The Edible Book Festival – The Grand Finale!

posted in: Emma Chichester Clark | 40

First and foremost, I have to congratulate every single one of you who took part in the Edible Book Festival here on Playing by the book. I was astounded by the quality and quantity of entries, and very quickly came to be grateful I was not having to judge them!

I am most grateful to Mélanie from Library Mice who shortlisted ten edible books. These were sent to our festival Patron, Emma Chichester Clark, for final judging.

Of judging Mélanie said:

“I was really chuffed when Zoe asked me to be the first-round judge of the Edible Books Festival. It meant that I couldn’t enter, which was a shame in a way, but looking at all wonderful 73 entries, I am now glad because I could never have competed with all that talent. I didn’t have anything specific in mind when choosing the ten finalists; I went with those that caught my eye straight away, might it be because they were quirky, funny, unusual or simply beautiful. It was hard not to be partial to those linked to books that I love but I managed to overcome that. In fact, I discovered quite a few books along the way. It was really hard choosing only ten though, as the hard work that participants put in made them all winners in my eyes.”

Emma Chichester Clark concurred, saying “Can’t they all have prizes?!”

Unfortunately we can’t give everyone a prize, but what we can do is give a big round of applause to the three winners selected by Emma.

In 3rd place is Entry 14, by Becky Earl:

Inspired by Elmer by David McKee

In 2nd place is Entry 24, by Kathryn Parry:

Inspired by The Cat in the Hat by Dr Seuss

And in 1st place is Entry 15, by Rachel Slater:

Inspired by The Odd Egg written and illustrated by Emily Gravett

Becky wins a signed copy of Lulu and the Best Cake Ever, Kathryn wins a signed copy of Lulu and the Best Cake Ever plus 5 books of her choice from the list below, and lucky Rachel wins an original drawing of Lulu and her best friend Alfie by Emma Chichester Clark PLUS a signed copy of Lulu and the Best Cake Ever PLUS 5 other picture book titles from Harper Collins, to be selected from the list below.

  • The Astonishing Secret of Awesome Man by Michael Chabon
  • The Lorax by Dr Seuss
  • Marshall Armstrong is New to Our School by David Mackintosh
  • Meerkat Madness by Ian Whybrow
  • Casper Candlewacks in Death by Pigeon by Ivan Brett
  • Department 19 by Will Hill
  • Hello Kitty Super Sparkly Sticker Book
  • Love Monster by Rachel Bright
  • My Henry by Judith Kerr
  • Penguin Pandemonium by Jeanne Willis
  • The Peppers by Sian Pattenden
  • Divergent by Veronica Roth

  • Congratulations to the three of you – please look out for an email from me regarding your postal address.

    To everyone else who took part, I am so sorry that each of you didn’t win first prize. I know that sounds a little silly to say, but I was honestly so impressed by the creativity and skill and sheer joie de vivre that shone out through each entry. I hope one day I get to share some cake with each of you. Thank you for making the festival so much fun and such a great success. I’m hoping that the festival will become an annual event here on the blog – so I look forward to seeing many of you return next year with even more amazing Edible Books.

    If you’ve written a blog post (or more) about your entry to the Edible Book Festival, please join the link up today by submitting your blog post’s permanent URL below. I encourage everyone to have a browse through the links and see just how much love and passion and fun went into creating all these cakes.

    40 Responses

    1. Sarah Cooper

      Well done winners! I was just delighted when I saw I had some nice comments for my Alice in Wonderland Cupcakes and Alien in Underpants sandwiches in the comments part. For me this is just a start of a journey as I have now found a love for sugarcraft, so thank you Zoe for hosting this wonderful challenge!

    2. Literary Mom

      What a fun contest! I’m curious what the judging criteria was. After looking at most of the entries on flickr, I was supposed that the more elaborate and intricate ones didn’t win. I know it’s all in fun, but I can’t help being curious, especially since I’d like our family to participate next year, so any tips would be good 🙂
      Literary Mom recently posted..Giving Up and Giving In for Lent

    3. Literary Mom

      …oops, I meant surprised (not supposed)! I see the explanation for how Melanie decided the top ten but not how Emma selected the top three. Also, which ones were the other 7 of the top ten? Btw, I commented on the ones on flickr that were my favorites. Next time, it could be fun to have readers vote…just an idea!
      Literary Mom recently posted..Giving Up and Giving In for Lent

    4. Zoe

      Literary Mom,
      The judging criteria were highly personal I think – whilst I told Melanie and Emma that what was key for me was a sense of fun, I think we all agreed that (1) really, any of the entries could have won a prize and (2) everybody looking at the list of entries would come up with a slightly different set of favourites. I like your idea of readers voting, and yes, for next year, I hope I’ll be able to implement a “readers’ prize”. And, of course, that you’ll take part next year!
      Zoe recently posted..The Edible Book Festival – The Grand Finale!

    5. Zoe

      Jojoebi, your video alone deserved a prize. Perhaps as well as a readers category there should be a video category next year!

      • Zoe

        Hi Polly, yes, there might have been some complications if there had been a readers’ vote! Thanks so much for taking part – glad to hear you’re already thinking about your submission for next year!

      • Zoe

        Thanks Rebecca. I have to agree with you, any competition where cake eating is allowed is a good one!

    6. sandhya

      This contest was a real treat! I have sent the link to several friends who are baking enthusiasts. Thanks for hosting it, Zoe.

      • Zoe

        A pleasure, Sandhya – I think lots of people have had lots of fun as a result of the festival and that delights me!

      • Zoe

        Hooray LH Johnson! Having seen your slideshow I’m even more keen for you to enter again next year 🙂 I think I may have to make visits to homes as part of the judging process…

    7. maggy, red ted art

      Fabulous choice of winners! It must have been SOOOO hard to choose!I am really inspired by all the fantastic creations!

      Thanks for rally us all to get creative!


      • Zoe

        Thanks Maggy – as you know, it’s so exciting to be part of a community having fun and being creative

    8. Tasha

      Fabulous – I loved this cake! Well done to the winners and runners up. It must have been very difficult to choose a winner as they all looked like they’d been fun to make. Ours definitely was! I’ve posted links to our cake but have had to post two as I wrote it up in two parts, I hope that’s okay!! Loving reading other people’s posts about their cakes. Roll on next year!
      Tasha recently posted..Here we are, elsewhere!

      • Zoe

        Hi Tasha, judging was so difficult – all the stories that I received in emails about how the families and groups of children got involved with choosing the edible book, making, eating, reading – I could never have chosen a winner knowing how much effort had gone in behind the scenes!

    9. choxbox


      Agree – I would also be glad I were not the judge! Quite a tricky job! Congrats to the winners, wish I could eat their entries up (albeit in an eggless version!)

    10. Robyn

      Congrats to the winners! They are absolutely fantastic- it was so much fun to browse the gallery. Thanks Zoe for hosting this event! What a fantastic way for book lovers to gather and play 🙂
      Robyn recently posted..Edible Book Festival

      • Zoe

        Se7en, that’s a great idea – I’ll definitely create such a badge for next year’s festival

    11. Maeve

      And there was me thinking this was an excuse (if one was ever needed) to eat more cake. These wonderful creations are works of art!

    12. rachel slater

      Hi Zoe

      Just receive my bundle of books and illustration by Emma. Thank you very much. We are very excited at having some new books to read tonight.
      rachel slater recently posted..Book Club Choice

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