UKLA Book Awards 2017 longlist

The longlist has been announced for the UK’s only book awards judged entirely by active teachers (so a great award for you to keep your eye on). This award has three categories; ages 3-6, ages 7-11, and ages 12-16. The list will be whittled down to a shortlist in March and the winners will be announced at the UKLA International Conference in June 2017 which will be held this time in Glasgow. As such, the judges for the 2017 award will consist of 56 teachers across Scotland.

The 2016 winners were: Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion by Alex T. Smith (ages 3-6); The Imaginary by A.F. Harrold and Emily Gravett (ages 7-11); The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge (ages 12-16).


The UKLA Book Awards seek to celebrate children’s books in order to:

  • encourage teachers to increase their professional and personal knowledge of recently published high quality children’s books
  • promote the place of books for young people in all educational settings from nursery to key stage 4

The books selected for the award will be titles that teachers can share with pupils as part of regular classroom experience, e.g. to:

  • read for pleasure in the teacher’s read aloud programme to the whole class
  • inspire extended response from learners (through discussion, creative interaction or understanding the wider curriculum)
  • be the focus of study (set books, shared and guided reading)
  • enhance all aspects of literacy learning and literary study

Selection committees and teacher judges are asked to look, first and foremost, for well-written, engaging ‘reads’ and, where appropriate, outstanding illustration and design.

(taken from

The longlisted books for the 2017 awards are:

Ages 3-6

A Hungry Lion or a Dwindling Assortment of Animals by Lucy Ruth Cummins  All Aboard for the Bobo Road by Stephen Davies  There is a Tribe of Kids by Lane Smith

All Aboard for the Bobo Road, Stephen Davies illus Christopher Corr, Andersen Press

Take Away the A, Michaël Escoffier, illus Kris Giacomo, Andersen Press

Lucinda Belinda Melinda McCool, Jeanne Willis illus Tony Ross, Andersen Press

A Beginner’s Guide to Bearspotting, Michelle Robinson, David Roberts, Bloomsbury

Little Home Bird, Jo Empson, Child’s Play

Lionheart, Richard Collingridge, David Fickling Books

The Bear and the Piano, David Litchfield, Frances Lincoln

Imaginary Fred, Eoin Colfer, illus Oliver Jeffers, HarperCollins

The Day The Crayons Came Home, Drew Daywalt, illus Oliver Jeffers, HarperCollins

Green Lizards vs. Red Rectangles, Steve Antony, Hodder Children’s Books

Solomon and Mortimer, Catherine Rayner, Macmillan Children’s Books

There’s a Bear on My Chair, Ross Collins, Nosy Crow

The Lion Inside, Rachel Bright, illus Jim Field, Orchard Books

Charlie and Lola: One Thing, Lauren Child, Orchard Books

Zim Zam Zoom, James Carter, illus Nicola Colton, Otter-Barry books

Alison Hubble, Allan Ahlberg, illus Bruce Ingman, Puffin

A Hungry Lion or A Dwindling Assortment of Animals, Lucy Ruth Cummins, Simon & Schuster

Grandad’s Island, Benji Davies, Simon & Schuster

Tidy, Emily Gravett, Two Hoots

There Is a Tribe of Kids, Lane Smith, Two Hoots

How to Find Gold, Viviane Schwarz, Walker Books


Ages 7-11

Gorilla Dawn by Gill Lewis   Harry Miller's Run by David Almond  Soon by Morris Gleitzman

Under Earth, Under Water, Aleksandra Mizielinska, and Daniel Mizielinski, Big Picture Press

The Wolf Wilder, Katherine Rundell, illus Gelrev Ongbico, Bloomsbury

Beetle Boy, M.G Leonard,  Chicken House

Perijee & Me, Ross Montgomery,Faber & Faber

Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot, Horatio Clare, Jane Matthews Firefly Press

The Wolves of Currumpaw, William Grill, Flying Eye Books

The Journey, Francesca Sanna, Flying Eye Books

Time Travelling with a Hamster, Ross Welford, HarperCollins

How To Fight A Dragon’s Fury, Cressida Cowell, Hodder Children’s Books

The ACB with Honora Lee, Kate De Goldi, Greg O’Brien, Hot Key Books

The Thing About Jellyfish, Ali Benjamin, Macmillan Children’s Books

Sputnik’s Guide to Life on Earth, Frank Cottrell Boyce, illus Steve Lenton, Macmillan Children’s Books

Little Bits of Sky, S E Durrant, illus Kati Harnett, Nosy Crow

The Many Worlds of Albie Bright, Christopher Edge, Nosy Crow

Heartsong, Kevin Crossley-Holland, illus Jane Ray, Orchard Books

Gorilla Dawn, Gill Lewis, Oxford University Press

Pugs of the Frozen North, Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre, Oxford University Press

Dreaming the Bear, Mimi Thebo, Oxford University Press

Soon, Morris Gleitzman, Puffin

The Greenling, Levi Pinfold, Templar Publishing

Harry Miller’s Run, David Almond, Salvatore Rubbino, Walker Books


Ages 12-16

A Graphic Novel by Kath Shackleton  The Nest by Kenneth Oppel  Concentr8 by William Sutcliffe

The Crossover, Kwame Alexander, Andersen Press

The Reluctant Journal of Henry K Larsen, Susin Nielsen, Andersen Press

Orbiting Jupiter, Gary D Schmidt, Andersen Press

One, Sarah Crossan, Bloomsbury

Concentr8, William Sutcliffe, Bloomsbury

Island, Nicky Singer, illus Chris Riddell, Caboodle Books

Crow Mountain, Lucy Inglis, Chicken House

The Icarus Show, Sally Christie, David Fickling Books

The Nest, Kenneth Oppel illus Jon Klassen, David Fickling Books

My Name’s Not Friday, Jon Walter, David Fickling Books

The Smell of Other People’s Houses, Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock, Faber & Faber

Survivors of the Holocaust, Kate Shackleton, Zane Whittington and Ryan Jones, Franklin Watts

Fire Colour One, Jenny Valentine, HarperCollins

The Stars At Oktober Bend, Glenda Millard, Old Barn Books

Railhead, Philip Reeve, Oxford University Press

Salt to the Sea, Ruta Sepetys, Puffin

The Red Abbey Chronicles: Maresi, Maria Turtschaninoff, Pushkin

The Marvels, Brian Selznick, Scholastic

How Not to Disappear, Clare Furniss, Simon & Schuster

Hell and High Water, Tanya Landman, Walker Books

The Rest of Us Just Live Here, Patrick Ness, Walker Books


Making use of the UKLA Book Award in your teaching practice:

You can get involved with your class through the wonderful ‘Our Class Loves This Book: John Downing Award’ which celebrates a class’ response (led by their teacher) to one of the books shortlisted for the UKLA Book Awards.

This award encourages teachers to explore a book in detail, by not only looking at the author and the text, but also immersing their classes into worlds of possibility thinking. Teachers may decide to use their chosen book as part of a theme they are teaching with their children, it could be an author study, or maybe a one off exploration – the choice is theirs!

The response can be presented in any way, e.g. through information technology, dance, art, drama, writing, music, spoken presentation or any combination of these.

Take a look at the previous winners for inspiration here.

Image result for Our class loves this book: The John Downing Award

There are some fantastic books on the longlist (it’s great to see poetry and non-fiction represented) and I’m really looking forward to following this award. There are quite a few books that I haven’t managed to look at yet on the list, but I did really enjoy the following titles:

Ages 3-6

Lucinda Belinda Melinda McCool by Jeanne Willis Full Size Cover Full Size Cover

Ages 7-11

Time Travelling with a Hamster by Ross Welford   Full Size Cover  Full Size Cover

Ages 12-16

My Name's Not Friday by Jon Walter  The Crossover by Kwame Alexander    The Nest by Kenneth Oppel


Have you read any books from the longlist that you would like to recommend to your fellow students?

One thought on “UKLA Book Awards 2017 longlist

  1. Fantastic longlists this year. i love THERE IS A BEAR ON MY CHAIR, and Jeanne Willis’ new book plus the return of the Crayons!

    now need to read the 5th book of Morris Glietzman’s SOON to find out how whats happening with Felix.

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