Costa Book Awards 2021
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Costa Book Awards 2021


Just when you thought your to-read list couldn't get any longer, the Costa Book Awards reveal their 2021 shortlists! That's 5 categories—Novel, First Novel, Biography, Poetry and Childrens' books—making a magnificent 20 books, all singled out for their ability to spark joy and conversations. Huge congratulations to all the shortlistees and their publishers!

The category winners will be announced on 4th January, and the overall winner on 1st February. 
 

Costa First Novel Award Shortlist

Open Water
(Hardback)
Caleb Azumah Nelson
 
Open Water asks what it means to be a person in a world that sees you only as a Black body, to be vulnerable when you are only respected for...
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The Manningtree Witches
(Paperback)
A. K. Blakemore
 
A visceral, thrilling debut that reimagines the history of the Witchfinder General in 17th century England.
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£8.99
 
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Fault Lines
(Hardback)
Emily Itami
 
Brief Encounter set in contemporary Tokyo -- a funny, sharp and moving story of modern love from a writer to watch
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The Stranding
(Hardback)
Kate Sawyer
 
A heartbreaking novel of love, loss and hope about a woman who hides from the end of the world in the belly of a whale.
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Costa Novel Award Shortlist

Unsettled Ground
(Hardback)
Claire Fuller
 
Unsettled Ground is a portrait of life on the fringes of society that explores with dazzling emotional power how we can build our lives on broken foundations, and spin light...
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Signed Bookplate Edition - The High...
(Hardback)
Jessie Greengrass
 
The High House explores how we get used to change that once seemed unthinkable, how we place the needs of our families against the needs of others
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The Fortune Men
(Hardback)
Nadifa Mohamed
 
Mahmood Mattan is a fixture in Cardiff's Tiger Bay, 1952, which bustles with Somali and West Indian sailors, Maltese businessmen and Jewish families. He is a father, chancer, some-time petty...
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The Island of Missing Trees
(Hardback)
Elif Shafak
 
The Island of Missing Trees is a rich, magical tale of belonging and identity, love and trauma, nature and renewal, from the Booker-shortlisted author of 10 Minutes 38 Seconds in...
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Costa Biography Award Shortlist

Consumed: A Sister's Story
(Hardback)
Arifa Akbar
 
​Consumed is an eloquent and moving excavation of a family's secrets and a sister's detective story to understand her sibling.
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The Moth and the Mountain: A True...
(Paperback)
Ed Caesar
 
The untold story of Britain's most mysterious mountaineering legend - Maurice Wilson - and his heroic attempt to climb Everest. Alone.
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Fall: The Mystery of Robert Maxwell
(Paperback)
John Preston
 
In February 1991, Robert Maxwell made a triumphant entrance into Manhattan harbour on board his yacht, the Lady Ghislaine. He had come to complete his purchase of the...
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Free: Coming of Age at the End of...
(Hardback)
Lea Ypi
 
​Free is an engrossing memoir of coming of age amid political upheaval, in which Lea Ypi traces the limits of progress and the burden of the past, illuminating the spaces...
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Costa Poetry Award Shortlist

All The Names Given
(Paperback)
Raymond Antrobus
 
Building on his award-winning debut collection, The Perseverance, All the Names Given is a collection of intimate, deeply personal poems flickering with gods and ghosts, and the painful electricity that...
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A Blood Condition
(Paperback)
Kayo Chingonyi
 
The moving, expansive, and dazzling second collection from award-winning poet Kayo Chingonyi A Blood Condition tells a story of inheritance - the people, places, cultures and memories that form us.
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Eat Or We Both Starve
(Paperback)
Victoria Kennefick
 
A daring first collection from an exciting young Irish poet, tackling how to live with the past and not be consumed by it.
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The Kids
(Paperback)
Hannah Lowe
 
Hannah Lowe taught for a decade in an inner-city London sixth form. At the heart of this book of compassionate and energetic sonnets are 'The Kids', her students, the teenagers...
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Costa Children’s Book Award Shortlist

Maggie Blue and the Dark World
(Paperback)
Anna Goodall
 
A middle grade novel telling the story of Maggie Blue, an outsider both at home and at school, who sees a fellow classmate stolen through a window to another world...
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The Crossing
(Paperback)
Manjeet Mann
 
The trailblazing new novel from the Carnegie Medal shortlisted author of Run, Rebel.
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The Midnight Guardians
(Paperback)
Ross Montgomery
 
When Col's childhood imaginary friends come to life, he discovers a world where myths and legends are real.
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The Boy Who Made Everyone Laugh
(Paperback)
Helen Rutter
 
Billy is an eleven-year-old boy with a big dream. He wants to be a stand-up comedian when he grows up. A tough career for anyone, but surely impossible for Billy...
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