Chris Riddell appointed new Children’s Laureate

This week brings us a new Children’s Laureate, in the form of illustrator and occasional writer Chris Riddell. Best known for The Edge Chronicles, co-written by Paul Stuart and illustrated by Riddell himself, Riddell received his award from the outgoing Laureate Malorie Blackman.

The award, started in 1999 as a way of recognising the importance of children’s literature, is awarded every two years. Malorie Blackman, author of Noughts and Crosses and outgoing Laureate, was thanked profusely on Twitter, using the hashtag #thankyouMalorie.

Blackman worked tirelessly during her time as Laureate to promote the importance of reading for pleasure. She also fought against library closures and lent a voice to the popular Let Books Be Books campaign.

On accepting his award, Riddell said “I couldn’t be more proud to accept this vital role, on which successive Laureates have stamped their identities in their own distinctive ways. During my term, I want to use the immediacy and universality of illustration to bring people together and lead them all into the wonderful world of books and reading.”

He will be using the £15,000 bursary in a range of schemes for encouraging young people to engage with literature.

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