Welcome to the Aventis Prizes for Science Books 2006. The Prizes, now in their 18th year, are managed by The Royal Society with the generous support of the Aventis Foundation with the aim of encouraging the reading, writing and publication of high quality, accessible science books for both adults and children. Since they were established in 1988 the Prizes have become widely acknowledged as the most prestigious popular science book awards in the world.
There are two Prizes which are awarded on an annual basis: the General Prize for science books aimed at the wider population; and the Junior Prize, for books written with a younger reader in mind. The Prizes are each worth 10,000 to the winning authors and 1,000 to each of the shorlisted books. The 2006 award winners will be announced at a prestigious awards ceremony held at the Royal Society on 16 May 2006.
Past winners of the General Prize include some of the leading names in adult non-fiction such as Bill Bryson, Stephen Hawking and Jared Diamond. Recent Junior Prize winners include Frances Dipper for the DK Guide to the Oceans, and Nick Arnold and illustrator Tony de Saulles who've won twice with books in the hugely-successful Horrible Science series.
In 2005 Philip Ball won the General Prize for his book, 'Critical Mass: How One Thing Leads to Another' (William Heinemann). The Junior Prize was won by Robert Winston for his first book for children,'What Makes Me, Me?' (Dorling Kindersley).
The diversity and quality of science literature was evident in the books longlisted and shortlisted for both the General Prize and Junior Prize in 2005, with themes as diverse as drug use, the power of the human mind, memory and the history of our planet and our ancestry. The Aventis Prizes seek to celebrate this.
The Aventis Foundation is a German charitable trust established by a predecessor of sanofi-aventis, a world leader in pharmaceuticals.
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