This issue’s cover illustration is from Cookie and the Most Annoying Boy in the World written and illustrated by Konnie Huq. Thanks to Piccadilly Press for their help with this September 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

Lulu’s First Day (Under 5s Pre-School/Nursery/Infant)

Anna McQuinn

(Alanna Max)
32pp, PICTURE BOOK, 978-1907825217, RRP £11.99, Hardcover

This delightful, heart-warming picture book follows book lover Lulu on her first day at pre-school. A wonderful book for parents preparing their child for nursery or school, with a couple of nods to the emotional journey parents are going through too.

Latest Reviews

Winter of the Wolves (8-10 Junior/Middle)

Tony Bradman
(Bloomsbury Education)

160pp, FICTION, 978-1472953780, RRP £5.99, Paperback

This short tale has echoes of Rosemary Sutcliffe in it, following as it does a homeless boy who becomes a man, is tested in battle and finally finds his calling as a wordsmith, a teller of tales.

read more >

When We Were Warriors (8-10 Junior/Middle)

Emma Carroll
(Faber & Faber)

256pp, FICTION, 978-0571350407, RRP £6.99, Paperback

Emma Carroll is fast establishing herself as one of the most consistent and accessible authors writing for KS2 readers.

read more >

Now or Never-a Dunkirk Story (10-14 Middle/Secondary)

Bali Rai

208pp, 978-1407191362, RRP £6.99, Paperback

This absorbing and revealing book is part of the Voices series, published to give a platform to those unsung heroes from the past whose authentic stories have not been fully told.

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Paper Avalanche (14+ Secondary/Adult)

Lisa Williamson
(David Fickling Books)

368pp, FICTION, 978-1910989968, RRP £10.99, Hardcover

This is Lisa Williamson’s third novel, and like its predecessors scores highly for sheer readability. Compassionate and understanding, even where silly spoilt Bonnie is concerned, this is YA fiction at its most assured.

read more >

Books for Keeps Feature

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Latest News


Klaus Flugge Prize award ceremony

Jessica Love is the winner of the 2019 Klaus Flugge Prize for Julian is a Mermaid. Set up in honour of veteran publisher, founder of Andersen Press Klaus Flugge, the prize is for the most exciting and promising newcomer to children’s picture book illustration.

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UKLA Awards

A record number of submissions and a new category to highlight information books marks the 12th longlists for the UKLA Awards, the only national awards judged by active classroom teachers.

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Lollies logo

Michael Rosen, children’s novelist, poet and former Children’s Laureate, has announced the shortlist for the 2020 Laugh Out Loud Awards (The Lollies), the awards that celebrate the funniest children’s books.

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