Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to inform the House that the Canada Council for the Arts announced this week the winners of the 2004 Governor General's Literary Awards for Children's Literature.
I am proud to say that in English language books the winner in the text section is a constituent of mine, Mr. Kenneth Oppel, for his book Airborne .
Mr. Oppel published his first book in 1985 when he was only 15. Since then he has had a successful career in promoting children's literacy. Although Mr. Oppel has received many awards for his work, this is his first Governor General's literary award.
Canada Council director John Hobday said it best:
In a world dominated by television, video games and the Internet, children's authors and illustrators have an extraordinary challenge: to create books that stimulate the senses, the emotions and the imaginations of our young people and instil in them a lifelong love of reading.
It is people like Kenneth Oppel and the other three children's laureates who have given the children of our country a very precious gift. We thank them.