This year marks the 25th anniversary of the prize and includes an impressive list of authors we hold dear to our hearts.
Valentines Day is just around the corner, and we’ve got just the thing for you— What do you mean you have plans?! Well you won’t once you hear what we have in store. Seriously! Your other half’s rose petal-strewn proposal will pale in comparison. Ready?
We’ve got fifty (YES, FIFTY, 5-0!) roasting hot romance novels to give away. That’s right, these romances, valued at over $500, are so supremely sexy they’ll have you cancelling any plans you had for Valentine’s Day 2020, and beyond. And not only that, but many copies are signed by the authors!
Loki Ascending – Asa Maria Bradley
From Duke Till Dawn (signed by author!) – Eva Leigh
Duchess By Design (signed by author!) – Maya Rodale
Reverb – Anna Zabo
Wrong To Need You (signed by author!) – Alisha Rai
You May Kiss the Bride – Lisa Berne
Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover (signed by author!) – Sarah MacLean
Deadly Obsession – April Hunt
Lady Claire Is All That (signed by author!) – Maya Rodale
The Way Back to You – Sharon Sala
Forget Me Not – Brenda Jackson
A Cowboy Never Quits – Cindi Madsen
Texas Destiny (signed by author!) – Lorraine Heath
Second Chance Cowboy (signed by author!) – A.J. Pine
Risk It All – Katie Ruggle
Forget Me Not – Brenda Jackson
What Ales the Earl (signed by author!) – Sally MacKenzie
The One for You – Roni Loren
Their Perfect Melody (signed by author!) – Priscilla Oliveras
Make Me Yours – Katee Robert
Springtime at Hope Cottage (signed by author!) – RaeAnne Thayne
Touch the Sky (signed by author!) – Kari Cole
The Trouble With Cowboy Weddings (signed by author!) – Nicole Helm
Project Duchess (signed by author!) – Sabrina Jeffries
Dominate Me (signed by author!) – Stacey Lynn
Claimed – Alexa Riley
Cowboys & Harvey Girls: Pathfinder – Anna Schmidt
The Wish – Patricia Davids
The One I Love to Hate (signed by author!) – Amanda Weaver
Relentless (signed by author!) – Elizabeth Dyer
Flirting With First (signed by author!) – Sophia Summers, Heather B. Moore, Rebecca Connolly
Dirty Damsels (signed by author!) – Peggy Jaeger
Hot to the Touch (signed by author!) – Jaci Burton
Acting on Impulse (signed by author!) – Mia Sosa
Blood Surfer (signed by author!) – Debra Jess
Let the Good Times Roll (signed by author!) – Melanie Greene
The Friend Zone – Abby Jimenez
When We Left Cuba (signed by author!) – Chanel Cleeton
All Your Perfects – Colleen Hoover
The Amish Christmas Letters (signed by author!) – Patricia Davids, Sarah Price, Jennifer Beckstrand
A Princess in Theory – Alyssa Cole
Dalliances & Devotion (signed by author!) – Felicia Grossman
Blood Hunter – Debra Jess
A Secret Rose (signed by author!) – Debra Jess
Bayou Vows (signed by author!) – Geri Krotow
Hard Night (signed by author!) – Jackie Ashenden
So what are you waiting for? Enter now for your chance to win your reading material for the next year!
The Booker Prize has been a principal barometer of the British literary community since 1969, and since 2014, has considered all original fiction written in English. If you don’t have time to read all 13 books on the long list (a Booker dozen), and you don’t want to wait for the short list in September or the winner in October, here are our top picks.
Image via Amazon
This is a gallows humor slasher about the things you do for the ones you love. Morally unencumbered, capturing the complexities of sibling life, this is a page turner you won’t want to put down. It’s already won several awards, including the LA Times Award for Best Crime Thriller and the Field Notes Morning News Tournament of Books, as well as being shortlisted for the Women’s Prize for Fiction, and optioned for a movie.
This is Braithewaite’s debut, but already shows a distinct, explosive voice, and has been perhaps one of the most publicized of the long list novels. Anyone with a taste for killers, or good female villains in general, should pick this up, but you don’t have to be a slasher fan to enjoy this novel.
2. Quichotte – Salman Rushdie
Image via Amazon
Quichotte won’t be released until September, but the modern retelling of Don Quixote promises Rushdie’s signature blend of reality and magical realism, with both a commitment to the source material and the devastating strangeness of the present age.
Salman Rushdie has long been a towering figure in literature. Both literary and surrealist, Rushdie has won a battery of awards for his 13 previous books, including the Eggerton prize, and promotion to Commandeur in the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, Frances greatest literary honor. Rushdie has won the booker three times, including the 25th and 40th anniversary prizes.
It may not be out yet, but it can be prehumously recommended on anticipation.
Image via Amazon
This pick is both more tragic and more fantastical, narrated by the guardian spirit of a lovelorn chicken farmer. In love with a wealthy woman, and cheated out of everything he’s ever had, this book explores suicide, loss, and abandonment all through the lens of a narrator who is both hundreds of years old and removed from humanity. The prose is rich and ethereal, and explores what victimhood does to a person, and how far it’s possible to fall – all while traveling the world and more astral spaces.
This is Obioma’s second novel, and his first was short listed for the Booker Prize, so it’s a good bet this year.
Featured image via The Irish Times
‘Richest’ here does not mean substantial content of the short stories — although each of these eighteen stories undoubtedly has that too. ‘Richest’ here literally means the most money. The winner of this award will receive £30,000 ($38,074.95), which is the largest amount offered in any English language short story prize contest.
The prize in question is for The Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award. It is open to any writer who has been published in Ireland or the UK. The story must be under 6,000 words. The longlist has just been announced and the eighteen writers include both well known names and less familiar up and coming writers.
The more well known names include A.M. Homes and Emma Cline. Homes, the author of over ten books, is nominated for her story, “The National Caged Bird Show.” Cline, the author of the bestselling novel The Girls, is nominated for her story, “What Can You Do With a General.”
The full list:
Kathleen Alcott, “Natural Light”
Kevin Barry, “The Coast of Leitrim”
Emma Cline, “What You Can Do With a General”
Paul Dalla Rosa, “Comme”
Joe Dunthorne, “All the Poems Contained within Will Means Everything to Everyone”
Wendy Erskine, “Inakeen”
A.M. Homes, “The National Caged Bird Show”
Caoillin Hughes, “Prime”
Louise Kennedy, “In Silhouette”
Toby Litt, “Impatience”
Danielle McLaughlin, “A Partial List of the Saved”
Gerad Mckeague, “Wet Bloody Country”
Alecia McKenzie, “Trees”
Paddy O’Reilly, “All the Languages”
Nicholas Petty, “It is Summer at Camp Pomodoro”
Brian Van Reet, “Lazarus”
Kevin Wilson “Biology”
The shortlist for the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction, the “only award for comic writing” has been announced. Despite controversy last years when “[the prize] was withheld because no book was judged funny enough to deserve to win” the shortlist for last year’s funniest novel has been announced, and despite all the laughter there’s some stiff competition.
Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize started up the first year of the 21st century. It is dedicated to the spirit of PG Wodehouse, one of the 20th century’s funniest writers.
This year, according to Irish Times the judge’s panel consists of “musical comedian and improviser Pippa Evans; comedian Sindhu Vee; broadcaster and author James Naughtie, Everyman’s Library publisher David Campbell, and a vice-president of the Hay Festival and director of National Trust Wales, Justin Albert.”
Jen Beagin lives in New York and holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of California. She “has published stories in Juked and Faultline, among other journals and literary magazines“.
Her second novel, Vacuum in the Dark, is a sequel to her debut novel Pretend I’m Dead. Published in 2019 by Simon & Schuster, it is described by Kirkus as “a welcome sequel to one of last year’s most exciting debuts” and has been named a best book for February 2019 by Oprah Magazine.
The plot is described by Amazon as “Mona is twenty-six and cleans houses for a living in Taos, New Mexico. She moved there mostly because of a bad boyfriend—a junkie named Mr. Disgusting, long story—and her efforts to restart her life since haven’t exactly gone as planned.”
Judge Sindhu Vee is quoted as saying, “Honest (sometimes brutal), compassionate and always able to pick out what’s funny in the darkest spot. Vacuum in the Dark had me grinning in recognition and laughing even as I winced.”
Image Via Harper Collins
Already a screenwriter and editor of children’s book, Kate Davies is an English author who “lives in east London with her wife“. In at the Deep End is her debut novel.
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The novel faces sex head on as, according to Amazon, “Julia’s sexual awakening begins; her new lesbian life, as she coins it, is exhilarating. She finds her tribe at queer swing dancing classes, and guided by her new lover Sam, she soon discovers London’s gay bars and BDSM clubs, and . . . the complexities of polyamory”. In at the Deep End has been described by Kirkus Review as “Sweet but never saccharine; a literary rom-com about the importance of knowing yourself”.
Judge Pippa Evans said of the novel, “I laughed out loud reading this hilarious exploration of sexual awakening…So, so funny whilst exploring the sadness and danger of wanting to be loved.”
Image Via Penguin Books Australia
Born in 1958, Roddy Doyle is an Dublin author who has written “…five novels, including Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha, for which he won the 1993 Booker Prize, and The Woman Who Walked into Doors‘.
Image Via The Independent
Penguin summarizes the book as thus: “Meet Charlie Savage: a middle-aged Dubliner with an indefatigable wife, an exasperated daughter, a drinking buddy who’s realized that he’s been a woman all along… Compiled here for the first time is a whole year’s worth of Roddy Doyle’s hilariousseries for the Irish Independent.” In their review Irish Times wrote that “[t]here’s a knack to this character-sketch style writing. It depends on “on the money” observations and on-point humour. Writing like this is like performing stand-up: make ’em laugh and you can get away with anything” and “Doyle knows how to work a crowd.”
Judge Justin Albert called the novel is “…belly-achingly funny, surprisingly optimistic and heart-warming book written by a writer at the very height of their literary powers. A book to savour, and to re-read time and again”.
Image Via Penguin Books Australia
A native of the West Midlands, Lissa Evans was a junior doctor for four years before changing her career. It seems like she was destined for writing, given that her website says, “[s]he comes from a family of voracious readers and spent most of her adolescence in the local library, thus becoming well read if not wildly popular”.
Image Via Words With Writers
In it’s summary of the book, Amazon writes that “[d]uring the Women’s Suffrage Campaign, she was a militant who was jailed five times and never missed an opportunity to return to the fray. Now in middle age, the closest she gets to the excitement of her old life is the occasional lecture on the legacy of the militant movement”. In their review, The Guardian wrote that “[h]istorical novels frequently shine a light on contemporary mores, and Old Baggage is a timely read, not only for the anniversaries it commemorates but because of the present hostility towards feminism.”
Judge David Campbell said the novel “…is both a brilliant evocation of the suffragettes’ great struggles and a great comedy. Mattie is a wonderfully engaging figure in this beautifully written book. I loved it.”
Image Via Goodreads
Paul Ewen is a New Zealand writer based in south London. According to his website, “[h]is work has appeared in the British Council’s New Writinganthology, the Guardian, the TES, Tank, and Five Dials. Paul’s first novel, Francis Plug: How To Be A Public Author, was published by Galley Beggar Press in 2014.”
Image Via The Stray
Francis Plug: Writer in Residence is a sequel to Francis Plug: How To Be A Public Author. In their summary, Amazon writes that, “FRANCIS PLUG is back. The lovable misfit is now adjusting to life as a newly published author. Interviews and publicity are coming his way, not to mention considerable acclaim. But Francis can’t understand why people think he was writing fiction…”
Not convinced this is great? The Guardian wrote that, “Ewen has pulled off another outstandingly funny book. Plug remains wonderfully eccentric and occasionally surreal. Still looking for guidance on “the writer’s life”, and particularly preoccupied with literary prizes he might one day win, he continues to seek out acclaimed authors.”
Judge James Naughtie said that this surreal novel is “is hilarious and poignant too, cutting through the absurdity that our eponymous hero generates wherever he goes, and touching on some raw truths.”
Image Via Penguin Books
Nina Stibbe “lives in Cornwall with her partner, Mark Nunney, and their two children, Eva, 15, and Alf, 13, and their dog, Peggy“. Outstandingly, her novel Love, Nina: Despatches from Family Life was adapted by Nick Hornby for the BBC, re-titled Love, Nina, which stared Faye Marsay in the title role and Helena Bonham Carter.
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As per Amazon, Reasons to be Cheerful, is about Lizzie “seizes her chance to find love and soon begins calling him her boyfriend even though they have never so much as kissed or sat next to each other on the sofa” and, while “[n]avigating the new waters of adult life…Lizzie arrives at an unexpected, and unexpectedly moving, destination.”
The Times called the novel “unique…Arch, knowing, naive, faux-naif, humble yet self-regarding, candid yet prim…”
Judge Pippa Evans said that, “Nina Stibbe is a comic magician with detail that paints the most fantastic comedy picture. I have never considered working in a dental surgery and now have no desire at all. But I’d happily read about this one for the rest of my life!”
Image Via Irish TImes
The winner will be announced during Hay Festival (May 23rd-June 2nd), but regardless this is an impressive list. It features four female writers, including Nina Stibbe who has been nominated twice before (making this her third time nominated).
It’ll be a tough competition, but all these books will make you laugh and, through the laughter, you might learn something.
Featured Image Via Mentzendorff