This year’s shortlist is, incredibly, our 19th.  As always, it offers something for everyone  but this year all of our shortlisted books have a strong Northern connection.  

With war and witchcraft, comedy and covid, love and legends,  stories set at home and abroad, in the past and in the present... all of our shortlisted books are guaranteed to keep y7/8 readers turning the pages and with lots to talk about.

This year more than ever, our shortlisted books are packed full of important issues and ideas and they will definitely get you thinking -  prejudice, protest, war, not judging by appearances, courage, death, environmental impact, positive activism and much, much more...

What's more, our shortlisted titles show the importance of being kind: to ourselves, to each other, to our community and to the world we live in.

Which one are you going to start with?  Click on the covers below to find out more about each book and its author.

Don’t forget to email us your bookish thoughts and opinions on each of the titles then check out our other great reading suggestions on each of the shortlist pages until the winner is announced in June.

Seven Million Sunflowers
Malcolm Duffy

The Wall Between Us
Dan Smith

The Rewilding of Molly McFlynn
Sue Reed

Northern Soul
Phil Earle