Monday, August 22, 2016

IBBY Congress celebrates the best of world children's books

It has been an amazing opportunity for supporters of children's reading and writing to have the 35th IBBY Congress here in New Zealand.

The congress of the International Board on Books for Young People brought the cream of international literacy experts, authors, illustrators, librarians, teachers and publishers to Auckland's Aotea Centre for a four-day event that concluded with the Storylines Family Day yesterday.

The New Zealand Publishers stand (above), which benefited
from the enthusiastic presence of IBBY volunteer
Coline Rouge (right)

Oratia was privileged to be a part of proceedings, taking our place alongside seven other publishers on the Publishers Association of New Zealand stand to showcase local books. A number of other publishers also had their own stands.

The congress gave an opportunity to meet with delegates from around the world, as well as the strong contingent of local children's books advocates.

A highlight for us was escorting renowned Brazilian illustrator Roger Mello on behalf of the congress organisers, and seeing Roger in a session on book illustration with Australian illustrator Bronwyn Bancroft and local illustrator Zak Waipara.

Top: Zak Waipara (right) with Bronwyn Bancroft
Below: an image from Māui - Sun Catcher
In his talk Zak featured imagery from our forthcoming publication Māui - Sun Catcher, a picture book retelling of the myth of Māui catching the sun, written by Tim Tipene.

Saturday evening's gala dinner included presentation of the biennial Hans Christian Andersen Awards, the most prestigious awards inchildren's literature.
Cao Wenxuan delivered a brilliant acceptance speech
China's Cao Wenxuan was present to receive the writer's award; Germany's Rotraut Susanne Berner, who was unable to attend, created a delightful video to acknowledge receipt of the illustrator's award.
Oratia publisher Peter Dowling (right) with legendary US educational publisher Kent Brown at the gala dinner
The congress has been a massive, largely voluntary undertaking by the New Zealand IBBY chapter, Storylines. It was great to see congress directors Libby Limbrick and Rosemary Tisdall receive due acknowledgement for their efforts - and to hear unanimous praise from the over 500 delegates.
MC Miriama Kamo (left) toasts congress directors Rosemary Tisdall (centre) and Dr Libby Limbrick

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

New edition of Te Arawa profiled in the Rotorua Daily Post

It's now a week until the launch of Te Arawa, our new edition of Don Stafford's classic history of the Arawa people of Rotorua and the central Bay of Plenty.

The launch at the Rotorua Museum will be presided over by Rotorua Mayor Steve Chadwick, with representatives of local iwi and Don's family among the distinguished guests.

Don, who passed away in 2010, was a much-loved and respected figure in Rotorua - as evidenced by an article in the Daily Post on Monday.

The article, which you can see via this link, conveys the sense of anticipation ahead of the book's release.

For more about Te Arawa, see the book's page on the Oratia website.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

IBBY Congress brings the world of children's books to Auckland

One of the world's major gatherings for children's books, reading and writing is barely two weeks away from New Zealand shores.

The 35th IBBY International Congress - and the first ever in Oceania - takes place at Auckland's Aotea Centre from 18 - 21 August.

IBBY, the International Board on Books for Young People, is a non-profit organisation that represents a global network of people committed to bringing books and children together.

The Congress features an impressive array of international speakers and over 500 delegates, including authors, illustrators, literacy specialists, academics and teachers.

Oratia is going to be there as an exhibitor alongside seven other New Zealand publishers, on the Publishers Association of New Zealand stand at the Aotea. 

We're looking forward to showing our children's books to the gathering, meeting with colleagues from around the world, and sharing in an exciting few days.

The Congress has been a major undertaking for the Storylines Children’s Literature Charitable Trust of New Zealand (the New Zealand section for IBBY), with organisation led by Libby Limbrick and Rosemary Tisdall.

More information is on the IBBY Congress 2016 website.

'The Children's Nobel'
A highlight of the Congress will be the awarding of the biennial Hans Christian Andersen Award, the children's literature equivalent of the Nobel Prize for Literature. 

This year, China's Cao Wenxuan is the winner of the Author Award, and Germany's Rotraut Susanne Berner receives the Illustrator Award.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Kura Toa stays the distance

The new Oratia Books edition of Tim Tipene's young adult novel Kura Toa Warrior School is out today.
The book was first published by Reed Books; in 2009 we reissued it under our Libro International imprint, and it has reprinted regularly ever since.

Tim's story of troubled high-school student Haki as he struggles to defend the rights of his tribe and grow into a warrior has really struck a chord with teenage readers. It's in demand as a set text in a number of high schools, as well as for general readers.

Long may Kura Toa remain available! For more detail, see the books page on the Oratia website.

Tim Tipene will be appearing the Storylines Northland Family Day in Kaitaia on Saturday 27 August; follow this link for more information.

Tim Tipene

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