2018 Scottish Teenage Book Prize Shortlist Revealed

Teens with shortlisted books in front of the Parliament building
Category: Press Releases

Voting opens for the 2018 Scottish Teenage Book Prize as shortlist is announced. Scottish teenagers posed with a ballot box at the Scottish Parliament today to launch the poll to find Scotland’s favourite teen book.


The shortlisted authors for the prize, now in its second year, have been revealed as Elizabeth Laird for Welcome to Nowhere with illustrations by Lucy Eldridge, Caighlan Smith for Children of Icarus, and Danny Weston for The Haunting of Jessop Rise.

The Scottish Teenage Book Prize was set up to celebrate the most popular teen books by authors in Scotland. It is run by Scottish Book Trust with support from Creative Scotland. Shortlisted authors receive £500 and the winner £3,000.

While most teenagers across Scotland can’t vote yet in elections, teenagers of all ages can vote for their favourite book from the shortlist and take part in picking the winner. They can engage with the prize by voting as part of their class or book group by 8 February 2018.

The winning book will be announced in an exclusive video available to classes who have registered to vote on 28 February 2018.

Teens are invited to create their own book trailer or graphic novel of the shortlisted books, with the chance to win Waterstones gift cards. Scottish Book Trust provides extensive learning resources for teachers on how to create book trailers and graphic novels.

Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said: “Each of the three books is a compelling read and a strong contender for winner. Teenage readers are among the most passionate and this prize is a great opportunity for them to get involved, be inspired to create their own piece of fiction, and vote for their favourite to win. We are looking forward to finding out which book comes out on top.”

Jenny Niven, Head of Literature, Languages and Publishing at Creative Scotland said: “The Scottish Teenage Book Prize provides an excellent opportunity for young people to discover, discuss and vote for their favourite books. This year’s shortlist includes a fantastic selection of some of Scotland’s most exciting talent in the young adult genre. It is very encouraging to see the Scottish Teenage Book Prize alongside the What’s Your Story? Development Programme, continuing to nurture Scotland’s teenage writers and readers.”


Quotes and information on the shortlisted titles:

Elizabeth Laird is an award-winning writer of children's fiction and travel. She has won the Scottish Arts Council Children's Book of the Year Award and has been shortlisted for the Costa Award, the Blue Peter Award, the Royal Mail Award and five times for the Carnegie Medal. Elizabeth’s books have been translated into more than twenty-five languages.

Commenting on her nomination, author Elizabeth said: “What an honour to be shortlisted for the wonderful Scottish Teenage Book Prize! Writing a book is a sort of magic. There I sit, in my lonely study, scribbling away, and then, a year later, the words scrawled on the page have miraculously appeared in a book, and now, thanks to being shortlisted, children all over Scotland will be reading them, seeing what I've seen, feeling what I felt and, I hope, loving my characters as I love them.”

Caighlan Smith is a 22-year-old fantasy novelist from Newfoundland, Canada. She was a finalist for the Dell Magazines Undergraduate Award for Excellence in Science Fiction & Fantasy Writing in both 2015 and 2016. She was a Saltire fellow and Alexander & Dixon scholar at the University of Glasgow, where she studied an MLitt in Fantasy.

Commenting on her nomination, author Caighlan said: “I'm so excited to be shortlisted for the Scottish Teenage Book Prize! Whenever I think about it I get a warm, fuzzy feeling that translates into a ridiculous smile, which has people on the bus giving me funny looks. I'm just thrilled, really. I think it's amazing that the readers get to decide the award, and I'm honored that Children of Icarus gets to be a part of that.”

Danny Weston is an Edinburgh-based author of four novels. He was the winner of the Older Readers category of the Scottish Children’s Book Awards in 2016 for The Piper. He has also published over fifteen books as Philip Caveney, including the Edinburgh trilogy – Crow Boy, Seventeen Coffins and One For Sorrow.

Commenting on his nomination, author Danny said: “I am thrilled and delighted to be shortlisted for the Scottish Teenage Book Prize. The fact that it is voted for by actual readers is the best thing of all.”


Notes to editors:

For all media enquiries including photos of the launch or the authors, please contact Moira Findlay on moira.findlay@scottishbooktrust.com or 0131 524 0160 / 07824 36560.


Scottish Book Trust

Scottish Book Trust is a national charity changing lives through reading and writing. We inspire and support the people of Scotland to read and write for pleasure through programmes and outreach work that include:

  • Gifting books to every child in Scotland to ensure families of all backgrounds can share the joy of books at home.
  • Working with teachers to inspire children to develop a love of reading, creating innovative classroom activities, book awards and author events.
  • Supporting Scotland’s diverse writing community with our training, awards and writing opportunities.
  • Funding a range of author events for the public to enjoy and promoting Scottish writing to people worldwide.

www.scottishbooktrust.com   @scottishbktrust   www.facebook.com/scottishbktrust


Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland please visit www.creativescotland.com.  Follow us @creativescots and www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland


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