Nominations announced for major book awards

After quiet few months post-Christmas, the children’s book world has come alive with the announcement of the longlists and shortlists for three major awards; The Branford Boase Award, The Children’s Book Awards, and the prestigious CILIP Kate Greenaway and Carnegie Medals.


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The Brandford Boase Award is an award for debut children’s authors which also recognises the contribution of the editor in nuturing new talent. Authors that make the cut for this award are usually ones to look out for as previous winners and nominees who have gone on to become well-known names include Siobhan Dowd, Meg Rosoff, Mal Peet, Philip Reeve, Frank Cottrell Boyce, Patrick Ness and Frances Hardinge. The shortlist for the Award will be announced on 8 May 2017.  The winner will be announced on 5 July at a ceremony in London.

2017 Branford Boase Award longlist

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Fenn Halflin and the Fearzero by Francesca Armour-Chelu, edited by Sarah Handley (Walker Books)

Alone by D J Brazier, edited by Charlie Sheppard & Chloe Sackur (Andersen Press)

The Hawkweed Prophecy by Irena Brignull, edited by Sarah Leonard and Megan Larkin (Orchard)

Cogheart by Peter Bunzl, edited by Rebecca Hill (Usborne)

Why I Went Back by James Clammer, edited by edited by Charlie Sheppard (Andersen Press

Follow Me Back by Nicci Cloke, edited by Emma Matthewson (Hot Key Books)

We are Giants by Amber Lee Dodd edited by Niamh Mulvey (Quercus)

Little Bits of Sky by Sue Durrant, edited by Kirsty Stansfield (Nosy Crow)

Eden Summer by Liz Flanagan, edited by Bella Pearson (David Fickling Books)

The Bubble Boy by Stewart Foster, edited by Rachel Mann (Simon and Schuster)

The Otherlife by Julia Gray, edited by Chloe Sackur (Andersen Press)

The Best Medicine by Christine Hamill, edited by Siobhan Parkinson (Little Island)

Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton, edited Alice Swan and Kendra Levin (Faber)

The Girl of Ink & Stars by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, edited by Rachel Leyson (Chicken House)

Defender of the Realm by Mark Huckerby and Nick Ostler, edited by David Stevens (Scholastic)

Orangeboy by Patrice Lawrence, edited by Emma Goldhawk (Hodder Children’s Books)

Beetle Boy by M G Leonard edited by Barry Cunningham and Rachel Leyson (Chicken House)

Girl out of Water by Nat Luurtsema, edited by Emma Lidbury (Walker Books)

The Apprentice Witch by James Nicol, edited by Kesia Lupo and Barry Cunningham (Chicken House)

Riverkeep by Martin Stewart, edited by Shannon Cullen (Penguin Random House)

Kook by Chris Vick, edited by Nicholas Lake and Samantha Swinnerton (HarperCollins Children’s Books)

Spangles McNasty and the Fish of Gold by Steve Webb, edited by Charlie Sheppard (Anderson Press)


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Children’s Book Award 2017

The Children’s Book Award is the only national award for children’s books that is voted for entirely by children. It is owned and coordinated by the Federation of Children’s Book Groups and is highly respected by teachers, parents and librarians. Children nationwide are now invited to vote for their favourite of the ten shortlisted books and have until 12.00 Friday 12th May to get their votes in. The category winners and the author of the best children’s book published in the 2016 nomination period will be announced at an awards ceremony which takes place in central London Saturday 10th June 2017.

Shortlisted books

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Books for Younger Children

Oi Dog, Kes Gray and Claire Gray and illustrated by Jim Field, published by Hodder

Chicken Nugget, Michelle Robinson, illustrated by Tom McLaughlin, published by Puffin

Grandad’s Island, Benji Davies, published by Simon and Schuster

Gracie Grabbit and the Tiger, Helen Stephens, published by Scholastic


Books for Younger Readers

The Accidental Pirates (Voyage to Magical North), Claire Fayer, published by Macmillan

An Eagle in the Snow Michael Morpurgo, published by Harper Collins

The Jam Doughnut that Ruined my Life Mark Lowery, illustrated by Hannah Shaw, published by Piccadilly


Books for Older Readers

One Sarah Crossan, published by Bloomsbury

Car-Jacked Ali Sparkes, published by OUP

Mistletoe and Murder, Robin Stevens, published by Penguin Random House


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The CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals

The oldest and most prestigious awards for children’s books in the UK celebrate their 60th anniversary this year and Chris Riddell is in the running for an unprecedented 4th award! There are many familiar names making up a very strong longlist this year and I certainly don’t envy the judges in trying to narrow these two lists down!

The CILIP Carnegie Medal is awarded by children’s librarians for an outstanding book written in English for children and young people. The CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal is awarded by children’s librarians for an outstanding book in terms of illustration for children and young people. From 2016,  a new commendation will also be awarded to one title from each shortlist that most distinctively illuminates, upholds or celebrates our personal freedoms. The Amnesty CILIP Honour is judged by a separate panel of judges convened by Amnesty International UK.

Tricia Adams, Chair, CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals judging panel, said: ‘Both longlists are outstanding, showcasing the huge range of storytelling to be found in this vibrant area of publishing (children’s books now make up almost a third of the books sold in the UK each year). The subject matter that emerges from the two lists – stories about refugees, our relationship with the natural world, and living with disability and loss – reflect the very real issues children have to deal with. In turbulent times, we need children’s books to provide a safe space from which to help make sense of the world.’

The shortlists for both the CILIP Carnegie Medal and the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2017 will be announced on Thursday 16th March, with the winners being announced on Monday 19th June.

2017 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal for illustration longlist:

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Alpha illustrated by Barroux, written by Bessora, translated by Sarah Ardizzone (The Bucket List)

Return illustrated and written by Aaron Becker (Walker Books)

Wild Animals of the North illustrated and written by Dieter Braun (Flying Eye Books)

Bob the Artist illustrated and written by Marion Deuchars (Laurence King Publishing)

The Lion Inside illustrated by Jim Field, written by Rachel Bright (Orchard Books)

Perfect illustrated by Cathy Fisher, written by Nicola Davies (Graffeg)

Tidy illustrated and written by Emily Gravett (Pan Macmillan)

The Wolves of Currumpaw illustrated and written by William Grill (Flying Eye Books)

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone illustrated by Jim Kay, written by J.K. Rowling (Bloomsbury)

The Whale illustrated by Ethan Murrow, written by Vita Murrow (Templar)

Greenling illustrated and written by Levi Pinfold (Templar)

A Great Big Cuddle illustrated by Chris Riddell and written by Michael Rosen (Walker Books)

A Beginner’s Guide to Bear Spotting illustrated by David Roberts, written by Michelle Robinson (Bloomsbury)

The Journey illustrated and written by Francesca Sanna (Flying Eye Books)

The Marvels illustrated and written by Brian Selznick (Scholastic)

There is a Tribe of Kids illustrated and written by Lane Smith (Two Hoots)

Rain illustrated and written by Sam Usher (Templar)

Counting Lions illustrated by Stephen Walton and written by Virginia McKenna and Katie Cotton (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books)

Little One illustrated and written by Johanna Weaver (Hodder Children’s Books)

The Great Fire of London illustrated by James Weston Lewis, written by Emma Adams (Wayland)


2017 CILIP Carnegie Medal longlist:

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Aubrey and the Terrible Yoot by Horatio Clare (Firefly Press)

Sputnik’s Guide to Life on Earth by Frank Cottrell Boyce (Pan Macmillan)

Unbecoming by Jenny Downham (David Fickling Books)

The Bone Sparrow by Zana Fraillon (Orion Children’s Books)

How Not to Disappear by Clare Furniss (Simon & Schuster)

The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock (Faber & Faber)

Whisper to Me by Nick Lake (Bloomsbury)

Beetle Boy by M.G. Leonard (Chicken House)

The Stars at Oktober Bend by Glenda Millard (Old Barn Books)

Pax by Sara Pennypacker (HarperCollins)

Railhead by Philip Reeve (Oxford University Press)

Beck by Mal Peet with Meg Rosoff (Walker Books)

Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt (Andersen Press)

The Marvels by Brian Selznick (Scholastic)

Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys (Puffin)

Island by Nicky Singer (Caboodle Books)

Dreaming the Bear by Mimi Thebo (Oxford University Press)

Time Travelling with a Hamster by Ross Welford (HarperCollins)

Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk (Corgi)

The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner (Andersen Press)


My predictions

For the Branford Boase Award, I would love to see  Little Bits of Sky by S.E. Durrant win as I really enjoyed this story about a brother and sister in care. I also enjoyed, We are Giants by Amber Lee Dodd and The Bubble Boy by Stewart Foster. Although I haven’t read it yet, Beetle Boy by M G Leonard was highly recommended to me by The Book Nook and it has also made the Carnegie Medal longlist which is an amazing achievment for a debut author.

For the Children’s Book Awards, I am cheering on Oi Dog, Kes Gray and Claire Gray and illustrated by Jim Field to win the younger children category. This follow-up to Oi Frog is hilarious. For the younger readers category, The Accidental Pirates Voyage to Magical North by Claire Fayers has my vote purely because it has pirates and librarians together in the same story (although Margaret Mahy did come close to doing this in her two-story book Great Piratical Rumbustification AND The Librarian and the Robbers). For the older readers category, even though she has a slew of awards under her belt, I would love to see One by Sarah Crossan win as she is such a skilled writer.

Now, the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards are much harder to pick. For the Kate Greenaway illustrator award, if I had to choose, I would have to go for the ecological fable Greenling by Levi Pinfold as the gaps in his text give so much weight to the illustrations and make this an excellent book for discussion. For the Carnegie award, my pick would be The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock as I found that I couldn’t wait to read this on my lunch break. It would also be good to see Nicky Singer’s Island win as she ended up publishing this book herself after being told that, amongst other things, children would be bored by a story about global themes.

I can only really base my predictions on books that I’ve read so let me know what you’ve read and would like to see win one these awards.

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