Everyone needs a Home Library. It doesn't have to be huge, and it doesn't have to be full of shiny new books, but everyone needs to be able to own a few of their favourite books, the ones we want to read over and over again.
When Anne Fine became Children's Laureate, she set up My Home Library, to make it easier for everyone to have their own Home Library. She invited your favourite illustrators to help her, by drawing special bookplates for you to print off and paste into the front of your books, to tell everyone that this book is part of your Home Library.
Now she is helping to celebrate twenty years of the Children's Laureateship! Anne was only the second Laureate, but now there have been ten altogether. You can read more about the celebrations on the Booktrust website. And the tenth Children's Laureate, Lauren Child, has drawn us a lovely new bookplate to mark the occasion!
Bookplates by Laureates
Quentin Blake, the first Chidren's Laureate, helped Anne to set up My Home Library. You may recognise some of his drawings decorating this site - and he made us some brilliant bookplates, too! And Chris Riddell made us some plates long before he became the ninth Children's Laureate.
We are grateful to all the artists - Laureates or not! - who have helped us to offer you bookplates for your very own Home Library. Have fun exploring the site; you're bound to find something that's just right for you.
My Home Library has been going for over 15 years now, which seems impressive enough. But in 2017, the Carnegie Medal celebrated a full eighty years - a whole lifetime!
Anne Fine thought some of you might like to focus on the winning books over that time: she says "you might spot them in libraries and bookshops, maybe? take a peep? After all, each was considered the very best book of its year. Some seem to have all but vanished. But many are now classics which you'll have read, or seen on bookshelves, or on film.
"So let's take a decade a month. That should give you plenty of time to haunt your charity shops and see if there's anything you fancy adding to your own Home Library.
"The Carnegie Medal honours the Scottish born philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie. He's the great man who endowed so many of our public libraries, and rather wonderfully said, "To die rich is to die disgraced." The prize was established in 1935 by the Library Association, and is still considered the most prestigious award an author for children or young adults can win. (I can't describe to you how proud I am to have won it twice.)"
Anne introduces the Carnegie Medal - and recommends some of the prize-winning books.
And here are just a few of the bookplates on the My Home Library website. Why not print them out and stick them in the front of the books in your home library?
Just click on any small picture you like and it will take you to the full size version, then print it out or download it for printing later. You are free to print or copy any number, so long as it is for non-commercial use only.
And if these don't take your fancy, use the buttons to explore the site - the right bookplate for you is here, somewhere...
We know that what you really enjoy about this site is the bookplates - so we've had a grand spring clean to make it easier for you to make the most of them. Have a good look round! There are bookplates in all shapes and sizes. There's a little bit about what bookplates are, and where they come from. There's a page for the questions you ask us. And if you can't find what you're looking for, there's a new Site Map which lists everything on the site, which should help you to find it!
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Last updated 15th January 2021