Top-selling author Barbara Mitchelhill has won this year’s West Sussex Children’s Book Award after being picked by hundreds of pupils in the county.
The writer’s latest novel Run Rabbit Run was named winner this morning, March 7, to coincide with World Book Day.
The prize, set up to get ten to 12-year-olds into reading, has been awarded to several notable children’s authors since its inception in 2002 - including War Horse writer Michael Morpurgo.
Barbara’s winning book was chosen by nearly 700 pupils from 67 primary and secondary schools in West Sussex.
The adventure novel, set during WWII, is based on brother and sister duo Lizzie and Freddie and their father, who is told to enlist in the army or face prison.
The family soon go on the run, desperate to stay together, and try to keep one step ahead of the police until they are forced to stop and face the consequences.
The school pupils involved in the award will also have the chance to meet Barbara later this year.
Lionel Barnard, County Council Deputy Leader responsible for the Library Service, said: “Run Rabbit Run is an exciting and thought-provoking read which explores the issues of war through the eyes of children.
“Barbara has proven to be an extremely popular novelist and her books have clearly struck a chord with a lot of young people.
“This has been another hugely successful year for the award with hundreds of pupils joining together to discuss some of the best contemporary fiction on offer.”
To find out more about the West Sussex Children’s Book Award visit www.westsussex.gov.uk/libraries