Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh wins the Margaret Mahy Book of the Year Award for "Mophead"
Samoan/Tuvaluan, Auckland based poet Dr Selina Tusitala Marsh has won the supreme prize at the 2020 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. She won the 'Margaret Mahy Book of the Year Award' for her personal picture book, "Mophead"
'Mophead' is the story of what it felt like to be a little girl with big hair and how she grew into it and became our Poet Laureate. It's dedication: “For those who stick out.”
Watch her acceptance speech in the video above where she talks about how she also illustrated the book herself as well.
Here’s a snippet from the press release, covering what the judges said:
Mophead is “clever, joyful and inspiring, with not a smidgen of pretension or condescension”. They went as far as calling the book “perfect” – describing it as a taonga that should be placed in the hands of every child in Aotearoa, especially young Pasifika children who might not yet know their own creative power.
“We love this book’s design and production. We love that it’s part picture book, part graphic novel, part memoir, part poem – its form is exactly what it wants and needs to be, which is the message of the book too,” says convenor of judges Jane Arthur.
'Mophead' also won the Elsie Locke Award for Non-fiction.