Considered one of the UK’s most prestigious and popular literary prizes the Costa Book Awards shortlists are always eagerly anticipated and are guaranteed to add a title or three to everyone’s TBR lists.
This year’s finalists are dominated by female authors and contain an eclectic mix of genres and writing styles. With four books shortlisted for each category and five categories there’s bound to be at least one book that piques your interest in amongst these twenty titles. We’ve emphasised the Costa Novel Award as this is usually the most anticipated award from the five categories but all twenty of the Costa Book Awards 2016 finalists are included.
Maggie O’Farrell – This Must Be the Place
Maggie O’Farrell may have written seven novels but this is considered to be her breakout novel; This Must Be the Place is an irresistible love story about an unforgettable family.
Rose Tremain – The Gustav Sonata
What does neutrality do to a person? How hard can it be to grow up in a neutral country, living a neutral life and having neutral opinions? The Gustav Sonata reveals many perhaps unexpected consequences of such a life.
Costa First Novel Award
The Good Guy – Susan Beale
My Name is Leon – Kit de Waal
The Words in My Hand – Guinevere Glasfurd
Golden Hill – Francis Spufford
Costa Biography Award
Dadland: A Journey into Uncharted Territory – Keggie Carew
Elizabeth: The Forgotten Years – John Guy
The Return: Fathers, Sons and the Land In Between – Hisham Matar
I’m Not With the Band: A Writer’s Life Lost in Music – Sylvia Patterson
Costa Poetry Award
Sunshine – Melissa Lee-Houghton
Falling Awake – Alice Oswald
Say Something Back – Denise Riley
Let Them Eat Chaos – Kate Tempest
Costa Children’s Book Award
The Bombs That Brought Us Together – Brian Conaghan
Orange Boy – Patrice Lawrence
The Monstrous Child – Francesca Simon
Time Travelling with a Hamster – Ross Welford