Young Writer of the Year Award: Meet the shortlist

I attended a Young Writer of the Year Award event on Saturday 17 November, and thought I’d share with you some more information about the award itself, and the shortlisted authors and their books!

With a mix of genres and an array of content to get your emotions going, you’re in for a treat with this shortlist…

The Award:

In all its glory, The Sunday Times / Peters Fraser + Dunlop Young Writer of the Year Award is a literary prize awarded to a British author who is under the age of 35. Their work can either be published or an indie, and the winner receives £5,000 as well as being noted as outstanding literature. The runners-up win £500 each.

The winner will be announced on 6 December 2018, but who is in for the running? I’m going to be doing a review for each of these books over the next month, but here’s some more information on the books that made the shortlist…

Meet the shortlist:

The Mermaid and Mrs. Hancock, Imogen Hermes Gowar:

One September evening in 1785, the merchant Jonah Hancock hears urgent knocking on his front door. One of his captains is waiting eagerly on the step. He has sold Jonah’s ship for what appears to be a mermaid.

As gossip spreads through the docks, everyone wants to see Mr. Hancock’s marvel. Its arrival spins him out of his ordinary existence and through the doors of high society. At an opulent party, he makes the acquaintance of Angelica Neal, the most desirable woman he has ever laid eyes on… and a courtesan of great accomplishment.

This meeting will steer both their lives onto a dangerous new course…

From hearing an excerpt of the book, this is the one I’m looking forward to reading the most out of the shortlist, but they all look fab in their own way!

Pages: 484

Genre: Historical Fiction with a dash of magical creatures!

Publisher: Harvill Secker

Kings of the Yukon, Adam Weymouth:

A lyrical account of an epic voyage by canoe down the Yukon River.

The Yukon River is almost 2,000 miles long, flowing through Canada and Alaska to the Bering Sea. Setting out to explore one of the most ruggedly beautiful and remote regions of North America, Adam Weymouth journeyed by canoe on a four-month odyssey through this untrammeled wilderness, encountering the people who have lived there for generations.

Weymouth’s portraits of these people and landscapes offer an elegiac glimpse of a disappearing world.

When reading from his book, you can tell the passion and how well the author has managed to describe and illustrate the landscapes and scenes he saw. I can only imagine being transported to the Yukon River.

Pages: 264

Genre: Non-fiction

Publisher: Particular Books

The Reading Cure, Laura Freeman:

At the age of fourteen, Laura Freeman was diagnosed with anorexia. She had seized the one aspect of her life that she seemed able to control and struck different foods from her diet one by one until she was starving. But even at her lowest point, the one appetite she never lost was her love of reading.

As Laura battled with her anorexia, she gradually re-discovered how to enjoy food – and life more broadly – through literature.

Book by book, meal by meal, Laura developed an appetite and discovered an entire library of reasons to live.

This book sounds incredible. I really love the ‘How books restored my appetite’ tag line and the originality and inventiveness of the book. The author described how it may indirectly help others, but how much it has also helped herself. From the discussion, I could tell how much the book meant to the author, and I’m hoping the readers feel the same way.

 Pages: 247

Genre: Non-fiction

Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson

Elmet, Fiona Mozley:

Daniel is heading north. He is looking for someone. The simplicity of his extra life with Daddy and Cathy has turned menacing and fearful. They lived apart in the house that Daddy built for them in the woods with his bare hands. They foraged and hunted.

Cathy was more like her father: fierce and full of simmering anger. Daniel was more like their mother: gentle and kind. Sometimes, their father disappeared, and would return with a rage in his eyes…

This book sounds like it might replace my hunger for a book much like The Hazel Wood, but also with a gothic tinge which I’m totally digging. EXCITED.

Pages: 310

Genre: Fiction

Publisher: John Murray

To find out more information about the Young Writer of the Year Award, have a look at their website and for the latest news, as well as finding out the winner, keep an eye on their Twitter.

This post is in no way affiliated with the award or sponsors. I attended the event as a blogger and was given a free copy of each of the books noted above, in hopes I would provide an honest review (which of course, you guys know I always do!)

I’ve written this post as I know a lot of my readers are interested in writing their own book, and I hope you consider applying for the award in the future.

With my kindest thanks to Laurie from Peter Fraser + Dunlop and Andrew from The Sunday Times for inviting Bookmark That to the event.

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