Children’s Book Award


Children’s Book Award 2017

The books, kindly donated by publishers across the UK, are currently being read and reviewed by children in the 12 testing groups and the shortlist and Top 50 will be published in February 2017, with the Award Ceremony being held in June 2017.

 Winners of the Children’s Book Award 2016, the only national award voted for entirely by children 

Photographs by Ed Thompson

Blue Peter Best Story Award-winners Pamela Butchart and Thomas Flintham continue their winning streak by being named overall winners of The Children’s Book Award 2016. Their book My Head Teacher Is a Vampire Rat wins the Books for Younger Readers category before going on to win the overall prize. Pamela and Thomas were presented with the silver oak trophy by the children of Ipswich Children’s Book Group.

Apple and Raid  by Sarah Crossan wins the Books for Older Readers category – seen here with the childrPhotographs by Ed Thompsonen of Solihull Children’s Book Group and Is There A Dog In This Book? by Viviane Schwarz is named the Books for Younger Children category winner.

Photographs by Ed Thompson

Photographs by Ed Thompson







Pamela Butchart’s hilarious, primary school-based story, coupled with Thomas Flintham’s wonderfully anarchic illustrations made it a popular choice among younger readers. Pamela and Thomas will join the ranks of previous winners who include Michael Morpurgo, Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler – and last year’s overall winners Oliver Jeffers and Drew Daywalt.

The award is voted for entirely by children: in 2016 nearly 100,000 votes in total were cast and over 30,000 for the shortlist. To learn more click here for the press release. The ceremony was entertainingly hosted by children’s author Steven Butler, photographed below with the winners.

Photographs by Ed Thompson

All Photographs by Ed Thompson

Young book-lovers in Pembrokeshire were represented at the Children’s Book Award 2016 ceremony last week by three pupils from Ysgol Gelli Aur/Golden Grove Community School in Pembroke.

Fern Cumine (11), Nell Evans (10) and Ruby Travis (11) were chosen to represent Pembrokeshire and the West Wales Children’s Book Group.

book-awards- west wales

Pictured are Fern, Nell and Ruby at the Children’s Book Awards 2016 with authors (from left): Kim Slater, Sarah Crossan, Viviane Schwarz, Thomas Flintham, and Pamela Butchart.

The girls travelled to London for the prestigious awards, joining children from other book groups across the UK. As well as meeting several top authors during lunch and an informal book signing session, Fern, Nell and Ruby were chosen to present a portfolio to writer Kim Slater for her book Smart. The portfolio consisted of work on Kim’s book carried out by students across the UK, including pupils from several schools in Pembrokeshire. It was bound and illustrated professionally. Catherine Cumine, Fern’s mother, said the girls described it as a really exciting experience with an ‘awesome atmosphere.’ “They said they enjoyed being surrounded by books and it made them want to read everything!” said Catherine. “It was lovely to be involved in something centred fully around books and celebrating reading,” she added. “The authors were very open, kind and supportive with the children and it was a brilliant day. They even had invitations to meet up with some of the authors at the Hay Festival!”

The Children’s Book Award (known as the Red House Children’s Book Award during the 14 years of The Book People’s sponsorship)  is the only national award for children’s books that is voted for entirely by children themselves. It was founded in 1980 by the FCBG’s Pat Thomson to celebrate the books that children themselves love reading, and each year since then children in FCBG book groups and around the UK  have been reading as many new books as they can and voting to pick both the shortlist and the eventual winners. It is highly respected by teachers, librarians and parents, and past winners include J.K. Rowling, Patrick Ness, Andy Stanton, Malorie Blackman, Anthony Horowitz and Oliver Jeffers. Now in its 36th year, the award has often been the first to recognise the future stars of children’s fiction and has the ability to turn popular authors into bestsellers.

Rick Yancey, overall winner in 2014 said in his winning speech: “To get this award is the most special experience I’ve had as a writer because it’s from all of you, it’s from the people I’ve been sharing this experience with; and to be recognized and honoured in this way is something that really is special to me beyond words.”

Voting for the shortlist books is done by FCBG local groups from all over the UK.

The full shortlist for the Children’s Book Award 2016 is as follows:

Younger Children

– Fabulous Pie by Gareth Edwards and Guy Parker-Rees (Scholastic)
– Is There a Dog in this Book? by Viviane Schwarz (Walker Books)
– Ready, Steady, Jump! by Jeanne Willis and Adrian Reynolds (Andersen Press)
– This Book Just Ate my Dog! by Richard Byrne (Oxford University Press)


Younger Readers
– My Headteacher is a Vampire Rat! by Pamela Butchart and Thomas Flintham (Nosy Crow)
– Boy in the Tower by Polly Ho-Yen (Doubleday)
– Horrid Henry’s Krazy Ketchup by Francesca Simon and Tony Ross (Orion Children’s Books)


Older Readers
– Apple and Rain by Sarah Crossan (Bloomsbury Children’s Books)
– Smart by Kim Slater (Macmillan Children’s Books)
– Listen to the Moon by Michael Morpurgo (HarperCollins Children’s Books)




2015 Awards


The children of the Federation of Children’s Book Groups have chosen their favourites and the winners have been announced at an exciting ceremony at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London. Oliver Jeffers and Drew Daywalt’s The Days the Crayons Quit was the overall winner, and winner of the younger children category. The other category winners were Demon Dentist by David Walliams and illustrated by Tony Ross (books for younger readers) and Split Second by Sophie McKenzie (books for older readers).

Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers both live in New York City and could not make the ceremony, but were represented by their publishers.

The Red House Childen's Book award for 2015 goes to "The Day the
Oliver thanked voters via a very entertaining video:

While Drew thanked voters via Twitter with this wonderful illustration:


Wendy Gilham, RHCBA coordinator said:
“It’s been a very exciting first year for me to be organising the Award. What a wonderful shortlist of books the children chose and with nearly 50,000 votes from FCBG children around the country, it really shows the Award’s popularity among the nation’s children. The Day The Crayons Quit is truly the children’s choice.”


The 2015 shortlisted books were:

Books for Younger Children
Dragon Loves Penguin – Debi Gliori (Bloomsbury)
The Day The Crayons Quit – Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers (HarperCollins)
Got To Sleep Or I Let Loose The Leopard – Steve Cole and Bruce Ingram (Random House)
That Is NOT a Good Idea – Mo Willems (Walker)

Books for Younger Readers
Baby Aliens Got My Teacher – Pamela Butchart, illustrated by Thomas Flintham (Nosy Crow)
Demon Dentist – David Walliams, illustrated by Tony Ross (HarperCollins)
The Bomber Dog – Megan Rix (Puffin)

Books for Older Readers
Noble Conflict – Malorie Blackman (Doubleday)
Prince of The Icemark – Stuart Hill (Chicken House)
Split Second – Sophie McKenzie (Simon and Schuster)

Here are some highlights from the 2014 ceremony:

And here is our 2014 winner’s acceptance speech:

You can see some images from the 2014 award ceremony here.

Some press coverage of the 2014 Award
Love and aliens conquer all as ‘The 5th Wave’ wins children’s book award – The Independent
Yancey wins Red House award – The Bookseller
The 5th Wave wins Red House children’s book award – The Guardian



The Winners of the 2013 Red House Children’s Book Award were

  • Spooky Spooky House by Andrew Weale and Lee Wildish in the Younger Children category
  • Gangsta Granny by David Walliams, illustrated by Tony Ross in the Younger Readers category
  • The Medusa Project: Hit Squad by Sophie McKenzie in the Older Readers category


The award for the overall winner went to Spooky Spooky House by Andrew Weale and Lee Wildish!

Over 200 photos from the award ceremony are available to view here.

The 2013 Red House Children's Book Award Winners - Lee Wildish and Andrew Weale, for Spooky, Spooky House

The 2013 Red House Children’s Book Award Winners – Lee Wildish and Andrew Weale, for Spooky, Spooky House

You can see a gallery of images from the 2012 Red House Children’s Book Award Ceremony in our Photo Gallery.

Michael Morpurgo (centre) with Jim Kay (L), and Patrick Ness (R). A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness and Jim Kay won the Red House Children’s Book Award in 2012.


If you have a question you can’t find an answer to on the website contact and we’ll try to help.

Some past press coverage
Children vote A Monster Calls best book of 2012 The Guardian 18 February 2012
Patrick Ness wins Red House book award The Telegraph 18 February 2012
Michael Morpurgo’s Shadow wins children’s book prize BBC News: Entertainment & Arts 11 June 2011
Sophie McKenzie wins Red House award The Bookseller 8 June 2009