The Laugh Out Loud Book Awards (Lollies) is set to make a comeback this year, after being cancelled due to Covid in 2020.
Scholastic UK, which hosts the awards, announced the cancellation of last year’s prize because of complications adapting the judging and voting schedules around school closures.
This year, the awards will go ahead with virtual long and shortlisting panels and school votes run online.
Michael Rosen is set to return as head judge and will be joined on the shortlisting panel by actor, writer and comedian Stephen Mangan, whose children’s book with sister Anita, Escape the Rooms, is published this June. The panel will be completed by teachers Ceridwen Eccles and Maaria Khan as well as Scholastic product director Kate Newport. Rosen launched the Lollies with Scholastic in 2015, after the Roald Dahl Estate announced it was closing down the Roald Dahl Prize for funny books.
Commenting on the latest announcement, Rachel Partridge, Scholastic group marketing and PR and Schools commercial director, said: “We are delighted to be able to announce the return of the Lollies. We know how much children and teachers look forward to reading and celebrating the shortlisted books and voting for their favourites. It’s become a real highlight of the school and publishing calendar and we look forward to sharing some fantastic funny books with eager readers.”
Due to the previous year's cancellation, any books previously submitted for last year’s awards will be considered alongside books published in 2020 that meet the criteria. One set of prizes will be awarded.
Submissions will be open from Monday 22nd March until 2nd April, and books for consideration should be sent to Scholastic, 35 Range Road, Witney, OX29 0YD and clearly marked Lollies Submission. The winners will be announced in spring 2022.