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Extensive Reading Foundation 2010
Language Learner Literature Award Winners & Finalists

Every year, the Extensive Reading Foundation recognises the best new works of language learner literature in English. From readers published in 2009, an international jury have chosen the winning book in each of the 5 categories: Young Learners, Adolescents & Adults: Beginner, Elementary, Intermediate, Advanced, taking into account Internet votes and the comments of students and teachers around the world.

Young Learners Winner & Finalists

The Magic Brocade

The Magic Brocade  Winner  

Author: Retold By: Sue Arengo  Illustrator: Nancy Lane
When a widowed weaver creates a beautiful brocade depicting the Sun Palace, the fairies of the Sun Palace send a wind to bring the brocade to the Palace that they might copy it. The weaver's son goes on a hazardous journey in search of the brocade. He must bring it back as his mother cannot live without the brocade.
Judges' Comments: It is a fine, interesting, usefully cultural specific variation on familiar fairy-tale themes. The plain fluency of the storytelling and the clear structural patterning would likely be very helpful for most young readers. It also has beautiful illustrations and good language repetitive patterns for young learners to make it feel easy to read through.
Series: Classic Tales Elementary 3  Publisher: Oxford University Press  ISBN: 9780194239622  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Para-Life Rescue!

Para-Life Rescue!

Authors: Colleen Sheils & John Chapman
In Brazil, a man has discovered a new way of saving, or rescuing, people from drowning in the ocean. This new rescue method involves a person using a motor-powered aircraft to work with lifeguards on the beach. How do these people work together? Is this an effective way of saving lives?
Judges' Comments: It is a non-fiction book about how brave, dedicated people use paragliders to save the lives of swimmers at beaches around the world who are in danger of drowning. The book is clean, professional, interesting, and educational as well as accessibly written and aptly illustrated with photographs. Furthermore, the accompanying CD, with English subtitles, adds a listening element and enhances comprehensibility.
Series: Footprint Reading Library Upper Intermediate / B2  Publisher: Heinle  ISBN: 9781424022328  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Author: Retold By: Sue Arengo  Illustrator: Damian Ward
The classic tale of the puppet that comes to life.
Judges' Comments: This is a version of the classic tale that kids, especially the naughty ones, can relate to. Pinocchio wants to be a good boy, but at the same time, he wants to take initiative and to have adventures. Also, being different from other kids, Pinocchio is sometimes picked on and taken advantage of. Fortunately, through it all, his father and another adult are there for him, and, in the end, he rewards their patience and kindness.
Series: Classic Tales Elementary 3  Publisher: Oxford University Press  ISBN: 9780194239509  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Adolescents & Adults: Beginner Winner & Finalists

The Winning Shot

The Winning Shot  Winner  

Author: Sue Murray
14-year-old Mitch and his brother visit their uncle in Canada. Mitch's Uncle gives him a camera for his birthday. He takes a lot of photographs and goes to a hockey game to take pictures for a photography contest. But suddenly his camera disappears. Then that evening something happens which changed all of their lives.
Judges' Comments: The story flows well. It's enjoyable and keeps the reader glued to the page.
Series: Hueber Lekturen Level 1  Publisher: Hueber Verlag  ISBN: 9783192429767  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Author: Margaret Johnson
It's Tom's birthday. But no-one has any time for him. Then he finds a bag and inside, there is a strange camera ...
Judges' Comments: It has a story line that kept us reading to see what might happen, even though we thought we might already have guessed the ending. We like the illustrations and the look of the book.
Series: Cambridge Discovery Readers Starter  Publisher: Cambridge University Press   ISBN: 9788483235133  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Storm Hawks

Storm Hawks

Author: Amy Wolfram, Adapted By: Helen Parker
A fantasy comic-strip style reader based on the hit animated TV series from Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.
Judges' Comments: It's a good old rip-roaring adventure story - a sci-fi story for teenagers that brings out teenage themes well. It appeals to both boys and girls and the visuals are nicely done.
Series: Scholastic Readers Starter  Publisher: Mary Glasgow / Scholastic  ISBN: 9781905775385  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Adolescents & Adults: Elementary Winner & Finalists


Titanic  Winner  

Author: Tim Vicary
On a quiet sea, the biggest ship in the world is waiting. There is no noise from the engines. Up in the night sky there are hundreds of stars. Behind the ship, and iceberg, a great mountain of ice - goes slowly away into the black night. In the beautiful first-class rooms, rich passengers eat and listen to music. Down in the third-class cabins, families sleep. An exciting new life is waiting for them in America. But for many of the people in this small 'city of the sea', this is their last night alive...
Judges' Comments: Even working at such an elementary level, the author manages to convey facts in a reliable and interesting way, and it is clearly well-researched. Moreover, people's voices are presented by the clever inclusion of imagined dialogues and first person statements. In spite of the very basic level there was no hint of it being patronising, which often happens with other non-fiction readers. Besides, it has some quasi-fictional aspects in the narrative that give the reader some thrill, even though we know the end of the story. The sense of reality created by the mix of archive photographs, illustrations and Hollywood film stills combines with the imagined voices to give the story a dual dimension."
Series: Oxford Bookworms Library, Factfiles, Stage 1 (Beginner)  Publisher: Oxford University Press  ISBN: 9780194236195  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Number the Stars

Number the Stars

Author: Lois Lowry, Adapted By: Edward Broadbridge
The year is 1943 and for 12-year-old Annemarie Johansen life in Copenhagen is a complicated mix of home and school, not enough food - and Nazi soldiers on the streets. Annemarie's best friend Ellen is a Jew. And as the Nazi soldiers begin to kill all Jews, Annemarie stands by her friend and helps her try to escape to Sweden. Will they succeed?
Judges' Comments: This original story covers a difficult topic, especially if you know little about World War Two and the holocaust. This is what makes the story especially welcome. It may bring to young generations of readers some knowledge of events which should never be forgotten. It is at the same time extremely relevant in our multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, religiously diverse societies. The issues are dealt with from the perspective of a young person, which reduces the heaviness without trivialising it. The narrative flow is excellent and the original plot stands up with native speaker literature for interest value.
Series: Easy Readers Elementary  Publisher: Egmont  ISBN: 9788723907134  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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The Secret Garden

The Secret Garden

Author: Frances Hodgson Burnett, Adapted By: Elizabeth Ann Moore  Illustrator: Alida Massari
Life with her uncle is uneventful for bad-tempered Mary Lennox until one day she finds a secret garden. She wants to make the garden beautiful and meets Dickon, a friendly boy who helps her. Then Mary meets her cousin Colin, an invalid, who is confined to bed. With Mary and Dickon's help Colin goes out into the secret garden and discovers the meaning of true friendship and happiness...
Judges' Comments: This version of the story takes this enduring children's classic at a lower language level than earlier ELT adaptations. The task of adapting a classic to a present-tense only narrative is a major one, and this succeeds. The themes of unhappy childhood, prejudice and family relationships are a constant. Characterisation survives the low language level. The illustration is generally superb and the publishers are to be commended for listing the structural criteria for the level in an appendix, an example others could follow. It was considered young in appeal and presentation, but in the end it was felt that older learners could enjoy the story
Series: Black Cat Green Apple Starter / A1  Publisher: Black Cat Publishing  ISBN: 9788853008435  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Adolescents & Adults: Intermediate Winner & Finalists

Michael Jackson: The Man, The Music, The Mystery

Michael Jackson: The Man, The Music, The Mystery   Winner  

Author: Vicky Shipton
Michael Jackson was one of the world's most famous pop stars and his unexpected death in 2009 made news headlines everywhere. This compelling biography traces his journey from child star in The Jackson 5 to global fame as the 'King of Pop'.
Judges' Comments: This is a well-written, balanced account of the life of a great entertainer. There are excellent additional snippets at the end of the book.
Series: Scholastic Readers 3 (Intermediate)  Publisher: Mary Glasgow / Scholastic  ISBN: 9781905775828  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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The Mind Map

The Mind Map

Author: David Morrison
Lucho and Eva are paired together for a History project. The first stage is to draw a 'Mind Map' of all their ideas. But Lucho's mind map has a mind of its own and starts to grow. The map leads Lucho and Eva on an adventure involving the ancient theft of gold in a lost city in the Colombian jungle.
Judges' Comments: A gripping story. It has a good fast-moving plot and is well- written. The story has action, magic and love all in a strong local setting.
Series: Cambridge Discovery Readers 3 (B1/Lower Intermediate)  Publisher: Cambridge University Press  ISBN: 9788483235409  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Playing with Fire: Stories from the Pacific Rim

Playing with Fire: Stories from the Pacific Rim

Author: Jennifer Bassett
He smiled, showing teeth yellow from cigarette smoke. He looked at his desk diary, then at her papers again. 'Mmm... a hundred pesos a month, Why, that's one thousand two hundred pesos a year. Surely, you can afford to buy me a forty-peso dinner!' How can Marina say no? How can she refuse the Chief's next request? He is an evil man, but she needs her promotion...
Judges' Comments: The stories are all very strong, hard-hitting and well expressed. Excellent use of illustrations by local illustrators
Series: Oxford Bookworms Library, World Stories Stage 3 (Pre-Intermediate)  Publisher: Oxford University Press  ISBN: 9780194792844  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Adolescents & Adults: Advanced Winner & Finalists

The Best of Times

The Best of Times  Winner  

Author: Alan Maley
Chee Seng, a 16-year-old Malaysian boy, has to grow up fast as he lives through the best and the worst of times. He suffers heartbreak as his parents' marriage falls apart and experiences the joys and heartache of first love.
Judges' Comments: This original story has an interesting plot that appeals to young adults. The language is also pitched nicely for this level.
Series: Cambridge English Readers Level 6 (Advanced)  Publisher: Cambridge University Press  ISBN: 9780521735469  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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The Kalahari Typing School for Men

The Kalahari Typing School for Men

Author: Alexander McCall Smith, Retold By: Annette Keen
When a new detective agency opens in town, Precious Ramotswe has an unexpected problem - competition!
Judges' Comments: This has an excellent plot that keeps the reader involved. The re-telling is well-done.
Series: Penguin Readers Level 4 (Intermediate)  Publisher: Longman  ISBN: 9781408294451  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Safe House

Safe House

Author: James Heneghan, Adapted By: Philip Hewitt
We are in Belfast in 1999. A young catholic boy, Liam, experiences that his parents get killed by some protestant men, and the men see him. Liam is offered to stay in at a 'Safe House', but not even here can he feel safe.
Judges' Comments: A good story with a plot that is exciting.
Series: Easy Readers  Publisher: Egmont  ISBN: 9788723906311  Publication Date: 2009  Format: Paperback
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Previous Winners & Finalists: 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006
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