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Oscar’s Reserve Prize shortlist unveiled – along with double prize cash

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Oscar’s Book Prize shortlist unveiled - along with double prize money
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he winner of this year’s Oscar’s E book Prize will get £10,000 – double the regular prize revenue – with six publications shortlisted for the prestigious award.

The annual prize for the ideal youngsters’s photograph ebook is now in its eighth calendar year and is awarded in memory of Oscar Ashton, who died aged a few-and-a-half of an undetected coronary heart condition in 2012.

Amid the shortlisted authors is Gruffalo creator Julia Donaldson who is nominated alongside illustrator Sara Ogilvie for The Medical center Doggy and Smriti Halls who is nominated 2 times.

The Londoner was shortlisted with Steve Little for I’m Sticking With You and with David Litchfield for Rain Ahead of Rainbows. Also nominated are Tom Percival for Meesha Helps make Good friends, Lu Fraser and Kate Hindley for The Littlest Yak and Yasmeen Ismail for Would You Like A Banana.

Julia Donaldson is among the the shortlisted authors

/ PA

Oscar’s father James Ashton, the prize’s chairman and co-founder, claimed: “I’m certainly thrilled we can double the benefit of Oscar’s E-book Prize.

“From chatting to our past winners, I know for them it is not all about the cash but these authors and illustrators ought to have large many thanks for inspiring the up coming technology of viewers.

“Substantially rising the prize is our way of saying thank you, when at the very same time I hope concentrating interest on the amazing guides revealed in this segment of the industry for youngsters and their carers to share.”

The winner of the award, supported by Amazon, the Countrywide Literacy Have confidence in and the Evening Normal, will be announced by its patron HRH Princess Beatrice in a livestreamed ceremony on Could 11.

Amazon Director of EU Books Simon Johnson explained the entries have been “a enjoyment to read” and “packed total of vital educational messages”.

National Literacy Believe in Chief Executive Jonathan Douglas stated the award was “a amazing celebration of early year’s literature”.

He claimed: “The shortlist of entries to this year’s prize is remarkable. Congratulations to all authors, it has been a challenging year for lots of, but your perform has introduced pleasure to lots of households and is aiding youngsters on their way to getting to be audience.”

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Frazzled mums and sharp one particular-liners – Motherland is continue to a pleasure

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Frazzled mums and sharp one-liners - Motherland is still a joy

As Motherland’s girl-on-the-verge Julia, she is only at any time one minor annoyance (a babysitter cancelling, say, or an unexpected check out from the in-legislation who travel gradually as a result of her kitchen like that container ship stuck in the Suez Canal) away from collapsing into an existential scream.

Right after spending the first collection hoping to flat-out deny the probability of at any time generating “mum good friends,” Julia is now the very-strung ringleader of a gang of school gate misfits, such as globe-weary Liz (a scene-stealing Diane Morgan, dishing out a person-liners in monotone), no-bullshit Meg (Tanya Moodie) and soaked blanket Kevin (Paul Prepared), the token father. In the palms of a producing team that incorporates Sharon Horgan and comic Holly Walsh, it is a premise which is ripe for comedy – and complete chaos.

Julia, Liz and friends are back for spherical three

/ BBC / Merman

Sequence three kicks off with some unwelcome news: standing at a podium bearing the slogan “Comb, shampoo, comb,” a instructor confirms that a nit epidemic is tearing by the faculty. They are making an attempt to establish patient zero, and any pupils carrying head lice will have to isolate at house. The Covid parody feels a minimal much too on the nose for a demonstrate as cleverly noticed as this one, but as soon as the briefing is about, the episode finds its stride. Julia’s mum Marion, who took a amusing flip at sports day final time, is eventually set to transfer out of her daughter’s property on Saturday – so she’s considerably less than thrilled when self-appointed queen bee Amanda (Lucy Punch) reveals she’s pre-emptively cancelled her son’s birthday celebration in case it turns into a super-spreader occasion, nixing Julia’s absolutely free childcare. 

Her daughter Ivy, in the meantime, has been determined as affected individual zero in the lice outbreak, meaning she’s shunned by her faculty good friends when Julia drags her to the park throughout their “isolation” interval. “I’m a stay-at-dwelling father, I’m employed to currently being taken care of like a turd in a swimming pool,” sighs a sympathetic Kevin. He’s on in particular melancholic kind this time all-around, as the tensions in his relationship – evident to anyone apart from him since series a single, episode just one – have arrived at breaking level, prompting his spouse Jill (who remains eternally offstage, like Godot) to retreat to her business office in the attic – “she’s straight up the loft ladder like a chinchilla” – and sooner or later check with for a divorce.

The break-up, which prospects Kevin to start off swigging Bailey’s from the bottle and enact some poetic justice on loft-dwelling Jill, is not the only revelation to rock the “nit blitz” get together that Julia hosts (for totally self-interested factors). A phone call from her mum’s medical professional telling her to hold fireplace on the go causes her to run upstairs and scream into a pile of towels, only to bump into Meg’s spouse Monthly bill (Anthony Head), who is reeling from information that will put the rest of their considerations into stark point of view.

Kevin, left, is likely by a tough time

/ BBC / Merman

The jumpers might be a little bit extra stylish this time all over (probably the gang has been blackmailed into acquiring up leftover stock from Amanda’s boutique, Hygge Tygge, even though Julia’s hottest puffa coat still tends to make her glance “like an angry purple sleeping bag,” as Liz places it) but over-prolonged Covid metaphor aside, the jokes are as sharp as ever. It is hard to choose who receives the best one-liners, which seem to be to have been dished out at any time so democratically in the writers’ area, though Amanda could just have the edge.

She is continue to a beautifully coiffed nightmare, placing down her minion, the endlessly exploitable Anne (Phillipa Dunne), at each offered possibility. When Liz reveals she’s just had a career interview at a shoe shop on the significant avenue, Amanda begins to grill her sidekick about a absolutely fictional stint driving the counter at Greggs. “I under no circumstances labored at Greggs, I was head of product development at GlaxoSmithKline around the world,” Anne pipes up, prompting her frenemy to twist the knife a very little little bit additional. “I can’t photograph you operating in an workplace, Anne,” she frowns. “I see you… with cakes and puffs.”

Handled in another way, a comedy about a team of center-course Acton mums could have been unbearably twee, but with its acutely noticed characters, knockout cast and knack for wringing hilarity from the most banal of situations, Motherland is an unhinged delight, by turns savage and sweet. With secondary college selection looming (episode two brilliantly skewers catchment place paranoia, which sees Julia embrace Catholicism with newfound fervour) here’s hoping this is not the gang’s very last hurrah.

Motherland is on BBC Two at 9pm on Mondays, catch up on BBC iPlayer.

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