Storylines Children’s Literature Charitable Trust of New Zealand | Te Whare Waituhi Tamariki o Aotearoa

Storylines Kids’ Pick Award

Storylines Kids' Pick Competition Background

This online competition encourages young TV viewers to participate in a vote for a “Kids’ Pick” from the annual Storylines Junior Fiction Notable Books list; a great way to encourage the What Now audience to read Storylines’ selections for the best books published in the previous year.

What Now is a top-rating, much-loved, madcap, live two-hour show. Broadcast on Sunday mornings on TV2, its target audience is primary school children.

The competition invites young readers to choose which they think would be the best book for kids aged 8-12 years.

To enter the competition readers are invited to go to the What Now website (, where there is a link to a review presented by an intermediate school aged reviewer of each of the year’s Storylines Notable Junior Fiction Books. Viewers watch the reviews, and/or read the books themselves, and vote for their favourite book by nominating it for the Storylines Kids’ Pick Award for the year. They enter the draw for the book they would most like to read, or tell their friends about, on the What Now website.

The vote is promoted live on air over three weeks, with presenters directing viewers to the What Now website and the video reviews.

The What Now team says “the campaign is celebratory, fun and ensures children are front and centre”. The voting campaign provides an opportunity for children all over New Zealand to engage with books and What Now says the competition is “a platform for readers and reading” and “an excellent way to talk about books at length on live TV”.

All entries go into the draw to win a full set of that year’s Storylines Junior Fiction Notable Books for their school.

Teachers are encouraged to watch the video reviews as a class activity or encourage their students to watch at home.

A full list of the Storylines Junior Fiction Notable Books  for each year is on the Storylines website.

In association with What Now

Winners of the Storylines Kids’ Pick award


It was a tie! Congratulations to two excellent winners selected by young readers for the Storylines Kids’ Pick Award in association with What Now. The two books areThe Ghosts on the Hill by Bill Nagelkerke (top), and Mallory, Mallory: Revenge of the Tooth Fairy by James Norcliffe (lower image).  Both authors are delighted – and will be awarded with an engraved trophy.

In reviewing the winning books, Tom said he liked The Ghost on the Hill because,  ‘…it was true’  and ‘…based in New Zealand and all characters are fun and thoughtful’;  Sophie,  commenting on Mallory Mallory: The Revenge of the Tooth Fairy,  said she liked it because it was ‘really cool’ and had ‘a lot of fantasy magical characters’.

Te Awhi Rito New Zealand Reading Ambassador Ben Brown,  Canterbury-based  (as, coincidentally, are the two winning authors and What Now), congratulated the winners on Sunday 14th November on What Now (TV2), and talked about how important reading is.

Two lucky students who voted for their Pick of the Storylines Junior Fiction Notable books won a full set of the award winning books for their school. They were Oska Ferey, from Gisborne and Parauri Taurua, from Auckland.


Prince of Ponies received the most votes and received the 2020 Storylines Kids’ Pick Award.

The five runners up were: Tui Street Heroes by Anne Kayes; Hazel and the Snails by Nan Blanchard, #Tumeke! by Michael Petherick; Bullseye Bella by James Guthrie; and To Catch a Thief by Des Hunt.

Children in schools from all over New Zealand voted for the book they would most like to read, after the Storylines Junior Fiction Notable Books were featured on What Now. Votes were cast based on a review of each of the Storylines Notable Junior Fiction Books by students from Kirkwood Intermediate School in Christchurch.

Two children who voted for the winning book received a pack of the  Storylines Junior Fiction Notable Books for their school, based on a lucky draw. The winners were in Gore and Rotorua.


The winner of the 2019 Storylines Kids Pick, in association with What Now, was The Fire Stallion by Stacy Gregg, published by HarperCollins. The Fire Stallion was voted by young viewers of What Now as their ‘ Storylines Kids’ Pick’ from the ten books listed in the 2019 Storylines Notable Books Junior Fiction list.

The runner-up books were Lyla by Fleur Beale, published by Allen & Unwin, and
1918 Broken Poppies by Des Hunt, published by Scholastic.

Author Stacy Gregg featured at a special event held at the Manukau Vodafone Events Centre in Auckland. Edited highlights of the presentation to Stacy Gregg and the celebration of Storylines Notable Books were broadcast on What Now.

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