OAF News

Finalists Chosen for 2005 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Childrenís Book Awards

Toronto, April 27, 2005 ó Authors and illustrators nominated to the shortlist for the 2005 Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards were announced today.  (See attached list.) These national awards ó one for a children's picture book and one for a young adult/middle reader book ó recognize writers and illustrators from across Canada who demonstrate artistic excellence in children's literature.

Each year, two juries of children from a school in Ontario select the winners.  This year, students from Claude E. Garton Public School in Thunder Bay will review the books and announce the winners on June 3, 2005 at the school (414 Grenville Avenue, Thunder Bay).

The young adult/middle reader book category is judged by students in grades 7 and 8.  The winning author will receive a $5,000 prize.  Students in grades 3 and 4 will award the $5,000 children's picture book prize, which is split between the author and illustrator.

The Ruth Schwartz Children's Book Award was established in 1976 by Sylvia Schwartz in memory of her sister, the late Ruth Schwartz, a respected Toronto bookseller. Last year, their family decided to rename it the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards to honour Sylvia.  Sylvia was a well-known photographer in Toronto from the 1940s to the early 1960s who had a great love of children.

The administration of these awards is shared annually by the Ontario Arts Council, which selects the school and the juries, the Ontario Arts Foundation, the Ruth Schwartz Foundation  and the Canadian Booksellers Association, whose members select the short list of books.

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Short List for the 2005
Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards

Picture Books

  • A Very Unusual Dog written by Dorothy Joan Harris, illustrated by Kim LaFave
    North Winds Press/Scholastic Canada Ltd.
  • Drumheller Dinosaur Dance written by Robert Heidbreder, illustrated by Bill Slavin and EsperanÁa Melo
    Kids Can Press Ltd.
  • Monkey Business written and illustrated by Wallace Edwards
    Kids Can Press Ltd.
  • Peg and the Yeti written by Kenneth Oppel, illustrated by Barbara Reid
    HarperCollins Canada
  • Stella, Princess of the Sky written and illustrated by Marie-Louise Gay
    Groundwood Books

Young Adult/Middle Reader Books

  • After Sylvia by Alan Cumyn
    Groundwood Books
  • Airborn by Kenneth Oppel
    HarperCollins Canada
  • The Heaven Shop by Deborah Ellis
    Fitzhenry & Whiteside
  • Miss Smithers by Susan Juby
    HarperCollins Canada
  • The Pepins and their Problems by Polly Horvath
    Groundwood Books

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For more information, please contact:
Kirsten Gunter, Communications Manager, Ontario Arts Council  (416) 969-7403 or
toll-free in Ontario at 1-800-387-0058 ext.7403 or email kgunter@arts.on.ca

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