Award Poetry Books

2018 Poetry Shortlist

So here it is...

the NSTBA 2018 Poetry shortlist.


Apes to Zebras: An A-Z of Shape Poems

Liz Brownlee, Sue Hardy-Dawson and Roger Stevens

Bloomsbury    ISBN: 978-1472929525

You can read the long list review here.


Firecrackers  Zaro Weil, illustrated by Jo Riddell

ZaZaKids in association with Troika      ISBN: 978-1909991781

You can read the long list review here.


The Same Inside: Poems about Empathy and Friendship

Liz Brownlee, Matt Goodfellow and Roger Stevens

Macmillan     ISBN: 978-1509854509

You can read the long list review here.


Chicken on the Roof    Matt Goodfellow

Otter-Barry Books    ISBN: 978-1910959909

You can read the long list review here.

Congratulations to all! The winners will be announced at the awards ceremony on the 10th November.


All 80 titles for the six categories of our long list have now been reviewed! Each and every one a fantastic book, highly recommended by JAB and the NSTAB team.

The short list will be announced on the 8th September. Votes from the panel are already coming in so here's a little reminder of the twelve fabulous books on the Poetry Category Long List.

Apes to Zebras ~ Liz Brownlee, Sue Hardy-Dawson & Roger Stevens (Bloomsbury)
Alphamals- Ruth Symons and Graham Carter (Big Picture Press)
Firecrackers    Zaro Weil and Jo Riddell (Troika)
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Tickling with Words-John Townsend (Book House)
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The Same Inside- Liz Brownlee, Roger Stevens & Matt Goodfellow (Macmillan)
Chicken on the Roof- Matt Goodfellow and Hannah Asen (Otter-Barry)
The World's Greatest Space Cadet- James Carter (Featherstone)
Blast off- Carole Bromley and Catherine Benson (Doorstop Books)
Little Lemur Laughing- Joshua Seigal (Bloomsbury)
Message from the Moon- Hilda Offen (Troika )
 Peace Lily- Hilary Robinson and Martin Impey (Strauss House)
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Rising Stars New Young Voices in Poetry Various (Otter-Barry)
Which four of these fabulous books will make up the NSTBA18 shortlist?

LONG LIST REVIEW: The World's Greatest Space Cadet


This collection is about so much more than space! There are poems in a range of forms and on a variety of topics- all ready to be enjoyed.

There are some wonderful examples of concrete poems in this book. 'Spider, Spider' is an ode to these industrious marvels. Told in rhyme, the poem celebrates the wonder of the spider, using exclamation marks for its legs. This would be a great model to use to inspire children to create their own verse about a mini-beast of their choosing- or any other creature! 'Aha!' is shaped like a light bulb and is a funny poem about having that break through idea- or not!

'School Library!' is a fabulous celebration of all the wonders held in a school library- the places it can take you, the genres you can enjoy. It is crying out to be performed and should be plastered over the door of every school library in the country!

Collective nouns- real and made up- are always fun to play around with and 'How Many Minibeasts?' offers the opportunity to do this. Some using alliteration, all using imagination, the poem is a fantastic starting point for children to investigate collective nouns- a loveliness of ladybirds, a cluster of spiders, a bushel of stick insects- before thinking about why James Carter picked the words he used and then creating their own.

The language chosen is rich and varied, offering challenge and requiring reflection. James Carter's use of a range of fonts adding a playful note to many of the poems. Ed Boxall's lively illustrations add interest and are varied.

A great collection for using in class and enjoying everywhere!

The World's Greatest Space Cadet   James Carter, illustrated by Ed Boxall

Bloomsbury      ISBN: 978-1472929464