IBW Book Award

This year, we're pleased to be celebrating the 10th Annual Independent Bookshop Week (IBW) Book Awards, again including three categories: Adult, Children’s and Picture Book, as well as our Best of the Best award to find the best books in both the Adult and Children's categories from the previous winners of the IBW Book Award since it launched. The shortlisted titles are listed below with the winners being announced the day before IBW, Friday 17th June. 

Best of the Best Award
The 'Best of the Best' winners will be announced at the end of the summer. The Adult category will be chosen by independent booksellers and their customers via instore voting cards that will list previous IBW Book Award-winning titles, including the 2016 winner. Voting will begin on the first day of IBW, with voters invited to choose their favourite book from the list. The Children's category's panel of judges will be chosen via a national competition with National Book Tokens' Caboodle, where children will be asked to write a review of their favourite book for the opportunity of being picked for  the children's judging panel. 

2016 Judges
For the Adult category, the judges are Emma Healey, author, Elizabeth is Missing (shortlisted in 2015); Claire Armitstead, The Guardian; Simon Heafield, Foyles; and Sue Lake, White Rose Bookshop. Children's and Picture Book categories will be judged by Nicolette Jones, The Times; Sally Nicholls, author and 2015 winner; Steven Pryse, Pickled Pepper Bookshop; and Carrie Morris, Booka Bookshop. BA Vice President Ros de la Hey (The Mainstreet Trading Company) will chair the judging meetings for all three categories and help determine the winners. 

The shortlisted titles for 2016 are:

           Adult Category Shortlist  Children's Shortlist

                                                                       Picture Book Shortlist


  • A Spool of Blue Thread - Anne Tyler (Vintage)       
  • A God in Ruins - Kate Atkinson   (Black Swan)       
  • The Shepherd's Life: A Tale of the Lake District - James Rebanks   (Penguin)       
  • The Green Road - Anne Enright    (Vintage)       
  • SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome    - Mary Beard (Profile Books)       
  • The Road to Little Dribbling - Bill Bryson (Black Swan)       
  • The Man Who Made Things Out of Trees - Robert Penn (Penguin)       
  • The Invention of Nature: The Adventures of Alexander von Humboldt, the Lost Hero of Science  - Andrea Wulf (John Murray)       
  • The Loney - Andrew Michael Hurley (John Murray)       
  • A Place Called Winter  - Patrick Gale  (Tinder Press)     



  • Goth Girl and the Wuthering Fright - Chris Riddell  (Macmillan Children's Books)       
  • How to Fight a Dragon's Fury    -Cressida Cowell  (Hodder Children’s Books)       
  • The Rest of Us Just Live Here  -Patrick Ness  (Walker Books)       
  • The Astounding Broccoli Boy   - Frank Cottrell Boyce (Macmillan Children’s Books)       
  • Pugs of the Frozen North - Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre  (Oxford University Press)       
  • My Brother is a Superhero  - David Solomons (Nosy Crow)       
  • The Boy Who Sailed the Ocean in an Armchair - Lara Williamson   (Usborne Publishing)       
  • Kensuke's Kingdom - Michael Morpurgo (Egmont)       
  • Whistling in the Dark - Shirley Hughes  (Walker Books)       
  • One - Sarah Crossan (Bloomsbury) 
  • The Person Controller - David Baddiel (HarperCollins)        
  • Time Travelling with a Hamster - Ross Welford (HarperCollins)     


  • What the Ladybird Heard Next  -Julia Donaldson & Lydia Monks   (Macmillan Children's Books)       
  • GRRRRR! - Rob Biddulph    (HarperCollins)        
  • Mog and Barnaby - Judith Kerr   (HarperCollins)        
  • Tree - Patricia Hegarty and Britta Teckentrup (Little Tiger Kids)      
  • Stanley the Amazing Knitting Cat  - Emily MacKenzie (Bloomsbury Children's Books)       
  • The Bear Who Went Boo - David Walliams & Tony Ross (HarperCollins)        
  • The Mouse who Reached the Sky - Petr Horacek  (Walker Books)  
  • Vikings in the Supermarket  - Nick Sharratt (David Fickling Books)       
  • Warning! This Book May Contain Rabbits - Tim Warnes (Little Tiger Press)       
  • I'm a Girl  - Yasmeen Ismail   (Bloomsbury Children's Books)       
  • The Bear and the Piano - David Litchfield  (Frances Lincoln) Children's Books       
  • Grandad's Island - Benji Davies    (Simon & Schuster)      


Commenting on his shortlisted nomination in the Adult Category, Patrick Gale said:We are so lucky, in the UK, to have such a thriving network of independent bookshops.  Anyone who lives, as I do, far from a big city, can testify to their power to energise a neglected high street and act as much loved community hubs.   Enthusiastic hand-selling, reflective of a bookseller's informed tastes, trumps online algorithms every time!”

On receiving her shortlist nomination in the Picture Book Category, Julia Donaldson said: “I am a big fan of independent bookshops. I like the way they each have their own character, with buildings ranging from cottage-y to cavernous, with window displays by local artists or creative staff members, and with stock reflecting the tastes and passions of their owners and customers.  But one thing they almost all have in common is the knowledge, dedication and enterprise of their staff.”

On receiving his IBW Award shortlist nomination in the Children’s Category, Chris Riddell said:

Chris Riddell

The IBW Book Award 2015 winners were - Adult category: The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters (Virago); Children’s Fiction category: An Island of our Own by Sally Nicholls (Scholastic), and Children’s Picture Book category: A Walk In Paris, Salvatore Rubbino (Walker Books).