MELBOURNE, Aug. 16 (Xinhua) -- The Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA) announced Book of the Year 2013 winners at an award ceremony at the National Library in Canberra today, Australian Associated Press reported on Friday.
According to the winners' list released by CBCA, wining authors around the nation achieved the award, which is divided into five categories, for the different targeted age groups respectively.
Margo Lanagan who is a New South Wales (NSW) writer of short stories and young adult fiction won Book of the Year in the older readers category, referring to mature readers, through her novel Sea Hearts.
Forty-five-year-old Sonya Hartnett, who has been called "the finest Australian writer of her generation", is an author of fiction for adults, young adults, and children. Her novel Children of the King picked up the award for younger readers category that recommended books to independent younger readers.
And The Terrible Suitcase, which co-worked by Emma Allen and Freya Blackwood who is an illustrator and special effects artist, took out the award in the early childhood category. This category targets the children in the pre-reading to early reading stages.
Meanwhile, according to the CBCA, Ron Brooks and Julie Hunt's The Coat won the Picture Book of the Year, while the writers behind Tom the Outback Mailman, Kristin Weidenbach and Timothy Ide shared the Eve Pownall Book of the Year 2013.
Both two categories covered books mainly for audiences ranging from birth to 18 years. Some books may be for mature readers.
CBCA's president Angela Briant told local media that the awards show local authors and illustrators are producing enduring works that will be cemented in the country's cultural history.
"There is increasing community awareness of how crucial it is that all young Australians achieve at the very least competent levels of literacy. The best way to achieve that is to provide children and young people with engaging and high quality books - even better if they are Australian books." local media quoted Briant as saying.
The announcement of these awards due to time to coincide with the CBCA's Book Week, which kicks off on this Saturday. This Book Week, which has been held for 68 years, is the longest running children's festival in Australia. And the CBCA Book of the Year Awards can also be considered as the national longest running children's book awards.
CBCA is a volunteer run, not-for-profit organization that was established in 1945 and is comprised of branches of individual members who are passionate about children's and young adult literature. The Children's Book of the Year Awards is supported by Awards Foundation, which was set up to raise fund for prizes in perpetuity and to offer substantial monetary prizes of up to 10, 000 Australian dollars (9,143 U.S. dollars) per category to the authors and illustrators of winning and honor books.
The shortlisted novels are often used as a buying guide for young book lovers, local media reported.