Tom Palmer has been named overall winner of The Children’s Book Award 2020. His book D-Day Dog also won the Books for Confident Readers category before going on to win the overall prize
The Runaway Pea written by Kjartan Poskitt and illustrated by Alex Willmore won the Books for Younger Children Category, Mutant Zombies Cursed My School Trip, written by Matt Brown and illustrated by Paco Sordo, won the Books for Younger Readers category, while Angie Thomas’ On the Come Up was named winner in the Books for Older Reader category.
Tom Palmer said, ‘I am thrilled to win the Children’s Book Award 2020! A massive thank you to the thousands of children who voted and to the Federation organisers. This prize celebrates writers writing and readers reading, and I am beyond delighted to receive it. It is really important to me, when writing about history, to base my stories on real people and real events. I have learned that children are far more engaged with a book if the soldier (or dog) character really existed. I think the celebration and interest in Captain Tom Moore and other veterans we’ve seen in the D-Day 75th and other anniversaries bears this out. There is no need to make up inspiring figures like Glen the Paradog and Captain Tom – we have them in our midst and in our history, and we owe it to them to celebrate the strength and values that they represent, in turn to help us deal with our own challenges in 2020.’
The Children’s Book Award is the only national award for children’s books that is voted for entirely by children. It is owned and coordinated by the Federation of Children’s Book Groups and past winners include J.K. Rowling, Patrick Ness, Andy Stanton, Malorie Blackman, Anthony Horowitz and Michael Morpurgo, who has won a record four times.
The results were announced at a special ceremony, live-streamed on 10th October and shortly to be available to watch on the FCBG website, where there is also special video content from all the featured authors and illustrators.
Sarah Stuffins, coordinator of The Children’s Book Award, says ‘2020 didn’t quite deliver the 40th Anniversary that we expected, but we’re thrilled to have been able to take the ceremony online and Tom is a truly worthy winner. Being online also allows us to reach well beyond our own book groups and home-schooling has brought many parents into contact with their children’s reading in a unique way. We hope the filmed reports on each of the shortlisted title are a real resource to many and will encourage even more engagement in today’s superb and vibrant children’s literature scene.’
The full shortlist for the Children’s Book Award 2020 is as follows:
Books for Younger Children
- Jazz Dog, written and illustrated by Marie Voigt, published by OUP
- Matisse’s Magical Trail, written by Tim Hopgood and illustrated by Sam Boughton, published by OUP
- The Runaway Pea, written by Kjartan Poskitt and illustrated by Alex Willmore, published by Simon & Schuster Children’s Books
Books for Younger Readers
- Mutant Zombies Cursed My School Trip, written by Matt Brown and illustrated by Paco Sordo, published by Usborne
- Owen and The Soldier, written by Lisa Thompson, published by Barrington Stoke
- The Maker of Monsters, written by Lorraine Gregory, published by OUP
Books for Confident Readers
- Wildspark, written by Vashti Hardy, published by Scholastic
- A Pocketful of Stars, written by Aisha Busby, published by Egmont
- D-Day Dog, written by Tom Palmer, published by Barrington Stoke
Books for Older Readers
- Becoming Dinah, written by Kit de Waal, published by Hachette Children’s Group
- On The Come Up, written by Angie Thomas, published by Walker Books
- Two Can Keep a Secret, written by Karen M McManus, published by Penguin