Thursday, March 26, 2009

Sour Grapes

As expected, I didn't win the Enfield Children's Book Award this morning. Jacqueline Wilson did. Which I also saw coming.

It was a very fun event though, and all superbly organised. I really enjoy events where there are not only enthusiastic kids, but other authors too! I don't often get to meet them or chat. But Jonny Zucker and SF Said were both there and I learned a lot talking to them. Had a few laughs too.

It was especially pleasing to meet SF Said, because his first Varjak Paw book was pretty inspiring back when I was writing the early Jimmy Coates books. If you haven't read any Varjak Paw you should check it out.

Anyway, Dame Jacqueline Wilson had recorded a video message accepting the award.

I've heard lovely things about her, though I've never met her myself, so I don't want this to come across as bitchy, but...

...I'm afraid I can't hold back from saying it: I just don't like her books. I've tried and tried to read several different titles of hers and every time I feel sickened after only a few pages (or sometimes just a page or two!).

I know the books aren't aimed at me, so my opinion on her work counts for nothing, but there are plenty of books not aimed at me that I can still appreciate as being well written or funny or interesting in some other way. For example, I think Louise Rennison is absolutely brilliant.

And Jacqueline Wilson is not.

So it confuses me that she is so revered (even by some librarians and teachers).

So there you go. I didn't win the award, and I've had my little whinge about it. Hmm... didn't mean it to come across that way. I just thought it was a good opportunity to put out a plea for people to stop recommending her books! You'll only encourage her. Check out Louise Rennison or Cathy Cassidy instead.


Nicola said...

my name is Nicola.
im also not a jacoline wilson fan
i find her books repetative and boring. im more of a actiony thriller girl. soz about you not winning the award

NutmegAngel said...

i had a bit of a phase where i read loads of jacoline wilson books, but realised after about four or five that they were all ridiculously similar and gave up. the only two i can even remember the vaguest details of were the Lottie Project, which was ok, and then one about twins (can't remember the title). my brother actually enjoyed them more than me... like Nicola, i much prefer action/thriller books, and it annoys me how much attention jacoline wilson gets. they're not that amazing.

Anonymous said...

I think you are being cowardly and unprofessional to criticise Jacqueline Wilson on your website. If you have something to say about her at least do it where she will REALISTICALLY have the opportunity to speak up for herself. You have the power to make a MASSIVE impression on the minds of young readers and look what you have prompted from Nicola and Nutmeg Angel - a reflection of your petty and resentful attitude.
Shame on you!