Awards Ceremony March 2021

Hosted by Joseph Peelo, Kylemore College. See below for comments by students about some of the titles they read.

GRA Winner Announce 2020

GRA student poster winners 2020

The Awards Ceremony can be viewed here:

Great Read Award Virtual Ceremony – YouTube (20 mins.)

Thank you to Joseph Peelo of Kylemore College for hosting this year and to Linda Kerr of Mount Carmel SS for all the video editing.

Congratulations! Thank you to all the student readers and voters. Special thank you to our video reviewers: Sarang, Joanna, Sam, James and Mali.

A selection of student comments:- [see reviews on the video also]

The Space We’re In /by Katya Balen

“I don’t really read but I like this story because I know it is [like] a true story.” (Colaiste Pobail, Acla)

The Cantankerous Molly Darling /by Alvy Carragher

“I found this book very entertaining and enjoyable. I love the characters and how the author describes life in a chaotic house and how it affects people.” (Colaiste Pobail, Acla)

“It was absurd but oddly relatable!” (The King’s Hospital)

“This book combines the perfect amounts of humour and problems. I loved the character of Molly because she is a completely ordinary girl, with no special talents, who’s world suddenly turns upside-down. She feels helpless, like many of us have surely felt before, which helps connect with her. I liked the attitude presented in the book towards teenage problems. For example, the chickens being sold doesn’t seem like a big problem, but to Molly it was a disaster. I could really relate to this because I, myself, have faced small problems that would have looked unimportant to someone from the outside, but rocked my world on the inside. The Cantankerous Molly Darling portrays how little things can mean the whole world to a young person and that’s what I really liked in it.” (Riversdale Community College)

Last Ones Left Alive /by Sarah Davis-Goff

“I liked the ending as Orpen’s training seemed to be all for that moment, and her life with the Banshees.” (Castleknock College)

“This is overall a very good book – I like how they’re living through an apocalypse. And how they’re on a quest to find the legendary Banshee to cure Maeve. (Kishoge Community College)

Becoming Dinah /by Kit de Waal

“I like the way the author gives Dinah two versions of herself. Ismael who Dinah is in in the inside and Dinah who Dinah is on the outside.” (The King’s Hospital School)

Becoming Dinah is a beautiful book about finding yourself and understanding your feelings. Something very important for young people. It made me realize who are the people that are most important in my life. It’s a very emotional book and it often brought me close to tears. In my opinion the use of second person point of view in the prologue and epilogue is used to reinforce the irrationality of Dinah’s actions (prologue) and the feeling of calmness that settles when the problems are resolved (epilogue). I think this makes the reader feel like the story is theirs. At least I felt like I was cutting my hair off and I knew I would regret it. I almost didn’t want to know what came next, but I had to read on because that feeling had me hooked.” (Riversdale Community College)

Bearmouth / by Liz Hyder

“Original and different” (KH)

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder /by Holly Jackson

“I liked the writing the most, the storyline was my favourite and the title captivated me.” (Mount Seskin Community College)

And The Stars Are Burning Brightly /by Danielle Jawando

“A very good read for any[one] with issues. Well done.” (Colaiste Pobail Acla)

The Million Pieces of Neena Gill / by Emma Smith-Barton

“The topic of the book is a very difficult one, but it is very important to talk about mental [health] issues” (Colaiste Pobail Acla)

Most Likely / by Sarah Watson

“If I was a girl I would’ve liked it better. It was a typical love story.” (Colaiste Pobail Acla)

“Great book! I loved the concept and thoroughly enjoyed it!” (The King’s Hospital)

“It was an incredible read and told an empowering story about four average girls achieving incredible thing and I think everyone should read it as it addresses some issues and educated me on topics that should be talked about more.” (The King’s Hospital)

Noinin / by Maire Zepf

Really really good book, do recommend a read, easy to understand if you’re not the best at Irish!! (Mt Anville)

“I think that this novel was smart and enjoyable. I liked the development and the storyline was clever. I enjoyed this novel very much because I was drawn to Noinin, a teenage student like myself.” (Mt Anville)

“This book was unpredictable and very relevant and appropriate for our age group (15-16 years old)” (Mt Anville)

It was beautiful but heart-breaking! (The King’s Hospital)

“I really liked how modern this book is and how it is unlike any other Irish book we have read in Irish class.” (Mt Anville)