Wildlife hits a winning streak as Invented by Animals and The Last Bear take top prizes at 2022 Blue Peter Book Awards

Published on: 04 March 2022

BookTrust is excited to announce the winners of the 2022 Blue Peter Book Awards, as voted for by primary school aged-children from across the UK: The Last Bear and Invented by Animals.

Every year, the Blue Peter Book Awards recognise and celebrate the best authors, most creative illustrators and the greatest reads for children. Taking the top spot for Best Book with Facts in 2022 is Invented by Animals by Christiane Dorian and Gosia Herba, and honoured as the winner of Best Story is The Last Bear by Hannah Gold and Levi Pinfold.

More about the Blue Peter Book Awards 2022

The Last Bear: an exciting adventure that explores the climate emergency

The Last Bear is a moving tale that children will fall in love with. Mixing the adventure of life in the Arctic Circle with danger, excitement, a touching exploration of April's relationship with her father, and a thought-provoking exploration of the climate emergency, Hannah Gold's story is a reminder of the difference that one person can make. Even though it's set in the frozen climes of the Arctic Circle, it is full of warmth.

The Last Bear author, Hannah Gold, said:

'When I found out I had won, I burst into tears and couldn't speak. Like many children, I grew up on a diet of Blue Peter, following the show’s adventures and falling in love with all the pets. This feels particularly apt, because whilst The Last Bear touches upon serious themes, at its core, it is a story about the love between a child and an animal.
'Some of my earliest memories are visits to the library with my mum and then scampering back home to lose myself in the pages of a book. Books aren't just about escape. For children, stories play an increasingly important role in teaching empathy, kindness and tolerance. They help shape identity, a sense of belonging and often lend courage.'

Levi Pinfold, who illustrated the book, said:

'Who’d have thought reading too many comics as a kid would lead to a Blue Peter Book Award?! It's amazing to be a part of Hannah's wonderful book. To me, good stories are the ultimate enjoyment. It doesn’t matter what kind of person you are; you can guarantee someone has written a story which will grab you and not let go. It’s a thrill to celebrate something that can give so much pleasure. And to those of you who might be sitting on the fence about picking up a book: take a chance, try something that looks good, it can change your life! It did mine.'

Invented by Animals: fun non-fiction about the animals behind our technology

Invented by Animals is a fun and informative non-fiction book that explores how animal anatomy, behaviour and skills have influenced the development of a range of human inventions. Packed full of interesting information, it not only highlights the remarkable capabilities of many creatures, but also shows how these qualities have been incorporated into the design of various objects and technologies.

On the win, Invented by Animals author, Christiane Dorian said:

'I am thrilled to win the Blue Peter Book Award amongst so many fantastic books. The fact that it is judged by children makes it even more special, as they are the best critics. I would say to children, read about what you enjoy. Whether it’s stepping into an imaginary world of wizards or learning all about amazing creatures or tropical jungles, books help us to understand the world around us and stimulate our curiosity and imagination. They can be funny, informative and inspiring. If you find books daunting, you don’t have to read it from beginning to end in one go. You can dip in and out, look at the pictures and go for the bits of text you find most interesting.'

Illustrator Gosia Herba, added:

'I love creating books for children, so it's my greatest joy to be appreciated by the readers. As a child, I spent most of my time reading or drawing, two things, each connected with books, which helped me discover my true passion: illustrating and making books for kids. We can do incredible things using nothing but our imagination and reading can be a great adventure. Don't be discouraged if you don't like a particular book. Look for another one that will interest and amaze you with the story. There are so many books in the world that everyone will find something interesting.'

Two winners picked by hundreds of schoolchildren

Managed by BookTrust, the UK’s largest children’s reading charity, the immensely popular Blue Peter Book Awards celebrate the best books for primary school-aged children, published in the last 12 months. The winning titles in 2022 were voted for by over 300 children from 12 schools across the UK.

Diana Gerald, CEO of BookTrust commented:

'In an ever-changing and stressful world, more than ever we need brilliant and informative books that can grab the attention of every child, no matter what their interests, and inspire even the most reluctant of readers to pick up a book. At an age when children are starting to grow and develop their interests, the 2022 Blue Peter Book Award winners have offered children knowledge, escapism, new role models and nurtured their curiosity. But most of all they have inspired a new generation of children on their journey to becoming readers.'

On Friday 4 March, watch the winners announced live during a special edition of Blue Peter on CBBC and BBC iPlayer from 5pm.

Get more information on the Blue Peter Book Awards

Download the press release for further details (.docx, 963KB)