The Yoto Carnegies 2023

The Yoto Carnegies are the UK’s longest running and best-loved children’s book awards, recognising outstanding reading experiences created through writing and illustration in books for children and young people.

The Yoto Carnegie Medal for Writing is awarded by children’s librarians for an outstanding book written in English for children and young people.

The Yoto Carnegie Medal for Illustration is awarded by children’s librarians for an outstanding book in terms of illustration for children and young people.

A national (and international) reading for pleasure initiative, the Yoto Carnegie Shadowing Scheme engages thousands of children and young people in reading the books on the shortlist via reading groups in schools and public libraries with dedicated educational reading resources and promotional materials to support each shortlist. Each year young people who take part in the scheme are invited to vote for their favourite books to win the Shadowers’ Choice Awards, which are announced alongside the Medal winners at the annual winners’ ceremony. The Medals are awarded annually by CILIP, the library and information association and the Youth Libraries Group with longlists announced in February, shortlists in March and the winners announced at a ceremony in June.

The Awards mission is: To champion librarians to inspire and empower the next generation to create a better world through books and reading.

The ceremony was also streamed live and can be watched back here:

The Yoto Carnegie Medal for Writing

The Blue Book of Nebo. Written and translated by Manon Stefan Ros (Firefly) ISBN 978-1913102784

Told through the dual narrative of a mother and son living in post-apocalyptic Nebo,  this is a  wholly original and inspiring story, which calls into question the ways we live and what makes us happy, explores Welsh identity and culture, and offers a beautiful appreciation of language. The original Welsh publication, Llyfr Glas Nebo, won multiple awards, including the 2019 Wales Book of the Year. This is the first time in the 90-year history of the medals that a book in translation has won

The Yoto Carnegie Medal for Writing. Shadower’s Choice

 I Must Betray You. Ruta Sepetys (Hodder) ISBN: 978-1444967616

Closely based on the real events of the Romanian Revolution of 1989, this is a powerful, heart-breaking thriller. Trapped by an evil dictatorship, will Cristian be forced to betray his family or will he risk everything he loves to resist? This is a veritable triumph of historical fiction exploring themes of freedom, betrayal, and hope in a way that is both thought-provoking and relevant to young people today.

Shortlisted titles

The Light in Everything by Katya Balen (Bloomsbury Children’s Books)

When Shadows Fall by Sita Brahmachari, illustrated by Natalie Sirett (Little Tiger)

Medusa by Jessie Burton, illustrated by Olivia Lomenech Gill (Bloomsbury Children’s Books)

The Eternal Return of Clara Hart by Louise Finch (Little Island)

Needle by Patrice Lawrence (Barrington Stoke)

I Must Betray You by Ruta Sepetys (Hodder Children’s Books)

The Blue Book of Nebo by Manon Steffan Ros (Firefly Press)

2023 Resources including teaching guides, shadowing activities , shadower’s reviews , author and Illustrator videos and interviews are available for every book:


The Yoto Carnegie Medal for Illustration

Saving Sorya: Chang and the Sun Bear. Illustrated by Jeet Zdung and written by Nguyen Thi Thu Trang (Macmillan) ISBN: 978-0753448342

Written by scientist and environmental activist Trang Nguyen, Saving Sorya: Chang and the Sun Bear is an inspirational graphic-novel adventure, based on a true story about a young conservationist who overcomes the odds to save a sun bear. The natural images are beautifully realistic while the human characters are drawn in a manga-influenced style and this blending of styles is vividly impressive.

The Yoto Carnegie Medal for Illustration Shadower’s Choice

The Comet written and illustrated by Joe Todd- Stanton (Flying Eye) ISBN: 978-1838740658

A luminously beautiful picture book, full of bittersweet farewell feelings, about learning to welcome the new, touching on the bewildering experience of moving house and exploring how this can affect a child’s sense of belonging, but also how it can open them up to new and wonderful experiences.

Shortlisted titles

Rescuing Titanic illustrated and written by Flora Delargy (Wide Eyed Editions)

Alte Zachen: Old Things illustrated by Benjamin Phillips, written by Ziggy Hanaor (Cicada Books)

The Worlds We Leave Behind illustrated by Levi Pinfold, written by A. F. Harrold (Bloomsbury Children’s Books)

The Visible Sounds illustrated by Yu Rong, written by Yin Jianling (UCLan Publishing)

The Comet illustrated and written by Joe Todd-Stanton (Flying Eye Books)

Saving Sorya: Chang and the Sun Bear illustrated by Jeet Zdung, written by Trang Nguyen (Kingfisher)


2023 Resources including teaching guides, shadowing activities, shadower’s reviews, author and Illustrator videos and interviews are available for every book:


More Awards

YA Book Prize 2023

The YA Book Prize launched in 2014 to award a YA title written by an author living in the UK or Ireland. Organised by book

The Branford Boase Award 2023

The Branford Boase Award was set up in memory of outstanding author Henrietta Branford and her editor Wendy Boase of Walker Books, who both died

Clippa 2023

CLiPPA (Centre for Literacy in Primary Poetry Award) is the only award for published poetry for children in the UK. A Schools Shadowing Scheme  is

Spark! School Book Awards 2023

Originating in Kingston and Richmond and now in its third year and partnered by the OU these awards are expanding their reach to any school