Shortlist 2013

The shortlist for the Royal Society Young People's Book Prize in 2013.

Publishers across the UK submitted their best recent books that communicate science to young people. An adult shortlisting panel has narrowed down the choice to a shortlist of six books.

The winning book will be selected entirely by groups of young people from schools and youth groups around the UK. These groups together form a judging panel that looks at all the shortlisted books and chooses a winner.

The six books shortlisted by the shortlisting panel for 2013 are:

2013-05-16_Build the human body

Build the human body

by Richard Walker (Templar)

The judges said: “A hands on, fun kit to help learn about the human body, accompanied by a well-illustrated, concise, clear book.”



by Anneliese Emmans Dean (Brambleby Books Ltd)

The judges said: “This book is buzzing with interesting science facts and wonderful poetry. Each page features a different British minibeast that you might find in your back garden, with a funny poem about them.”

2013-05-16_The elements

Discover more: The elements

by Dan Green (Scholastic Children's Books)

The judges said: “A good starting point for learning about the topic and full of rocking chemistry! Starting with what elements are and where they come from, the book goes through each element in turn with facts about their discovery and the science about how they impact our everyday lives.”

2013-05-16_Don't flush

Don't Flush: Lifting the Lid on the Science of Poo and Wee

by Richard Platt, Mary Platt, John Kelly (Kingfisher – An imprint of Macmillan Children’s Books)

The judges said: “A light-hearted but informative look at the science behind the use of poo and wee throughout history to build houses, wash and dye our clothes, fertilize crops, treat illnesses, solve crimes, control pollution and create fuel, energy and explosives. A perfectly disgusting book: Kids will love it!”

2013-05-16_Human body factory

Human Body Factory

by Dan Green (Kingfisher – An imprint of Macmillan Children’s Books)

The judges said: “This book is intricately illustrated with tiny factory workers who explain how each part of the body works. It is the ‘Where’s Wally?’ of the human body; you keep noticing comic little details such as the workers in dinghies mixing gastric juices in the stomach with a giant whisk! As well as being fun, we were also impressed by the level of accurate scientific detail.

2013-05-16_Look inside space

Look inside space

by Rob Lloyd Jones (Usborne Publishing)

The judges said: “A fantastically interactive book for younger children. Full of flaps to lift (and flaps under flaps) that reveal amazing facts about space!”

A full list of all previous shortlisted and winning entries is also available.

The shortlisting panel are:

  • Professor John Goodby FRS – Chemist at the University of York researching liquid crystals
  • Dr Jenny Read – University Research Fellow at the Institute of Neuroscience at Newcastle University researching visual perception
  • Grrlscientist – an evolutionary biologist, science writer and blogger
  • Shazia Lydon – Assistant Headteacher at Challney High School For Boys, Luton
  • Simon Watt – Science communicator and presenter of Inside Nature’s Giants on Channel 4

Royal Society Young People's Book Prize

Winner 2013
Look Inside Space by Rob Lloyd Jones

Shortlist 2013
See all six shortlisted books

Book prizes

Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books
Celebrates the best in popular science writing.

Royal Society Young People's Book Prize
Celebrates the best books that communicate science to young people.

Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize

Royal Society Junior Prize for Science Books

Royal Society’s Aventis Prize for Science Books’ Junior Prize

See the full list of all the winners.