This year’s slate includes lots of underdogs: the majority of the longlist books come from independent publishers. The diverse list includes a couple of American works, including writer Nell Zink’s debut, The Wallcreeper. Zink rose to prominence after being discovered by Jonathan Franzen, who exchanged letters with her about birds–both are birdwatchers.
Since its creation in 1999, the Guardian First Book Award has been given annually to the best fiction debut in any genre. The prize is worth £10,000, or about $15,600 US. Previous winners include Zadie Smith (for White Teeth) and Jonathan Safran Foer (for Everything is Illuminated). Last year’s winner was Colin Barrett, for Young Skins.
View the complete list below, and check back with us for the winners when they’re announced in November!
Man V. Nature by Diane Cook
Mrs. Engels by Gavin McCrea
Physical by Andrew McMillan
The Fish Ladder by Katharine Norbury
The Fishermen by Chigozie Obioma
Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible by Peter Pomerantsev
Grief Is the Thing with Feathers by Max Porter
The Shore by Sara Taylor
The Wallcreeper by Nell Zink
Spill Simmer Falter Wither by Sara Baume