Longlists Announced for the Yoto Carnegies 2024

yotocarnegies.co.uk | #YotoCarnegies24 | @CarnegieMedals

Tuesday 13 February 2024: The Yoto Carnegies, the UK’s longest running and best loved book awards for children and young people, today announced their longlists for 2024. Celebrating creative use of language and synergy between text and images, poetry and stories written in verse feature prominently, with British talent dominating the Medal for Writing longlist. Common themes include hidden worlds and alternate realities, forgotten histories highlighted or reimagined, and environmentalism and the power of nature.

A total of 36 books have been selected from 20 different publishers; 19 for the Yoto Carnegie Medal for Writing, and 18 for the Yoto Carnegie Medal for Illustration.

The lists include:

The Yoto Carnegies celebrate outstanding reading experiences in books for children and young people.  They are unique in being judged by librarians, with the Shadowers’ Choice Medal voted for by children and young people. The awards aim to spark a lifelong passion for reading by connecting more children with books that will change lives. The longlists were chosen from 129 nominations by the judging panel which includes 12 children’s and youth librarians from CILIP’s Youth Libraries Group.

The 2024 Yoto Carnegie Medal for Writing longlist is (alphabetical by author surname):

The 2024 Yoto Carnegie Medal for Illustration longlist is (alphabetical by illustrator surname):

Maura Farrelly, Chair of Judges for The Yoto Carnegies 2024, said:

Huge congratulations to all of our longlisted authors and illustrators in what has been a fantastic year for books for children and young people. It has been a joy and a privilege to chair an enthusiastic and dedicated panel of judges as we read, debated and considered the nominated titles before arriving at two exciting longlists. These are books that play with language and show how powerful words and illustrations can inspire imaginations and encourage empathy as well as helping young readers make sense of an increasingly confusing world and give them hope for a brighter future.”

Five debut authors feature on the longlist for the Medal for Writing, including Cathy Faulkner for a World War II free verse novel about everyday heroism, Digging for Victory, PRH WriteNow alum Beth Lincoln for her quirky mystery adventure The Swifts and Pari Thomson for Greenwild: The World Behind the Door, a richly imagined, fantasy ecological adventure. Offering the perspective of teenage boys, Nathanael Lessore is longlisted for Steady for This, a hilarious and heartwarming story about a wannabe rapper, and Tia Fisher for Crossing the Line, a powerful verse novel based on a true story about teenagers being swept up into county lines.

What Feelings Do When No One’s Looking is one of two debuts longlisted for the Medal for Illustration, by acclaimed Polish illustrator Aleksandra Zając. Written and translated by bestselling Polish author Tina Oziewicz, it is her first book to be published in English and gives younger children an introduction to understanding emotions and empathy. Chloe Savage‘s debut, The Search for the Giant Arctic Jellyfish, is a beautifully detailed adventure into the unknown. 

Nature and the environment are also central to The Wilderness by Steve McCarthy, an adventure book celebrating learning opportunities in the great outdoors, wordless picture book The Tree and the River by Aaron Becker which looks at the human impact on the natural world, and Global by Eoin Colfer and Andrew Donkin, illustrated by Giovanni Rigano, a compelling graphic novel about the real effects of climate change. Depicting stunning artistic seascapes, Stephen Hogtun‘s second picture book Deep follows a whale calf and his mother through the oceans. For the Medal for Writing, Electric Life by Rachel Delahaye takes an alternate approach, imagining a ‘perfect’ future society which is entirely digital with no natural world.

Historical fiction features heavily in the Medal for Writing longlist, with another two WWII-set stories – Until the Road Ends by Phil Earle is inspired by the Blitz’s most decorated bomb-dog, and Safiyyah’s War by Hiba Noor Khan highlights the forgotten heroes of the Grand Mosque of Paris who helped hide and protect Jews. The Little Match Girl Strikes Back by Emma Carroll, illustrated by Lauren Child,is a feminist reworking of the Hans Christian Andersen classic, based on a real Match Factory Strike in 1888 East London. Set in 1900s Philippines, Wild Song by Candy Gourlay is a culturally rich and authentic exploration of identity revealing a hidden history and a journey to America – similarly to Kwame Alexander’s The Door of No Return, which in lyrical verse portrays a young West African boy and his capture into slavery.

Choose Love by Nicola Davies, illustrated by Petr Horáček, uses poetry to poignantly highlight the real-life experiences of refugees, complementing To the Other Side by Erika Meza,which strikingly portrays a journey of two young refugee children. Journeys and finding your place in the world are also explored in Lost by breakout talent Mariajo Ilustrajo, The Midnight Panther by Poonam Mistry, and The Song Walker by Zillah Bethell.

Similar themes of self-discovery and identity are explored in Boy Like Me by Simon James Green, a 90s teen romance in the midst of Section 28 where gay relationships can’t be mentioned in schools, and Away with Words by Sophie Cameron – a highly original celebration of language and feelings.

A common thread through the Illustration longlist, a number of books used different styles of illustration to promote emotional literacy, creativity and tools to cope, with colour used to indicate mood or atmosphere – from the nostalgic, classic watercolours in The Boy Who Lost His Spark by Daniela Jaglenka Terrazzini, written by Maggie O’Farrell,to the bright colours representing hope introduced through seedlings growing in Catalina Echeverri’s illustrations in April’s Garden by Isla McGuckin, to the drama and darkness of the nightmarish wolves by Paddy Donnelly for Sarah Tagholm’s Wolves in Helicopters.

The shortlists for the 2024 Yoto Carnegies will be announced at a panel event at London Book Fair beginning at 9.15am on Wednesday 13 March. The winners’ ceremony will be hosted live and streamed on Thursday 20 June. The winners will each receive a specially commissioned golden medal and a £5,000 Colin Mears Award cash prize. The winners of the Shadowers’ Choice Medals – voted for and awarded by the children and young people – will also be presented at the ceremony. They will also receive a golden medal and £500 worth of books to donate to a library of their choice.

Yoto, the innovative, screen-free audio platform for children, is the headline sponsor of the Awards. The Yoto Carnegies are also sponsored by ALCS. Scholastic are the official book supplier and First News are the official media partner.

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For further information on The Yoto Carnegies 2024 please visit: www.yotocarnegies.co.uk
#YotoCarnegies24 | @CarnegieMedals

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Author and illustrator biographies and images, book synopses and jackets
are available to download here.



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