About

The Red Dot student’s choice book awards are an initiative of the International School Libraries Network (ISLN) in Singapore. The annual event started in 2009. All school libraries in Singapore — and the region — are welcome to participate.  Shortlisted books — in four age-based categories, with eight titles in each — are announced in May or June at the Readers Cup finals.

Voting takes place between March and May. There is an overall winner for Singapore as well as individual winners within each school.

A Readers Cup competition based on a subset of these shortlists is usually held in May. If you are interested in seeing information about previous Readers Cups, see the previous Red Dot Book Awards websites under the Previous Years header in the menu above.


The Red Dot categories are roughly based on readers, rather than book formats or school divisions. (NB: It is up to every librarian to determine which books are right for which classes in your school to read.)

  • Early Years (ages 3–7)formerly Picture Books (where books are an interesting read-aloud)
  • Younger Readers (ages 7–10)formerly Junior) — (where Captain Underpants and Geronimo Stilton are the assumed reading level)
  • Older Readers (ages 10-14)formerly Middle) — (where Inkheart and The Lightning Thief are the assumed reading level)
  • Mature Readers (ages 14-adult)(formerly Senior) — (where Twilight and The Book Thief are the assumed reading level)

Shortlist titles are chosen by a committee of teacher-librarians from recent children’s literature (first published in English within the past four years), with the goal of offering a range of books from around the world.

Criteria in choosing books:

  • Mix of genres, e.g., fiction, nonfiction, poetry, graphic format
  • Balance of boy/girl main characters
  • Balance of nationalities
  • Published (in English) within the last 4 years (i.e., for the year 2019-2020, books published in 2016, 2017, 2018 or 2019)
  • The shortlists will consist of 8 books at each level
  • Preferably only #1 if in a series
  • No repeat of an author from previous 3 years
  • Preferably books that encourage Text-Text, Text-Self, and/or Text-World connections for students (i.e., books worth talking about)

Bibliographic details can be found via the GoodReads lists.


When posting about the Red Dot Books on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or other social media, use these hashtags:

  • #reddotbooks
  • #early_reddot
  • #younger_reddot
  • #older_reddot
  • #mature_reddot

For more information, contact ISLN at librarynetwork@gmail.com

See also this blog post by Katie Day about how the Red Dot Awards were started.