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Blue Peter accused of “censoring” book prize

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By The Drum Team, Editorial

December 6, 2010 | 2 min read

Judges for the 2011 Blue Peter Book Awards have undertaken a hasty u-turn after discovering a novel they had recommended for children depicted graphic scenes of torture and swearing.

Trash by Andy Mulligan, depicts life in a lawless third world country and had been nominated in the favourite story category of the awards.

However despite considering it a “brilliant story” a Blue Peter assistant told Mulligan that the tale wasn’t: “suitable for our younger readers without parental guidance.”

David Fickling of publisher Random House, accused Blue Peter of “censoring” the award, saying that the children’s shows actions were “misconceived.”

Mulligan himself was discomfited by the decision, saying that it was never “helpful” to think in terms of suitable age groups when writing children’s books.

Instead Mulligan saw it as the duty of author’s to take readers to “unfamiliar” places, irrespective of whether they are 48 or seven.

Blue Peter Random House

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