiman beat off such renowned competition as Terry Pratchett for Nations and Peter Reeve for Fever Crumb to pick up the golden medal and Â£500 worth of books to donate to a library of his choice.
Head over to the BBC website to see a short video of Gaiman talking about the golden age of children’s literature and to see him catch both presenters out when he tells them heâ€™s writing for Doctor Who.
(via BBC News)