Outstanding books for young people with disabilities

Three UK titles selected for 2023 IBBY Collection of Books for Young People with Disabilities

The following books have been selected for inclusion in the 2023 IBBY Selection of Outstanding Books for Young People with Disabilities:

Catchpole, James (text) and George, Karen (ill.)
What Happened to You?
London, UK: Faber, 2021 [32pp.]
ISBN 978-0571358304

Jones, Rosie (text) and Smillie, Natalie (ill.)
The Amazing Edie Eckhart
London, UK: Hodder, 2021 [240pp.]
ISBN 9781444958348

Macon, Summer (text and ill.)
Up and Down Mum
Swindon, UK: Child’s Play, 2019 [36pp.]
ISBN 9781786283399

The 2023 Outstanding List was presented at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair on March 7, 2023. The list of titles is shared on the Toronto Public Library website (https://www.torontopubliclibrary.ca/ibby/) and through the IBBY website (www.ibby.org).  

The IBBY UK’s nominations this year were selected by a working party whose members were Dr Rebecca Butler, Carol Thompson and Ros Bird.

Working Party Comments
In 2021, the selection process was greatly affected by Covid19. Some of the 79 IBBY sections had no postal service, no access to translators and libraries were closed. In the UK we had a lower response to our request for submissions and we may have missed great examples from UK publishers with everyone working at distance. But we agree that our chosen nominated titles are outstanding and reflect a variety of disabilities. At a time when children need these books the most, it’s more urgent than ever to get them out into the world and into the hands of children.

These are the 2023 nominations from IBBY UK:

Raymond Antrobus, Can Bears Ski? illustrated by Polly Dunbar. Walker Books, 2020
Rose Robbins, Loud! Scallywag Press, 2021
James Catchpole, What Happened to You? illustrated by Karen George. Faber 2021
Summer Macon, Up and Down Mum, Child’s Play, 2019

Joyce Dunbar, The Boy in the Jam Jar, illustrated by John Shelley. Bloomsbury, 2020
Katherine Woodfine, Elizabeth and the Box of Colours, illustrated by Rebecca Cobb. Barrington Stoke, 2022

Cath Howe, It’s Not My Fault, Nosy Crow, 2019
Rose Hones, The Amazing Edie Eckhart, illustrated by Natalie Smillie. Hodder, 2021
Gil Lewis, Swan Song, Barrington Stoke, 2021
Helen Rutter, The Boy Who Made Everyone Laugh, Scholastic, 2021
Lisa Thompson, The Goldfish Boy, Scholastic, 2017
Anna Woltz, Talking to Alaska, translated by Laura Watkinson. Rock the Boat, 2021


IBBY Stickers. The IBBY Secretariat has produced stickers that can be used by publishers to put on the covers of their selected outstanding books. These can be requested from ibby.secretariat@ibby.org   

Touring the international list in the UK
For the last several years, IBBY UK has organised tours of the international collections of outstanding books to venues in (amongst others) Plymouth, Brighton, Cambridge, Glasgow and Edinburgh. If your institution would be interested in hosting the exhibition, please contact the IBBY UK Membership Secretary, email membership@ibby.org.uk.