17 February 2021
Shortlists have been unveiled for this year's Channel Island Children's Book Awards.
In addition to the Children's Book of the Year category, 2021 sees the introduction of the new Picture Book of the Year category, showcasing the best new illustrated books for younger children.
Launched in 2019, the Awards are a joint initiative between Jersey Library and Guernsey's Guille-Allès Library, run with the generous support of sponsor Ravenscroft. The Awards celebrate excellence in children's writing and illustration, and were created to help children develop a love of reading for pleasure.
Children across the Channel Islands have until Friday 16 July to read the shortlisted books and vote for their winner online at www.cichildrensbookaward.org. Copies will be sent to participating schools and will be available to borrow from the Library.
The five shortlisted books in the Children's Book of the Year category are: Troofriend by Kirsten Applebaum; The Unstoppable Letty Pegg by Iszi Lawrence; The Beast and the Bethany by Jack Meggitt-Phillips; The Super Miraculous Journey of Freddie Yates by Jenny Pearson; and Llama Out Loud! by Annabelle Sami.
The five shortlisted books in the new Picture Book of the Year category are: Where the Sea Meets the Sky by Peter Bentley & Riko Sekiguchi; I'm Sticking with You by Smitri Halls & Steve Small; The Leaf Thief by Alice Hemming & Nicola Slater; Mabel and the Mountain by Kim Hillyard; and Perdu by Richard Jones.
The winner will be announced at a special ceremony at the Library in September.
Marc Sweeney, Customer Services Assistant at Jersey Library and judge, said: "We're really excited sharing this year's shortlists with Jersey schoolchildren. There were so many great stories nominated that we had a tough job narrowing our choices down to just five in each category. After much debating over Zoom with our fellow judges in Guernsey, we settled on what we feel could be our best awards line-up yet!"
Juliet Bousfield, Marketing & Public Relations Executive at Ravenscroft, said: "The books shortlisted this year will definitely appeal to young islanders and my Ravenscroft colleagues and I have thoroughly enjoyed reading them. This is the third year that Ravenscroft has supported the Channel Island Children's Book Award and it's fantastic to hear that children are being encouraged to read more and try new authors and genres."
The winner of the 2020 Children's Book of the Year award was Lisa Thompson's The Day I Was Erased, the story of an eleven-year-old boy who suddenly finds himself erased from his life – as if he never existed – and must find a way to reverse it. The 2019 winner was The Explorer by Katherine Rundell, about a group of children who crash-land in the Amazon jungle.