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English language Wales Book of the Year 2022 shortlist announced

01 Jul 2022 4 minute read
The English Wales Book of the Year 2022 shortlist

Literature Wales have revealed the names of the books that have been shortlisted for this year’s English language Wales Book of the Year Award.

The four shortlists – Poetry, Fiction, Creative Factual and Children and Young People – were announced on BBC Radio Wales’ Drive show with Colette Hume.

The English-language winners will be announced on BBC Radio Wales on the 29 July.

The Welsh language shortlist was announced last month.

A total of £14,000 will be shared among the winners, and each winner will receive a trophy designed by artist and blacksmith Angharad Pearce Jones.

English@BangorUni Poetry Award 

A Voice Coming From Then, -Jeremy Dixon (Arachne Press)

Inhale/Exile, – Abeer Ameer (Seren Books)

The Sorry Tale of the Mignonette - Angela Gardner (Shearsman Books)

Creative Non-Fiction Award 

Roots Home: Essays and a Journal - Gillian Clarke (Carcanet)

The Journey is Home: Notes from a Life on the Edge - John Sam Jones (Parthian)

The Long Field, – Pamela Petro (Little Toller Books)

Rhys Davies Trust Fiction Award 

I am the Mask Maker and other stories, – Rhiannon Lewis (Victorina Press)

Plain Sluts – Sian Hughes (STORGY Books)

The Fortune Men -  Nadifa Mohamed (Viking, Penguin Random House)

Children and Young People Award 

Daydreams and Jellybeans - Alex Wharton (Firefly Press)

The Shark Caller – Zillah Bethell (Usborne)

The Valley of Lost Secrets – Lesley Parr (Bloomsbury Children’s Books)


This year’s English-language judging panel includes poet and writer Krystal Lowe, journalist and broadcaster Andy Welch, author and presenter Matt Brown, and poet and recipient of a 2020 Rising Star Award, Taylor Edmonds.

On behalf of the Judging Panel, Andy Welch said:  “I was thrilled to be invited to join the judging panel of the WBOTY prize, and was bowled over by the quality among the entrants.

“Whittling down so many books to a Short List was no easy task, but we believe we’ve selected a dozen books that fully reflect the highly original, thoroughly entertaining, diverse nature of Welsh literary talent.”

Readers will also be given an opportunity to vote for their favourite book as part of the Wales Arts Review People’s Choice Award.

The Welsh language shortlist announced last month were:

The Welsh@BangorUni Fiction Award

Mori – Ffion Dafis (Y Lolfa)

Hela – Aled Hughes (Y Lolfa)

Hannah-Jane – Lleucu Roberts (Y Lolfa)

The Welsh Poetry Award

Cawod Lwch – Rhys Iorwerth (Gwasg Carreg Gwalch)

Merch y Llyn – Grug Muse (Cyhoeddiadau’r Stamp)

Stafelloedd Amhenodol – Iestyn Tyne (Cyhoeddiadau’r Stamp)

The Welsh Factual Award

Dod ’Nôl at fy Nghoed – Carys Eleri (Y Lolfa)

Paid â Bod Ofn – Non Parry (Y Lolfa)

Eigra: Hogan Fach o’r Blaenau – Eigra Lewis Roberts (Gwasg y Bwthyn)

The Welsh Children and Young People Award

Pam? – Luned Aaron a Huw Aaron (Y Lolfa)

Gwag y Nos – Sioned Wyn Roberts (Atebol)

Y Pump – various authors (Y Lolfa)

‘Celebrating literature’

The Welsh shortlist was selected by broadcaster Mirain Iwerydd, presenter and columnist Melanie Owen, academic, editor and author Siwan Rosser, and director, poet and author Gwion Hallam.

On behalf of the judging panel, Melanie Owen says it was “great privilege to be a member of the panel”.

“I love reading and writing, so to enjoy the work of some of Wales’ best writers was a dream,” he said.

“It’s very true to say that the panel discussions have been lively and passionate – which was no wonder with so much talent on the table in front of us.

“The quality of all the books has made the choices difficult, but what a wonderful opportunity to celebrate Welsh literature. ”

Readers will also be given an opportunity to vote for their favourite book as part of the Golwg360 People’s Choice Award.

‘Show appreciation’

“Alongside the main literature ceremonies of our Eisteddfodau and Hay Festival, the Book of the Year Award is a highlight in the Welsh calendar of readers and lovers,” said Leusa Llewelyn, Acting Co-Chief Executive of Literature Wales.

“It’s a lively time on social media discussing our favourite books, guessing who’s on the list, celebrating successes and sometimes complaining that our favourites haven’t reached the list!

“But most of all, it is an opportunity for us to show appreciation to our talented writers – to thank them for entertaining us, and for creating an escape for us between the covers of their books.

“This is more true than ever after two challenging years, and for that, our thanks are greater than ever.”

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Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
2 years ago

John Sam Jones once Mayor of Abermaw, a Brexit ‘casualty’, he moved to Germany and Wales lost a good man…wishing you health, happiness and an award…

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