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>> AUTHOR PROFILES

Author Alan Gibbons shot to stardom when he won the Blue Peter Book Award for 'The Book I Couldn't Put Down' in 2000 with Shadow of the Minotaur, the first title in his Legendeer trilogy.

Shadow of the Minotaur was also shortlisted for the prestigious Carnegie Medal. Although it narrowly missed the final award, it was voted the children's winner by the thousands of school children who shadow the award. Alan was also shortlisted for the Carnegie Award 2003 for The Edge.

As an ex-primary school teacher (for 18 years) in inner city Liverpool and father of four children, Alan is flying the flag for boys' fiction. He is often told that boys just don't read and he doesn't believe it.

'All too often boy-friendly themes such as horror, adventure, science fiction and sport are viewed with condescending distaste Everybody recognises that boys gravitate towards non-fiction but they will read fiction. On one condition it has to be fiction which connects.'

Alan's books connect. From fantasy and computer games to the realism of life in school and on the football pitch, he knows what boys want to read and understands all the nuances of their lives.

Alan is a regular contributor to the press and often on radio talking about children and books. He also founded and leads the Campaign for the Book, which fights against library closures.


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