Andrew Miller wins Costa Book of the Year
25th January 2012
Andrew Miller has been chosen as the winner of the overall Costa Book of the Year award for his sixth novel, Pure.
Miller collected the GBP 30,000 prize at a ceremony at Quaglino's in central London and becomes the 40th winner of the award, which was previously known as the Whitbread Book of the Year.
Earlier this month, Pure picked up the Costa best novel award, edging out Julian Barnes' Man Booker Prize-winning The Sense of an Ending in the process, and becomes the first novel to win the overall Costa Book of the Year prize since 2008.
Miller beat off a strong shortlist to claim the prize, including poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy's The Bees, Christie Watson's debut novel Tiny Sunbirds Far Away, Moira Young's children's book Blood Red Road and Matthew Hollis' acclaimed Edward Thomas biography Now All Roads Lead to France.
The judging panel, chaired by Evening Standard editor Geordie Greig, said the decision was a difficult one but Miller's novel embodies the characteristics of a great book.
'A structurally and stylistically flawless historical novel, this book is a gripping story, beautifully written and emotionally satisfying. A novel without a weakness from an author who we all feel deserves a wider readership,' the panel stated.
It is Miller's first major literary award since his debut novel Ingenious Pain won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for Fiction in 1997, after receiving significant critical acclaim.