A humorous and heartbreaking coming of age tale about a teenage boy from Newcastle has been nominated for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2019, widely regarded as one of the most prestigious accolades in the world of books. Announced Thursday 7th February, Me Mam. Me Dad. Me by Malcolm Duffy is shortlisted in the Older Fiction category.

In his debut novel, Newcastle-raised Duffy tells the story of Danny who is unsettled by his mother’s troubled relationship with her new boyfriend, and decides to go in search of his father who he has never met. In Me Mam. Me Dad. Me Duffy tackles domestic violence head on whilst finding humour and hope in the most unlikely of places.

Malcolm Duffy says “Waterstones has always been a place I love to lose myself, a wonderland of amazing wordsmiths, so to have my book shortlisted for their Waterstones Children’s Book Prize is beyond my wildest dreams. It’s the sort of thing that happens to other people, not a guy from Newcastle. But Me Mam. Me Dad. Me. is on the list. As a Geordie would say – belter!”

The Waterstones Children’s Book Prize exists to reward and champion new and emerging talent in children’s books. Now in its fifteenth year, it is widely regarded as one of the most important prizes for children’s books.

Last year’s winner, The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas shot to the top of the bestseller charts following the award announcement and saw an increase in sales of over 900% across the Waterstones estate.

The winners will be announced at an evening reception at Waterstones Piccadilly (London), Europe’s largest bookshop, on Thursday 21st March 2019. Six books will compete within each category to be crowned category winner, with the three category winners then vying for the overall title of Waterstones Children’s Book of the Year 2019. The winner of each category will receive £2000, with the overall winner receiving an extra £3000. In the event that the prize is awarded to a partnership then the prize money will be split equally between the joint winners.

The winning authors and illustrators will also see a significant boost in sales, and the promise of an ongoing commitment to their writing career from all Waterstones shops nationwide.