Announcing the Wales Book of the Year Short List 2016

19 May 2016

The Short List was announced via a live online broadcast in collaboration with the Welsh-language television company Cwmni Da on Thursday 19 May at 1.00 pm.

After months of reading, meeting, deliberating and debating, the Wales Book of the Year judges have chosen their favourites from the ninety submitted books, and Literature Wales is delighted to announce the Wales Book of the Year Short List 2016. This year, award categories have been sponsored by The Open University in Wales, The Rhys Davies Trust, Aberystwyth University and The Brecknock Society.

The English-language Wales Book of the Year Short List 2016 is as follows:

The Roland Mathias Poetry Award:  Love Songs of Carbon, Philip Gross (Bloodaxe Books)  Boy Running, Paul Henry (Seren) Pattern beyond Chance, Stephen Payne (HappenStance Press)

The Rhys Davies Fiction Award:  The Girl in the Red Coat, Kate Hamer (Faber & Faber)  We Don't Know What We're Doing, Thomas Morris (Faber & Faber)  I Saw a Man, Owen Sheers (Faber & Faber)

The Open University in Wales Creative Non-Fiction Award:  Losing Israel, Jasmine Donahaye (Seren)  Woman Who Brings the Rain, Eluned Gramich (New Welsh Rarebyte)  Wales Unchained, Daniel G. Williams (University of Wales Press)

The Short List was announced via a live online broadcast in collaboration with the Welsh-language television company Cwmni Da on Thursday 19 May at 1.00 pm.

Following the announcement the presenter Lisa Gwilym interviewed two of this year's judges, Tony Brown and Lleucu Roberts about the panel's choices. A video of the live announcement can be viewed on the  Literature Wales website.

On the English-language judging panel this year are writer and lecturer Tony Brown; Associate Editor with The Bookseller, Caroline Sanderson, and Director for Wales of the National Trust, Justin Albert.

Caroline Sanderson said: "The diversity of entries across each category has been a delight: and the sheer affluence of the vein of writing, both Welsh and out of Wales is a cause for celebration in itself. Our nine shortlisted titles shone out particularly brightly however, with an extra nugget of pleasure to be had from the fact that almost half of them are by debut authors"

Lleucu Siencyn, Chief Executive of Literature Wales said: "We are extremely proud that the Wales Book of the Year Award can promote the richness and diversity of contemporary Welsh literature. The 2016 Short List is proof, if proof was needed that the writers of Wales continue to make their mark on the world's literary map."

The Welsh-language judging panel for 2016 are writer Lleucu Roberts, lecturer and poet Llion Roberts, and BBC Radio 1 and Radio Cymru DJ Huw Stephens. Here is the Welsh-language Short List:

Aberystwyth University Welsh-language Poetry Award:  Nes Draw, Mererid Hopwood (Gomer)  Hel llus yn y glaw, Gruffudd Owen (Cyhoeddiadau Barddas)  Eiliadau Tragwyddol, Cen Williams (Gwasg y Bwthyn)

Welsh-language Fiction Award:  Norte, Jon Gower (Gomer)  Y Bwthyn, Caryl Lewis (Y Lolfa)  Rifiera Reu, Dewi Prysor (Y Lolfa)

The Open University in Wales Welsh-language Creative Non-Fiction Award:  Pam Na Fu Cymru, Simon Brooks (Gwasg Prifysgol Cymru)  Dyddiau Olaf Owain Glyndŵr, Gruffydd Aled Williams (Y Lolfa)  Is-deitla'n Unig, Emyr Glyn Williams (Gwasg Gomer)

The winners of this prestigious Award will be announced at an Award Ceremony held in The Redhouse, Merthyr Tydfil on Thursday 21 July. Each category winner will receive a prize of £1,000, and the main award winners in each language will receive an additional £3,000. Each winner will also receive a specially commissioned trophy created by the artist Angharad Pearce Jones. Tickets for the Award ceremony are £5 and can be purchased from Literature Wales: 029 2047 2266 / post@literaturewales.org

At the Award Ceremony both the People's Choice Award and Gwobr Barn y Bobl (the Welsh-language people's prize) will be presented to the reading public's favourite title from the Short List. Visit the  Wales Arts Review website  to vote for your favourite English-language title. The Welsh-language poll is hosted by  Golwg360

For further information on the Wales Book of the Year Award visit: literaturewales.org/book-of-the-year

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