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Storylines announces notable NZ children’s books for 2019

The Storylines Children’s Trust has announced its 2019 Notable Books list for children’s and young adult books published in the previous year.

Notable books in each category are:

Picture books

  • Mini Whinny: Happy Birthday to Me (Stacy Gregg, illus by Ruth Paul, Scholastic NZ)
  • Oink (David Elliot, Gecko)
  • Dig, Dump, Roll (Sally Sutton, illus by Brian Lovelock, Walker Books)
  • How Māui fished up the North Island (Donovan Bixley, Upstart Press)
  • I am Jellyfish (Ruth Paul, Puffin)
  • Granny McFlitter, the Champion Knitter (Heather Haylock, illus by Lael Chisholm, Puffin)
  • Puffin the Architect (Kimberly Andrews, Puffin)
  • Muddle & Mo’s Rainy Day (Nikki Slade Robinson, Starfish Bay)
  • The Anzac Violin (Jennifer Beck, illus by Robyn Belton, Scholastic NZ)
  • The Bomb (Sacha Cotter, illus by Josh Morgan, Huia)

Junior fiction

  • The Short but Brilliant Career of Lucas Weed (Chrissie Walker, Scholastic NZ)
  • Whetū Toa and the Magician (Steph Makutu, illus by Katharine Hall, Huia)
  • The Mapmakers’ Race (Eirlys Hunter, illus by Kirsten Slade, Gecko)
  • Rafferty Ferret: Ratbag (Sherryl Jordan, One Tree)
  • The Fire Stallion (Stacy Gregg, HarperCollins)
  • Cuz (Liz van der Laarse, One Tree)
  • My New Zealand Story: Dawn Raid (Pauline (Vaeluaga) Smith, Scholastic NZ)
  • Sticking with Pigs (Mary-anne Scott, One Tree)
  • Lyla: Through My Eyes – Natural Disaster Zones (Fleur Beale, A&U)
  • Kiwis at War – 1918: Broken Poppies (Des Hunt, Scholastic NZ)

YA fiction

  • Take Flight (J L Pawley, Eunoia)
  • Legacy (Whiti Hereaka, Huia)
  • Flight of the Fantail (Steph Matuku, Huia)
  • Ezaara: Riders of Fire, Book One (Eileen Mueller, Phantom Feather)
  • Dragon Hero: Riders of Fire, Book Two (Eileen Mueller, Phantom Feather)
  • Ash Arising (Mandy Hager, Penguin)
  • The Anger of Angels (Sherryl Jordan, Walker Books)
  • Catch Me When You Fall (Eileen Merriman, Penguin)
  • The Rift (Rachael Craw, Walker Books)


  • New Zealand’s Backyard Beasts (Ned Barraud, Potton & Burton)
  • Cook’s Cook: The Cook who Cooked for Captain Cook (Gavin Bishop, Gecko)
  • Go Girl: A Storybook of Epic NZ Women (Barbara Else, Puffin)
  • Oh Boy: A Storybook of Epic NZ Men (Stuart Lipshaw, Puffin)
  • Anzac Animals (Maria Gill, illus by Marco Ivančić, Scholastic NZ)
  • ART-TASTIC (Sarah Pepperle, Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū)
  • Why is that Lake so Blue? A Children’s Guide to New Zealand’s Natural World (Simon Pollard, Te Papa)
  • Mozart: The Man Behind the Music (Donovan Bixley, Upstart)
  • The New Zealand Wars (Philippa Werry, New Holland)
  • Pathway of the Birds (Andrew Crowe, David Bateman)

Te Reo Māori

  • Te Hīnga Ake a Māui i te Ika Whenua: Pūrakāu o Aotearoa Book 1 (Donovan Bixley, Darryn Joseph & Keri Opai, Upstart)
  • Ngā Whetū Matariki i Whānakotia (Miriama Kamo, Zak Waipara & Ngaere Roberts, Scholastic NZ).

Award certificates will be presented at the Storylines Margaret Mahy Medal Presentation and National Awards Day in Auckland on 31 March.

Storylines promotes the development of children’s and young adult literature in New Zealand and has operated as New Zealand’s national section of the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) since 2001. For more information about the organisation and the awards, see the Storylines website.



Category: Awards Junior Local news