Best Scottish Children's Books of 2012 Revealed as Winners of Scottish Children’s Book Awards 2012 Announced

John Fardell, Jonathan Meres and Barry Hutchison have been named as the winners of the 2012 SCOTTISH CHILDREN’S BOOK AWARDS, Scotland’s largest Children’s Book Prize which is voted for exclusively by children. The winners of the three age categories (who receive £3,000 each) were announced today during a special ceremony at Dundee’s Caird Hall, attended by 1,000 young people from all over Scotland.

A celebration of the best of Scottish writing and illustration for children, the Scottish Children’s Book Awards are run by Scottish Book Trust in partnership with Creative Scotland.

Award-winning author-illustrator John Fardell won the Bookbug Readers category (3-7 years) for his picture book The Day Louis Got Eaten (published byAndersen Press). John said:

“I'm really delighted (and tremendously grateful!) that “The Day Louis Got Eaten” has won the Bookbug Readers category of the Scottish Children's Book Awards. It's genuinely been an honour just to be on such a terrific shortlist alongside authors and illustrators whose work I love, and to be part of these fabulous awards, which do so much to encourage children to enjoy the excitement of books. Big thanks to all the pupils who took part, and to all the teachers, librarians and the fantastic team at Scottish Book Trust who make it all happen.”

Popular Children’s author and comic Jonathan Meres won the Younger Readers Category (8-11 Years) for the first book in his World of Norm series, The World of Norm: May Contain Nuts (published byOrchard). He said:

"I'm genuinely chuffed to bits to win this prestigious award and I have to say, also genuinely surprised considering the two superb books I was up against.  Thanks so much to everyone who took the time to vote.  Not just for me, but for all the nominees."

Barry Hutchison, a previous winner of the 2010 Scottish Children’s Book Awards, won the Older Readers Category (12-16 Years) for The 13th Horseman (published by Harper Collins). Barry commented:

"The other books in my category were amazingly strong, and so to win was a brilliant surprise. Thanks to all the pupils who voted across the country - I owe you one!"

The total prize fund is £12,000, with the shortlisted authors and illustrators receiving £500 per book, and the winning authors and illustrators receiving £3,000 per book.

Record numbers of children took part in this year’s awards, with over 31,000 votes cast – a huge increase of 34% onlast year - and over 1,500 Scottish schools registering to take part. The amount of children getting involved increases year on year, with the very first awards in 2006 attracting just over 2,000 votes, compared to 16,000 votes in 2010 and 23,000 votes in 2011.  

Jasmine Fassl, Children’s Programme Manager at Scottish Book Trust, commented:

“The very best thing about the Scottish Children’s Book Awards is that they get children excited about books. This year’s awards have been our biggest ever with tens of thousands of young people getting involved in reading, discussing and reviewing a selection of the most popular Scottish children’s books of the year – they all have their favourites, and they get very passionate about the book they are championing. There is nothing nicer than celebrating the books that children themselves have enjoyed reading, and the authors who take part in the SCBA, both shortlisted and winners, are playing a key part in inspiring a new generation of book lovers.”

Minister for Children and Young People Aileen Campbell, said:

“It is fantastic that nearly 32,000 children have been involved in this year’s awards, this is an outstanding success. This week is the Scottish Government’s well-being week – where we are encouraging everyone to think about how they can have a positive impact on the wellbeing of our children and young people - reading has an important part to play.

“Reading is fun for children, capturing their imagination, stimulating development and is a great activity for parents to share with their wee ones. That’s why we provide £1.6 million for the Bookbug scheme -which helps encourage an early love of books and has already benefitted over 400,000 Scottish families with more to follow in future.”

Emma Turnbull, Development Officer, Creative Scotland, said:

“The Scottish Children’s Book Awards are a major success story, thanks to all the schools and the teachers who encourage their pupils to get involved - this year, involving more of them than ever before. The three winning books are all fantastic stories and Creative Scotland’s association with these prizes continues to be a great delight.”

CALL Scotland has again worked with Scottish Book Trust and the authors and publishers to create accessible digital versions of the nine shortlisted books, for children and young people with physical, visual and reading or dyslexic difficulties, who can’t read the paper books. The accessible digital versions are available free of charge from CALL Scotland. You can request books by going to

The Scottish Children’s Book Awards are not only about reading but also about writing: the popular Book Review Competition attracts hundreds of high quality entries from budding journalists and authors all over the country, hoping to win book tokens for themselves and an author visit for their school.

The Scottish Children’s Book Awards are managed by Scottish Book Trust in partnership with Creative Scotland, and supported by the Times Educational Supplement Scotland (TESS) and Waterstones.


FOR ALL PRESS QUERIES, PLEASE CONTACT HELEN CRONEY:  0131 524 0175 or 07751 69 58 54


Notes to editors:

  • Scottish Book Trust is Scotland’s leading agency for the promotion of literature, reading and writing.
  • The Awards are judged in three age categories (Bookbug Readers – 3-7 years, Younger Readers – 8-11 years and Older Readers – 12-16 years)
  • Teachers, librarians and book group leaders sign up their groups in the appropriate age group and then the young judges read, review, discuss and vote for their favourite book
  • Reviews are posted on the Scottish Book Trust website by young judges to share their enthusiasm about the shortlisted books
  • Videos of each author reading and talking about their book are available at