Topic: Battle of the Birds - 2012 Sir Julius Vogel Award for Best Youth Novel
Congratulations to Lee Murray, a Tauranga Writer and Oceanbooks author whose debut publication, Battle of the Birds (Taramea Publishing) has just won the 2012 Sir Julius Vogel Award for Best Youth Novel. Lee, we are so enormously proud of you and the hard work you have put in over the last few years to make it as a writer.
Battle of the Birds is an engaging narrative that could usefully be purchased by schools as a classroom set for reading and discussion. Homesick in Wisconsin, 11-year-old Annie lies on an eagle-shaped mound when the eagle breaks from the ground, flying her home to New Zealand 1000 years too early and during a battle between the birds. She says, “Feeling homesick is horrible and it was like that when I moved to Wisconsin. Then I discovered Wisconsin’s intriguing animal-shaped effigy mounds, ancient sites with no known purpose. I imagined these mounds were secret portals to other places. If I found the right door, perhaps it would transport me home to New Zealand.
“But they say you can never go home. Things change while you are away! I thought I’d explore this idea through Annie’s adventure, while also drawing on my experience of trail running through New Zealand forests. So I sent Annie back to a time when moa and te hokioi dominated the wild New Zealand bush.”
To tell you more would be to spoil the thrill of discovering Annie’s story for yourself.
Find out more about Battle of the Birds by visiting the website www.battleofthebirds.info