Theatre professor’s young adult novel wins awards
“Steeplejack,” the young adult fantasy novel by Robinson Distinguished Professor of Shakespeare Andrew Hartley, has won two major awards: the 2017 International Thriller Writers Award for “Best Young Adult Novel” and the 2017 Manly Wade Wellman Award for North Carolina Science Fiction and Fantasy. Both awards were announced July 15.
“Steeplejack” is a fantasy/mystery set in an imaginary world inspired by 19th-century South Africa. Noma Dumezweni, the African-born English actress who made headlines as Hermione Granger in the London West End production of “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” narrated the audiobook version. Published in 2016 by Tor Teen, “Steeplejack” is the first in a trilogy; the second book, “Firebrand,” was released last month in both print and audio versions, again featuring Dumezweni.
Founded in 2004, International Thriller Writers is an honorary society of fiction and nonfiction writers of books classified as “thrillers.” It includes more than 4,000 members from 51 countries.
Since 2013, the Manly Wade Wellman Award is given annually by the North Carolina Speculative Fiction Foundation to recognize outstanding achievement in science fiction and fantasy novels written by North Carolina authors. Hartley’s book was chosen from a list of 115 eligible novels. His is the first book for young adults to win the award. Read the full award announcement here.