Macmillan’s UK and US divisions both won best picture book awards today (19th December) at the Chen Bochui International Children’s Awards in Shanghai, China.
The awards took place on the eve of the Shanghai Children’s Book Fair (CCBF) 2014. It is the first year publishers outside China have been eligible for the prize.
In the picture book category, Mr Tiger Goes Wild by Peter Brown and published by Macmillan Children’s Books won along with If You Want to See a Whale by Julie Fogliano and Erin E Stead, published by Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan US.
Devin Luna, v.p of international sales and marketing at Macmillan US, told The Bookseller the award means the titles will reach a larger audience in China. “More Chinese children will not only receive these books they will want to read them too… If You Want to See a Whale has universal themes that are respected in China, it’s about imagination and sticking to a long journey.”
Sarah McLean, head of international sales in open markets at Pan Macmillan, said Mr Tiger Goes Wild is a modern classic, with “fresh illustrations and an amazing text”.
Three Chinese picture books also won awards at the ceremony, Mulan: A Ballad of the Northern Dynasties by Cai Gao (Tomorrow Publishing House), Whose Home Is It? by Liu Xugong (Hsin-Yi Foundation Publishing House), and The Piggy Who Lost a Tooth by Gao Hongbo and Li Rong (China Children’s Press & Publication Group).
The winners were chosen by an international jury, including Brazilian illustrator Roger Mello, who picked up a gong for international author of the year.
Canadian Patricia Aldana, the president of the jury for the Hans Christian Andersen Award, also won a prize for her contribution to children’s literature, as did poet Jin Bo and publisher Hai Fei.
Three authors – Xue Tao, Yin Jianling and Pang Jielei – were given awards for children’s literary books.