This issue’s cover illustration features a selection of books by Jane Ray. Thanks to Boxer Books, Hachette Children’s Books and Walker Books for their help with this March 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 Lotterys Plus One (8-10 Junior/Middle)

Emma Donoghue

(Macmillan Children's Books)
320pp, 978-1509803194, RRP £10.99, Hardcover


Emma Donoghue has already made a name for herself with her adult novels. Now she turns her talents to writing for a much younger audience and proves a very welcome addition to world of children's books.


Latest Reviews

Frogkisser (8-10 Junior/Middle)

Garth Nix
(Piccadilly Press)

384pp, 978-1848126015, RRP £10.99, Hardcover


This novel has everything you could possibly want in a fairytale and more - humour, wit, a feisty princess and of course frogs. There are nods to every classic fantasy you have ever read here and the whole makes for a supremely satisfying read.


read more >

A Dangerous Crossing (10-14 Middle/Secondary)

Jane Mitchell
(Little Island Books)

224pp, 978-1910411582, RRP £7.99, Paperback


Tragic settings do not always make for top-class fiction, but this fine novel is an exception here. It is based on actual stories arising from the on-going middle-Eastern conflict.


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Welcome to Nowhere (10-14 Middle/Secondary)

Elizabeth Laird
(Macmillan Children's Books)

352pp, 978-1509853441, RRP £6.99, Paperback


In her latest novel, Elizabeth Laird returns to the Middle East. Set at the very beginning of the Syrian civil war, it’s the story of a middle class family (father is a government employee) which is caught up in the protests in Bosra and Daraa and forced to flee to Jordan.


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Whisper to Me (14+ Secondary/Adult)

Nick Lake
(Bloomsbury Childrens)

544pp, 978-1408853863, RRP £7.99, Paperback


Set in New Jersey, this sometimes harrowing story provides a sympathetic and informed description of what it is like to hear voices in your head inaudible to everyone else.


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Latest News

THE CILIP CARNEGIE AND KATE GREENAWAY SHORTLISTS 2017

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The shortlists for the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals have been announced. More than ninety books were nominated by librarians for the awards, of these 20 in each category where longlisted. Eight have now made it onto the shortlists.


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SHORTLISTS ANNOUNCED FOR SCHOOL LIBRARY ASSOCIATION INFORMATION BOOK AWARD 2017

The School Library Association has announced the shortlist for the seventh annual SLA Information Book Award.


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SHORTLIST FOR THE UKLA BOOK AWARDS ANNOUNCED

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The shortlists for the 2017 UKLA Book Awards have been announced.In three age categories, the awards recognise books that can ‘enhance all aspects of literacy learning’, and are the only awards chosen by teachers.


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LONGLIST ANNOUNCED FOR THE 2017 KLAUS FLUGGE PRIZE

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The longlist for the 2017 Klaus Flugge Prize is announced today (Wednesday 8 March 2017). Established in 2016, the Klaus Flugge Prize is awarded to the most promising and exciting newcomer to children’s book illustration. It honours publisher Klaus Flugge, founder of children’s publisher Andersen Press and a supremely influential figure in picture books.


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THE BOOKSELLER YA BOOK PRIZE SHORTLIST

The Bookseller has announced the ten titles on the shortlist for The YA Book Prize 2017.


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