The Kelpies Prize 2018: Shortlist Announced!

Our Kelpies Prize 2018 Shortlist

Thank you to all the authors who submitted their titles for consideration for the Kelpies Prize 2018! After a difficult (but still enjoyable!) judging process, we are thrilled to announce that this year’s shortlisted books are:

Haunted Tide by Celia Bryce

Darkly atmospheric with a supernatural twist, Haunted Tide is a gripping and intensely readable tale set in the remote Scottish islands.

The Lost Wizard of Nine Witches Wood by Hannah Foley

Grab your enchanted bicycle and hold on tight! Wildly inventive and packed with fantastical thrills, The Lost Wizard of Nine Witches Wood is a warm and quirky whirlwind of an adventure, full of magical heart.

Over the Sea to Skye by Robin Scott-Elliot

A thrilling twist on one of the most dramatic moments in Scotland’s history, Over the Sea to Skye is a historical adventure full of danger and intrigue, set against the backdrops of both the Jacobite Rebellion and the Cold War.

The winner of the Kelpies Prize 2018 will be announced on 24th August at the Edinburgh International Book Festival. To find out more about about the books and authors you can read our shortlist information sheet.

Kelpies Prize 2019 – Watch This Space

Do you have a brilliant idea for a children’s book set in Scotland? We will launch the Kelpies Prize 2019 soon, with some exciting changes! Watch this space for more information.

Kelpies Prize – Previous Winners

Hearty congratulations to Emily Illett, who won the Kelpies Prize 2017 with her beautiful, lyrical tale of sisterhood, The Girl Who Lost Her Shadow. Find out more about our recent winners below, or see our full list of previous winners and shortlisters.

Ruby McCraken: Tragic Without Magic

2016 winner
Ruby McCracken: Tragic Without Magic
by Elizabeth Ezra

Slugboy Saves the World

2015 winner
Slugboy Saves the World
by Mark A. Smith

The Mixed-Up Summer of Lily McLean

2014 winner
The Mixed-Up Summer of Lily McLean
by Lindsay Littleson


The Kelpies Prize

Earlier this year, Floris Books celebrated a decade of awarding its Kelpies Prize for unpublished Scottish children’s fiction. And what a decade it has been!

DonFirstAidForFairiesNEFloris took over the Kelpies imprint of Scottish children’s novels from fellow Scottish publisher Canongate in 2002. In the last 10 years we’ve published more than 35 books (roughly a third of all the Kelpies books in print) by authors discovered through the Kelpies Prize.

It’s not just the prizewinners who’ve gone on to be published. On many occasions we’ve published Kelpies Prize runners-up too. In the 10 years of the prize we’ve published 14 new authors, including a bumper year in 2011 when we published all three of the shortlisted authors.

NicholsonThistleStreetWithout these authors, our wonderful range of Scottish picture books, the Picture Kelpies, would be missing some great titles – like Thistle Street by Mike Nicholson, winner of the first Kelpies Prize in 2005. And our young teen range, KelpiesTeen, might never have been conceived without Roy Gill (shortlisted for the 2011 Prize). Originally, the prize asked for children’s fiction for 8 to 12 year olds, but our authors are a talented and versatile lot and the Kelpies imprint is growing. We now have books aimed at five age ranges from tots to teens, and for 2015 Prize we opened submissions for three different categories: 6 to 8, 8 to 11 and 11 to 14 years.


We like to think that our judges have an eye for talent and the fact that many of our Kelpies Prize authors have gone on to be recognised by other awards, seems to confirm that. Kelpies Prize authors are the proud owners of several Scottish Children’s Book Awards (Scotland’s most prestigious children’s book prize) and have also been shortlisted for, and won, the Heart of Hawick Award, Salford Book Award, Hillingdon Primary Book of the Year Award and many more besides.

So after another successful Kelpies Prize and a record number of entries, we remain hopeful for the future of our Prize and so many others like it. Hopeful and eternally grateful for the authors who take the time to submit to us, to Creative Scotland who supports it and to the legacy that it has allowed us to create.

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Who will win the Kelpies Prize 2014?

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Yes, lovely readers, it’s that time of year again!

Every year at Floris, we look far and wide for the next book to join our brilliant collection of Kelpies Prize winners. If it’s Scottish and a cracking story, we want to read it. We’ve had loads of entries this year, and our judges have been busy picking three of the best for you.

If you’re a fan of a superhero adventure, look no further than The Superpower Project by Paul J. Bristow. When Megan’s gran dies (she exploded while waterskiing, but that’s not important), she leaves behind a mysterious map of Greenock. Megan and her best pal Cam think the map might help them work out what IS important. Like the superpowers they’ve suddenly developed…

And there are more mysterious goings on in Lindsay Littleson’s The Mixed-Up Summer of Lily McLean. Stuck in the middle of her big sister’s teenage tantrums and her younger brothers fighting over the TV remote, Lily’s baby sister Summer is the only one that seems to like spending time with her. She can’t wait to head off on holiday to Millport with Gran, just the two of them. But Lily keeps hearing a strange voice telling her not to go, telling her that safe, small, Millport is dangerous…

There’s something odd about Kamryn’s new foster brother, Ross. As if mum’s new boyfriend wasn’t enough to deal with she now has a fake brother who “does crazy things.” And then there’s the weird texts Kamryn’s been getting. They’re crazy too. Could everything be part of a bigger, crazier secret? Find out in Joan Pratt’s My Fake Brother.

Thrilling stuff, we’re sure you’ll agree! So which book do you think should win? Send us a quick email (or find us on Facebook) and let us know what you think.

Hurry though, because you’ve not got long – the secret will be out on Thursday 14th August 2014.

Posted by: Kirsten at Discover Kelpies