The Book of the Year Award is the earliest category of Children's Book Council of Australia awards, first presented in 1946.
No award was presented in 1947 or 1949.
A strong-minded old woman struggles with an ancient gnome-like creature for the right to live in the small cottage that she has just bought, on land that the Njimbin has occupied for centuries.
'When his home is destroyed after an attack, Derin sets out to look for his missing father, captured by soldiers of the Citadel. But he is handicapped by his lameness and forced to use a crutch; his only companion on his quest are an old woman, Marna, and a raven which mysteriously attaches itself to him.'
(Source: back cover)
'The Plum-Rain Scroll is a tale of peril and heroic deeds set in Idzumo, the old Japan of legend and living folklore. Marishoten, the evil Black Iris Lord, seeks to overthrow the Mikado and usurp the Chrysanthemum throne. But first he must find the Plum-Rain Scroll, which holds the three secrets to help him achieve his victory. From the humble Tachibana-ya, the Orange Tree Inn, two unlikely companions set forth to seek the Scroll before Marishoten can achieve his evil design: Taro, the Odd Job boy, and Prince Hachi (Lord Eight Thousand Spears). Their quest takes them far into the countryside, where they are joined by seven even more unlikely companions. When this courageous group finally arrive in Miyako, their adventures reach a stunning climax as they come face to face with their enemy..' (Source: UQP)
'The arrival of baby Carl marks a turning point in the lives of the Mariners. Loved and wanted though he is, Carl casts a shadow over the household, and his adolescent brother becomes increasingly resentful and bewildered.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.
'An account of a rookie Australian Air Force squadron stationed in England during World War II.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.
Simon Brent is orphaned. Still shocked, he is taken to live with his only relatives, brother and sister Charlie and Edie Waters, who live on a farm. There, Simon meets the Aboriginal spirits who also live on the land. Together Simon, Charlie, Edie, and the spirits save the land from the ancient Nargun. The story is memorable in the portrayal of the Nargun and the spirits, as well as the characters of Charlie and Edie, and the depiction of Simon's change from a shocked and emotionally frozen individual to a normal boy.
'Longtime is a place in the Blue Mountains where Edwin Truelance built a house, Letty, his wife, planted a garden and their five children had a world of rain-forest and bushland to explore. Then more people came.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.
The story of Ingeborg, a young Norwegian girl, who lives on a farm on the remote island of Draugoy, in the north. The Germans are beginning their invasion of Norway.
'No one had talked about fuel; what was the use of talking, anyway? But they all knew that engines which run on fuel have to run out of fuel sometime, and that the Egret just couldn’t keep on going for ever. They seemed to have been sitting in this plane, imprisoned, for days, waiting to die. Gerald just flew on and on as though he wanted to fly away to another world, almost as though he didn’t want to go down, almost as though he didn’t know how to go down.
When the Egret’s pilot dies suddenly mid-flight six teenagers, the only passengers on board, face a terrifying situation. Gerald has had some flying lessons, but he has never flown alone, and he has never landed a plane. Lost and afraid, they fly on as the fuel gauge drops and night closes in. Will they find a clear landing place? Could they land in the sea? If they do somehow land safely how will they find their way back to civilisation?'
Source: Publisher's blurb (Text Publishing edition).
'Across nearly two thousand miles of flat, sandy desert country runs a railway line, linking east and west Australia. Scattered along it are small groups of houses. Here the fettlers live, isolated from towns and other people, maintaining the line in the blazing heat.
At night, out of the blackness the min-min appears, an elusive and mystic light dancing on the horizon, beckoning and retreating. Aborigines tell of the wonder and excitement this small swaying light arouses. To Sylvie, a young girl living with her family at the siding, the gleam in the dark is symbolic of her life and future.
Her brother Reg, a "young rough", is frightened to stay at the siding after some of the mischief he causes. So he and Sylvie set off across the endless desert, carrying insufficient water and some bread and jam, walking under the scorching sun, in dust and wind, and facing icy nights.'
Source: 1966 publisher's blurb.
'It's hot, dry and sweaty on Ash Road, where Graham, Harry and Wallace are getting their first taste of independence, camping, just the three of them. When they accidentally light a bushfire no one would have guessed how far it would go. All along Ash Road fathers go off to fight the fires and mothers help in the first aid centres. The children of Prescott are left alone, presumed safe, until it's the fire itself that reaches them. These children are forced to face a major crisis with only each other and the two old men left in their care.
'The best selling Ash Road is an action-packed adventure story, so evocative of rural Australia you can taste the Eucalyptus.' (Publication summary : Text Classics)
'Brought up in boarding schools, Ryle has learned to be independent, but when her mysterious father dies, her whole world changes. Part of her inheritance is a half-share in a dilapidated farm which she shares with a scruffy grandfather she meets for the first time.'
The four Barker children each have a plan to raise money for their mother who is in hospital. The Barkers already face a financial crisis as drought menaces their farm. Things get out of hand, and resourcefulness and courage are needed to save the situation
The Barker children's plans to make money to help out when their mother has to have an operation, and drought threatens their isolated sheep station, lead to unforeseen adventures.
'Sometimes when Lexie fingered a string of shells she had been given as a little girl, she felt strange memories stir. It was as if something very precious was buried away in her own mind. Great-great Aunt Rita's old shell necklace carries a power that Lexie can't possibly know. Then, when it leads her to a new friend, she and Merrina enter the secret gully where Merrina's people live.But the gully holds a terrible secret, as old as the necklace itself. Will Lexie be strong enough, as she relives the nightmare her Aunt Rita endured?This deeply moving classic by one of our great children's writers is part fantasy, part history, and one hundred percent masterpiece.'
Source: Publisher's blurb (UQP reprint).
'The pearldivers of Firecrest Island are forced to flee their island after a natural disaster; and must come to terms with their old native superstitions, with the help of Kerri–a twelve year old scholarship student.'
Source: Publisher's blurb (Pan Books edition).
'Early last century Paul Harris and his cousin and uncle sailed out from England, planning to farm in New South Wales. Their ship founders and they are rescued by a mysterious "whaler" manned by unscrupulous men.'
Source: Publisher's blurb.With Devil's Hill
A Tasmanian boy reveals the habitat of the almost extinct Tasmanian tiger to someone who may want to capture it, and now he must find a way to protect the animal.
A group of children set up a club to pursue their favourite project: keeping vandals out of the nearby national park.