Skip to content

Past winners and shortlisted books

I Am a Book. I Am a Portal to the Universe, by Stefanie Posavec and Miriam Quick, was selected by children as the 2021 winner of the Royal Society Young People’s Books Prize. 

Explore the full shortlist, from stepping into Leonardo da Vinci's workshop, being transported through the night sky, or even ‘rooting’ through the world of plants below. 

Here’s what some of the young judges had to say about the winning book:

“I adore this book. It’s chaos but in a good way. It’s so intriguing because it shows you how weird and wonderful our universe is, and how it’s a pleasure to live in this universe.”  

“This book is unique and full of surprises, it had me wondering what the next page was going to be like, it had you reading in circles and wiggly lines and had you doing some weird things.”  

“I found out there was a number called six quintillion!”  

“I love how this book it written as if it was talking to you personally and that makes me want to take in the information that it’s telling you more. The illustrations are large and clear and there is no page filled with just words that go on and on. Finally it’s a very funny yet interesting book I think that this would be a great choice.”  

“I chose this book because it was really interesting in a really interactive way. It was also really easy to read and i learnt so much from it in a short time. It was also extremely fascinating and it has made me want to find out more about the universe.” 


Volcanologist Professor Katharine Cashman, Chair of the 2021 judging panel said: “This book portrays science as the creative subject that it is - from understanding the Big Bang, to spotting the size of an ostriches’ eyes, this book explores the science all around us. 

“There is magic and wonder encapsulated in every page - children can touch a dot to leave bacteria behind, and learn how many babies were born in the time it takes them to turn a page. This book tells a story and brings the reader with them – it’s different to any other science book I have ever seen before” 

View a full list of past winners and shortlisted books.

The 2021 shortlist

Recent winners

Cats React to Science Facts book cover

Izzi Howell: Cats React to Science Facts (2020)


Raman Prinja: Planetarium (2019)

Gianni Sarcone and Marie-Jo Waeber: Optical Illusions (2018)

Home Lab, Robert Winston (DK)

Robert Winston: Home Lab (2017)

Was this page useful?
Thank you for your feedback
Thank you for your feedback. Please help us improve this page by taking our short survey.