Kaj je zlata hruška?
Zlata hruška je znak kakovosti otroških in mladinskih knjig. Po mnenju uredniškega odbora, ki vsako leto pripravlja Priročnik za branje kakovostnih mladinskih knjig, se tiste knjige, ki po vsebini in izvedbi izstopajo, uvrstijo med odlične izdaje leta in pridobijo pravico do znaka Zlata hruška.
Med odličnimi izdajami izberemo najboljše štiri knjige v štirih različnih kategorijah ter jim podelimo štiri priznanja:
- za izvirno slovensko mladinsko leposlovno knjigo,
- za izvirno slovensko mladinsko poučno knjigo,
- za prevedeno mladinsko leposlovno knjigo,
- za prevedeno mladinsko poučno knjigo.
What is a Golden Pear?
Golden Pear is a visual sign promoting the best children’s books. Its establishment is closely connected with the systematic assessments of children’s literature in Slovenia. The first attempts at such assessments date back to the establishment of the first Slovenian journals, focusing on children’s literature: Otrok in knjiga (Child and Book) 1972 and Šolska knjižnica (School Library) 1991, which published recommendations, assessments and reviews of selected titles. In 1998, a team of experts from the Pionirska Library (that later became Pionirska, Center for Youth Literature and Librarianship, Ljubljana City Library (The Pionirska Center)), prepared the first independent publication the List of Recommended Books for Children and Youth (the List), which contained annotations on selected books published between 1991 and 1997 and has been published every year since then. In 1999-2001, the List contained annotations for all fiction and selected non-fiction books published the previous year. As book production increased, it was no longer possible to annotate all fiction titles and from 2002 The List contained annotations only for recommended fiction and non-fiction books. In 2008, the List was renamed to Manual for Reading Quality Youth Literature (the Manual). In 2009, the expert committee of the Manual decided to include grading into the annual assessment of all the fiction and non-fiction books for children and youth (with some exceptions of books written by children, textbooks, coloring books etc.), with grades from 1 (very low quality books) to 5 (the excellent books). Grades 3, 4 or 5 are considered a recommendation to librarians for purchase and to reading mentors for further recommendation. The excellent books (with grade 5 in the Manual) are then visually promoted with a Golden Pear sign. The image of the sign with the Golden Pear has been created by an established Slovenian illustrator, who is among others the illustrator of the 2020 ICBD message and Slovenian 2020 nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award, Damijan Stepančič.
The Golden Pear was very quickly recognized as a symbol of quality, and the Golden Pear stickers now help visitors to most Slovenian libraries and bookstores to choose quality literature. Although it is still a challenge, the small size of the Slovenian publishing market, with around 1000 published books for children and youth per year, has made such a systematic classification possible.
In order to further promote the best books, in 2010, the expert committee of the Manual established the Golden Pear award for children’s and YA literature in three categories: best original fiction, best translated fiction (awarded jointly with the Slovenian section of IBBY 2010 ̶ 2017) and best original non-fiction, the first Slovenian award intended for non-fiction literature for children in Slovenia.
The Manual and the Golden Pears are closely connected with other projects of the Pionirska Center, especially with Expert Wednesday, a series of expert seminars for reading mentors, librarians and other experts working in the field of children’s literature. The topics of the seminars are usually closely related to the observations of the Manual’s expert committee collected during the analysis of the annual production of children’s literature.
Dr. Tina Bilban
Institute Nova revija, Slovenia
President of IBBY Slovenia