First edition of Cărturino Awards. A Cărturești project for Romanian children’s books writers and illustrators.

The winners of the first Cărturino Awards edition are:

Câștigătorii Premiilor Cărturino sunt: 


A new Cărturești project comes to life this year:  the Cărturino Awards dedicated to children’s books, an initiative to recognize the value of children’s literature, its importance in the Romanian book industry, and in the process of nurturing readers from a young age.

Given the constant growth of the children’s book segment in the Romanian market in recent years – including those authored by Romanian writers and illustrators – with titles published in increasingly bold and carefully curated graphic conditions, an additional form of recognition was needed, especially since there are no awards in Romania specifically dedicated to children’s books.

The Cărturino Awards consist of two main sections: the Illustrated Book of the Year, a prize worth €2,000, awarded for the book as a whole (text and illustration), which will be shared equally between the writer and the illustrator, and the Children’s Literature Book of the Year, worth €1,000, awarded for the text. In addition to the prize money, the winners of the two sections will receive books worth €200, which they will donate to associations or institutions of their choice. The selection of books will be up to the winners.

Within the awards, there will be two special sections, each worth €500: the Booksellers’ Award, awarded by a group of booksellers representing various bookstores in Romania, and the Children’s Award, voted on by a group of children under the coordination of Svetlana Cârstean.

The jury, composed of Iulia Iordan (writer), Carla Duschka (graphic designer), Oana Purice (literary agent), Maria Surducan (illustrator), and Mădălina Oprescu (member of the Cărturești organizing team) followed both the relevance, innovation, and creativity in writing and illustrating a story, as well as the attention to detail regarding the book as an object and finally evaluated all submitted titles and thus chose the 10 finalists of each of the main sections.

Finalists for Children’s Literature Book of the Year:

🍄 Cornute cosmonaute și alte 116 nonsensuri, Carmen Tiderle, ilustrator Vali Petridean, Editura Arthur
🍄 Fanfara lui Rostogol, Lavinia Braniște, ilustrator Andrei Măceșanu, Editura Vlad și Cartea cu Genius
🍄 Miraculoasa viaţă uitată a lui Iris Cartier, Flavius Ardelean-Bachmann, ilustrator Radu Răileanu, Editura Polirom 
🍄 Cronicile Domnișoarei Poimâine III: Misterul orașului Lunivineri, Adina Rosetti, ilustratoare Oana Ispir, Editura Arthur
🍄 De ce și-a pierdut Balaurul tableta… și alte întâmplări fantastice, Adina Rosetti, ilustrator Andrei Măceșanu, Editura Arthur
🍄 Când erau dragonii mici, Diana Geacăr, ilustrator Radu Răileanu, Editura Polirom
🍄 Învățătorii de Grijă. Sânziana, fata Soarelui, Alex Donovici, ilustrații Leonid Gamarț, Curtea Veche Publishing
🍄 Eroi din întâmplare III – Manuscrisul misterios, Liviu Chifane, Editura Datagroup
🍄 Oranjeria, Alexandra Niculescu, ilustratoare Silvia Mitrea, Editura pentru Artă și Literatură
🍄 Apă, praf și soare, Adriana C. Grigore, Editura Arthur

Finalists for Children’s Picture Book of the Year:

🍄 Cofetăria, Lavinia Braniște, ilustratoare Mihaela Paraschivu, Editura CARTIER
🍄 O istorie cu gust de kiwi, Adina Rosetti, ilustratoare Irina Maria Iliescu, Editura Arthur
🍄 Cui i-e frică de Scufița Roșie?, Georgiana Chițac, ilustratoare Georgiana Chițac, Editura Vlad și Cartea cu Genius
🍄 Apolodor pe crestele Carpaților, Florin Bican, ilustrator Dan Ungureanu, Editura Arthur
🍄 Petarde și pocnitori. Poveste de sărbători, Florin Bican, ilustrator Andrei Măceșanu, Editura Arthur
🍄 Anunțuri hazlii pentru adulți și copii, Ionela Hadârcă, ilustratoare Irina Dobrescu, Editura CARTIER
🍄 Cameleonul Cami pleacă în Tibet, Luminița Corneanu, ilustrator Andrei Damian, Editura Vlad și Cartea cu Genius
🍄 Într-un bar din Zanzibar, Marina Debattista, ilustratoare Marina Debattista, Editura Frontiera
🍄 Degețelele, Gabriela Tabacu, ilustratoare Irina Dobrescu, Editura Humanitas
🍄 Cei patru fabuloși și microfonul fantastic, Cristiana Petre, ilustratoare Andra Badea, Curtea Veche Publishing

The winners of the Cărturino Awards will be announced with a ceremony, which will take place on the 10th of March, at Cărturești Carusel.

“Children’s literature gives birth to generations of readers and imaginative individuals. Children’s books have saved a book market from crisis. It’s hard to imagine that until now they didn’t have their own gala, where they could parade with capes, tenor bow ties, brass bands, freckles, violet hair, dogs with round glasses, and the whole arsenal. But now things have changed. Cărturești has set them straight. And the children’s books of Romanian authors will have their own celebration. I am so happy to be a part of it.” – Oana Purice (literary agent, jury member)

The Carturino Awards continue Cărturești’s mission to support contemporary Romanian writers and illustrators, reflected over time in numerous projects, including the most recent ones: Cărturești’s literary creation grants and residences, now in their 4th edition, as well as the Visual Creation Residences in Viscri, initiated in 2023; Short. Festival of Short Prose, held in December each year, Book and Honey, a podcast dedicated to contemporary authors, and numerous projects and collaborations with illustrators and visual artists from Romania.

Carturino, the name under which the awards have come into the world, was born from the imagination of Carmen Tiderle and took shape in the illustration by Ștefan Georgescu.

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