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Shortlists for Yoto Carnegie Greenaway Awards 2022

The shortlists for Yoto Carnegie Greenaway Awards 2022 have been announced. Celebrate the power of friendship and pictures to create empathy, connection and Hope.

The UK’s longest running and best-loved book awards for children and young people, the Yoto Carnegie Greenaway Awards, today announced the shortlists for 2022.

Acclaimed authors Katya Balen, Phil Earle, and Alex Wheatle progress from Yoto Carnegie longlist to shortlist for the first time; and four debuts are recognised – Sue Divin for the Carnegie and George Butler, Danica Novgorodoff and Peter Van den Ende on the Yoto Kate Greenaway list.

Second novels from 2021 Carnegie Shadowers’ Choice winner Manjeet Mann and 2017 Carnegie shortlisted author Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock secure a place on the shortlist; while double Kate Greenaway Medal winners Sydney Smith (2018 & 2021) and Emily Gravett (2005 & 2008) have a shot at a third Medal.

Six of the eight Yoto Carnegie shortlisted books are based on real-world events – from Tacky’s War to WWII; the legacy of the Troubles to the refugee crisis; the 2011 Japanese tsunami to the Central Park Exonerated Five case – with many demonstrating the power of friendship to help young people overcome challenges and celebrate difference.

The judges’ selection champions pictures and their ability to communicate with readers and help them understand the world, with two wordless picture books on the Yoto Kate Greenaway list and two illustrated titles up for the Yoto Carnegie Medal, including one featuring manga. The Awards celebrate outstanding achievement in children’s writing and illustration respectively and are unique in being judged by children’s and youth librarians, with the Shadowers’ Choice Award voted for by children and young people.

16 books have been selected in total – eight for the Yoto Carnegie Medal and eight for the Yoto Kate Greenaway Medal – from a longlist of 33 titles. They were chosen by an expert team of volunteer judges, featuring 14 librarians from CILIP’s Youth Libraries Group based across the UK.

The 2022 Yoto Carnegie Medal shortlist (alphabetical by author surname):

October, October by Katya Balen, illustrated by Angela Harding
Guard Your Heart by Sue Divin
When the Sky Falls by Phil Earle
Everyone Dies Famous in a Small Town by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock
The Crossing by Manjeet Mann
Tsunami Girl by Julian Sedgwick, illustrated by Chie Kutsuwada
Cane Warriors by Alex Wheatle
Punching the Air by Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam

The 2022 Yoto Kate Greenaway Medal shortlist (alphabetical by illustrator surname):

Drawn Across Borders illustrated and written by George Butler
The Midnight Fair illustrated by Mariachiara Di Giorgio, written by Gideon Sterer
Too Much Stuff illustrated and written by Emily Gravett
Long Way Down illustrated by Danica Novgorodoff, written by Jason Reynolds
Milo Imagines the World illustrated by Christian Robinson, written by Matt de la Pena
Shu Lin's Grandpa illustrated by Yu Rong, written by Matt Goodfellow
I Talk Like a River illustrated by Sydney Smith, written by Jordan Scott
The Wanderer illustrated and written by Peter Van den Ende

Jennifer Horan, Chair of Judges for the Yoto Carnegie Greenaway Awards 2022, comments: “My fellow judges and I are proud of our sixteen-strong shortlist of books for the Yoto Carnegie Greenaway Awards, which we hope will excite, move and empower the young readers who pick them up, including the thousands shadowing this year’s Awards. On a personal level, having a research interest in the link between children’s literature and empathy, I’m thrilled that our Yoto Carnegie shortlist showcases how friendship can help young people find the strength to navigate a path through challenging times. We’re also delighted to celebrate the power of pictures, not only on the Yoto Kate Greenaway list but in a couple of Carnegie titles too. Many of our shortlisted books remind us that art can help us to communicate and connect with young people when words sometimes fail us. The Shadowing Groups and our young readers now share the judges’ difficult task of picking two winners from this rich pool of talent.”


This year, the Yoto Carnegie Greenaway Awards are running a series of #YotoCarnegieReadAlong and #YotoGreenawayDrawAlong events. There will be two live events, along with shortlist packs available for schools and libraries to enable them to host their own celebrations. More details will be released soon.

The Awards are also expanding their reading campaign with shortlist POS packs being made available to public and school libraries as well as to retailers for the first time, including stickers, bookmarks and posters.

The winners will be announced and celebrated on Thursday 16th June at a lunchtime ceremony at The British Library, hosted by award-winning poet and novelist Dean Atta, who won the Carnegie Shadowers’ Choice for The Black Flamingo in 2020.

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