Launched in 1971, the Costa Book Awards is one of the UK’s most prestigious and popular book prizes and celebrates the most enjoyable books of the year by writers resident in the UK and Ireland.
Uniquely, the prize has five categories – First Novel, Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children’s Book – with one of the five winning books selected as the overall Costa Book of the year and each category is judged separately by a panel of three judges per category. The Costa Book of the Year is then chosen by a nine-member panel which includes representatives from the original panels who are joined by other well-known people who love reading.
Books are entered by publishers and entry for the Awards closes at the end of June each year. The author of the Costa Book of the Year receives £30,000, presented at an awards ceremony at the end of January.
The five winners in the running this year are:
Winner of the 2019 Novel Award: Middle England by Jonathan Coe
Purchase Middle England here.
Winner of the 2019 First Novel Award: The Confessions of Frannie Langton by Sara Collins
Purchase The Confessions of Frannie Langton here.
Winner of the 2019 Biography Award: The Volunteer: The True Story of the Resistance Hero who Infiltrated Auschwitz by Jack Fairweather
Purchase The Volunteer: The True Story of the Resistance Hero who Infiltrated Auschwitz here.
Winner of the 2019 Poetry Award: Flèche by Mary Jean Chan
Purchase Flèche here.
Winner of the 2019 Children’s Book Award: Asha & the Spirit Bird by Jasbinder Bilan
Purchase Asha & the Spirit Bird here.