Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2012

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Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2012


Waterstones Children's Book Prize is now in its eighth year and once again there are some exciting books to choose from.

The Winner

The Pirates Next Door by Jonny Duddle

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Matilda lives in the little seaside town of Dull-on-Sea where the average age is 67. The house next door has been empty since she was a baby and she longs for a family with a girl of her own age to move in but instead a family of pirates move into the decrepit old house - complete with their pirate ship, treasure chests, barrels of grog and Jim Lad who is in Matilda's class at school. The neighbours - well, the town - are not pleased, so what will the pirate family do to win them round? Meanwhile, Matilda is having a lot of fun. Full review...

The Shortlists

Picture Books

No! by Marta Altes

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Perfect for dog lovers, this is a fun story to read aloud, with lively illustrations. Full review...

I Don't Want To Be A Pea! by Ann Bonwill and Simon Rickerty

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Most children are very capable of squabbling about almost anything and, so it seems, are hippos and birds. In this charming book, this extremely unlikely pair continually argue about what each should wear to Bird-Hippo FairyTale Fancy Dress party but they do both agree on one thing – neither wants to be a pea! Will they ever be able to resolve the argument? Full review...

The Pirates Next Door by Jonny Duddle

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Matilda lives in the little seaside town of Dull-on-Sea where the average age is 67. The house next door has been empty since she was a baby and she longs for a family with a girl of her own age to move in but instead a family of pirates move into the decrepit old house - complete with their pirate ship, treasure chests, barrels of grog and Jim Lad who is in Matilda's class at school. The neighbours - well, the town - are not pleased, so what will the pirate family do to win them round? Meanwhile, Matilda is having a lot of fun. Full review...

A Bit Lost by Chris Haughton

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Little owl has fallen out of his nest - uh-oh! Thankfully, a kindly squirrel is going to help him find his mummy. The little owl remembers aspects of what she looks like, so the squirrel ticks off animal after animal until they find mummy owl. Full review...

I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen

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The poor bear has lost his hat. He wants it back. As with all bears, he's a bit of a surly ol' thing. His pointy red hat is about the only thing that puts a smile on his face, and he just can't find it. The fox and frog don't know where it is, the rabbit is evasive, and the tortoise is more interested in climbing a rock. How will the bear ever find his hat? Poor bear. Full review...

Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen

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A cheeky and fun take on big bad wolf fairy tales. Although there's one twist too many, the vibrant text and adorable illustrations make it well-worth a read. Warmly recommended. Full review...

Fiction 5 to 12

The Windvale Sprites by Mackenzie Crook

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If you, like me, thought this was a vanity project from a celebrity, then be prepared to be staggered. A boy discovering fairies has hardly been covered in a better way. Full review...

Muncle Trogg by Janet Foxley

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Muncle Trogg is the smallest giant in the world. He's fed up of being upside-downed by his bigger, but younger, brother, Gritt. At school, he always falls foul of the other pupils. The teachers don't treat him too much better. He simply doesn't fit in at all. With his school-leaving exams coming up, Muncle doesn't know what he's going to do with himself. However, Sir Biblos, the King's wise man, sees a spark in Muncle, and Muncle embarks on adventures that dabble in the edges of the Smalling world. Full review...


Sky Hawk by Gill Lewis

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Lovely story of love, loss and conservation and how one wild bird can bring friends, families and even strangers together. This one will be great within a school context, but is just as fulfilling to read at home. Recommended. Full review...

The Brilliant World of Tom Gates by Liz Pichon

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A cross between a book and a comic but in book form this story of his life as told by the year 5 lad is a great read - particularly for reluctant readers. Highly recommended. Full review...

Milo and the Restart Button by Alan Silberberg

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Lovely story about coming to terms with grief. Milo's voice is sweet and honest and regular comic strip punctuations prevent things from ever becoming too painful. Full review...

Claude in the City by Alex T Smith

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Fantastic illustrations that fit perfectly with this funny story. A wonderful book that I think grown ups will love as much as children! Full review...

Teens

You Against Me by Jenny Downham

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A book about love, loyalty and choices. Beautifully written and tremendously moving, it's a worthy follow up to the phenomenally successful Before I Die. Full review...

Being Billy by Phil Earle

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Thought-provoking and moving story of a boy who's been in long-term care. Unreliable narration gives this story direct impact and a big punch. Bookbag thought it was great. Full review...

Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

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A sweet, funny and touching tale of grief and recovery which is one of the most beautifully put together books I've read for a long time, adding 'scrapbook style' parts which supplement the main narrative perfectly. Full review...

My Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece by Annabel Pitcher

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A sad, funny and uplifting story about a family in crisis, mourning for a child killed in a terrorist attack. Jamie, the central character, has an offbeat, unflinchingly honest voice that readers won't forget in a hurry. Full review...

Divergent by Veronica Roth

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Beatrice - or Tris as she becomes - belongs to one of five factions in a segregated future world. Beatrice is Abnegation (selflessness) but has always struggled with the self-effacing lifestyle embraced by her faction. But she's not sure if she's any better-suited to one of the others: Candor (honesty), Amity (kindness), Erudite (intellect) or Dauntless (courage). So Tris approaches the faction aptitude test taken by all sixteen-year-olds in her society with a large dollop of trepidation. Full review...

Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

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This novel is based on real-life accounts. It's 1941 and Lithuanian citizens are being evicted from their homeland and forced to make a gruelling journey - but how many are strong enough to survive? Full review...