2020 Costa Book Awards

Costa Book Awards, formerly Whitbread Literary Awards (1971–84), Whitbread Book Awards (1985–2005), series of literary awards given annually to writers resident in the United Kingdom and Ireland for books published there in the previous year.

Distinctively, the prize has five categories – First Novel, Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children’s Book – with one of the five winning books selected as the overall Costa Book of the year and each category is judged separately by a panel of three judges per category.


Overall Winner of the 2020 Costa Book of the Year and Costa Novel Award

The Mermaid of Black Conch, A Love Story by Monique Roffey is the Winner of the 2020 Costa Book of the Year and Costa Novel Award

April 1976: St Constance, a tiny Caribbean village on the island of Black Conch. David, a fisherman, sings to himself in his pirogue, waiting for a catch – and attracts a sea-dweller he doesn’t expect. Aycayia, a centuries old mermaid, is drawn to his singing. But her curiosity is her undoing when she is caught by American tourists… David rescues her and hides her away, where she slowly, painfully turns into a woman. Borrow now.


Winner of the 2020 First Novel Award

Love After Love by Ingrid Persaud

Irrepressible Betty Ramdin, her shy son Solo and their marvellous lodger, Mr Chetan, form an unconventional household. Happy in their differences, they build a home together. Home: the place keeping these three safe from an increasingly dangerous world – until the night when a glass of rum, a heart to heart and a terrible truth explodes the family unit, driving them apart. Borrow now.


Winner of 2020 Poetry Award

The Historians by Eavan Boland

Throughout her nearly sixty-year career, acclaimed poet Eavan Boland came to be known for her exquisite ability to weave myth, history, and the life of an ordinary woman into mesmerizing poetry. She was an essential voice in both feminist and Irish literature, praised for her ‘edgy precision, an uncanny sympathy and warmth, an unsettling sense of history’ ( J.D. McClatchy). Her final volume, The Historians, is the culmination of her signature themes, exploring the ways in which the hidden, sometimes all-but-erased stories of women’s lives can powerfully revise our sense of the past. Borrow now.


Winner of 2020 Children’s Book Award

Voyage of the Sparrowhawk by Natasha Farrant

The second sensational middle-grade standalone that follows an epic voyage from England to France in the aftermath of WW1, from the bestselling author of The Children of Castle Rock. In the aftermath of World War One, everyone is trying to rebuild their lives. If Ben is to avoid being sent back to the orphanage, he needs to find his brother Sam, wounded in action and is now missing. Lotti’s horrible aunt and uncle want to send her away to boarding-school (when she has just so successfully managed to get expelled from her last one!). And Clara, their young teacher, is waiting for news of her missing fiancé . . . Borrow now.


Winner of 2020  Biography Award

Dear Life by Rachel Clarke

 From the Sunday Times bestselling author of Your Life in My Hands comes this vibrant, tender and deeply personal memoir that finds light and love in the darkest of places.

As a specialist in palliative medicine, Dr Rachel Clarke chooses to inhabit a place many people would find too tragic to contemplate. Every day she tries to bring care and comfort to those reaching the end of their lives and to help make dying more bearable.Rachel’s training was put to the test in 2017 when her beloved GP father was diagnosed with terminal cancer. She learned that nothing – even the best palliative care – can sugar-coat the pain of losing someone you love. Coming soon to Brent Libraries.


Explore the complete Costa Prizes 2020 shortlist.

Discover a collection of 2020 prize winners available from our e-library.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s