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2022 Long list Book Links Award for Children’s Historical Fiction

Book Links is proud to announce the 2022 Shortlist for the annual Book Links Award for Children’s Historical Fiction. Eight stories from Australia have been chosen from  more than thirty entries for the award. Entries included picture books, middle grade novels and stories for older readers. Here are eight titles that excel at developing an understanding and appreciation of history in children. Congratulations to everyone on the 2022 long list!

2022 Long List Book Links Award for Children’s Historical Fiction

Underground  Marsupial Outlaws and Other Rebels of Australia’s War in Vietnam by Mirranda Burton, Allen & Unwin Children, 2021.
Intersecting stories and entwined destinies reveal Australia during the Vietnamese War in memorable graphic detail.


The Katha Chest by Radhiah Chowdhury, illustrated by Lavanya Naidu, Allen & Unwin Children, 2021.
Asiya loves to go to Nanu’s house where she explores the big old chest filled with quilts that tell the stories of the women in Asyia’s family and the history of her people.
Elsewhere Girls by Emily Gale and Nova Weetman, Text Publishing, 2021.
Told in alternating chapters by Cat and Fanny this time engaging slip/body swap novel explores the challenges facing young girls today and in the past.


Footprints on the Moon by Lorraine Marwood, University of Queensland Press, 2021.
A verse novel set in 1969,  just before the moon landing and during the time of protests about conscription and Australia’s involvement in the Vietnam war.  Sharnie, a young girl mainly concerned with  finding her place in her first year at  high school  gradually becomes involved in the issues of the day.
Rabbit, Angel, Soldier, Thief by Katrina Nannestad, illustrated by Martina Heiduczek ABC Books AU, 2021.
A moving story about a  little boy’s experiences as a member of the Russian Red Army fighting to survive against the German advance. It was inspired by the story of real boy, Sergey Aleshkov, who was about six when he joined the Red Army.
Cuckoo’s Flight by Wendy Orr, Allen & Unwin Children, 2021.
When Clio’s town in Bronze Age Crete is threatened by seafaring raiders, she faces the greatest sacrifice of all. Can Clio, her herd of horses and a new young friend find a way to change their destinies?


Main Abija My Grandad by Karen Rogers, Allen & Unwin Children, 2021.
With luscious artwork and a lyrical text in Kriol and English,  Ngukurr artist Karen Rogers evokes the world of her childhood in a remote part of the Northern Territory. Her story shows how culture and history is passed on from generation to generation.


The Secret Battle by Pamela Rushby, illustrated by Fiona MacDonald, Eagle Books, 2021.
Nine-year-old city newspaper seller Roddy becomes involved in the infamous Battle of Brisbane in 1942: when American and Australian servicemen fought against each other, rioting in the streets of the city for two days.

Congratulations to everyone who made it this magnificent long list. Look out for these dates:

  • 1 June – Shortlist is announced

  • 27 July – Winner is announced

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