Surprise ending for shadow book readers

Members of the shadowing group pictured at their first meeting

Members of the shadowing group pictured at their first meeting - Credit: Archant

Colyton students choose their favourite children’s tale - but it is not the national judges’ choice

Around a dozen students from Colyton Grammar School have been reading the eight children’s books shortlisted to win this year’s Carnegie Medal.

The shadowing group has been meeting once a week since April to read and discuss the stories.

They then invited a group of Year 6 pupils from Colyton Primary School to a lunchtime ‘voting party’, where the shadowers presented the books and then held a secret ballot to choose their favourite, which was announced at the end of the lunch.

The winner, by a huge margin, was ‘Wonder’ by R J Palacio, a moving story of a boy suffering from a severe facial abnormality and his struggles to fit in with other children.

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The actual winner, announced the next day at a prestigious ceremony in London, was ‘Maggot Moon’ by Sally Gardner, an unusual tale of a 15-year-old dyslexic boy living in a violent, dystopian 1950s England.

School lLibrarian. Sue Burns-Price said: “Our students thoroughly enjoy reading the shortlisted titles every year and also look forward to presenting them to the primary school children.

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“We hope we are doing a little bit to emphasise the importance of reading for pleasure, and maybe we will encourage them to try reading some of the shortlisted titles themselves.”

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