The Week Junior Book Awards today announced their 2024 Shortlists in collaboration with The Bookseller, and partners LoveReading4Kids, WHSmith, and World Book Day. Launched in 2023 to rapturous applause the awards aim to inspire children to read for pleasure. Something which is very close to our hearts.

The shortlisted books will be shared directly with the award-winning news magazine’s eight to 14-year-old readers and their families via a 12-week promotional campaign. 

Anna Bassi, Editorial Director of The Week Junior, commented, "The 74 books on our shortlist represent an incredible range of authors, illustrators, designers, stories and subjects – testament to the endless creativity and innovation in children’s publishing.

Our judges are in for some excellent reading over the next couple of months. I’m really excited to find out which of the books readers of The Week Junior elect to win our Children’s Choice trophy – this is their chance to vote and I hope they’ll use it. With reading for pleasure seemingly in decline I’d like to think our shortlists will inspire more kids to give books a go, discover something new, and hopefully spark a love of reading that lasts for life." 

Philip Jones, Editor of The Bookseller, shared, "In its second year, The Week Junior Book Awards already feels firmly established; and these shortlists have everything we need them to have, showcasing the breadth, creativity, colourfulness, and the sheer power of story-telling and fact-weaving that we know children's writers and illustrators are always capable of. Hurrah once again to The Week Junior for continuing to support children's books." 

The 13 book categories include six new categories this year, launched in response to feedback from publishers and reflecting the interests of The Week Junior’s readers. These are:  Animals & Nature; Graphic Novel; Hobbies & Interests; Picture Book; Poetry, and Wellbeing.

They join the other categories: Audiobook; Breakthrough Book; Cover of the Year; Fiction Older; Fiction Younger; Non-Fiction, and STEM (in partnership with The Week Junior Science+Nature magazine). 

The shortlisted books were selected from more than 370 entries with the help of an expert committee including LoveReading4Kids MD Deborah Maclaren who chaired the shortlisting committee for Older Fiction. The committee represented booksellers, librarians, literacy charities, children’s book reviewers and primary school teachers. 

Our very own Deborah Maclaren commented: "It has been an absolute joy to be involved in The Week Junior Book Awards again this year. Being part of the Shortlisting Committee was a tall order with so many incredible books submitted but the shortlists are a beautiful thing. Such a brilliant batch of inclusive, diverse and stunning books where all children can find themselves reflected. And now, we go again, as I'm delighted to also be on the Judging Committee for the next phase of the Awards journey. Bring it on!

At LoveReading4Kids we are cheerleaders of authors and illustrators so it's brilliant to partner with the Week Junior Book Awards which are so important to enable a light to be shone on these special authors and illustrators who are collaborating with publishers to create amazing books for children. We shout about these books week in week out, and by partnering with The Week Junior as their Social Value Partner we hope to do even more for reading for pleasure."

Readers of The Week Junior will have the chance to vote for Book Cover of the Year and the Children's Choice Award – the overall winner of the shortlist in all categories. Alongside them, the prestigious judging panel includes CBBC Newsround presenter Ricky Boleto; Children’s Laureate Joseph Coelho; author and Place2Be ambassador Sophie Dahl; children’s TV presenter and author Jess French; Comics Laureate Bobby Joseph, and award-winning author SF Said, who was the winner of the Older Fiction award in 2023.  

Dive into the shortlists in full here and add your favourites to your basket knowing you'll be doing great things for a school close to your heart, or schools in need.


Children's Book of the Year: Breakthrough 

Children’s Book of the Year: Younger Fiction (6–9 year-olds)

Children’s Book of the Year: Older Fiction (9–12 year-olds)

Children’s Book of the Year: Non-Fiction 

Children's Book of the Year: Poetry

Children's Book of the Year: Graphic Novel

Children's Picture Book of the Year

Children's Book of the Year: STEM

Children's Book of the Year: Wellbeing

Children's Book of the Year: Hobbies & Interests

Children's Book of the Year: Animals & Nature

Cover of the Year

Children’s Audiobook of the Year

  • Animal Tales from India: Ten Stories from the Panchatantra by Nikita Gill, narrated by Nikita Gill
  • Billy and the Giant Adventure by Jamie Oliver, narrated by Jamie Oliver
  • Impossible Creatures by Katherine Rundell, narrated by Samuel West
  • Loki: A Bad God's Guide to Ruling the World by Louie Stowell, narrated by Ben Willbond
  • Onyeka and the Rise of the Rebels by Tola Okogwu, narrated by Nneka Okoye
  • Stink: Fairy vs Boy by Jenny McLachlan, narrated by Caius Nicholas

Congratulations to everyone who made the shortlist. This is truly an incredible celebration of children's books. The winners will be announced at a glittering awards ceremony in London on 30th September - and we can't wait!

To find out more visit