This issue’s cover illustration features The Pavee and the Buffer Girl by Siobhan Dowd and Emma Shoard. Thanks to Barrington Stoke for their help with this May cover.

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Illustrating It Starts with a Seed

Jennie Webber illustrating It Stars with a Seed

Jennie Webber describes and demonstrates her unique etching technique and her inspiration for It Starts with a Seed.

Books for Keeps is the UK’s leading, independent children’s book magazine. It was launched in 1980 and ever since has been reviewing hundreds of new children’s books each year and publishing articles on every aspect of writing for children. There are over 12,500 reviews on our new website and more than 2,000 articles including interviews with the top children’s authors and illustrators.

“The best scholars, reviewers, authors and critics write for Books for Keeps. We hold a mirror up to the children’s book world and reflects back its output, issues and preoccupations with intelligence, scholarship and wit.”

Book of the week


The Last Duchess (8-10 Junior/Middle)

Laura Powell

(Macmillan Children's Books)
304pp, 978-1509808908, RRP £6.99, Paperback


Meet Pattern – no first name, the orphanage where she grew up neglected to provide one. Thirteen years-old she is a graduate of Mrs Minchin’s Academy of Domestic Servitude and destined to go far: no-one darns like Pattern. Even so, there is great surprise when she is appointed lady’s maid to the Grand Duchess of Elffinberg, also thirteen.


Latest Reviews

Where the World Ends (10-14 Middle/Secondary)

Geraldine McCaughrean
(Usborne Publishing Ltd)

320pp, 978-1474921145, RRP £9.99, Hardcover


We have been to Antarctica, the central plains of Asia, the middle of Australia – now Geraldine McCaughrean takes us to one of the harshest – but beautiful – landscapes – the islands of St Kilda on the edge of the Outer Hebrides.


read more >

Wave me Goodbye (10-14 Middle/Secondary)

Jacqueline Wilson
(Doubleday Childrens)

464pp, 978-0857535153, RRP £12.99, Hardcover


It is September 1939. Shirley Louise Smith, aged ten, is evacuated from London to an unidentified small town in the safer countryside.


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Rook Anthony McGowan (10-14 Middle/Secondary)

Anthony McGowan
(Barrington Stoke Ltd)

104pp, 978-1781127230, RRP £7.99, Paperback


Rook completes a trilogy which began with Brock and Pike. Young Nicky’s life has been tough. His Mum’s left home, his Dad’s been in trouble with the law, his older brother Kenny has special needs and Nicky is his main emotional support.


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See You in the Cosmos, Carl Sagan (10-14 Middle/Secondary)

Jack Cheng
(Dial Books)

314pp, 978-0399186370, RRP £13.23, Hardcover


This story is told in the voice of eleven-year-old Alex, whose particular hero is the late, popularising astronomer of the title. It consists of a series of audio recordings he makes for the benefit of life forms out there in the cosmos.


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Every Hidden Thing (14+ Secondary/Adult)

Kenneth Oppel
(David Fickling Books)

370pp, 978-1910989579, RRP £10.99, Hardcover


Dinosaur skeletons! Hostile American Indians! Teenage orphans, one girl, one boy! Young love! Double dealing! Near death! This novel has them all!


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News
Latest News

RUTA SEPETYS AND LANE SMITH NAMED WINNERS IN CARNEGIE GREENAWAY ANNIVERSARY YEAR

The winners of the 2017 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals are announced today, Monday 19 June. In its 80th year, Ruta Sepetys is named winner of the Carnegie Medal for her book Salt to the Sea, while Lane Smith is awarded the 60th Kate Greenaway Medal for his picture book There is a Tribe of Kids.

Read a special Books for Keeps interview with Ruta Sepetys here and with Lane Smith here.


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ADA TWIST, SCIENTIST AND WINNER OF THE LITTLE REBELS CHILDREN’S BOOK AWARD

Little Rebels logo 2017

The Alliance of Radical Booksellers (ARB) has announced that the winners of this year’s Little Rebels Children’s Book Award are Andrea Beaty and David Roberts for their book, Ada Twist, Scientist (Abrams & Chronicle Books).


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LAUREN CHILD ANNOUNCED AS 10th WATERSTONES CHILDREN’S LAUREATE

Lauren Child

Lauren Child, artist and author and illustrator of the award-winning Charlie and Lola and Clarice Bean picture books and Ruby Redfort novels, is the 10th Waterstones Children’s Laureate.


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CHILDREN’S BOOK AWARD WINNERS 2017

Children's Book Award logo

Michael Morpurgo and Michael Foreman have been awarded the Children’s Book Award 2017 for their book, An Eagle in the Snow. The win is a record-breaking fourth for Michael Morpurgo.

An Eagle in the Snow won the Books for Younger Readers category, before going on to take the overall prize. Sarah Crossan added a win in the Books for Older Readers category to the plethora of awards she has won for One, while Oi Dog!, written by Kes and Claire Gray and illustrated by Jim Field, was named winner in the Books for Younger Children’s category.


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SCHOLASTIC UK ANNOUNCE LOLLIES 2017 SHORTLIST

Lollies 2017 logo

Michael Rosen, children’s novelist, poet and former Children’s Laureate, today announced the shortlist for the 2017 Laugh Out Loud Awards (The Lollies). Now in their second year, the Lollies, created by Scholastic to replace the Roald Dahl Funny Book Prize celebrate the funniest children’s books.


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UK ENTRANTS FOR BIB, THE BIENNIAL OF ILLUSTRATIONS BRATISLAVA 2107 ANNOUNCED

The Wolves of Currampaw

The International Centre for the Picture Book in Society based at Worcester University and IBBY UK (International Board of Books for Young People) have announced a collaboration to select UK illustrators for the Biennial of Illustrations Bratislava (BIB) 2017.


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