CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medal shortlist announced

Yes, it’s that time of year when all of the shortlists start rolling in and you begin to feel overwhelmed by how many books you have on your ‘must read when I get the time’ list. But pay attention as these book awards are widely acknowledged to be the most prestigious awards in children’s literature and they certainly don’t shy away from selecting hard-hitting themes or controversial titles – just look at last year’s Carnegie Medal winner Kevin Brooks with his book The Bunker Diary (possibly the most thrown-across-the-room book in 2014!). This year’s Carnegie shortlist also covers many challenging themes including war, suicide, illness and adversity.

On the shortlist for the Carnegie Medal for fiction this year are:

When Mr Dog Bites by Brian Conaghan (Bloomsbury)

Apple and Rain by Sarah Crossan (Bloomsbury)

Tinder by Sally Gardner (author) and David Roberts (illustrator) (Orion Children’s Books)

Cuckoo Song by Frances Hardinge (Macmillan Children’s Books)

The Fastest Boy in the World by Elizabeth Laird (Macmillan Children’s Books)

Buffalo Soldier by Tanya Landman (Walker Books)

The Middle of Nowhere by Geraldine McCaughrean (Usborne Books)

More Than This by Patrick Ness (Walker Books)

Whilst the Carnegie Medal recognises outstanding children’s fiction, the Kate Greenaway Medal is awarded for illustration and this year’s list includes plenty of dark and disturbing imagery (see Shaun Tan, David Roberts, Alexis Deacon and John Higgins/Marc Olivent) alongside the more typical style of children’s book illustrations. It’s great to see the inclusion of so many illustrated books aimed at older children.

On the Kate Greenaway Medal shortlist for illustrated books are:

The Promise by Laura Carlin (illustrator) and Nicola Davies (author) (Walker Books)

Jim’s Lion by Alexis Deacon (illustrator) and Russell Hoban (author) (Walker Books)

Shackleton’s Journey by William Grill (Flying Eye Books)

Dark Satanic Mills by John Higgins and Marc Olivent (illustrators) and Julian Sedgwick and Marcus Sedgwick (authors) (Walker Books)

Smelly Louie by Catherine Rayner (Macmillan Children’s Books)

Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse by Chris Riddell (Macmillan Children’s Books)

Tinder by David Roberts (illustrator) and Sally Gardner (author) (Orion Children’s Books)

Rules of Summer by Shaun Tan (Hodder Children’s Books)


Agnès Guyon, Chair of this year’s CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals judging panel, said of the shortlists:

‘There’s no doubt our writers and illustrators do not shy away from difficult, often painful imagery and themes. There is darkness here, illuminated by the bright light of optimism. These incredibly strong shortlists are not just a showcase of talent, but of the skilful ways our greatest writers and illustrators introduce young readers to big ideas, always instilling hope as they set their characters against the harshest challenges.’

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *