Former children’s laureate Anne Fine is among the shortlisted authors vying for the prestigious Carnegie Medal for her book Blood Family.
Ms Fine (pictured), already a two-time winner of the prize, is hoping to become the first author to take the 77-year-old award for the third time.
She is up against seven authors including Susan Cooper, best known for the 1970s Dark is Rising series, with her latest book Ghost Hawk.
The other shortlisted books are All the Truth That’s in Me by Julie Berry, The Bunker Diary by Kevin Brooks, The Child’s Elephant by Rachel Campbell-Johnston, Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell, Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead and The Wall by William Sutcliffe.
Previous winners include CS Lewis, Alan Garner, Philip Pullman, Melvin Burgess and David Almond.
The books are shortlisted by Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) and the announcement today kicks off a scheme with thousands of children around the country reading the shortlisted books and posting their own reviews.
Michael Morpurgo and his wife, Clare, are the joint authors of poetry anthology Where My Wellies Take Me, which is on the shortlist for the illustration prize, the Kate Greenaway Medal. The anthology is the first book project for illustrator Olivia Gill.
Helen Thompson, who chaired the judging panel, said: “All of the books hold great appeal for both boys and girls, placing fantastic storytelling at their heart.
"Books that tackle dark themes, such as kidnap, war and orphaned children, but which do so with humanity, sensitivity and, in places, lyricism. The result is some fantastically gripping and moving stories of outstanding quality.”
The shortlist for the Kate Greenaway Medal also includes The Paper Dolls by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Rebecca Cobb; The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt, illustrated by Oliver Jeffers; This is Not my Hat by Jon Klassen; The Dark by Lemony Snicket, illustrated by Jon Klassen; Mouse, Bird, Snake, Wolf by David Almond, illustrated by Dave McKean; and Oliver by Birgitta Sif.
The winners will be announced on Monday 23 June.