The Fourth Bonniest Baby in… Scotland

We’re so delighted that The Fourth Bonniest Baby in Dundee has been shortlisted for this year’s Bookbug Picture Book Prize. Congratulations to author Michelle Sloan and illustrator Kasia Matyjaszek!

With bouncing rhymes by first-time author Michelle and quirky, colourful illustrations from Kasia, The Fourth Bonniest Baby in Dundee tells a cheeky and comical tale of a big sister and her wee brother, and a bonnie baby contest. This bright Picture Kelpie will be included this year’s Bookbug P1 Family Bag, gifted to all new Primary 1 children as part of Book Week Scotland. The Fourth Bonniest Baby in Dundee illustration

Of course, both Michelle and Kasia are elated about the nomination!

“I am thrilled and honoured that our book The Fourth Bonniest Baby in Dundee has been shortlisted! To think that Bonnie Baby will be read all over Scotland is so exciting!” – Michelle

“I am super excited about the shortlist! I am also very happy that our book will be included in the Bookbug P1 Bag – it was such a fun story to illustrate and I hope the children will enjoy it too.” – Kasia

Congratulations too to fellow Bookbug Picture Book Prize shortlisters Little Owl’s Egg (Debi Gliori and Alison Brown) and Gorilla Loves Vanilla (Chae Strathie and Nicola O’Byrne). After they receive their Bookbug bag, all children have the chance to vote for their favourite book.

This year’s Book Week Scotland will take place from 27th November to 3rd December. The Scottish Book Trust create Bookbug Family Bags in partnership with Education Scotland and the Scottish Government. They support literacy for children in Primary 1-3 as part of the the Read, Write, Count campaign.

You can download the full press release here, and find out more about Bookbug from the Scottish Book Trust.

More about The Fourth Bonniest Baby in Dundee

The contest for the Bonniest Baby in Dundee is here, and one very grubby baby brother is scrubbed, dressed, combed and taken by his mum and big sister to charm the judges. But by the time they arrive, their bonnie baby is sticky, claggie and clarty. Are his chances of winning dashed? Maybe, when he blows a raspberry in the judge’s face!

The Fourth Bonniest Baby in Dundee by Michelle Sloan and Kasia Matyjaszek is available now.

Wee ones can meet This Bonny Baby too, in our brand new board book with a peekaboo mirror! Coming September 2017.

A Very Kelpie Christmas


It’s almost Christmas morning, and all over the world children will soon be rushing to open their presents. But have you ever wondered what your favourite Kelpies characters might be getting up to on Christmas day? Read on to find out!

Thorfinn the Nicest Viking by David MacPhail

In most places they decorate trees for Christmas, but in Thorfinn’s village it’s traditional to decorate the Christmas goat. Thorfinn festoons the creature with pretty baubles and shiny glass. The other Vikings use dead rats and severed ears. It’s also traditional to catapult the goat into the fjord after they’ve finished, but, as usual, Thorfinn volunteers to take its place. He dons his swimming trunks and plonks himself on top of the catapult. “Merry Christmas, my dear friends,” he says, as the catapult is released. Thorfinn finds his yuletide dip most invigorating.

bottom-trumps-slugboy-full-colour-v1Slugboy aka Murdo McLeod
from Slugboy Saves the World by Mark A Smith

It’s 5.09am on Christmas morning and Murdo’s just getting home. He’s been up half the night foiling a festive foe called Randolph the Red-Nosed Robber. Well, maybe “foiling” is too strong a word. That sort of suggests he was in some way successful (he wasn’t). Still, Murdo isn’t about to let another failed adventure spoil his Christmas. All he needs to do now is get to bed without waking his mum…



from The Beginner’s Guide to Curses by Lari Don

Molly’s paws make tiny dents on the crust of last night’s snow. She had wished for a white Christmas, hoping to test her hare-speed on a new surface. She hadn’t wished for the beast behind her. The creature she’d found chewing her stocking this morning.

Now Molly hears heavy breathing and heavier feet. It’s catching up. She feels hot breath on her neck; snow melts to water under her paws…

(Want to find out what happens next? Head on over to Lari’s blog to read the rest!)


granny-emily-harry-dogWee Granny
from Wee Granny’s Magic Bag by Elizabeth McKay

Harry and Emily are showing Wee Granny their presents.

‘Oh no,’ Mum calls from the kitchen, ‘we’ve got a power cut. I can’t cook Christmas dinner.’

‘Och, don’t worry,’ says Wee Granny, reaching into her tartan bag and bringing out a table laden with turkey and all the trimmings, trifle, mince pies and bottles of ginger wine.

‘Cheers,’ says Wee Granny, raising her glass, ‘and Happy Christmas, my bonnie darlings.’

4th-bonniest-babyThe Fourth Bonniest Baby in Dundee by Michelle Sloan

“It’s Christmas Day!” the bairns all shriek.
Our Bonnie Baby takes a peek
To see his stocking filled with sweets and toys.

A teddy, a train, some coins, a cracker,
A Santa in a shiny wrapper –
He’s chocolate! Bonnie Baby has a lick.

He rips and bites, grips Santa tight.
The chocolate melts – we thought it might!
Och no! Our bonnie baby’s in a state!

He’s sticky, claggie, clarty too,
Head to toe in chocolatey goo!
The tastiest Christmas baby in Dundee.


Calum FergusonCalum Ferguson
from Scotland Stars F.C. by Danny Scott

It’s Christmas morning, 6.30 am. Calum braves the cold of his bedroom to shuffle across to the window in his pyjamas. Above him, his breath hangs in the air like footballers doing bicycle kicks. “Yes,” Calum whispers, gazing out at the snow, “a white Christmas!” A few seconds later, Calum’s dad emerges from the back door. Did he get up early to build a snowman? Calum thinks before he spots three white poles, a net and a set of instructions.











Slugboy’s Slugs Have Escaped!

slug-upsetSlugboy Saves the World jacket coverYou may not have heard of Slugboy, Scotland’s worst superhero. Thanks to an unfortunately tasty-looking radioactive slug, eleven-year-old Murdo Macleod now has two pretty unique superpowers: the first is sliding up walls. Quite slowly. The second is secreting slippery slime from his skin. (Yes, just as disgusting as it sounds.)

It’s a world where superhero competition is fierce, and Slugboy is so underrated he doesn’t even make the list when an evil mastermind devises a plan to capture all the other superheroes.

Now, Slugboy has to use his not-so-super and oh-so-gross abilities to free the other superheroes and save the world.

The Great Slug Hunt

Unfortunately, Slugboy has let his collection of pet slugs get away from him. They’re causing chaos on the Kelpies website, not to mention Facebook and Twitter! We need your help to round up the last of the slugs in an epic slughunt, and there are some signed copies of Slugboy Saves the World in it for randomly selected slughunters.

If you spot a slug on our website, Facebook page, or Twitter, simply send us a screenshot on Facebook or Twitter, using the hashtag #SlugHunt (and don’t forget to follow or like us!) to be entered into the draw.

Happy slug-hunting!

Slugboy Saves the World by Mark A. Smith won the Kelpies Prize 2015 and is available now!

PS If you fancy your chances with the Kelpies Prize, you may want to join our #AskAKidsEditor Twitter chat on Wednesday 16 November. Visit our blog post for all the details.