London, 22nd January 2016: With the culmination of the 2015 Costa Book Awards just days away, the latest odds from bookmakers William Hill have debut novelist, Andrew Michael Hurley, winner of the Costa First Novel Award, as favourite for the Costa Book of the Year with The Loney: a slow-burn gothic horror story the judges called ‘as close to the perfect first novel as you can get’.
In second place is novelist and 1995 Book of the Year winner, Kate Atkinson, with A God in Ruins: the story ofTeddy Todd – would-be poet, RAF bomber pilot, husband and father – as he navigates the perils and progress of the 20th century, winner of the Costa Novel Award at 3-1.
Close behind in third place is historian and writer Andrea Wulf, winner of the Costa Biography Award, for The Invention of Nature: The Adventures of Alexander Von Humboldt, The Lost Hero of Science at 4-1. Biography won the 2014 Book of the Year with H is for Hawk by Helen Macdonald, her personal account of training a goshawk as a way of dealing with grief following her father’s death.
In joint fourth place at 5-1 are Young Adult fiction and children’s writer Frances Hardinge, winner of the Costa Children’s Book Award for The Lie Tree: a Victorian murder mystery; and Scottish poet, writer and musician Don Paterson for his latest collection, 40 Sonnets, which the judges called ‘a tour de force by a poet at the height of his powers..’
The odds are:
Andrew Michael Hurley, The Loney 6/4
Kate Atkinson, A God in Ruins 3/1
Andrea Wulf, The Invention of Nature 4/1
Frances Hardinge, The Lie Tree 5/1
Don Paterson, 40 Sonnets 5/1
The Costa Book Awards is the only major UK book prize open solely to authors resident in the UK and Ireland. Uniquely, it recognises the most enjoyable books across five categories – First Novel, Novel, Biography, Poetry and Children’s Book - published in the last year.
Originally established in 1971 by Whitbread Plc, Costa announced its takeover of the sponsorship of the UK's most prestigious book prize in 2006. 2015 marks the 44th year of the Book Awards.
The five Costa Book Award winners, each of whom will receive £5,000, were selected from 638 entries. The five books are now eligible for the ultimate prize, the 2015 Costa Book of the Year, worth a further £30,000.
The 2015 Costa Book of the Year winner will be announced at an awards ceremony at Quaglino’s in central London on Tuesday 26th January 2016 by a panel of judges chaired by writer and Ottakar’s founder James Heneage and including comedian and actress Katy Brand, actress and author Jane Asher and broadcaster, writer and actress Janet Ellis.
The winner of the Costa Short Story Award, voted for by the public, will also be announced that evening.
For more information:
For further press information, to arrange an interview with any of the category winning authors or members of the final judging panel, please contact Amanda Johnson on 07715 922 180 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Founded in London by Italian brothers Sergio and Bruno Costa in 1971, Costa is the UK’s favourite coffee shop, having been awarded “Best Branded Coffee Shop Chain in the UK and Ireland" by Allegra Strategies for six years running (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 & December 2015).
With over 2,000 coffee shops in the UK and more than 1,880 shops in 30 overseas markets, Costa has diversified into both the at-home and gourmet self-serve markets. There are now more than 4,275 Costa Express self-serve machines in the UK.
In the UK Costa employs over 16,000 people and creates around 1,500 jobs each year.
Costa is committed to looking after coffee-growers. That's why we've established The Costa Foundation, a registered charity. The Costa Foundation's aims are to relieve poverty, advance education and the health and environment of coffee-growing communities around the world. So far, The Costa Foundation has funded the building of 46 schools and improved the social and economic welfare of coffee-growing communities.