The longlists published today exemplify the award criteria’s aim of encouraging teachers’ knowledge of high-quality children’s books, that can reflect all identities and promote diversity and although the lists do have well established and prizewinning authors and big publishers, it is very often the small independent publishers and the extraordinary debuts that stand out from the crowd. There are 37 publishing houses, and even more imprints, represented in this list which is a real testament to the strength of children’s publishing.

Publishers, both big and small, are obviously keen to submit to this award, which is the only national children’s book awards to be judged by teachers and consequently of great interest to fellow teachers in schools around the UK. The summer reading challenge for the initial selection panels (composed of experienced past teacher judges, ex-teachers, librarians, and consultants) was to read the combined record-breaking total of 500 submissions, across the four categories of these awards. Publishers can submit up to three titles in each category and Barrington Stoke in the 7-10+ category and Hot Key Books in 11-14+ succeeded in having all three of their books longlisted. Bloomsbury have repeated their feat of having books longlisted in every category and this year Andersen Press have matched this remarkable achievement. But it is equally notable to celebrate the first appearance of small publishers such as Hashtag Press in the 7-10 category and to see the success of Lantana’s first middle grade fiction in the same category.

Awards Chair, Christine Lockwood, said “We always approach this difficult but exciting task with great anticipation.  The longlisting team were challenged to select from a very rich and exceptional list of submissions this year and they have come up with four sparkling longlists.  It was a joy to meet the majority of our committed, knowledgeable, and enthusiastic longlisters in person, rather than via digital platforms.  I would like to thank them for their hard work over the summer.  The longlists will now pass to our teams of teacher judges and their group leaders in Brighton and the South East, and I can’t wait to share these books with them over the next year.

This year there are 84 judges covering the four categories and they have until mid-March to read the longlisted books, discuss them with their group leaders, and share them with pupils. All the groups will then meet, hopefully in person, for the difficult task of choosing their shortlist of 6 books in each category.

Headteachers welcomed the opportunity to receive new books for their schools and for their teachers to widen their knowledge of recent children’s titles and in several cases have teachers across the whole school involved. 54 schools in total will be impacted by this injection of quality texts to inspire learning and reading for pleasure.   For UKLA, giving classroom practitioners the opportunity to read a selection of new children’s books is as important as finding an overall winner. Research carried out by members of UKLA (Cremin et al 2008) clearly demonstrated the links between teachers’ knowledge of children’s books and the likelihood of pupils becoming successful readers. Despite this evidence, teachers are seldom given time to read new books or funding to purchase them when they do.

UKLA are grateful for the continued support of the award sponsors, which help the awards to grow and develop each year. Reading Cloud and Lovereading4kids, recognise the value of the judging experience for schools and teachers:

“A roll call of the great and the good in children’s literature as well as some of our newcomers and stars of the future, what a list of authors and illustrators. The UKLA continues to do what it does best, engaging with and supporting teachers across our nation and shouting about the best children’s books being published today. This is another outstanding longlist for the 2024 UKLA Awards, it’s a brilliant selection of books that deserve to be celebrated and we are proud to be involved and help them shine. Now, more than ever, what the UKLA does to engage, delight, educate and inspire our teachers to become reading teachers, is a critical and wonderful thing. Seeing the impact these books have on the children in the classroom setting is an inspiration and shows the importance of getting high quality newly published books in the hands of our children. Books where they can all find themselves reflected. The awards are equally valuable for anyone with a child in their life to help find their next favourite book and encourage reading for pleasure. Congratulations to everyone who is longlisted, we can’t wait to find out the winners, but whoever takes those coveted trophies home, these children’s books are all stars.

And don’t forget you can buy all of them on LoveReading4Kids or via the UKLA website, and receive 10% off RRPs and donate 25% of your spend to a school close to your heart.” Deborah Maclaren Managing Director of LoveReading4Kids Credited to Sue Polchow, Library Advisor, Reading Cloud.

“Reading Cloud are really delighted to support these worthwhile and unique children’s book awards as co-sponsors again this year. We are always heartened to see so many dedicated teacher judges all over the UK working with the longlisted, shortlisted and winning books to inspire a love of reading in their pupil groups and beyond. Encouraging reading for enjoyment and improving literacy are very much at the heart of Reading Cloud and through our platform, pupils can review and recommend books, sharing their enthusiasm for reading through a variety of accessible and engaging tools and features.”

Longlist 3-6+

Speak Up written by Nathan Bryon and illustrated by Dapo Adeola (Puffin)

A Ticket to Kalamazoo! – Zippy Poems to Read Out Loud written by James Carter     and illustrated by Neal Layton (Otter-Barry Books)

You’re So Amazing written by James & Lucy Catchpole and illustrated by Karen George (Faber)

Budgie written by Joseph Coelho and illustrated by David Barrow (Barrington Stoke)

Fox & Son Tailers  written and illustrated byPaddy Donnelly (The O’Brien Press)

The Hare-Shaped Hole written by John Dougherty and illustrated by Thomas Docherty (Frances Lincoln)

Maybe You Might   written by Imogen Foxell and illustrated by Anna Cunha (Lantana)

10 Dogs written and illustrated by Emily Gravett (Two Hoots)

Gory Rory Fangface Needs a Kiss written by Ziggy Hanaor and illustrated by Ollie Silvester (Cicada)

Martha Maps It Out written and illustrated by Leigh Hodgkinson (Oxford)

The Perfect Present written and illustrated by Petr Horáček (Otter-Barry Books)

Lost written and illustrated by Mariajo Ilustrajo (Frances Lincoln)

I say Oh, You say No written and illustrated by            John Kane (Templar)

Who Ate All the Bugs? Written and illustrated by Matty Long (Oxford)

The Goat and the Stoat and the Boat written by Em Lynas and illustrated by Matt Hunt (Nosy Crow)

The Wilderness written and illustrated by Steve McCarthy (Walker)

What Feelings Do When No One’s Looking written and translated by Tina Oziewicz and illustrated by Aleksandra Zajac (Pushkin)

Don’t Be Silly written and illustrated by Padmacandra (Scallywag)

Faruq and the Wiri Wiri written by Sophia Payne and illustrated by Sandhya Prabhat (Templar)

Five Bears written and illustrated by Catherine Rayner (Macmillan)                        

The Zebra’s Great Escape written by Katherine Rundell and illustrated by Sarah Ogilvie (Bloomsbury)

Dadaji’s Paintbrush written by Rashmi Sirdeshpande and illustrated by Ruchi Mhasane (Andersen)

Tap! Tap! Tap! Dance! Dance! Dance! Written and illustrated by Hervé Tullet and translated by Christopher Franceschelli          (Chronicle Kids)

Dick the Delightful Duck written by Kaye Umansky and illustrated by Ben Mantle (Alison Green)

The Artist written and illustrated by Ed Vere (Puffin)

Longlist 7-10+

Birdsong written by Katya Balen and illustrated by Richard Johnson (Barrington Stoke)

The Song Walker written by Zillah Bethell and illustrated by Saara Katariina Söderlund (Usborne)

Call Me Lion written by Camilla Chester and illustrated by Irina Avgustinovich (Firefly)

Swimming on the Moon written by Brian Conaghan (Bloomsbury)

How to be More Hedgehog written by Anne Marie Conway and illustrated by Danielle Dey (Uclan)

The Rescue of Ravenwood written by Natasha Farrant (Faber)

Digging for Victory written by Cathy Faulkner (Firefly)

Wildsmith: Into the Dark Forest written by Liz Flanagan and illustrated by Joe Todd-Stanton (Uclan)

Can you Feel the Noise written by Stewart Foster (Simon & Schuster)

If You Read This written by Kereen Getten (Pushkin)

Finn Jones Was Here written by Simon James Green and illustrated by Jennifer Jamieson (Scholastic)

The Stories Grandma Forgot (and How I Found Them) written by Nadine Aisha Jassat and illustrated by Sandhya Prabhat (Orion)

The Wishkeeper’s Apprentice written by Rachel Chivers Khoo and illustrated by Rachel Sanson (Walker)

A Passing On of Shells written by Simon Lamb and illustrated by Chris Riddell (Scallywag)

Moonflight written by Gill Lewis and illustrated by Pippa Curnick (David Fickling Books)

Jodie written by Hilary McKay and illustrated by Keith Robinson (Barrington Stoke)

Spellstone written by Ross Montgomery (Walker)

Mwikali and the Forbidden Mask written by Shiko Nguru and illustrated by Melissa McIndoe (Lantana)

Where the River Takes Us written by Lesley Parr and illustrated by David Dean  (Bloomsbury)

Bertie and the Alien Chicken written by Jenny Pearson and illustrated by Aleksie Bitskoff (Barrington Stoke)

Paradise Sands written and illustrated by Levi Pinfold (Walker Studio)

The Twig Man written by Sana Rasoul (Hashtag Press)

House of Shells written by Efua Traoré (Chicken House)

Cuckoo Summer written by Jonathan Tulloch (Andersen)

The Lizzie and Belle Mysteries: Drama and Danger written by J.T. Williams and illustrated by Simone Douglas (Farshore)

Longlist 11- 14+

The Door of No Return written by Kwame Alexander (Andersen)

Warrior Girl Unearthed written by Angeline Boulley (Rock the Boat)

Away with Words written by Sophie Cameron (Little Tiger)

Choose Love written by Nicola Davies and illustrated by Petr Horáček (Graffeg)

Crossing the Line written by Tia Fisher (Hot Key)

The Way of Dog written by Zana Fraillon and illustrated by Sean Buckingham (Chicken House)

Wild Song written by Candy Gourlay (David Fickling Books)

The Unraveller written by Frances Hardinge (Macmillan)

Leila and the Blue Fox written by Kiran Millwood Hargrave and illustrated by Tom de Freston (Orion)

The Lorikeet Tree written by Paul Jennings (Old Barn Books)

As Long as the Lemon Trees Grow written by Zoulfa Katouh (Bloomsbury)

The Battle of Cable Street written by Tanya Landman (Barrington Stoke)

Steady for This written by Nathanael Lessore (Hot Key)

You Think You Know Me written by Ayaan Mohamud (Usborne)

Children of the Stone City written by Beverley Naidoo (HarperCollins)

Different for Boys written by Patrick Ness and illustrated by Tea Bendix (Walker)

Oxygen Mask written by Jason Reynolds and illustrated by Jason Griffin (Faber)

The Haunting of Tyrese Walker written by JP Rose (Andersen)

Tyger written by SF Said   and illustrated by Dave McKean (David Fickling Books)

I Must Betray You written by Ruta Sepetys (Hodder)

The Silver Chain written by Jion Sheibani (Hot Key)

Happy Head written by Josh Silver (Rock the Boat)

The Notorious Scarlett and Browne written by Jonathan Stroud (Walker)

All My Rage written by Sabaa Tahir (Atom)

Brown Girl Dreaming written by Jacqueline Woodson (Orion)

Longlist Information Books 3-14+

Unspoken written by Kwame Alexander and illustrated by Dare Coulter (Andersen)

Lands of Belonging: A History of India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Britain written by Vikesh Amey Bhatt, and Donna Amey Bhatt and illustrated by Salini Perera (Nosy Crow)

Africana written by Kim Chakanetsa and illustrated by Mayowa Alabi (Wide Eyed Editions)

One Little Bug written by  Becky Davies and illustrated by Jacob Souva (Little Tiger)

Lessons From Our Ancestors written by Raksha Dave and illustrated by Kimberlie Clinthorne-Wong (Magic Cat)

Very Short Introductions for Curious Young Minds: The Amazing Power of Activism written by Lily Dyu and illustrated by Ekaterina Gorelova and Ana Seixas (Oxford)

Honest written by Milly Evans and illustrated by Lucia Picerno (Hot Key)

The Truth Detective written by Tim Hartford and illustrated by Ollie Mann (Wren & Rook)

A is for Bee written and illustrated by Ellen Heck (Pushkin)

Medicine written by Briony Hudson and illustrated by Nick Taylor (Big Picture Press)

Human 2.0 written by Patrick Kane and illustrated by Sam Rodriguez (Big Picture Press)

We Are Palestinian written by Reem Kassis and illustrated by Noha Eilouti (Templar)

Amy Gets Eaten written by Adam Kay and illustrated by Henry Paker (Puffin)

Nomads: Life on the Move written and illustrated by Kinchoi Lam (Cicada)

The Boy Who Didn’t Want to Die written by Peter Lantos (Scholastic)

Our Story Starts in Africa written by Patrice Lawrence and illustrated by Jeanetta Gonzales (Magic Cat)

Explodapedia: The Cell written by Ben Martynoga and illustrated by Moose Allain (David Fickling Books)

A Wild Child’s Book of Birds written by Dara MacAnulty and illustrated by Barry Falls (Macmillan)

Whose Tracks in the Snow? Written and illustrated by Alexandra Milton (Boxer Books)

Saving Hn’on: Chang and the Elephant written by Trang Nguyen and illustrated by Jeet Zdung (Macmillan)

A History of Words for Children written by Mary Richards and illustrated by Rose Blake (Thames & Hudson)

This Book Will Save The Planet written by Dany Sigwalt and illustrated by Aurélia Durand (Frances Lincoln)

Engineers Making a Difference written by Shini Somara and illustrated by Manual Šumberac and Adam Allsuch Boardman (What On Earth Books)

Darwin & Hooker written by Alexander Stewart and illustrated by Joe Todd-Stanton (Bloomsbury)

Every Word Tells a Story written by Tom Read Wilson and illustrated by Ian Morris (Words & Pictures)

Notes to Editors

About UKLA

 UKLA is a registered charity, which has as its sole object the advancement of education in literacy. UKLA is committed to promoting good practice nationally and internationally in literacy and language teaching and research. The Association was founded in 1963 as the United Kingdom Reading Association. In 2003 it changed its name to the United Kingdom Literacy Association, to reflect more accurately its wider range of focus and interest.

UKLA especially supports the development of approaches to literacy learning and teaching which underpin these understandings. The Association recognises the significance for effective language and communication learning of literature, drama, the visual media, non-fiction texts and information technology, as well as welcoming approaches to teaching which draw on the resources of a wide range of cultures and which are informed by a detailed understanding of how literacy and language work.

About Reading Cloud

Sponsors Reading Cloud have over 30 years’ experience providing feature rich innovative software for schools and 6th form colleges. Our intuitive & flexible library systems support several thousand schools with managing their libraries and reading resources. Engaging their students in reading, supporting independent learning, promoting reading for pleasure and in improving literacy, with a growing 4.5 million active borrowers worldwide.

Reading Cloud provides all the tools and functionality needed for day-to-day school library management as well as a safe online student reading community to ensure all students are able to develop long lasting positive attitudes to reading.

To find out more visit www.ess-readingcloud.co.uk

About LoveReading4Kids

The LoveReading family exists because reading matters, and books change lives.

LoveReading4Kids is the UK’s leading book recommendation brand for children’s books: reading, reviewing and shouting about books right across the age ranges.

Since 2005 families across the nation have relied on LoveReading4Kids to help them find their next favourite book.

They’ve had a busy year! In July 2022, they relaunched as a bookstore with social purchase.

Buy from their bookstores, get 10% off RRPs and 25% of the cover price will be given to a school of the customer’s choice to buy more books.

In September 2022, LoveReading4Schools, merged into LoveReading4Kids creating a reading for pleasure hub to make it easier for them to support schools across the UK.

LoveReading4Schools is now a portal within LoveReading4Kids creating a one-stop shop for reading for pleasure. Book recommendations, reading lists, develop wishlists, buy books and share the love – because 25% of every book bought on LoveReading and LoveReading4Kids can be allocated to your school. So every penny you spend and your community spends gives you money back to buy more books.

Visit www.lovereading4kids.co.uk

Sign up the LoveReading4Schools portal https://www.lovereading4kids.co.uk/school/dashboard

Email schools@lovereading.co.uk if you have any questions

Past Winners



Flooded written and illustrated by Mariajo Ilustrajo (Frances Lincoln)


The Light in Everything written by Katya Balen (Bloomsbury)


The Crossing written by Manjeet Mann (Penguin)


Musical Truth: A Musical History of Modern Black Britain in 28 Songs written by Jeffrey   Boakye and illustrated by Ngadi Smart (Faber)

Highly Commended

Here and Queer written by Rowan Ellis and illustrated by Jacky Sheridan (Frances Lincoln)


3-6+ (Joint Winners)

Barbara Throws a Wobbler written and illustrated by Nadia Shireen (Puffin)

The Invisible written and illustrated by  Tom Percival ( Simon & Schuster)


October, October written by Katya Balen  Illustrated by Angela Harding (Bloomsbury)

Highly Commended

Front Desk written by Kelly Yang (Knights Of)


Punching the Air written by Ibi Zoboi and Yusef Salaam (HarperCollins)

Highly Commended

Tsunami Girl written by Julian Sedgwick and illustrated by Chie Kutsuwada( Guppy Books)

Information Books 3-14+

Nano written by Dr Jess Wade, illustrated by Melissa Castrillon (Walker)



Look Up! Written by Nathan Bryon, illustrated by Dapo Adeola, Dapo (Puffin)


Check Mates   written by Stewart Foster (Simon & Schuster)

Highly Commended

Owen and the Soldier written by Lisa Thompson, illustrated by Mike Lowery (Barrington Stoke) 

11-14+ (Joint Winners)

Run Rebel written by Manjeet Mann (Penguin)

The Last Paper Crane  written by Kerry Drewery, illustrated by Natsko Seki (Hot Key)

Information Books 3-14+

The Undefeated written by Kwame Alexander, illustrated by Kadir Nelson (Andersen Press)



Mixed  written and illustrated by Arree Chung (Macmillan)


The Eleventh Trade written by Alyssa Hollingsworth (Piccadilly Press)

11- 14+

No Fixed Address written by Susin Nielsen (Andersen Press)

Information Books 3-14+

Counting on Katherine written by Helaine Becker and illustrated by Dow Phumiruck  (Macmillan)

 Highly Commended

A Child of St.  Kilda written and illustrated by Beth Waters (Child’s Play)



After the Fall written and illustrated by Dan Santat  (Andersen Press)


The Explorer written by Katherine Rundell illustrated by      Hannah Horn (Bloomsbury)

Highly Commended

Running on Empty written by S. E. Durrant   illustrated by Rob Biddulph (Nosy Crow)


Long Way Down written by Jason Reynolds and illustrated by Chris Priestly (Faber)

Highly Commended

The Poet X written by Elizabeth Acevedo (Egmont Electric Monkey)


3-6:  Colin and Lee, Carrot and Pea written and illustrated by Morag Hood (Two Hoots)

7-11: (Joint Winners) Lesser Spotted Animals written and illustrated by Martin Brown (David Fickling Books)

Welcome to Nowhere written by Elizabeth Laird and illustrated by Lucy Eldridge (Macmillan)

12-16: Come Apart written by Sarah Crossan and Brian Conaghan (Bloomsbury)


3-6:  There’s a Bear on MY Chair written and illustrated by Ross Collins(Nosy Crow)

7-11: The Journey written and illustrated by Francesca Sanna (Flying Eye Books)

12-16: The Reluctant Journal of Henry K Larsen written by Susin Nielsen (Andersen Press)

Highly Commended: The Marvels by Brian Selznick ( Scholastic)


3-6: Little Red and the Very Hungry Lion by Alex.T. Smith, ( Scholastic)

Highly Commended: On Sudden Hill by Linda Sarah and Benji Davies(illustrator), (Simon & Schuster)

7-11: The Imaginary by A.F. Harrold and Emily Gravett (illustrator), ( Bloomsbury)

Highly Commended: The Boundless by Kenneth Oppel, (David Fickling)

12-16+ : The Lie Tree by Francis Hardinge( Macmillan)


3-6: The Day the Crayons Quit, Drew Daywalt , Oliver Jeffers (illustrator)( HarperCollins

7-11: Oliver and the Seawigs, Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre, (Oxford University Press)

Highly Commended 7-11 Award: Us Minus Mum, Heather Butler, (Little,Brown)

12-16: Every Day by David Levithan, published by Egmont


3-6:  This is not my Hat, Jon Klassen (Walker Books)

Highly Commended 3-6 Award: Open Very Carefully, Nick Bromley, Nicola O’Byrne (Illustrator), (Nosy Crow)

7- 11: The Story of the Blue Planet, Andri Snær Magnason, Julian Meldon D’Arcy, (translator), Áslaug Jónsdóttir (Illustrator), (Pushkin Press)

12- 16:  Now is the Time for Running, Michael Williams, (Tamarind Books, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books)


3 – 6: Good Little Wolf, Nadia Shireen Rayner (Jonathan Cape)

7 – 11: The Weight of Water, Sarah Crossan (Bloomsbury)

12- 16:  Code Name Verity, Elizabeth Wein (Electric Monkey)


3 – 6: Iris and Isaac, Catherine Rayner (Little Tiger Press)

7 – 11: Sky Hawk, Gill Lewis (Oxford University Press)

12 – 16: A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness, illustrated by Jim Kay (Walker)


3-11:   Birdsong, Ellie Sandall (Egmont)

12-16: Out of Shadows, Jason Wallace (Andersen Press)


3-11:  Then, Morris Gleitzman (Puffin)

12-16: The Graveyard Book, Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell (illustrator) (Bloomsbury)

Special commendation: Tales from Outer Suburbia, Shaun Tan, (Templar)


3-11: Archie’s War, Marcia Williams (Walker)

Highly commended 3-11: The Invention of Hugo Cabret, Brian Selznick  (Scholastic)

12-16: Bog Child, Siobhan Dowd  (David Fickling – Random House Children’s Books)


Picture book category: Penguin, Polly Dunbar (Walker )

Here lies Arthur, Philip Reeve, (Scholastic)

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