Today (Tuesday 16th February), longlists for both the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals, the UK’s oldest and most prestigious children’s book awards, are revealed. The 20-strong CILIP Carnegie Medal longlist sees the late Terry Pratchett’s final novel up against books by fellow previous winners Sally Gardner, Patrick Ness and David Almond as well as Frances Hardinge’s recent Costa Book of the Year winner, The Lie Tree.

In the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal longlist, former Children’s Laureate Anthony Browne could win a second Medal nearly a quarter of a century after his previous triumph with the return of his much loved chimpanzee hero in Willy’s Stories. He faces stiff competition from a powerhouse longlist including fellow former winners Chris Riddell, Helen Oxenbury and Emily Gravett. The Imaginary, for which Gravett is longlisted, is also in the running for this year’s Carnegie Medal. In an unusual twist, both Chris Riddell and Oliver Jeffers will be competing against themselves with each being listed twice.

All of those longlisted will be vying to join the pantheon of past winners of the world respected Medals, including legendary authors Arthur Ransome and C.S Lewis and renowned illustrators Quentin Blake and Shirley Hughes. The Carnegie Medal and the Kate Greenaway Medal are awarded for outstanding writing and illustration, respectively, in books for children and young people. Judged by a panel of expert librarians, the Medals are unique and are known as the awards that children’s book authors and illustrators say they ‘most want to win’.

Sioned Jacques, Chair of the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Medals judging panel for 2016, said:

“It is a real honour to take on the mantle of chairing the judging panel for this year’s Medals. The longlists for 2016 are outstanding and perfectly reflect the vibrancy of children’s books in the UK today. This is a real golden age of writing and illustrating for children and the range of skills and storytelling on display in the longlists are proof of the incredibly high standards of this ever-growing area of publishing – every book is a potential winner. These are all fantastic books and every one of them deserves a wide audience.”

Dawn Finch, President of CILIP, said:

“The Medals play a hugely important role in recommending good books to children, parents and teachers and illustrate the key role that librarians play in introducing readers to new books and to fantastic new storytellers and artists. The images and stories in both longlists leap off the page and the whole gamut of human life and experience is reflected, with books that cover family and friendship, love and loyalty and secrets and lies. There are books that explore war, slavery, civil rights and equality, others that re-imagine ancient myths, stories of coming of age and tales that span time and space, firing imaginations with every page that is read.”

The shortlists for both the CILIP Carnegie Medal and the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2016 will be announced on Tuesday 15th March, with the winners being announced on Monday 20th June at a special daytime event at the British Library. The winners will each receive £500 worth of books to donate to their local library and a specially commissioned golden medal. Since 2000, the winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal has also been awarded the £5,000 Colin Mears Award cash prize. In 2016, for the first time, the Carnegie Medal winner will also be awarded an equal amount of prize money from the Colin Mears Award. Also new for 2016, one title from each shortlist will be named the recipient of the Amnesty CILIP Honour, a new commendation for a book that most distinctively illuminates, upholds or celebrates freedoms. The two titles receiving the commendation will be able to carry an Amnesty CILIP Honour logo. On shortlist announcement day, Tuesday 15th March, Amnesty will host a drinks reception in London to celebrate the shortlists for both Medals.

The books longlisted for the 2016 CILIP Carnegie Medal are:

Book by John Agard (Walker Books)

A Song For Ella Grey by David Almond (Hodder)

One by Sarah Crossan (Bloomsbury)

The Earth Is Singing by Vanessa Curtis (Usborne)

The Door That Led To Where by Sally Gardner (Hot Key Books)

The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge (Macmillan)

The Imaginary by A.F. Harrold (Bloomsbury)

There Will Be Lies by Nick Lake (Bloomsbury)

We Are All Made of Molecules by Susin Neilsen (Andersen Press)

The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness (Walker Books)

Jessica’s Ghost by Andrew Norriss (David Fickling Books)

Panther by David Owen (Little, Brown Book Group)

The Shepherd’s Crown by Terry Pratchett (Penguin Random House)

Five Children on the Western Front by Kate Saunders (Faber)

The Ghosts of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick (Indigo)

Thirteen Chairs by Dave Shelton (David Fickling Books)

Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley (MiraInk, HarperCollins)

Fire Colour One by Jenny Valentine (HarperCollins)

My Name’s Not Friday by Jon Walter (David Fickling Books)

Liccle Bit by Alex Wheatle (Atom Books)

The books longlisted for the 2016 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal are:

Please Mr Panda illustrated and written by Steve Antony (Hodder Children’s Books)

Where’s the Elephant? illustrated and written by Barroux (Egmont Books)

Willy’s Stories illustrated and written by Anthony Browne (Walker Books)

This Book Just Ate My Dog! illustrated and written by Richard Byrne (Oxford University Press)

Wall illustrated and written by Tom Clohosy Cole (Templar)

There’s a Bear on My Chair illustrated and written by Ross Collins (Nosy Crow)

Grandad’s Island illustrated and written by Benji Davies (Simon & Schuster)

How the Sun Got to Coco’s House illustrated and written by Bob Graham (Walker Books)

The Imaginary illustrated by Emily Gravett, written by A.F Harrold (Bloomsbury)

Once Upon an Alphabet illustrated and written by Oliver Jeffers (HarperCollins)

The Day the Crayons Came Home illustrated by Oliver Jeffers, written by Drew Daywalt (HarperCollins)

Sam and Dave Dig a Hole illustrated by Jon Klassen, written by Mac Barnett (Walker Books)

Something About a Bear illustrated and written by Jackie Morris (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books)

Captain Jack and the Pirates illustrated by Helen Oxenbury, written by Peter Bently (Puffin)

Goth Girl and the Fete Worse Than Death illustrated and written by Chris Riddell (Macmillan)

The Sleeper and the Spindle illustrated by Chris Riddell, written by Neil Gaiman (Bloomsbury)

The Bolds illustrated by David Roberts, written by Julian Clary (Andersen Press)

Animalium illustrated by Katie Scott, written by Jenny Broom (Big Picture Press)

Footpath Flowers illustrated by Sydney Smith, written by JonArno Lawson (Walker Books)

Lili illustrated and written by Wen Dee Tan (Fat Fox)