Since December I’ve been working with Costa Coffee on their annual Costa Book Awards* by reviewing the four books shortlisted in the Children’s category. I’ve had a lot of fun getting stuck into a genre and kind of book that I don’t usually pick up, so I’m super grateful to the Costa team for this opportunity.
There are five categories in the Awards celebrating authors living in the UK and Ireland (First Novel, Novel, Children’s Book, Biography and Poetry) and in the past have each featured such prestigious authors as Philip Pullman.
Tonight, the winner of each category has been announced, which is the last hurdle before the overall champion is crowned later this month. Read on to see who has come out on top of each of the categories, and find out whether my prediction for the Children’s category was correct!
Winner: Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
Eleanor leads a simple life, wearing the same clothes every day, eating the same meals and buying the same alcohol. She doesn’t miss a thing. Except, sometimes, everything. One simple act of kindness shatters Eleanor’s carefully timetabled life, and she must learn to navigate anew.
Winner: The Explorer by Katherine Rundell
After crashing hundreds of miles away from civilisation in the Amazon, Fred, Con, Lila and Max are alone with no food, water or chance of being rescued. As they get to know their surroundings, it appears that somebody has been there before them. Could there be a way out?
Whilst my personal favourite (Moonrise by Sarah Crossan) didn’t win, I’m more than happy for Rundell. The Explorer was an incredible adventurous read, and I hope that through winning the category more people are exposed to this wonderful story.
Winner: In the Days of Rain by Rebecca Stott
As Rebecca Stott’s father lay dying, he begged her to help him write a memoir: the story of their family who for generations had all been members of a Christian sect. The Exclusive Brethren were a closed community who believed the world is ruled by Satan. Rebecca, born into the Brethren, and she was always asking dangerous questions.
Winner: Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor
A teenage girl holidaying in the hills of England goes missing. As the search develops, so does everyday life, full of births, deaths, secrets and betrayals.
Winner: Inside the Wave by Helen Dunmore
A collection of poems concerned with the border between the living and the dead, the human world and the underworld.
So there we have it, the five category winners! I think that after this I’ll be adding a couple more books to my ever growing TBR… The winner of the Costa Book Awards 2017 will be announced on the 30th January, and don’t worry if you can’t tune into the announcement because I’ll be revealing all here so keep an eye out. Did your personal preference win?
*This is part of a series of posts sponsored by the Costa Book Awards but all opinions and thoughts are my own.