Congrats to the AWC presenters and alumni on the 2021 CBCA Notables list!

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The Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA) has released its list of Notable books for 2021 and we are quite chuffed to see the names of so many of our presenters and graduates. No fewer than 10 members of the AWC family have been recognised for their books – as well as a whole swag of authors we've had on the So you want to be a writer podcast as our Writers in Residence.

Among the AWC alumni recognised are Maggie Hutchings for her picture books I Saw Pete and Pete Saw Me and Your Birthday Was the Best! both published by Affirm Press; Liz Anelli for her picture books The Biscuit Maker and Dry to Dry: The Seasons of Kakadu, both published by Walker Books Australia; Penny Harrison for her early childhood book Me and My Boots, published by Hardie Grant Children's Publishing; Kate Gordon for her two books for younger readers, Aster's Good, Right Things published by Riveted Press and The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn, published by University of Queensland Press; and Sarah Epstein for her book for older readers Deep Water, published by Allen & Unwin.

And we can't forget our wonderful presenters who – in between teaching courses at the Australian Writers' Centre – somehow also manage to write award-winning books. Superstars! A.L. Tait, who is also co-host of the So you want to be a writer podcast, has been listed for her book The Fire Star, published by Penguin Random House Australia; Sue Whiting for The Book of Chance and Good Question: A Tale Told Backwards, both published by Walker Books Australia; Judith Rossell for Pink! published by HarperCollins Publishers; and Pamela Freeman for Dry to Dry: The Seasons of Kakadu. And a special shout out to editor and mentor extraordinaire Cathie Tasker, who helped Shirley Purdie with her book My Story, Ngaginybe Jarragbe published by Magabala Books, which has also made the Notables list.

The CBCA Awards have been running since 1946 with the aim of promoting books of high literary and artistic quality. According to the CBCA website, these awards are now the most influential and highly respected in children's publishing in Australia.

The full list of CBCA Notable Books for 2021 is:

Book of the Year: Older Readers

Rawah Arja, The F Team, Giramondo Publishing
Asphyxia, Future Girl, Allen & Unwin
Davina Bell, The End of the World is Bigger than Love, Text Publishing
Alex Dyson, When It Drops, Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing
Sarah Epstein, Deep Water, Allen & Unwin
Zana Fraillon, The Lost Soul Atlas, Hachette Australia
Jane Godwin, When Rain Turns to Snow, Hachette Australia
Barry Jonsberg, Catch Me If I Fall, Allen & Unwin
Kay Kerr, Please Don’t Hug Me, Text Publishing
Cath Moore, Metal Fish, Falling Snow, Text Publishing
Anna Morgan, Before the Beginning, Hachette Australia
Christie Nieman, Where We Begin, Pan Macmillan Australia
Garth Nix, The Left-Handed Booksellers of London, Allen & Unwin
Anna Whateley, Peta Lyre’s Rating Normal, Allen & Unwin
Georgina Young, Loner, Text Publishing

Book of the Year: Younger Readers

Danielle Binks, The Year the Maps Changed, Hachette Australia
Kate Constable, The January Stars, Allen & Unwin
Kate Gordon, Aster’s Good, Right Things, Riveted Press
Kate Gordon, The Heartsong of Wonder Quinn, University of Queensland Press
Steven Herrick, Zoe, Max and the Bicycle Bus, University of Queensland Press
Bren MacDibble, Across the Risen Sea, Allen & Unwin
Amelia Mellor, The Grandest Bookshop in the World, Affirm Press
Jessica Miller, The Republic of Birds, Text Publishing
Jaclyn Moriarty, ill. Kelly Canby, The Stolen Prince of Cloudburst, Allen & Unwin
Sally Murphy, ill. Sarah Davis, Worse Things, Walker Books Australia
Katrina Nannestad, We Are Wolves, HarperCollins Publishers
Julianne Negri, The Secret Library of Hummingbird House, Affirm Press
Allison Rushby, When This Bell Rings, Walker Books Australia
Pamela Rushby, The Mummy Smugglers of Crumblin Castle, Walker Books Australia
Kirli Saunders, ill. Dub Leffler, Bindi, Magabala Books
Claire Saxby, Haywire, Scholastic Australia
A.L. Tait, The Fire Star, Penguin Random House Australia
Dee White, Beyond Belief, Scholastic Australia
Sue Whiting, The Book of Chance, Walker Books Australia
Sean Williams, Her Perilous Mansion, Allen & Unwin

Book of the Year: Early Childhood

Deborah Abela, ill. Marjorie Crosby-Fairall, Bear in Space, Walker Books Australia
Sarah Allen, Busy Beaks, Affirm Press
Bronwyn Bancroft, Coming Home to Country, Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing
Ashleigh Barton, ill. Martina Heiduczek, What Do You Call Your Grandpa?, HarperCollins Publishers
John Canty, Shapes and Colours, Berbay Publishing
Libby Gleeson, ill. Jedda Robaard, Soon, Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing
Jane Godwin, ill. Sara Acton, I’ll Always Be Older Than You, Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing
Bernadette Green, ill. Anna Zobel, Who’s Your Real Mum?, Scribble Kids’ Books
Penny Harrison, ill. Evie Barrow, Me and My Boots, Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing
Libby Hathorn & Lisa HathornJarman, ill. Mel Pearce, No! Never!, Hachette Australia
Kate Knapp, Ruby Red Shoes: My Wonderful Grandmother, HarperCollins Publishers
Frané Lessac, Australia Under the Sea 1, 2, 3, Walker Books Australia
Anna McGregor, Anemone is not the Enemy, Scribble Kids’ Books
Heidi McKinnon, There’s No Such Thing, Allen & Unwin
Aunty Fay Muir & Sue Lawson, ill. Lisa Kennedy, Respect, Magabala Books
Briony Stewart, We Love You, Magoo, Penguin Random House Australia
Zeno Sworder, This Small Blue Dot, Thames & Hudson Australia
Kate & Jol Temple, ill. Ronojoy Ghosh, Bin Chicken, Scholastic Australia
Margaret Wild, ill. Judith Rossell, Pink!, HarperCollins Publishers
Rhiân Williams, ill. Nathaniel Eckstrom, Ten Little Figs, Walker Books Australia

Picture Book of the Year

Tamsin Ainslie, text Edwina Wyatt, Sometimes Cake, Walker Books Australia
Liz Anelli, text Sue Lawson, The Biscuit Maker, Walker Books Australia
Evie Barrow, text Maggie Hutchings, I Saw Pete and Pete Saw Me, Affirm Press
Freya Blackwood, The Unwilling Twin, HarperCollins Publishers
Nick Bland, Wolfred, Hardie Grant Children’s Publishing
Philip Bunting, Give Me Some Space, Scholastic Australia
Philip Bunting, Not Cute, Scholastic Australia
Philip Bunting, Who Am I?, Scholastic Australia
Philip Bunting, Wombat, Scholastic Australia
Kelly Canby, Littlelight, Fremantle Press
Gabriel Evans, Norton and the Bear, Berbay Publishing
Bob Graham, Ellie’s Dragon, Walker Books Australia
Armin Greder, Diamonds, Allen & Unwin
Alison Lester, text Jane Godwin, Sing Me the Summer, Affirm Press
Chris McKimmie, Colin Cockroach Goes to Caloundra, Ford Street Publishing
Christopher Nielsen, text Nicole Godwin, Jelly-Boy, Walker Books Australia
Matt Ottley, text Meg McKinlay, How to Make a Bird, Walker Books Australia
Felicita Sala, text Maggie Hutchings, Your Birthday Was the Best!, Affirm Press
Danny Snell, text Jackie French, The Fire Wombat, HarperCollins Publishers
Hannah Sommerville, text Mike Dumbleton, Anisa’s Alphabet, MidnightSun Publishing
Scott Stuart, My Shadow is Pink, Larrikin House
Jane Tanner, text Margaret Wild, Girl from the Sea, Allen & Unwin
Anna Walker, Hello Jimmy!, Penguin Random House Australia
Annie White, text Sue Whiting, Good Question: A Tale Told Backwards, Walker Books Australia
Anna Zobel, text Bernadette Green, Who’s Your Real Mum?, Scribble Kids’ Books

Eve Pownall Award

Sami Bayly, The Illustrated Encyclopaedia of Dangerous Animals, Hachette Australia
Maree Coote, Azaria: A True History, Melbournestyle Books
Jennifer Cossins, The Daddy Animal Book, Hachette Australia
Jennifer Cossins, The Mummy Animal Book, Hachette Australia
Pamela Freeman, ill. Liz Anelli, Dry to Dry: The Seasons of Kakadu, Walker Books Australia
David Hartley & Kirsty Murray, ill. Dub Leffler, Strangers on Country, National Library of Australia
Felice Jacka, ill. Rob Craw, There’s a Zoo in my Poo, Pan Macmillan Australia
Andrew Kelly, ill. Mark Jackson & Heather Potter, Little Lon, Wild Dog Books
Sandra Kendall, Saltie Mumma, Windy Hollow Books
Gina M Newton, ill. Rachel Tribout, Hold On! Saving the Spotted Handfish, CSIRO Publishing
Stephanie Owen Reeder, ill. Tania McCartney, Australia’s Wild Weird Wonderful Weather, National Library of Australia
Stephanie Owen Reeder, Will the Wonderkid: Treasure Hunter of the Australian Outback, National Library of Australia
Shirley Purdie, Shirley Purdie: My Story, Ngaginybe Jarragbe, Magabala Books
Claire Saxby, ill. Tannya Harricks, Kookaburra, Walker Books Australia
Carole Wilkinson, ill. Prue Pittock, Matthew Flinders – Adventures on Leaky Ships, Wild Dog Books

Congratulations to everyone who has made the Notables list. The shortlist will be released on 30 March 2021 with the winners and Honour Books announced on 20 August 2021.

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