Book Trailer Competition 2016: Winners and Highly Commended

We asked students from across Scotland to create book trailers that captured the characters, setting and atmosphere of the books shortlisted for the 2016 Scottish Children's Book Awards, and we were amazed by what we received!

Choosing a winner was tough, but the unusual approach and technical mastry exhibited by the team of Emma Drury, Holly McIntosh, Isla Semple, Sonia Marshall and Fiona Johnston from The Mary Erskine school in their trailer for The Nowhere Emporium clinched them the top prize. See the winning trailers and four others commended for their excellence in at least one key aspect of book trailer creation below.


Winner – trailer for The Nowhere Emporium, by Emma Drury, Holly McIntosh, Isla Semple, Sonia Marshall and Fiona Johnston (The Mary Erskine School)



A fantastic trailer which takes the bold approach of focusing almost entirely on the setting of the novel as its main selling point, rather than focusing on characters or conflict. This trailer is an exemplary case of ‘showing, not telling’, where hardly any expository text is used and the group have relied entirely on clever shots to convey the wonder and mystery of the Emporium. As well as this, the trailer is superbly paced, with the visuals choreographed perfectly to correspond with rises and falls in the dynamics of the music. A thoroughly deserving winner!


Highly commended for cinematography, writing and acting – trailer for Never Tickle a Tiger by Sofia Taylor, Jillie-Ann Geerdink, Nina Balland, Maya Burnett, Enzo Corrigan, Hester Steuart Fothringham, Jago Bakshy, Karmen Gibson, Megan Crawford, Charlie Davies, Hazel Martin (Grandtully Primary School)



We loved the mise-en-scene in this trailer: Izzy is clearly set apart as the rogue of the bunch through the way shots are composed and organised! It’s also extremely well written and structured, with the viewer left wondering what’s about to happen after Izzy goes through with her tiger-tickling scheme. The tone of the trailer is spot on for the book, and we especially loved the lead actor, who definitely has some kind of future in the performing arts!


Highly commended for writing – trailer for Trouble on Cable Street by Laura Beveridge, Fiona Brown, Meg Saunders and Emily Seymour- Jackson (The Mary Erskine School)






We were particularly struck at how this trailer combined stock footage and original footage seamlessly. The voiceover from Isabella over the footage of protests and Fascist demonstrations helps to draw a strong link between the wider context of the novel and the personal lives of Isabella and her family.



Highly commended for cinematography and sound – trailer for The Piper by Tom Jenkins, Jack Wiseman and Harry Allen (Elgin Academy)






This trailer is supremely eerie and tense, superbly capturing the atmosphere of Danny Weston’s terrifying novel. The juxtaposition of childish music with the menacing setting and premise of the book made for a chilling viewing experience, and the pupils have shown the virtue of a ‘less is more’ approach, choosing their expository text very carefully and using rhetorical questions to draw in the viewer.


Highly commended for cinematography, sound and writing – trailer for The Piper by Georgia Williamson, Aileas MacDonald and Holly Pearson (The Mary Erskine School)



Another intensely spooky trailer for The Piper. This is another bold approach, revealing hardly anything about the plot of the novel and choosing to focus on just one pivotal scene. We loved the way that the sense of menace and foreboding is done in a very subtle way with just Daisy’s sudden awakening and the candles blowing out to give us a sense that something awful is about to happen.