AWARDED BEST BOOK OF YEAR
IT WAS 10 years in the making, but Jessica Townsend’s debut novel is now reaping huge rewards for the young author.
The Coast-born novelist has won the Australian Book of the Year award for her international publishing success,
This is the first book in a series of nine middle-grade fantasy books to be released by Ms Townsend.
The young author said she was just glad the readers enjoyed her book as much as she did.
“I just wrote the book the way I wanted to read it and the way it has been received has been a really welcome shock,” she said.
“I started writing it when I was 18 but it was originally about a little girl living with her eccentric aunt.
“I soon realised the aunt was a much more interesting character and that’s where it started.”
picked up three accolades at the 2018 Australian Book Industry Awards, including Book of the Year, along with the Matt Richell Award for New Writer of the Year, and Book of the Year for Younger Readers.
“I don’t think any writer really writes a novel expecting to win an award but it is a hugely gratifying experience,” Ms Townsend said.
“Writing a book feels like a really solitary thing but there is a lot of collaboration to bring it out into the world, so for me it’s a sign that my publisher has done an amazing job.”
Ms Townsend’s second novel, will be released on September 25.
IN THE BAG: Jessica Townsend’s debut novel has been named Book of the Year in the 2018 Australian Book Industry Awards.