Tag Archive: Costa Book Awards

Nov 18

And the shortlists for the Costa Book Award – Best Novel and Best First Novel – have been announced…

… and there’s at least one surprise.  Here are the nominees: Best Novel 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) Kate Atkinson’s Life After Life was nominated for the Costa Book Award in 2013, so …

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Oct 19

So who should have won this year’s Man Booker Prize?

As reminder below are the nominees and links to my reviews. Marlon James, A Brief History of Seven Killings (Oneworld Publications) Tom McCarthy, Satin Island (Jonathan Cape) Chigozie Obioma, The Fishermen (ONE, Pushkin Press) Sunjeev Sahota, The Year of the Runaways (Picador) Anne Tyler, A Spool of Blue Thread (Chatto & Windus) Hanya Yanagihara, A Little Life (Picador) As you’d be aware, Marlon …

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Mar 12

The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley

What’s It About Set mostly in 1976, congregants from Saint Jude’s Church in London are heading to the Loney, a small village on the Lancashire coast, for Easter pilgrimage.  Among them are two brothers, Smith and his mute brother Hanny.  What follows over the Easter period will change the lives of everyone on the pilgrimage …

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Jan 09

And The Winners of the Costa Book Awards are…

How to Be Both by Ali Smith in the best novel category and Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey for best first novel.  The announcement (including winners of the other categories) is here. Absolutely endorse the best novel winner.  Just yesterday I ranked How To Be Both as one my favourite books of 2014 and I can’t …

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Dec 24

Book Review: Academy Street by Mary Costello

What’s It About? Spanning 6 decades, beginning with Ireland in the 1940s and ending with the tragedy of the Twin Towers, Mary Costello’s short novel details the life and times of Tess Lohan.  The back cover blurb says, that during her fourty years living “with quiet intensity on Academy Street in upper Manhattan, Tess encounters …

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Dec 21

Book Review: Chop Chop by Simon Wroe

What’s It About? Monocle (not his real name) is an out of work wannabe writer slumming it in London.  Unable to afford rent, food or a decent novel, he decides to take-on menial work at a gastro-pub called The Swan.  It’s a decision that turns out to be both the best and worst of his …

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Dec 18

Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey

What’s It About? Maud Horsham, now in her eighties, is sliding inexorably into the foggy pit of dementia.  Her daughter, her carer and a stationery store worth of sticky notes are all that’s keeping her from completely forgetting who she is.  Unfortunately none of these things can shed light on where her best friend Elizabeth …

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Dec 13

Book Review: A Song For Issy Bradley by Carys Bray

What’s It About? Tragedy hits the Bradley family when Issy, the youngest child of four, dies from a bout of meningitis. The Bradley’s are Mormons and the strict religious principles of their faith rub against the need to grieve. The novel alternates its point of view between the father and mother, Ian and Claire Bradley and …

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Dec 03

Book Review: House of Ashes by Monique Roffey

The TL;DR Review For Those Who Haven’t Read The Book  What’s The Book About? A militant religious group attempts to overthrow the Government of a small Caribbean Island.  The events of the novel are based on the attempted coup that took place in Trinidad and Tobago in 1990. Should I read it? Maybe.  I have …

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Nov 30

Book Review: Nora Webster by Colm Toibin

Last year, Kirstyn and I spoke very highly of Claire Messud’s sixth novel, The Woman Upstairs, on the Writer and The Critic podcast.  It’s a book that refuses to shy away from the raw, passionate emotions of the lead female character, Nora, after she’s betrayed by a close friend.  Her anger and despair is confronting and difficult. …

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