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Judges Announced for 2012 Costa Book Awards

Press Release   •   Oct 03, 2012 09:35 BST

Costa Coffee today announces the judging panels for the 2012 Costa Book Awards.

They include author and comedian Mark Watson; authors Wendy Holden, Marcus Sedgwick and Matt Whyman; actress and broadcaster Janet Ellis; novelist and Editor-in-Chief of Red Magazine, Sam Baker; poet Daljit Nagra and novelist and biographer, DJ Taylor.

The full panels are listed below:


Janet Ellis: Actress and Broadcaster

Alison Flood: Books Journalist

Mark Watson: Author and Comedian


Sam Baker: Novelist and Editor-in-Chief, Red Magazine

Toby Clements:Book Reviewer and Author

Wendy Holden: Author


Valerie Grove:Journalist and Biographer

Ron Johns: Managing Director, Mabecron Books

DJ Taylor: Novelist and Biographer


Ted Hodgkinson:Online Editor, Granta

Daljit Nagra:Poet

Susan Sinclair: Divisional Manager, Foyles


Sarah Clarke:Range Manager, Waterstones

Marcus Sedgwick:Writer

Matt Whyman:Author

The judges’ task now is to read through the total of 568 books entered for this year’s Costa Book Awards.

They will then select shortlists and winners in their respective categories (First Novel,Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children’s Book) and the five award winners will form the shortlist for the 2012 Costa Book of the Year, which will be announced at an awards ceremony in central London on Tuesday January 29th, 2013.

The Costa Book Awards have the single aim of celebrating the most enjoyable books of the last year by writers based in the UK and Ireland. Originally established in 1971by Whitbread Plc, Costa, the UK's fastest-growing coffee shop chain, announced its takeover of the sponsorship of the UK's most prestigious book prize in 2006.

Recent winners of the Costa Book of the Year include Andrew Miller for Pure (2011), Jo Shapcott for Of Mutability (2010), Christopher Reid for A Scattering (2009), Sebastian Barry for The Secret Scripture (2008), Day by A. L. Kennedy (2007) and Stef Penney for The Tenderness of Wolves (2006).

Costa recently launched the Costa Short Story Award, a brand new Award for a single short story run in association with the Costa Book Awards but judged independently of the main five-category system. The new Award is for a single,previously unpublished short story of up to 4,000 words by an author aged 18 years or over and written in English.

A panel of five judges will select a shortlist of six entries which will be revealed in November 2012. The public will then be invited to vote online for their favourite story from the six finalists. The two runners-up and winner will be announced at the Costa Book Awards ceremony on 29thJanuary 2013.

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For further press information, please contact:

Amanda Johnson

Costa Book Awards Press and Publicity

Telephone: 07715 922180 (mobile)


The Costa Book Awards:

The Costa Book Awards, formerly the Whitbread Book Awards, were established in 1971 to

encourage, promote and celebrate the best contemporary British writing.

The Costa Book Awards have the single aim of celebrating the most enjoyable books of the last

year by writers based in the UK and Ireland and have five categories: Novel, First Novel, Biography,

Poetry and Children's Book.

About Costa:

With over 1390 coffee shops across the UK and more than 800 internationally, Costa is a global success story with a growing network of retail sites. In addition to our Costa-owned shops, we also operate both corporate and individual franchises: Corporate, Individual, International Franchising.