The book start week was blessed with the announcement of the new children's laureate.
Lauren Child, the bestselling and award-winning author and illustrator, has today been crowned the tenth Waterstones Children's Laureate.
Lauren Child, artist and author-illustrator of the Charlie and Lola and Clarice Bean picture books and Ruby Redfort novels, will be the Waterstones Children's Laureate 2017-19.
The announcement came today in a ceremony in Hull, which is UK City of Culture 2017, where Child received a specially commissioned solid silver Waterstones Children's Laureate medal from outgoing Laureate, Chris Riddell.
The role of the Waterstones Children's Laureate is awarded every two years to celebrate and recognise the important contribution children's literature makes to cultural life.
Reflecting on her role over the next couple of years, Lauren Child said that 'children today need more freedom to dream and imagine'.
She is best known for the Charlie and Lola picture books and the Clarice Bean series of picture books and novels. She wrote the series of Ruby Redfort.
Previous laureates include Michael Morpurgo, Anne Fine and Julia Donaldson.
The idea for the Children's Laureate originated from a conversation between (the then) Poet Laureate Ted Hughes and children's writer Michael Morpurgo. They considered it an appropriate and timely way to combine the celebration of excellence in writing and illustration for children with honouring individuals who have made a significant and lasting contribution to the world of children’s books.
Quentin Blake was the first Children's Laureate (1999-2001)
Each Children’s Laureate has taken the opportunity to promote particular aspects of children’s books. These have included visual literacy, readers with disabilities, poetry, storytelling, illustration, drama, writing for young adults and more.