The UK’s Klaus Flugge Prize’s Shortlist Features Six Debut Illustrators

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Designed to highlight the work of debut illustrators, the Klaus Flugge Prize pays £5,000 to the winner, from a six-title shortlist.

An example of Padmacandra’s illustrations from ‘The Tale of the Whale, shortlisted for the Klaus Flugge Prize. Image: Klaus Flugge Prize

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

Winner To Be Announced September 14
The Klaus Flugge Prize is not an old one, in case you’ve missed it. It was established in 2016 in honor of Klaus Flugge, the Hamburg-born founder of England’s Andersen Press, its own name a reference, of course, to Hans Christian Andersen.

The award goes to an emerging illustrator of children’s books.

The Flugge Prize is one of many that take the word longlist seriously. Its longlist this year comprised 24 picture books featuring the work of debut illustrators. Its shortlist, however, highlights a manageable six titles, and a keen emphasis on independent presses in the process.

The winner of this prize receives £5,000 (US$6,065) and helps bring needed attention to the work of illustrators—like translators, far too often overlooked for their critical importance to publishing. After all, when a parent walks the aisles of a bookstore, it’s not a book’s story that grabs them. It may not even be the title. It’s the artwork. And this is one of the reasons that illustrator Sarah McIntyre’s #PicturesMeanBusiness campaign is an important one.

The 2022 Klaus Flugge Prize Shortlist

An example of Flora Delargy’s illustrations for ‘Rescuing Titanic,’ one of the Klaus Flugge shortlisted titles. Image: Klaus Flugge Prize

  • Mammoth, illustrator Adam Beer, written by Anna Kemp, editor Helen Mackenzie Smith, art director Jane Buckley (Simon and Schuster)
  • Rescuing Titanic, illustrator Flora Delargy, editor Lucy Brownridge, art director Karissa Santos (Wide Eyed Editions)
  • Pierre’s New Hair, illustrator Joseph Hollis, editor Emilia Will, designer Jade Wheaton (Tate)
  • The Tale of the Whale, illustrator Padmacandra, written by Karen Swann, editor Janice Thomson, designer Ness Wood (Scallywag Press)
  • Choices, illustrator Roozeboos, designer Sarah Dellow (Child’s Play)
  • Alley Cat Rally, illustrator Ricky Trickartt, editor Emily Ball, designer Ivanna Khomyak (Flying Eye Books)

The jurors for this year’s prize are illustrator Emily Gravett; 2021 Klaus Flugge Prize winner Flavia Z Drago, the co-founding Beyond Books Lead at Civic Square in Birmingham, Nikki Bi; and Martin Salisbury, professor of illustration at Cambridge School of Art in Anglia Ruskin University. The jury is chaired by Julia Eccleshare, director of the Hay Children’s Festival.

In a prepared statement, Eccleshare says, “Our judges have selected a shortlist full of humor, drama, beauty, and big ideas.

“We can see in these six books values that are intrinsic to so many of the picture books published by Klaus Flugge: empathy, diversity, a child-centeredness, and a generosity of spirit. The illustrators’ ability as artists and storytellers is very exciting.”

In the still ongoing coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, Eccleshare says, “Picture books are booming.”

An example of the work of illustrator Roozeboos in the Klaus Flugge-shortlisted ‘Choices.’ Image: Klaus Flugge Prize

This is Publishing Perspectives’ 138th awards-related report in the 144 publication days since our 2022 operations began on January 3.

We urge publishing professionals to spend 10 minutes responding to the current survey of book awards’ dynamics and values. The survey can be accessed here, and it’s open through August 15. More on this is here.


More from Publishing Perspectives on book and publishing awards is here, more on children’s books is here, and more on illustration and illustrators is here.

More from us on the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on international book publishing is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson is a non-resident fellow of Trends Research & Advisory, and he has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with CNN.com, CNN International, and CNN USA. As an arts critic (National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.

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