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Small Publisher Wins Top Prize at PANZ Book Design Awards

By July 8, 2012No Comments



5 July 2012

Children’s picture book Two Little Bugs won the Gerard Reid Award for Best Book, sponsored by Nielsen Book Services at the PANZ Book Design Awards yesterday evening.

Described by convening judge Jenny Nicholls as “a triumph – a work of wonderful charm and considerable skill”, Two Little Bugs was the small surprise out of this year’s large selection of books. Two Little Bugs was designed by Rowan Sommerset, of husband-and-wife publishing team Dreamboat Books. Rowan’s design and Mark’s text complement each other to produce books that entertain both children and parents alike.

Two Little Bugs also received the Scholastic New Zealand Award for Best Children’s Book.

This is the second consecutive year that a children’s book has won Best Book at the Publishers Association of New Zealand’s annual ceremony to celebrate excellence in New Zealand book design. Last year’s winner was Hill and Hole, designed by Vasanti Unka.

Fleur: The Life and Times of Restaurateur Fleur Sullivan won both the Mary Egan Award for Best Typography and the Random House New Zealand Award for Best Illustrated Book. The book was designed by Alan Deare of AREA Design, whose work was described by the judges as “consummate typography and design – each page layout, the cover and even the spine show the designer’s attention”, creating a book to “suit the warm, unpretentious character of Fleur herself”.

The judges commended Awa Press Young Designer of the Year candidate Saskia Nicol for her brilliant design of Tupaia, which won the HarperCollins Award for Best Cover.

Fellow Young Designer candidate Anna Egan-Reid was also praised for her innovative and intelligent design for Janet Frame: In Her Own Words, which won the Hachette New Zealand Award for Best Non-illustrated Book.

The Pearson Award for Best Educational Book was won by He Kōrero – Words Between Us: First Māori–Pākehā Conversations on Paper, designed by Sam Bunny.

The PANZ Book Design Awards acknowledge excellence in the categories of typography, cover design, illustrated, non-illustrated, educational, and children’s books, with an overall award for Best Book. The awards are administered by the Publishers Association of New Zealand. The annual competition is the only event in New Zealand that highlights the innovation and integrity of New Zealand book design.


Jenny Nichollsis Art Director for the national current affairs monthly North & South. Alongside her on the judging panel were Roger Parsons, former bookseller and owner of Parsons Bookshop in Auckland, and Gideon Keith, the Creative Partner at Strategy Design & Advertising who has worked as a graphic designer and creative director for over twenty-five years.

Also announced yesterday evening was the Awa Press Young Designer of the Year, awarded to Random House designer Megan van Staden. See accompanying press release for more details.


For the full list of winning titles please visit:
and follow us on Twitter @PANZ_BDAwards
For further details and high-res images of all winning books please contact:
Alice McDowell
Whitireia Publishing
Mobile: 027 3376377


PANZ Book Design Awards 2012 Winners