SHORTLISTS FOR 2018 CILIP CARNEGIE AND KATE GREENAWAY MEDALS ANNOUNCED
British-American author Patrick Ness stands to be the first author to win a Carnegie Medal hat-trick
Seven-strong Kate Greenaway shortlist contains three books by single author-illustrators
True stories and timely issues inspire books across both lists, from Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give – inspired by Black Lives Matter – to Debi Gliori’s exploration of depression in Night Shift
Today (Thursday 15th March), the shortlists for the 2018 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals, the UK’s oldest book awards for children and young people, are revealed. Celebrating the best in children’s writing and illustration respectively, the Medals are unique in being judged by children’s librarians.
Patrick Ness is in the running for his third Carnegie Medal win with Release, which would make him the first author to secure a hat-trick in the Medal’s 81-year history. To date, Ness has been shortlisted for all seven of his children’s books and won twice, with A Monster Calls (2012) and Monsters of Men (2011). He is joined by Geraldine McCaughrean and Marcus Sedgwick – who have both been shortlisted for the Medal for the seventh year (McCaughrean was shortlisted twice in one year in 2011) – with Where the World Ends and Saint Death respectively; McCaughrean has won the Medal once before, with A Pack of Lies (1988). Other authors with works included on the eight-strong Carnegie shortlist include teen-rapper-turned-debut-author Angie Thomas (The Hate U Give), former shortlistees Lauren Wolk (Beyond the Bright Sea) and Lissa Evans (Wed Wabbit), and Will Hill (After the Fire) and Anthony McGowan (Rook).
There are three author-illustrators on the seven-strong Kate Greenaway Medal shortlist: Kate Greenaway contenders Debi Gliori’s Night Shift, Pam Smy’s Thornhill and Britta Teckentrup’s Under the Same Sky are shortlisted for the quality of their illustration, but in all three cases the illustrators have also written the books. They are joined on the shortlist by former Kate Greenaway winner Levi Pinfold, with one of his first commissions to illustrate a novel (The Song from Somewhere Else), and picture book offerings from Laura Carlin (King of the Sky), Petr Horáček (A First Book of Animals) and Sydney Smith (Town is by the Sea). Of the seven books, three illustrators have been shortlisted before (Pinfold, Gliori and Smith).
The 2018 shortlists are:
The CILIP Carnegie Medal 2018 shortlist (alphabetically by author surname):
Wed Wabbit by Lissa Evans (David Fickling Books)
After the Fire by Will Hill (Usborne)
Where the World Ends by Geraldine McCaughrean (Usborne)
Rook by Anthony McGowan (Barrington Stoke)
Release by Patrick Ness (Walker Books)
Saint Death by Marcus Sedgwick (Orion)
The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (Walker Books)
Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk (Corgi)
The CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2018 shortlist (alphabetically by illustrator surname):
King of the Sky illustrated by Laura Carlin and written by Nicola Davies (Walker Books)
Night Shift illustrated and written by Debi Gliori (Hot Key Books)
A First Book of Animals illustrated by Petr Horáček and written by Nicola Davies (Walker Books)
The Song from Somewhere Else illustrated by Levi Pinfold and written by A.F. Harrold (Bloomsbury)
Town is by the Sea illustrated by Sydney Smith and written by Joanne Schwartz (Walker Books)
Thornhill illustrated and written by Pam Smy (David Fickling Books)
Under the Same Sky illustrated and written by Britta Teckentrup (Little Tiger)
True stories and timely issues inspire several titles across both shortlists. On the Carnegie shortlist, historical events are reimagined in Where the World Ends by Geraldine McCaughrean, a novel set around a true survival story from 18th century St Kilda, After the Fire by Will Hill, which takes as its premise the siege of US federal agencies on Seventh-day Adventist sect, the Branch Davidians, and Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk, a book inspired by events that unfolded on Penikese island, Massachusetts – once home to a leper colony – in the 1920s. More recent global events are reflected in Angie Thomas’ powerful debut The Hate U Give, which intersperses family with the ethical concerns fuelling the Black Lives Matter campaign, whilst Marcus Sedgwick’s timely novel Saint Death looks at migration along the border of Mexico and the United States of America.
Rites of passage appear on both shortlists, starting with the Carnegie Medals’ inclusion of Release by Patrick Ness, a coming-of-age novel based on the author’s experience of growing up gay in a deeply religious family, and Rook by Anthony McGowan, the third instalment chronicling the lives and growing pains of brothers Kenny and Nicky. On the Kate Greenaway shortlist, Night Shift by Debi Gliori and Thornhill by Pam Smy both use monochrome, pictorial storytelling to explore dark themes of depression and bullying, whilst Levi Pinfold’s illustrations in A.F. Harrold’s The Song from Somewhere Else bring a novel about two loners finding friendship to life in an unsettling and surreal way. Equally dark, but more satirical, is Lissa Evans’ Wed Wabbit; the Father Ted-writer turned author uses playful language to explore the inner imaginative world with the story of 10-year-old Fidge, who is thrown into the bizarre world of her little sister’s favourite story.
For younger readers, the natural world is gloriously evoked in Petr Horáček’s illustrations for Nicola Davies’ A First Book of Animals and Britta Teckentrup’s Under the Same Sky, with both using rich colour palettes and clever techniques to create a visually arresting experience. The bleakness of coal mining towns and tunnels are contrasted with the beauty of Rome and land- and seascapes respectively in Laura Carlin’s illustrations for King of the Sky (Nicola Davies) and Sydney Smith’s for Town is by the Sea (Joanne Schwartz).
Jake Hope, Chair of the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals judging panel for 2018, said:
“The books on the 2018 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals shortlists offer moments of breath-taking poignancy and insight for all readers, young or old. The scope is truly global, stretching from forests to seas, traversing continents and cultures as well as time. The titles explore topical issues with remarkable emotional honesty embracing themes of prejudice, personal growth and development whilst eliciting a wider understanding of the wonders and complexities of the world young people inhabit. Verve and vibrancy radiate memorably from the impressive range of styles in writing and illustration on offer in these books, making the lists perfect for stimulating personal connections and conversation.”
The shortlists of 15 books were whittled down from a longlist of 40 titles (20 per medal), selected from a record-breaking 237 nominated books, each read by the 12 members of the judging panel.
The winners of the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals 2018 will be announced on Monday 18th June 2018 at a special daytime event at The British Library, hosted by June Sarpong. The winners will each receive £500 worth of books to donate to their local library, a specially commissioned golden medal and a £5,000 Colin Mears Award cash prize.
At the ceremony in June, one title from each shortlist will also be named the recipient of the Amnesty CILIP Honour, which is awarded to the books that most distinctively illuminate, uphold or celebrate human rights. The Honour aims to increase awareness of how great children’s books encourage empathy and broaden horizons. The Amnesty CILIP Honour is selected by a separate team of judges.
Joining the judging panel for the 2018 Amnesty CILIP Carnegie honour are Jordan Stephens (writer, performer and one half of hip-hop duo Rizzle Kicks), Jamila Gavin (award-winning children’s author) and Autumn Sharif (singer-songwriter), whilst Carlos Reyes (Chilean social documentary photographer, poet and an Amnesty prisoner of conscience in Chile during Pinochet's civic-military dictatorship) and Chris Riddell (former Children’s Laureate & Amnesty Ambassador) join the panel for the Kate Greenaway honour.
The CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals are the oldest children’s book awards in the UK, with the first winners announced in 1937 and 1957 respectively. The titles on the shortlists are selected from nominations for their literary and artistic merit and are contenders for the highest accolades in children’s literature, with previous winners including legendary talents Arthur Ransome, C.S Lewis and Mary Norton for the Carnegie Medal and illustrators Quentin Blake, Shirley Hughes and Raymond Briggs for the Kate Greenaway Medal.
In 2017, CILIP announced an independent review into how equality, diversity, inclusion and participation can best be championed and embedded into the work of the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals. Chaired by Margaret Casely-Hayford, the Diversity Review is taking place throughout the 2018 Medals cycle and is currently in consultation phase, which involves an online survey and focus groups. The survey − in development with Coventry University – will be launched in March 2018.
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NOTES TO EDITORS
About the CILIP Carnegie & Kate Greenaway Medals
The Carnegie Medal, awarded annually to the writer of an outstanding book for children, was established in 1936 in memory of the Scottish-born philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie (1835-1919). A self-made industrialist who made his fortune in steel in the USA, Carnegie’s experience of using a library as a child led him to resolve that “If ever wealth came to me that it should be used to establish free libraries.” He set up more than 2,800 libraries across the English-speaking world and by the time of his death over half the library authorities in Great Britain had Carnegie libraries.
The Kate Greenaway Medal was established in 1955 for distinguished illustration in a book for children. Named after the popular nineteenth century artist, known for her beautiful children's illustrations and designs, the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal is awarded annually for an outstanding book in terms of illustration for children and young people.
The full list of past winners of the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals can be found here: http://www.carnegiegreenaway.org.uk/archive-full-list.php
About the Awards Shadowing Scheme
Each year thousands of reading groups in schools and libraries in the UK and overseas get involved in the Awards, with children and young people ‘shadowing’ the judging process. They read, discuss and review the books on the shortlists and get involved in reading related activity in groups and online. Free shadowing educational resources include visual literacy teaching notes, talking points, human rights teaching notes produced by Amnesty, activity ideas and video interviews with the shortlisted authors and illustrators. Shadowing groups are encouraged to publish their own creative response to the books online including reviews, blogs, and videos.
About CILIP, the library and information association
CILIP is the leading voice for the information, knowledge management and library profession. Our goal is to put information and library skills and professional values at the heart of a democratic, equal and prosperous society. CILIP is a registered charity, no. 313014. The Youth Libraries Group (YLG) of CILIP works in a ‘pressure group’ role to preserve and influence the provision of quality literature and library services for children and young people, both in public libraries and school library services.
About Amnesty International and the Amnesty CILIP Honour
Amnesty International is the world’s leading human rights organisation with over 7 million supporters worldwide. It was awarded the Nobel peace prize in 1977. The Amnesty CILIP Honour was introduced in 2016, to commend human rights in children’s literature. One book is selected from each of the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medal shortlists, chosen because it most distinctively illuminates, upholds or celebrates freedoms. The inaugural Amnesty CILIP Honours were awarded in 2016 to Robin Talley for Lies We Tell Ourselves (CILIP Carnegie Medal shortlist) and Ross Collins for There’s a Bear on My Chair (CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal shortlist).
The judges for the 2018 Amnesty CILIP honour are: Nicky Parker, Publisher, Amnesty International UK; Rowena Seabrook, Human Rights Education Manager, Amnesty International UK; Abie Longstaff, children’s author and former human rights lawyer; Jamila Gavin, award-winning children’s author whose dual Indian and English heritage has been a constant source of inspiration; Gabrielle Cliff-Hodges, former Senior Lecturer in Education at the University of Cambridge, specializing in children’s literature; Louise Johns-Shepherd, chief executive of the Centre for Literary in Primary Education; Autumn Sharif, singer-songwriter and daughter of Somali refugees and Jordan Stephens, writer and performer best known as one half of pop duo Rizzle Kicks. The judges for the 2018 Amnesty Kate Greenaway honour are: Nicky Parker, Publisher, Amnesty International UK; Rowena Seabrook, Human Rights Education Manager, Amnesty International UK; Dan Jones, artist, storyteller, collector of nursery rhymes and Amnesty human rights educator; Chris Riddell, former Children’s Laureate and Amnesty Ambassador; Manya Benenson, artist and storyteller, daughter of Amnesty’s founder; Carlos Reyes-Manzo, Chilean social documentary photographer and poet. He was an Amnesty prisoner of conscience in Chile during Pinochet's civic-military dictatorship and exiled to Panama in 1975. In November 1979 he was kidnapped in Panama by the Chilean secret police and sent back to Chile via London where he escaped from the plane; Evelyn Arizpe, educator specialising in children’s literature, senior lecturer in education at Glasgow University and Amy Leon, Harlem-born musician, poet and educator.
CILIP Equality and Diversity Action Plan
A Diversity Review, chaired by Margaret Casely-Hayford, is taking place throughout the 2018 Medals cycle. CILIP announced the review of Medals - as part of the organisation’s wider Equality and Diversity Action Plan following concerns raised about the lack of BAME representation on the 2017 Carnegie Medal longlist. CILIP’s Equality and Diversity Action Plan follows previously published research commissioned in 2015 by CILIP and the Archives and Records Association, which outlined diversity issues in the library, archives, records, information management and knowledge management sector. The Review will inform the annual evaluation process and long-term planning around the Awards and accompanying shadowing scheme.
An interim report was published in December 2017 outlining the work carried out to date. In this report Margaret Casely-Hayford has stated: “I took on this role following criticism of the 2017 Carnegie longlist as it included no Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic (BAME) authors. Since then I have listened to comments, concerns and ideas about how the awards can be the best champion of diversity, inclusion and representation in order to create greater opportunity for the widest pool of talent to be drawn upon, providing authors and illustrators who can unlock a broader world of literary excellence for readers. This in turn should increase participation in reading and associated activities by all children and young people – regardless of who they are, their background and where they live.”
Nick Poole also stated in the report: “Librarianship is at the very heart of what makes the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards unique. A librarian is someone who behaves according to the ethics of our profession, who has made a lasting personal commitment to the universal rights of access to knowledge and of self-expression. Libraries are built on the twin ideals of universality and empowerment. They belong to everyone and everyone has the right to use them. But simply being universally accessible is not sufficient. As a sector, we have learnt that we need to be proactive in identifying and tearing down the barriers which prevent some people from discovering the joy of reading, of cultural participation and of seeing themselves reflected in literature.”
The Diversity Review is currently in the consultation phase, which involves an online survey and focus groups. The survey is in development with Coventry University and will be launched by March 2018. You can register here to take part in this survey and have your say.
SHORTLISTED BOOKS: SUMMARY
CILIP Carnegie Medal 2018 shortlist:
Wed Wabbit by Lissa Evans (David Fickling Books)
Wed Wabbit is a satirical tale about Fridge, an organized and independent 10-year-old, who finds herself plunged into the bizarre world of her little sister Minnie’s favourite story, where evil dictator Web Wabbit rules over the Wimbley Woos, colourful creatures who only speak in rhyme. With only a band of sentient toys and her awful cousin Graham to help her, Fidge must solve an increasingly ludicrous series of puzzles in order to go home, or she’ll be stuck forever in the world of the Wimbley Woos, and Minnie – in the real world – will die.
British author Lissa Evans has a background in comedy. Following a medical degree, she changed careers to become a comedy producer for radio and TV; her credits include Father Ted, Room 101 and Have I Got News for You. Her first book for children, Small Change for Stuart, was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and the 2011 Costa Children’s Book Award. Her books for adults include Their Finest Hour and a Half, which was longlisted for the Baileys Prize and made into a recent film, Their Finest, starring Bill Nighy. She lives in London.
After the Fireby Will Hill (Usborne)
After the Fire is inspired by the 51-day Waco siege in 1993, where US law enforcement attempted to raid the property of the real-life sect, the Branch Davidians, resulting in an intense gun battle and the deaths of 80 people. The narrative follows 17-year-old Moonbeam and her struggle with guilt as she fights to overcome everything she once believed in to tell her story, make sense of the tragedy, and recover.
British author Will Hill worked as a bartender, bookseller and in publishing before quitting to write full-time. His first novel, Department 19 – the first in a series of five – was published in 2011 to widespread acclaim. He lives in London.
Where the World Endsby Geraldine McCaughrean (Usborne)
Where the World Ends is a novel based on a true survival story from 1727 which played out on the isolated Scottish island of Hirta, St Kilda. What starts out as annual three-week harvest during fowling season turns into a courageous daily battle for survival as nine young boys are left stranded on the perilous sea stacks, imprisoned on every side by the ocean, and by their fears of the unknown.
British author Geraldine McCaughrean is a multi-award-winning children’s author. She has now been shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal eight times, and has won once before with A Pack of Lies in 1988. She has won the Whitbread Children's Book Award three times, the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize, the Smarties Bronze Award (four times) and the Blue Peter Book of the Year Award. In 2005 she was chosen from over 100 other authors to write the official sequel to J. M. Barrie's Peter Pan: Peter Pan in Scarlet (2016). She lives in Berkshire.
Rookby Anthony McGowan (Barrington Stoke)
Rook is the third standalone novel chronicling the lives of brothers Nicky and Kenny, who first appear in Brock and Pike. When the brothers rescue a rook left for dead, Kenny is determined to keep it alive. Nicky doubts the scruffy bird will make it, but has plenty else to worry about, including his struggles with a school bully, his first love, and the fact that everything is about to go very wrong.
British author Anthony McGowan has written several young adult novels, including Hellbent, Henry Tumour, which won the Book Trust Teenage Prize in 2006, and The Knife That Killed Me which was adapted into a highly acclaimed film in 2014. He has written widely for younger children, including the award-winning Donut Diaries series, and Einstein’s Underpants, which was shortlisted for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize in 2010. He lives in London.
Releaseby Patrick Ness (Walker Books)
Release takes place over the course of one Saturday in the life of Adam Thorn, a gay 17-year-old growing up in a deeply religious American home. Adam is forced to keep his new boyfriend secret, stave off advances from his predatory boss and live up to the example of his ‘perfect’ older brother as he struggles under the suffocating weight of his devout family, particularly his father, who is head preacher at an evangelist church.
British-American author Patrick Ness is the multi-award-winning author of A Monster Calls, the Chaos Walking series, More Than This, The Ask and the Answer, The Rest of Us Just Live Here, and The Crane Wife. He is twice winner of the CILIP Carnegie Medal for A Monster Calls (2012) and Monsters of Men (2011), and the first author to ever win this award in consecutive years. Patrick wrote the screenplay for a critically acclaimed screen adaptation of A Monster Calls starring Liam Neeson and Felicity Jones. Patrick is also the creator and writer of BBC3’s Dr Who spin-off The Class. Based on Patrick’s own experiences growing up gay in a deeply religious family, Release is his most personal literary novel yet. He lives in England.
Saint Death by Marcus Sedgwick (Orion)
Saint Death is a thriller about migrants, drug lords and gang warfare along the US/Mexican border, exploring themes of migration, capitalism, and what it means to live in poverty. Set in Anapra, one the poorest neighbourhoods in the Mexican city of Juarez, it tells the story of Faustino and his friend Arturo as they risk their lives trying to escape from the gang he’s been working for. Watching over them is Saint Death (or Santissima Muerte), a holy patron to rich and poor, a folk saint, a rebel angel, a sinister guardian.
British author Marcus Sedgwick’s first novel, Floodland, won the Branford Boase award for the Best Debut Children's Novel of 2000. His books have been shortlisted for the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize, The Blue Peter Book Award, The Costa Book Award and the Edgar Allan Poe Award. Saint Death is his seventh book to be shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal, the most recent being Ghosts of Heaven in 2016. His novel, Midwinterblood, won the 2014 Michael L. Printz Award. He lives in the French Alps.
The Hate U Giveby Angie Thomas (Walker Books)
The Hate U Give tells the story of 16-year-old Starr, a girl of two worlds. Every day she walks a fine line between the poor inner-city neighbourhood where she was born and raised, and the wealthy suburbs where she goes to high school. The uneasy balance between the two is shattered when Starr becomes the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend by a white police officer. What she saw, and whether she speaks out could affect her entire community and have an impact on her friends and close-knit family.
American author Angie Thomas was born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi. She studied Creative Writing at Belhaven University, where she was one of the only black students – a theme visited in The Hate U Give, her debut novel, which is currently being adapted for film. A former teen rapper, she recently won the inaugural Walter Dean Myers Grant awarded by the We Need Diverse Books campaign. She lives in Jackson, Mississippi, United States.
Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk (Corgi)
Beyond the Bright Sea is inspired by true events that took place on Penikese Island in Massachusetts – once home to a leper colony - in the 1920s. It tells the story of Crow, who has lived her whole life on a tiny stark island with Osh, the man who rescued her as a baby from a washed-up skiff and raised her, and Miss Maggie, their neighbour. After a mysterious fire appears across the water, Crow begins to question her own history, and triggers a chain of events that lead her down a path of discovery and danger.
American author Lauren Wolk graduated from Brown University in 1981 with a degree in English literature, spent a year as a writer with the Battered Women’s Project of the St. Paul American Indian Centre, and then worked as both an editor and an English teacher. Since 2007, she has been the Associate Director of the Cultural Center of Cape Cod. She is an award-winning poet and also a visual artist. Her critically acclaimed 2016 debut novel Wolf Hollow was shortlisted for the Waterstone’s Children’s Book Prize 2017 and was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal 2017. She lives in America.
CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2018 shortlist:
King of the Skyillustrated by Laura Carlin and written by Nicola Davies (Walker Books)
King of the Sky is a story about migration and the meaning of home. It tells the story of a young boy starting a new life in a foreign country. He feels lost and alone until he befriends an old man who races pigeons. Soon they are both pinning their hopes on a race across Europe and waiting for their dear friend, the pigeon aptly named King of the Sky, to return home.
British illustrator Laura Carlin is a graduate of the Royal College of Art and an award-winning illustrator, including The Biennial of Illustration Bratislava award (BIB) for children’s book illustration in 2015 for The Iron Man and A World of Your Own, and also the Bologna Ragazzi Prize for illustration in 2014. Her work has featured in Vogue, The Guardian and The New York Times. She lives in London, England.
Night Shift illustrated and written by Debi Gliori (Hot Key Books)
Night Shift offers an insight into depression – using simple text and black-and-white illustrations, with depression imagined as a dragon – in a visual exploration of how mental illness can isolate sufferers and affects one’s whole outlook on life. Inspired by the author’s own experiences of mental illness, the book offers insight, hope and a release from stigma.
Scottish author and illustrator Debi Gliori has been shortlisted for multiple prizes including the Kate Greenaway Award twice, for Mr. Bear to the Rescue (1997) and Always and Forever (2003), and also the Scottish Arts Council Award. She was the Shetland Islands' first Children's Writer-in-Residence. She has written and illustrated No Matter What, The Trouble With Dragons, Stormy Weather, The Scariest Thing of All, What's the Time, Mr Wolf?, Dragon Loves Penguin and, most recently, Alfie in the Bath and Alfie in the Garden as well as the popular Pure Dead fiction series for older readers. She lives in Scotland.
A First Book of Animalsillustrated by Petr Horáček and written by Nicola Davies (Walker Books)
A First Book of Animals, a companion volume to A First Book of Nature, is a treasury of poems about the animal world, encouraging readers to celebrate the variety of life on the planet. Drawing inspiration from a lifetime working to protect the natural world and its animals, Nicola Davies breathes life into the creatures of the wild. Each animal is described with lyrical writing by Nicola Davies and illustrated with detailed artworks from Petr Horáček.
Czech illustrator Petr Horáček (Czech) trained at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague before becoming a graphic designer, painter and author-illustrator. His titles Strawberries Are Red and What Is Black and White? won the Books for Children Newcomer Award in 2002. He was shortlisted for the CILIP Carnegie Medal in 2012 for Puffin Peter. Petr lives in Worcester, England.
The Song from Somewhere Elseillustrated by Levi Pinfold (Bloomsbury) and written by A.F. Harrold
The Song from Somewhere Else is a story of friendship, betrayal, acceptance and doing what is right. Frank doesn’t know how to feel when Nick Underbridge rescues her from bullies one afternoon. Nick is big, weird and smells. But there’s more to Nick, and to his house, than meets the eye, and soon Frank realises she isn’t the only one keeping secrets, or the only one who needs help.
British illustrator Levi Pinfold has published several picture books, including The Django, Greenling and Black Dog, which won the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal in 2013. Born in England, he now lives in New South Wales, Australia.
Town is by the Seaillustrated by Sydney Smith and written by Joanna Schwartz (Walker Books)
Town is by the Sea brings a piece of mining history to life by showing the striking contrast between a sparkling seaside day and the darkness underground where the miners dig. It follows the story of a young boy who wakes up to the sound of the sea, visits his grandfather's grave after lunch and comes home to a cosy dinner with his family, whilst all the while his mind strays to his father digging for coal deep down under the sea.
Canadian illustrator Sydney Smith has illustrated multiple children’s books, including The White Cat and the Monk and the Footpath Flowers, which was a New York Times Children’s Book of the Year, a winner of the Governor General Award for Illustration and shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal in 2016. He lives in Toronto, Canada.
Thornhill illustrated and written by Pam Smy (David Fickling Books)
Thornill uses black-and-white images to illustrate the dark and emotional story of two girls separated by 30 years but pulled together by a place. Ella is drawn to the big derelict house opposite her new house, convinced it has a story to tell. When she sees a girl in the grounds, the two develop a powerful friendship
British author and illustrator Pam Smy studied Illustration at Anglia Ruskin University, going on to complete the MA Children's Book Illustration in 2004. She combines her role as lecturer in illustration with illustrating fiction.
Under the SameSky illustrated and written by Britta Teckentrup (Little Tiger)
Under the Same Sky is a peep-through picture book that uses the animal kingdom to explore the closeness of communities through their shared hopes and dreams. From penguins seeking solace together to rabbits playing in the meadow, deer frolicking in the fields and flamingos sheltering from the storm. Teckentrup’s collaging techniques bring the animals and their environments to life and reiterates to the reader that despite our differences we all live in this world together.
German author and illustrator Britta Teckentrup has written and illustrated over 80 picture books, which have been published in over 20 different countries. She has won numerous awards including a Special Mention at the Bologna Ragazzi, Most Innovative Picture Book at the Junior Design Awards and her recent bestseller Bee, has been shortlisted for the 2017 Independent Booksellers Award. After 17 years in the UK, Britta now lives and works in Berlin.