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UKLA Book Award Shortlists

08 April 2020 Share


• New criteria have immediate impact on judges’ choices

• Diverse authors and debut publishers recognised

• Sarah Crossan and Philip Reeve could both win for the third time

@The_UKLA  #UKLA20   #teachersbookawards

2020 saw the introduction of new judging criteria in the only national book awards which are judged by teachers. Calling for the selection to be from a “wide and inclusive range” of publishers and for books which “recognise a broad range of perspectives, experiences and voices” the criteria reflect the strategic importance UKLA has given to diversity and inclusion in literacy education. The judges from Oxfordshire and Renfrewshire have risen to the challenge and produced UKLA’s most diverse lists ever, with small imprints dominating the selections in each of the four categories. 

12 teachers nominated from the 70 involved in the shortlisting will now form the final judging panel and have the challenging task of reading all the shortlisted books in all categories. Plans for the final judging meeting have had to adapt to the constraints imposed by the Covid-19 epidemic and similarly the winner’s announcement will be postponed until later in the year. A date and venue will be announced as soon as possible

For further information and to request an interview with the shortlisted authors and illustrators, or for images, please contact Chris Lockwood awards@ukla.org 

The Shortlists in full 


Mixed written and illustrated by Arree Chung (Macmillan)

The Suitcase written and illustrated by Chris Naylor-Ballesteros (Nosy Crow)

Lubna and Pebble written by Wendy Meddour illustrated by Daniel Egnéus (OUP)

Julian is a Mermaid written and illustrated by Jessica Love (Walker Books)

If All the World Were.. written by Joseph Coelho illustrated by Allison Colpoys (Frances Lincoln)

The Visitor written and illustrated by Antje Damm translated by Sally-Anne Spencer (Gecko Press)


Slick written by M.M.Vaughan ( Alma Books)The Eleventh Trade written by Alyssa Hollingsworth (Piccadilly Press)

Race to the Frozen North written by Catherine Johnson, illustrated by Katie Hickie (Barrington Stoke)

The Legend of Kevin written and illustrated by Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre (OUP)

The Middler written by Kirsty Applebaum(Nosy Crow)

Armistice Runner written by Tom Palmer (Barrington Stoke)


No Fixed Address written by Susin Nielsen (Andersen Press)

Toffee written by Sarah Crossan (Bloomsbury)

Catching Teller Crow written by Ambelin and Ezekiel Kwaymullin ( Penguin)

Lenny’s Book of Everything written by Karen Foxlee (Pushkin Press)

The Skylark’s War written by Hilary McKay (Macmillan)

Pay Attention Carter Jones written by Gary D. Schmidt (Andersen Press)

Information Books 3 -14+

Mary and Frankenstein written by Linda Bailey and illustrated by J?lia Sard?, (Andersen Press)

A Book of Bears written and illustrated by Katie Viggers (Laurence King)

A Child of St.  Kilda written and illustrated by Beth Waters (Child’s Play)

Counting on Katherine written by Helaine Becker and illustrated by Dow Phumiruck   (Macmillan)

Questions I am asked about the Holocaust written by Heidi Fried   ( Scribe)

Once Upon a Raindrop written by James Carter and illustrated by Nomoco(Caterpillar Books) 

UKLA is a registered charity, which has as its sole object the advancement of education in literacy. UKLA is committed to promoting good practice nationally and internationally in literacy and language teaching and research. 


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