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Guardian First Book Award longlist announced

3rd September 2012

The longlist for the 2012 Guardian First Book Award has been announced, with a record 11 titles in contention to win the GBP 10,000 prize.

Usually, only ten authors are selected at this stage in the judging process, but the high standard of this year's entries has resulted in the panel choosing an additional debut author.

The 2012 nominees include four works of non-fiction - Katherine Boo's Behind the Beautiful Forevers, Sandstorm: Libya in the Time of Revolution by Lindsey Hilsum, The Origins of Sex by Faramerz Dabhoiwala and Susan Cain's Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking.

They are joined by seven works of fiction, including Patrick Flanery's acclaimed Absolution, which was longlisted for this year's Desmond Elliott Prize for New Fiction.

It is competing against four other novels - The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach, Charlotte Rogan's The Lifeboat, The Yellow Birds by Kevin Powers and Kerry Hudson's Tony Hogan Bought Me an Ice-cream Float Before He Stole My Ma.

The longlist is completed by Mary Costello's short story collection The China Factory and Sarah Jackson's Pelt, a work of poetry that was nominated by Guardian readers to fill the final position on this year's list of contenders.

Commenting on the extended longlist, Lisa Allardice, chair of the judging panel and editor of the Guardian Review, said 2012 has clearly been a strong year for debut novels.

'So, for the first time, we have 11 titles on the Guardian First Book Award longlist. We have put together a lively and wide-ranging list to reflect the diversity of first books published this year,' she explained.

The prize, which is now in its 14th year, is open to any debut author writing in English, or translated into English.

A shortlist of between four and six titles will be unveiled in late October, with the winner, who will receive an advertising package in the Guardian and Observer, in addition to the GBP 10,000 prize, announced on November 29th.

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