First-time authors in running for youth literary awards

Children’s Book Council of Australia 2020 shortlist announced

The Children’s Book Council of Australia is a not-for-profit, volunteer-run organisation whose mission is to promote and advocate for the sharing of quality literature for young people across Australia. It showcases Australian creators and collaborates widely to foster a love of reading.

Barbie speaks with Professor Margot Hillel OAM about the awards

The 2020 CBCA Book of the Year received a record 517 entries. The shortlist is in six categories and includes acclaimed Australian children’s authors Margaret Wild, Emily Rodda, Stephen Michael King, Anna Walker, Aunty Joy Murphy and Vikki Wakefield as well as first-time authors Helena Fox, Astrid Scholte and Sami Bayly.

CBCA National Chair Professor Margot Hillel OAM said, ‘the shortlist paints a vibrant picture of Australia’s wildlife, history, people and Indigenous culture.’

The categories are:

  • Book of the Year for Older Readers
  • Younger Readers
  • Early Childhood
  • Picture Book
  • The Eva Pownall Award for factual books and
  • The New Illustrator award.

Three of the six books in the New Illustrator category are by Indigenous creators. Several books on this year’s shortlist explore confronting and challenging themes.

The winners of the 2020 CBCA Book of the Year Awards will be announced later this year and will coincide with Book Week , the theme of which is ‘Curious Creatures, Wild Minds’. The date of the announcement will not be known until the situation with COVID-19 is clearer.

You can find a full list of CBCA Book of the Year 2020 Shortlist books at :, and of course, they are all available from bookstores, even if you have to shop online for now.