A novel of fantasy, an autobiography and a mystery have been named as three winners of the Utah Children's Book Award for 1991. "Matilda" by Roald Dahl was voted the most popular book read by more than 46,000 children in grades 3 through 6. Other honorees are "All About Sam" by Lois Lowry and Lynne Reid Banks' "The Fairy Rebel." "Bill Peet: An Autobiography" was listed as the favorite informational book and Joan Lowry Nixon's "The Other Side of Dark," a book about a teenager who is stalked by her mother's murderer, was the young adult choice.

The winning titles were announced at a recent annual meeting of the Children's Literature Association of Utah. Members and guests were also introduced to the 1992 list of books for the three categories (published in this column on April 16th).Honored for the promotion of reading and support of the Utah Children's Book Award was Roger Toone, vice president of Deseret Book Company.

The Utah Children's Book Award, celebrating its 12th year, encourages readers' response by voting in school and public libraries for titles from selected lists throughout the school year. More than 50,000 votes came from around the state.

"Some schools set a challenge to students for completing the books," says association publicity chairman Emily Lowe. "An example of this is at Howard R. Driggs Elementary in Granite District where 1,000 ballots were collected and more than 70 children qualified to win a prize from their PTA as they read the books on the nomination list."