The judges of the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction have announced their longlist of 15 books for 2015.
In a change to prize protocol this year, the longlist is made public for the first time, and a six-strong shortlist announcement event in London will be held on March 24. These new developments have been prompted by an increase in entries to the prize (of 40% from 2014), and the high quality of historical fiction being currently published, reflecting the gathering prestige of the prize as it enters its fifth year.
The longlisted books are:
The Zone of Interest by Martin Amis
The Temporary Gentleman by Sebastian Barry
The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton
The Lie by Helen Dunmore
Viper Wine by Hermione Eyre
In the Wolf’s Mouth by Adam Foulds
Mr Mac and Me by Esther Freud
Arctic Summer by Damon Galgut
Wake by Anna Hope
The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth
The Undertaking by Audrey Magee
A God in Every Stone by Kamila Shamsie
The Architect’s Apprentice by Elif Shafak
The Ten Thousand Things by John Spurling
The Paying Guests by Sarah Waters
The Chair of Judges, Alistair Moffat, said, even this early, the judges found it a difficult task to slim the entries down from a record 124 to the 15-strong longlist.
“Our longlist is usually 12 but, given the strength of published work this year, and our decision to make it public for the first time, we have expanded the longlist to 15.
“We hope that by publishing the longlist, we can help point readers to some of the very best historical fiction published in the year.”
The winner of the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction 2015 will then be announced at the Borders Book Festival in Melrose in Scotland, on June 13, 2015.