Michael Morpurgo’s victory was announced at an awards luncheon held at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens, attended by over 200 people, including more than 80 children from across the country, all of whom were involved in the voting.
On receiving his award Michael said “Winning awards is always wonderful and particularly wonderful when it’s the Red House Children’s Book Award – which is voted for by children. What is particularly lovely for me is that this is the third time I’ve won the overall award. Shadow was a difficult book to write because I was writing about a contemporary conflict. I was conscious of the fact that there are families of soldiers who are fighting now in the war and dying in it. So there is a sensitivity that is raw and real. I wrote Shadow, as I do with all my books, because I felt so passionately about the subject – the detention centres and the suffering of war. I felt compelled to write it but wasn’t sure how it would be received. Winning this award, voted for by so many readers, means such a lot.”