Scottish Book Trust has today revealed the winner of the 2020 Bookbug Picture Book Prize is The Station Mouse by Meg McLaren (Anderson Press). Over 13,000 children across Scotland cast their votes for the award online.
The award is run by Scottish Book Trust, the national charity changing lives through reading and writing, with support from Browns Books for Students. The Bookbug Picture Book Prize celebrates the most popular new picture books by Scottish authors or illustrators. The runnersup were The Prince and the Witch and the Thief and the Bears by Alastair Chisholm, illustrated by Jez Tuya (Walker Books) and Sophie Johnson: Unicorn Expert by Morag Hood, illustrated by Ella Okstad (Simon & Schuster).
Printmaker and illustrator Meg McLaren graduated from the prestigious MA in Children's Book Illustration at the Cambridge School of Art. She now lives in Inverness and The Station Mouse is her third picture book.
A free copy of each of the three books on the shortlist was gifted to every Primary 1 child during Book Week Scotland (18 to 24 November 2019), in the Bookbug P1 Family Bag. The winner was chosen by children across Scotland, aged between three years and seven years old, who voted for their favourite book by submitting a class vote online or at home, via the Scottish Book Trust website.
Meg McLaren said:
"I am absolutely thrilled that The Station Mouse has won the Bookbug Picture Book Prize 2020. It’s truly amazing that Scottish Book Trust give books to so many children and I was really excited to be included in the Bookbug Primary 1 Family Bag year. To win is an utter surprise, and it’s all the more special because I know it was the readers themselves who voted.”
The winning book was announced in an exclusive video to schools and registered groups today (29 January 2020). Shortlisted authors and illustrators will receive £500 per book, and the winner will receive £3,000.
Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said:
“Many congratulations to Meg McLaren for winning this year’s Bookbug Picture Book Prize. What makes this prize special is that families and schools read the shortlist and take part in the vote, thanks to the Bookbug Family Bag that is gifted to every primary 1 child in Scotland. All the authors and illustrators included on the shortlist reflect some of the finest talent in the industry.”
Claire Smith, Sales Manager for Browns Books for Students, said:
“Congratulations to Meg McLaren whose picture book has been enjoyed, read and reviewed by those at the heart of Scottish communities. Browns Books for Students are proud of our ongoing partnership with Scottish Book Trust, supporting them with their outstanding work, in the development of reading and literacy in Scotland.”
Mairi Kidd, Head of Literature, Languages & Publishing at Creative Scotland, said:
“We are lucky in Scotland in that so many artists at the very top of their game lend their talents to picture books and stories for the very young. This is a demanding dual audience of the youngest children and their carers, and of course the real prize is the chance to set a new generation of readers on a lifelong journey of story. All of the shortlisted artists are winners in this sense, but special congratulations go to Meg, who was soundly endorsed by so many young Bookbug recipients.”
Notes to editors
The Bookbug Picture Book Prize
The Bookbug Picture Book Prize is managed by Scottish Book Trust in partnership with Creative Scotland and Browns Books for Students. Teachers, librarians and book group leaders sign up their groups, then the children read and vote for their favourite books. Children can also vote online at home via the Scottish Book Trust website. Books published during April 2018 - March 2019 were eligible for entry to the award. The Bookbug Picture Book Prize is open to authors and illustrators based in Scotland.
The Bookbug P1 Bag
The P1 Bag was produced by Scottish Book Trust in conjunction with Education Scotland and the Scottish Government as part of Read, Write, Count. You’ll find more ideas for fun activities and games that you can slip into your daily routine at parentclub.scot.
Scottish Book Trust
Scottish Book Trust is a national charity changing lives through reading and writing. We inspire and support the people of Scotland to read and write for pleasure through programmes and outreach work that includes:
- Gifting books to every child in Scotland to ensure families of all backgrounds can share the joy of books at home.
- Working with teachers to inspire children to develop a love of reading, creating innovative classroom activities, book awards and author events.
- Supporting Scotland’s diverse writing community with our training, awards and writing opportunities.
- Funding a range of author events for the public to enjoy and promoting Scottish writing to people worldwide.
In addition to the funding we receive from the Scottish Government and Creative Scotland, we need the constant support of trusts and foundations, corporate sponsors and individual donors.
Browns Books for Students
Browns Books for Students, sponsor of the Bookbug Picture Book Prize, supplies books, eBooks and DVDs for schools, colleges and businesses.
In addition to general fundraising, Scottish Book Trust receives Creative Scotland support through Regular Funding. Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery.