Welsh books of the year 2023

Where the River Takes Us.jpg

We look back at our favourite Welsh books of the year 2023.

  • The Sleeping Stones

    Author: Beatrice Wallbank
    Publisher: Firefly Press
    Interest age: 9-11
    Reading age: 8+

    Why are Gruff and Mat being irresistibly drawn towards the dangerous waters around their Welsh island? Can they right an ancient wrong? A gripping story of legend and magic, set in a close-knit community in Wales.

  • Where the River Takes Us

    Author: Lesley Parr
    Publisher: Bloomsbury
    Interest age: 9-11
    Reading age: 8+

    Can Jason and his friends find the big cat roaming the Valleys and win the reward for a photo of it? A fantastic story of friendship, adventure and sibling bonds, in 1974 Wales.

  • Wren

    Author: Lucy Hope
    Publisher: Nosy Crow
    Interest age: 9-11
    Reading age: 8+

    Wren feels trapped, but she’s not the only one to be inextricably linked to her home – an ancient Welsh castle. Exploring mythical creatures, grief and what it means to be free, this historical novel is also packed with drama and soaring action.   

  • Vivi Conway and the Sword of Legend

    Author: Lizzie Huxley-Jones
    Publisher: Knights Of
    Interest age: 9-11
    Reading age: 9+

    Vivi must use her newfound powers to stop a ruthless tyrant from destroying the human world. This enthralling magical adventure seamlessly blends ancient Welsh mythology with a diverse cast of characters in a contemporary setting.

  • The Curio Collectors

    Author: Eloise Williams Illustrator: Anna Shepeta
    Publisher: Barrington Stoke
    Interest age: 6-8
    Reading age: 7+

    Can Lily and Tom help their new friend find the special treasure her mother left for her? An engaging historical mystery, set in a dyslexia-friendly way.

  • The Magician’s Daughter

    Author: Caryl Lewis Illustrator: George Ermos
    Publisher: Macmillan Children’s Books
    Interest age: 9-11
    Reading age: 8+

    Abby finds a book that will allow her and her magician dad to perform real magic! A miraculous story about the magic of community, family and friendship from an award-winning Welsh author.

  • I, Spy: A Bletchley Park Mystery

    Author: Rhian Tracey Illustrator: David Dean
    Publisher: Piccadilly Press
    Interest age: 9-11
    Reading age: 9+

    When war is declared in 1939, Bletchley Park becomes a hive of covert activity and Robyn is tasked with looking after the homing pigeons. Suspecting there is a spy in their midst, she is determined to uncover the truth in this thrilling mystery adventure.

  • How are you feeling, Little Mouse?

    Author: Illustrator: Leonie Servini
    Publisher: Rily Publications
    Interest age: 2-3

    Join Little Mouse in a conversation about emotions. Simple, repetitive text and friendly pastel illustrations give toddlers a prompt to recognise and to talk about their feelings.

  • Ble Wyt Ti, Bwci Bo?/ Where are you, Bwci Bo?

    Author: Joanna Davies Illustrator: Steven Goldstone
    Publisher: Atebol
    Interest age: 4-5

    Where in the world are all the monsters? Join them in the ocean, the woods, and even in space! Rhyming fun in two languages, packing in plenty to pore over with toddlers.

  • Illustrated Welsh Folk Tales for Young and Old

    Author: Peter Stevenson
    Publisher: The History Press
    Interest age: 9-11
    Reading age: 9+

    Lavishly illustrated in glorious colour, the stories in this stunning collection range from updates of ancient, traditional tales to charming snippets of entertaining nonsense but both text and pictures share a quirky edge and slightly anarchic humour with knowing winks and witty asides to the reader.