Green Bean Books

Jewish Children’s Book Awards 2023/2024

Green Bean Books and Jewish Book Week are delighted to announce the criteria for the third Jewish Children’s Book Awards. The awards will again be judged by Green Bean publisher Michael Leventhal; author and chair of the book selection committee of PJ Library Chris Barash and award-winning children’s author Eric Kimmel. This year, they will also be joined on the judging panel by renowned illustrator and writer, Omer Hoffmann and Curator of Children’s Books at The Israel Museum in Jerusalem, Orna Granot.
To read coverage of this year’s award click here

Submission Criteria

The Jewish Children’s Book Awards for story and illustration aim to celebrate the work of talented Jewish children’s book authors and illustrators living in Europe and the UK.  Submitted work must be original and meet the criteria below. You can read the awards criteria in French, RussianGermanItalian and Spanish

For the illustration prize:

This year, we are inviting applicants to come up with a new front cover for a much-loved Yiddish folk story. The traditional, often-told tale recognises the importance of gaining perspective and  appreciating what you have. It runs along these lines:

A homeowner is unhappy with the size of their small dwelling and, after seeking advice on how to solve the problem, they are told to invite more people or animals to stay with them. This first makes their house seem even more crammed but when all the others leave, suddenly their cosy home seems so much larger than before. Problem solved!

There have been various iterations of this story published, including Julia Donaldson’s A Squash And A Squeeze, Margot Zemach’s It Could Always Be Worse, Heather Forest’s A Big Quiet House and Elizabeth Suneby and Laurel Molk’s No Room for a Pup. These books can be found on amazon by clicking the following links:

For A Squash And A Squeeze, click here

For It Could Always Be Worse, click here

For A Big Quiet House, click here

For No Room for a Pup, click here

Submitted front cover illustrations should be for a new version of this tale, giving scope for an illustrator to re-interpret the story in their own way. Entrants can use any of the existing titles listed above, or invent their own title which reflects their interpretation of the story. They should also adhere to the following:

Entrants can use any of the existing titles listed above, or invent their own title which reflects their interpretation of the story.

The submission should be suitable for readers aged 4-8. Submissions are invited from illustrators living in Europe and the UK. If you have been displaced from your country within the last year then please contact us directly to see if your submission can be accepted.

Each submission must include a note giving your residential address, date of birth, and details of how you found out about the awards.

Each submission should be in colour and be in a portrait format.

Each illustration must be supplied as a high-resolution jpeg or tiff and the completed submission should be emailed to awards@greenbeanbooks.com

For the story prize:

As with the two previous years, the submitted story must be Jewish in content, either inspired or informed by Jewish history, folklore, values, festivals or texts.

The submission should be suitable for readers aged 4-8. Submissions are invited from authors living in Europe and the UK. If you have been displaced from your country within the last year then please contact us directly to see if your submission can be accepted.

The author may have been published; the submitted work, however, must be unpublished in the English language and cannot be on active submission or under contract with an English language publisher before the award is announced.

The submission text can be no longer than 1200 words. Submissions are accepted in English, French, German, Italian, Ukrainian, Russian, Spanish and Yiddish.

Each submission must include a note explaining the Jewish content in not more than 100 words. Ideally, this explanatory note should be submitted in English. The note should include your residential address, date of birth, and details of how you found out about the awards.

The submission must be double spaced in font 12 in a Word or PDF document and the completed submission should be emailed to awards@greenbeanbooks.com

  • The winners of each category will receive £1,000 each. All entries will be considered for publication by Green Bean Books, but we cannot provide critical feedback on submissions. Authors/illustrators must be aged 16 or over.
  • No hardcopy submissions will be accepted.
  • Entries must be submitted by 30 November, 2023.
  • The author/illustrator retains copyright of their work.
  • Individuals may enter both prizes but must enter both prizes separately.
  • Work previously submitted for JCBA 2021/22 or JCBA 2022/23 may not be resubmitted.
  • The shortlist will be announced early in 2024.
  • For further information please contact: awards@greenbeanbooks.com
  • Click here to read more about last year’s 2022/2023 award and winners.