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


Kelpies Prize 2017 – Winner Announced!

After a record year of entries, it was more difficult than ever to choose the winner of the Kelpies Prize 2017. From dinosaurs to perhaps-witches to escaping shadows, our shorlist varied in subject matter but not in quality. After much deliberation, we’re pleased to announce that our winner is… (drumroll please) Emily Ilett!

Emily entranced the judges with her lyrical tale of sisterhood, The Girl Who Lost Her Shadow. Bookbug Picture Prize nominee Chae Strathie was on hand to present the prize. As well as a gigantic cheque for £2000, Emily has secured a coveted publishing deal with Floris Books.

We’d also like to congratulate shortlisters Debbie Canon (David and the Surprisingly Smart-o-saurus) and Kate Bolden (Lottie Larkin’s Magical Mishap). Both their entries had our audience chuckling at all the right places.

Catch up with all the Kelpies Prize 2017 fun with our Storify.

Our Kelpies Prize 2017 winner

Our shortlisters (L-R): Kate Bolden, Debbie Cannon and Emily Ilett

Originally from North Yorkshire, Emily currently works at Glasgow Women’s Library. Emily is no stranger to writing accolades – she was awarded the Mairi Hedderwick Writing for Children Bursary from Moniack Mhor in 2015 and was Children’s Writer in Residence at Wigtown Book Festival the same year.

When you’re sinking, you need something, or someone, to hold onto.

On the morning of Gail’s birthday, her shadow escapes under the kitchen door. Gail’s not surprised it’s decided to leave. Her dad has left for good and her sister Kay, who has always swum through life with her, is sinking into sadness. Gail is angry: angry that Kay doesn’t seem to care any more. Then Gail’s anger frightens her sister’s shadow away too. Determined to put things right, Gail chases after it. But where there are shadows, there’s darkness, and Gail discovers she’s not the only one looking for something lost…

Gail’s love for Kay will be tested to the extreme – can she retrieve her sister’s shadow, and her own?

A magical and lyrical tale, The Girl Who Lost Her Shadow is a story about bravery and the power of friendship, and being strong enough to ask for help when we really need it.

Want to enter next year’s prize?

Do you have a brilliant idea for a children’s novel set in Scotland? Entries are now open for the Kelpies Prize 2018! Visit the Floris Books website to read our full terms & conditions and find out how to submit your manuscript.