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The Kate Greenaway Medal
Recent Shortlist

The CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal Shortlist for 2013

Judges’ comments are listed in italics

Please note: The "age range" listed below is intended as a guide only, as determined by the 2013 judging panel.

Rebecca Cobb LUNCHTIME

Rebecca Cobb LUNCHTIME
Macmillan Children’s Books (3+)
ISBN: 9780230749528

It's lunchtime for one little girl, but she's just not hungry. A visiting crocodile, bear and wolf, however, are starving. It's just as well that children taste revolting! A beautifully illustrated tale of food, friendship and fun from an exciting new talent, Rebecca Cobb.

A book featuring a very attractive colour palette and an exemplary use of white space, text placement and layout. Naïve and yet sophisticated, the use of perspective and size reinforces the child’s viewpoint throughout.


Emily Gravett AGAIN!

Emily Gravett AGAIN!
Macmillan Children's Books (5+)
ISBN: 9780330544030

It’s nearly Cedric the dragon’s bedtime! He’s brushed his teeth and had his bath, which means there is just enough time for his mum to read him his favourite book. However, once is not enough and mum is more sleepy than Cedric. Growing impatient, he pleads with his sleeping mum to read to him again - with some fiery consequences! Emily Gravett won the Kate Greenaway Medal in 2008 with Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears and in 2006 for Wolves.

This perfect picture book by previous Greenaway winner Gravett, employs a clever use of ‘a book within a book’. The use of colour to signify emotion is both very effective and visually stunning, as is the way the text of the story changes as mum gets more tired. Every little element of the whole package works together brilliantly.


Chris Haughton OH NO, GEORGE!

Chris Haughton OH NO, GEORGE!
Walker Books (5+)
ISBN: 9781406332254

George is a dog with all the best intentions. And his owner, Harry, has all the best hopes that George will be a well-behaved dog when he leaves him alone for the day. But when George spies a delicious cake sitting on the kitchen table, his resolve starts to waver. You see, George loves cake… and it’s so hard to be a good dog when there are cats to chase and flowers to dig up!

The bold colour palette used in this very funny book is both vibrant and very effective – George’s expressive eyes, in particular, are brilliant. The relationship between Harry and George is very familiar and there’s a clever use of gorgeous endpapers before and after the story.


Jon Klassen I WANT MY HAT BACK

Jon Klassen I WANT MY HAT BACK
Walker Books (5+)
ISBN: 9781406338539

The bear’s hat is gone and he wants it back. Patiently and politely, he asks the animals he comes across, one by one, whether they have seen it. Each animal says no, some more elaborately than others. But just as the bear begins to despair of ever finding his hat, a deer asks a simple question that sparks the bear’s memory, inspiring him to renew his search with a vengeance.

A quirky, unique and fantastically funny book, there is so much humour to be found in the illustrations. A lesson in visual literacy, character emotions are expressed brilliantly and the clever use of the colour is inspired.


Chris Mould PIRATES ‘N’ PISTOLS

Chris Mould PIRATES ‘N’ PISTOLS
Hodder Children's Book (9+)
ISBN: 9780340999349

Following on from Mould’s Dust 'n' Bones and Fangs 'n' Fire, comes Pirates 'n' Pistols – ten swashbuckling pirate tales about some of the most villainous and scurrilous rogues ever to sail the Seven Seas. Traditional pirate myths and legends, some new and original tales and memorable pirates from all over the world burst off the pages.

The larger-than-life pirates are drawn with great humour and an extremely distinctive style using detailed pen and ink drawings. The combination of black and white and rich colour is used to great effect throughout this beautiful book with the illustrations working hand-in-hand with the text.


Helen Oxenbury (illustrator) and Peter Bently (author) KING JACK AND THE DRAGON

Helen Oxenbury (illustrator) and Peter Bently (author) KING JACK AND THE DRAGON
Puffin Books (3+)
ISBN: 9780141327594

Night is falling, bedtime is looming and playtime is almost over… but brave King Jack and his faithful followers, Sir Zak and baby Caspar are more than a match for dragons and horrid beasts! With a band of faithful knights and a mighty castle too, this is a magical make-believe adventure for brave little children everywhere! Helen Oxenbury won the Kate Greenaway Medal in 1969 with The Quangle Wangle's Hat and The Dragon of an Ordinary Family and again in 1999 with Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.

This is a truly timeless book offset by some fantastic modern touches. The distinctive illustrations echo the late Maurice Sendak’s Where the Wild Things Are but yet have a wonderful quality all of their own. The tonal colours are absolutely lovely, wonderfully evoking the imaginative playtime, and perfectly combine with the opposing pages featuring black and white drawings.


Levi Pinfold BLACK DOG

Levi Pinfold BLACK DOG
Templar Publishing (5+)
ISBN: 9781848770522

A black dog appears outside the Hope family's home. As each member of the household sees it and hides, the dog grows bigger. Only Small, the youngest Hope, has the courage to face the Black Dog. When it chases her through the forest she shows no fear, so it grows smaller and smaller. Finally, back to the size of a normal hound, the Black Dog is welcomed into the Hope household as their newest addition.

A visual treat, full of mood and atmosphere, the beautiful illustrations are full of detail and perfectly in keeping with the story. The use of scale, with the big dog pushing the text off the page, is clever. A timeless, thought-provoking book about facing up to anxiety, fears, and the black dog that visits some of us from time-to-time.


Salvatore Rubbino (illustrator) and Nicola Davies (author) JUST DUCKS!

Salvatore Rubbino (illustrator) and Nicola Davies (author) JUST DUCKS!
Walker Books (5+)
ISBN: 9781406327397

The young girl in this story may live in the city, but outside her window there’s a river full of mallard ducks! She hears them as soon as she wakes up and, on the way to school, she sees them upside down bobbing for food. Interspersed with fun facts, her enthusiastic commentary about her feathered neighbours are paired with cheerful watercolour illustrations.

This book features a beautiful ‘duckish’ palette of colours with a clever use of white space to indicate the duck’s watery landscape. The use of shadow and differing text types really makes these ducks – and their story - come alive.