Waterstones Children's Book Prize
Waterstones Children's Book Prize

Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2020

It is our enormous pleasure to share with you our Waterstones Children’s Book Prize shortlist for 2020. This year’s selections – as always chosen by our booksellers - mark our continuing commitment to championing the finest new talent in children’s writing and illustration today.

Illustrated Books Shortlist
Younger Readers Shortlist
Older Readers Shortlist
History of the Waterstones Children's Book Prize
With last year's winner, Onjali Q. Rauf's The Boy at the Back of the Class, already being hailed a modern classic, which one of our 2020 selection will follow in its formidable footsteps? We’ll be unveiling the category winners and our ultimate overall winner on Thursday 26 March. Follow all the latest news on our social media channels. We wish all our nominees the very best of luck!

Illustrated Books Shortlist

Sparking the imaginations of our very youngest readers, our Illustrated Books shortlist combines exciting visual storytelling with fun ways to learn and develop. From a counting book that doubles as a barnyard caper to an interstellar adventure about a meteor storm, these books are perfect for little hands and enquiring minds.

Look Up!
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£6.99   £4.99
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Once Upon a Unicorn Horn
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Otto Blotter, Bird Spotter
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£6.99   £4.99
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One Fox
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£7.99   £6.49
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Me and My Sister
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£7.99   £6.49
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Hidden Planet
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£9.99   £7.99
Paperback

Books for Younger Readers Shortlist

Magic and myth mingle with the tough choices of real life in these six page-turning books for independent readers. Budding romance, exotic adventure and the perils of transforming into poultry all feature in a wide-ranging shortlist of consistently high quality.

The Middler
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£6.99   £5.99
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Asha & the Spirit Bird
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£6.99   £5.99
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Charlie Changes Into a Chicken
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£6.99   £5.99
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The Deepest Breath
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£6.99   £5.99
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High-Rise Mystery
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£6.99   £5.99
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Our Castle by the Sea
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£6.99   £5.99
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Books for Older Readers Shortlist

Reflecting the increasingly mature and intelligent publishing emerging for Teenagers and Young Adults, the Older Fiction shortlist boasts hard-hitting plotlines and complex characterisation that never patronises or condescends. Stark dystopia rubs shoulders with contemporary drama in this dazzling selection.

A Good Girl's Guide to Murder
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£7.99   £5.99
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Bearmouth
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£7.99   £5.99
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Internment
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£7.99   £6.49
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Jemima Small Versus the Universe
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The Million Pieces of Neena Gill
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Meet the Experts
Meet the Experts

Get the opinions that really matter. Hear what our expert panel have to say about this year’s choices.


Previous Overall Winners

The Hate U Give
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The Girl of Ink & Stars
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£6.99   £5.99
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My Brother Is a Superhero
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£6.99   £4.99
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Blown Away
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£6.99   £5.99
Paperback
Rooftoppers
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£6.99   £4.99
Paperback
Ketchup Clouds
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£7.99   £6.49
Paperback
The Pirates Next Door
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£6.99   £5.99
Paperback
Artichoke Hearts
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£6.99   £5.99
Paperback
The Great Hamster Massacre
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£6.99   £5.99
Paperback
The Thirteen Treasures
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£7.99   £6.49
Paperback
Ways to Live Forever
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£6.99   £5.99
Paperback
Darkside NE
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£6.99
Paperback
The Diamond of Drury Lane
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£6.99   £5.99
Paperback
The Cry of the Icemark
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Celebrating 15 Years of the Waterstones Children's Book Prize

Celebrating 15 Years of the Waterstones Children's Books Prize

In 2019 we celebrated 15 years of the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize, reflecting on how far this unique award has come in discovering and championing the very best in children’s publishing.

15 Years of New Talent

We are passionate about discovering new talent. Since the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize first began, we’ve been sharing the best in new writing for children and teenagers.

15 Years of Illustration

We know that pictures can bring stories to life. Over the years, it’s been our pleasure to introduce fresh creative talent which combines words and pictures to stunning effect.

15 Years of Leading Conversation

Our choices always put readers first, rewarding the books that matter to them and reflecting the topics young people of all ages are most passionate about.

15 Years of Fun

We know that one of the hardest challenges for a writer is making readers laugh and that’s why we love to celebrate books that raise a chuckle.

15 Years Finding Adventure

Feeding young imaginations with the fuel to build universes of their own, we have always championed sweeping adventures of new worlds and brave deeds.

15 Years Being Brave

Throughout the history of the prize, we’ve rewarded books that engage with difficult issues in innovative and extraordinary ways. Stories that move, provoke and stay with you forever.

The Next 15 Years

In 2019 we crowned Onjali Q. Rauf’s compelling and compassionate The Boy at the Back of the Class as our winner, and its huge success is testament to the unerringly good judgement of our booksellers. What will scoop the coveted award this year? And what delights do the next 15 years hold? Join the conversation on Twitter - #wcbp20 – and make the case for your favourite.

Illustrated Books Shortlist
Younger Readers Shortlist
Older Readers Shortlist
History of the Waterstones Children's Book Prize