Today, BookTrust, the UK’s largest children’s reading charity reveals the six shortlisted titles for the influential 2022 Blue Peter Book Awards, designed to celebrate amazing authors, imaginative illustrators and the greatest reads for primary school-aged children published in the last 12 months.
The shortlist was revealed live on Blue Peter on CBBC and BBC iPlayer.
This year, meet animal inventors changing the world, take a trip to Bear Island, or spend 24 hours in the Stone Age with the books shortlisted.
The shortlist includes some unforgettable characters, including Danny Chung and his grandmother from China, Billy Plimpton who won’t let his stammer stop him from becoming a comedian, and April who befriends a polar bear a long way from home.
In the Best Books with Facts category, there is so much to learn, from which animals invented the best swimming costumes, to finding out about all of the ‘Good News’ out there in the world - from life-saving robots to trees that help heal planet.
All the books on this year’s shortlist are aimed at children between 6 and 12 years old, a vital time when children discover which books they like and build their own independent reading habits.
The shortlisted titles for Best Story are:
The Boy Who Made Everyone Laugh by Helen Rutter
Danny Chung Does Not Do Maths by Maisie Chan illustrated by Anh Cao
The Last Bear by Hannah Gold illustrated by Levi Pinfold
The shortlisted titles for the Best Book with Facts are:
24 Hours in the Stone Age by Lan Cook illustrated by Laurent Kling
Good News by Rashmi Sirdeshpande illustrated by Adam Hayes
Invented by Animals by Christiane Dorion illustrated by Gosia Herbia
Judged by a panel of experts who have whittled down a longlist to three books for each category, the final winners will be chosen by more than 300 school children across the country.
Diana Gerald, CEO of BookTrust said: “Congratulations to all of this year’s shortlisted authors and illustrators for creating an incredible selection of books filled with funny and heart-warming stories and awe-inspiring facts. Books provide such an opportunity to touch on important topics that children are interested in, whether it is spotting misinformation, diversity or climate change, and bringing these issues to life in a fun, engaging and entertaining way. At an age when children are starting to grow and develop their interests, the Blue Peter Book Awards play an important role in showing children, families and teachers that there is a book out there to grab the attention of every child, no matter what their interests, and inspire even the most reluctant of readers to pick up a book.
“Now the shortlisted books face their toughest critics yet - the children themselves who will choose the eventual winners. We hope all those children taking part in the judging process will discuss the books with their friends, families and teachers and this can go some way in supporting their reading habits in the future.”
Blue Peter Editor Ellen Evans said: “The Blue Peter Book Awards celebrate the very best new kids’ books. The 2022 shortlist features three outstanding books with facts and three amazing stories. The shortlisted books are inclusive, funny, and about topics that kids care about. Now, over 300 kids take charge to read and review the books and pick the winners.”
The awards are rigorously judged by school children across the country. This year over 1,000 schools applied to be a part of the judging process. The winning titles, voted for by over 300 children from 12 schools across the UK, will be revealed live on Blue Peter in Spring 2022 with the winning authors and illustrators appearing on the special awards episode of the show.