An Anglia Ruskin University graduate from Hitchin is among four others to have secured nominations in the Illustrated Books category for the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize 2024.

Chloe Savage, a Hitchin-based author who was born and raised in Stevenage, is among the finalists who secured the nominations.

The award marks its 20th anniversary this year and is renowned for recognising exceptional new children's writing and illustrations.

Chloe has been shortlisted for her debut picture book, 'The Search for the Giant Arctic Jellyfish'.

She said: "The Search for the Giant Arctic Jellyfish is deeply inspired by my own experience of failure and resilience.

"I love to make my work highly detailed, so that regardless of your reading ability, you will be able to find something to enjoy in the book.

"It is very important to me that my work is inclusive in this way.

"I am so grateful that I was able to make this book and share it with the world."

Her fellow nominees from ARU, Ellan Rankin, Kate Rolfe and Natalie Labarre, have also earned plaudits for their work.

The uniting factor for these artists is their shared experience at ARU’s Cambridge School of Art, where they graduated from the Children’s Book Illustration MA course.

Kate Rolfe has been nominated for her book 'Wolf and Bear', while Ellan Rankin's 'The Secret Elephant' and Natalie Labarre's 'Incredible Jobs You've (Probably) Never Heard Of' have also secured nods from the judging panel, comprised of Waterstones' expert booksellers.

Shelley Ann Jackson, associate professor and course leader of the MA in Children’s Book Illustration at ARU, said: "We are so thrilled that four of the six shortlisted illustrators for the Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2024 are MA Children’s Book Illustration graduates.

"We couldn’t be prouder of the successes of Natalie, Chloe, Ellan and Kate.

"We can’t wait to see where their careers take them next."

Each category winner of the Waterstones Children’s Book Prize will bag £2,000, with an additional £3,000 presented to the overall winner.

The awards will be announced at a ceremony on March 21.