The shortlist for the £25,000 Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction 2018 was announced today, with six books chosen from a previous longlist of thirteen.
The six-book shortlist is:
- Manhattan Beach Jennifer Egan (Corsair)
- Sugar Money Jane Harris (Faber)
- Grace Paul Lynch (Oneworld)
- The Wardrobe Mistress Patrick McGrath (Hutchinson)
- Miss Boston and Miss Hargreaves Rachel Malik (Fig Tree)
- The Gallows Pole Benjamin Myers (Bluemoose Books)
The Judges said:
Every year the Walter Scott Prize attracts more entries, and again this year we have had some terrific books on the table. It has been a real treat to explore quite dazzlingly different periods in history, and to discover new talent in first-time authors. This year’s shortlist encompasses the rural and the urban, the exotic and the everyday, the epic and the intimate. The narrative drive in each of our shortlisted books is compelling, and on the pages are universal truths with which we can identify. The judges are relishing the challenge of alighting on a winner!
The judges of the 2018 Prize are Alistair Moffat (chair), Elizabeth Buccleuch, Elizabeth Laird, Kate Figes, Katharine Grant, James Holloway, James Naughtie and Kirsty Wark. They will meet to decide the winner just ahead of its announcement at the Borders Book Festival on Saturday 16th June.
First awarded in 2010, the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction honours the inventor of the historical fiction genre, Sir Walter Scott, and is sponsored by the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch,. Previous winners include Hilary Mantel, Andrea Levy, Sebastian Barry, Tan Twan Eng, Robert Harris, John Spurling, and Simon Mawer. Last year’s winning book was Days Without End by Sebastian Barry, making him the first double prize-winner.
The Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction is open to books published in the previous year in the UK, Ireland or the Commonwealth. Reflecting the subtitle of Scott’s most famous work Waverley: Tis Sixty Years Since, the majority of the storyline must have taken place at least 60 years ago.