Tue, Aug 04, 2009 - Page 2 News List

Taiwanese artist’s children’s book on US award shortlist

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

Artie and Julie, a picture book written and illustrated by Taiwanese author Chen Chih-yuan (陳致元), has been selected as one of 10 notable children’s books of the year by a US teachers organization, a publishing source said yesterday.

The English-language book about two friends — Artie the lion and Julie the rabbit — was selected one of the top children’s books by the Children’s Literature Assembly of the US National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) for its Notables Award, said Heryin Publishing Co, which published the Chinese edition of Artie and Julie in 2006.

Artie and Julie will be featured, along with 29 other books, at the NCTE Convention in November and at the International Reading Association (IRA) Convention next year, as well as in the Autumn 2009 edition of the Journal of Children’s Literature, said Chou Yih-fen (周逸芬), editor-in-chief of Heryin Books.

The 30 children’s titles, which include fiction, non-fiction, poetry and picture books, demonstrate uniqueness in the use of language or style, involve word play, word origins, or the history of language, and invite child response or participation, the Children’s Literature Assembly said.

Having received glowing reviews from the US-based Kirkus Reviews, the English edition of Artie and Julie, published in the US last year, was introduced as “a good book worthy of having,” Chou said.

Chen, 34, has produced illustrated children’s books, including Guji Guji — a story about a crocodile who thinks it’s a duck after it is raised by a duck, On My Way to Buy Eggs — about a little girl running an errand for her father, The Featherless Chicken and The Best Christmas Ever.

Guji Guji made it to the New York Times bestseller list in 2005.

The Pingtung-born Chen is the only Chinese-language writer and illustrator to have won repeated international recognition for his work, including a best children’s book award presented by the US trade magazine Publishers Weekly in 2003 and a best children’s book award presented by the Japan Library Association in 2006.

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