25 Jul 2012

Tribute to Margaret Mahy

6:07 am on 25 July 2012

Writer Jack Lasenby has paid tribute to Margaret Mahy, who has died at the age of 76.

A prolific author whose works were translated in many other languages, she won the Carnegie Medal twice and the Hans Christian Andersen Award in 2006. She was appointed a Member of the Order of New Zealand in 1993.

Lasenby says Mahy appealed to children of all ages which is a difficult skill to master.

He told Morning Report her stories are a wonderful combination of reality and fantasy, which stand up to scrutiny years after they were first published.

Prime Minister John Key says her books and stories have been part of New Zealand children's lives for generations and will remain firm favourites for years to come.

He says it is a mark of the Government's respect for her achievements and her work, that he chose one of her books to take to his British counterpart, David Cameron, for his children.

Mr Key says she will be sorely missed.

Learning Media chief executive David Glover, her first publisher, said Ms Mahy ''touched the hearts of every New Zealander''.