News: The Little Rebels Award Shortlist 2020

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The Little Rebels Award was established to bring to the spotlight children's fiction books that challenge stereotypes, promote social justice and advocate for a more peaceful and fairer world.

Now in its 8th year, the award is run by booksellers Housmans Bookshop and Letterbox Library and is awarded by the Alliance of Radical Booksellers (ARB). The judging panel includes authors, teachers, booksellers and children's book experts.

The books on the 2020 shortlist include themes of boundless kindness, domestic violence, excess consumerism, sustainability, untold histories and a Brexit fable. Fen Coles, Co-Director of Letterbox Library, said of the shortlist: “The current pandemic has sharpened so many social justice issues- poverty, domestic violence, the destruction of our environment- but also shone a light on our capacity for great kindness. The latest Little Rebels Award shortlist similarly exposes the fissures in our society alongside an overall optimism and a belief in change. Never has this roll call of social justice books been more useful in giving children tools to make sense of the world and to know that they can be the agents of change.”

The shortlist for this year's award is as follows:

Sofia Valdez, Future Prez by Andrea Beaty, illustrated by David Roberts (Abrams & Chronicle)

Available here

Sneaky Beak by Tracey Corderoy, illustrated by Tony Neal (Little Tiger)

Available here

The Boy Who Loved Everyone by Jane Porter, illustrated by Maisie Paradise Shearring (Walker) Available here

King Leonard's Teddy by Phoebe Swan (Child's Play)

Available here

Now or Never - A Dunkirk Story by Bali Rai (Scholastic)

Available here

The Closest Thing to Flying by Gill Lewis (OUP)

Available here

The Little Island by Smriti Prasadam-Halls, illustrated by Robert Starling (Andersen Press)

Available here

The 2020 winner will be revealed in September and will receive a cheque for £2,000. For more information about the award, visit

You can order all of the Little Rebels 2020 shortlisted titles as a book pack from Letterbox Library, or individually from Housmans Bookshop.

Where next? > Visit our Reading for Pleasure Hub

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