Launched in 1971 known then as the Whitbread Literary Awards, and with Costa taking over in 2006, the Costa Book Awards honour the most outstanding books written by authors from the UK and Ireland. There is a ceremony hosted every year in January where judges pick from five categories – First Novel, Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children’s book, with one of the five winners chosen as Book of the Year.
This year marks the 44th anniversary of the Awards and has attracted as many as 638 entries in total. This year’s nominees include 12 women and 8 men with ages ranging from 27 to 68. There are three judges per category including Novelist Louise Doughty, writer Matt Haig and Journalist Penny Junor.
Winners in each of the five categories will receive £5,000 and they will be announced on Monday 4th January 2016. The overall winner will receive an amount of £30,000 and will be selected and announced at the Costa Book Awards on Tuesday 26th January 2016.
The full shortlist can be seen below:
2015 Costa Novel Award shortlist
Kate Atkinson – A God in Ruins (Doubleday)
Anne Enright – The Green Road (Jonathan Cape)
Patrick Gale – A Place Called Winter (Tinder Press)
Melissa Harrison – At Hawthorn Time (Bloomsbury)
2015 Costa First Novel Award shortlist
Sara Baume – Spill Simmer Falter Wither (Windmill Books)
Kate Hamer – The Girl in the Red Coat (Faber & Faber)
Andrew Michael Hurley – The Loney (John Murray)
Tasha Kavanagh – Things We Have in Common (Canongate)
2015 Costa Biography Award shortlist
Robert Douglas-Fairhurst – The Story of Alice: Lewis Carroll and the Secret History of Wonderland (Harvill Secker)
Thomas Harding – The House by the Lake (William Heinemann)
Ruth Scurr – John Aubrey: My Own Life (Chatto & Windus)
Andrea Wulf – The Invention of Nature: The Adventures of Alexander Humboldt, the Lost Hero of Science (John Murray)
2015 Costa Poetry Award shortlist
Andrew McMillan – Physical (Jonathan Cape)
Kate Miller – The Observances (Carcanet)
Don Paterson – 40 Sonnets (Faber & Faber)
Neil Rollinson – Talking Dead (Jonathan Cape)
2015 Costa Children’s Book Award shortlist
Frances Hardinge – The Lie Tree (Macmillan Children’s Books)
Hayley Long – Sophie Someone (Hot Key Books)
Sally Nichols – An Island of Our Own (Scholastic)
Andrew Norriss – Jessica’s Ghost (David Fickling Books)
To be eligible for the awards, books must have been published first in the UK or Ireland between 1st November 2014 and 31st October 2015 and their authors reside in the UK for the previous three years.
Who do you want to win this year’s awards? Let us know by leaving a comment or using the hashtag #CostaBooks at @UCLanPluto