Picador's award winning novels

08 December 2015

Here are a few Picador titles that have won or been shortlisted for literary prizes in 2015.

Station Eleven

Winner of the Arthur C. Clarke Award 2015 and longlisted for Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction 2015

George R. R. Martin called Station Eleven his novel of 2014, 'It's a deeply melancholy novel, but beautifully written, and wonderfully elegiac... a book that I will long remember, and return to.'

Moving backwards and forwards in time, from the glittering years just before the collapse to the strange and altered world that exists twenty years after, Station Eleven charts the unexpected twists of fate that connect six people: famous actor Arthur Leander; Jeevan – warned about the flu just in time; Arthur's first wife Miranda; Arthur's oldest friend Clark; Kirsten, a young actress with the Travelling Symphony; and the mysterious and self-proclaimed 'prophet'. 

Emily St. John Mandel talks about incorporating Shakespeare in Station Eleven

 

Mobile Libary

One of the eight winning titles of the Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize 2015

Quirky, dark, magical and full of heart, Mobile Library is both a tragicomic road trip and a celebration of the adventures that books can take us on. 

Twelve-year-old Bobby Nusku is an archivist of his mother. He catalogues traces of her life and waits for her to return home.

Bobby thinks that he's been left to face the world alone until he meets lonely single mother Val and her daughter Rosa. They spend a magical summer together, discovering the books in the mobile library where Val works as a cleaner. But as the summer draws to a close, Bobby finds himself in trouble and Val is in danger of losing her job. There's only one thing to do – and so they take to the road in the mobile library...

The life of a mobile librarian

 

The Whole and Rain-domed Universe

Winner of the Ewart-Biggs Prize

Colette Bryce was awarded a special prize in memory of Seamus Heaney as part of the the Christopher Ewart-Biggs Prize for her collection The Whole and Rain-domed Universe.

The Prize was instituted in memory of the British Ambassador to Ireland who was murdered by the IRA in 1976 with the aim of promoting and encouraging peace and reconciliation in Ireland, a greater understanding between the peoples of Britain and Ireland, or closer co-operation between the partners of the European Community. 

Professor Roy Foster said of the poetry prize: ‘We also decided to award a prize in memory of Seamus Heaney, a good friend to the Prize, whose own work did so much to advance the causes for which it was founded. The strikingly assured, subtle and moving collection of poems by the Derry poet Colette Bryce constitute an utterly appropriate winner for this special award.’

Read 'Derry' from The Whole and Rain-domed Universe

 

Harvest

Winner of the International IMPAC DUBLIN Literary Award

Set in an unnamed part of rural England in an unnamed time (though for the agriculturally aware of you, we know this is pre-enclosure farming), it tracks the disintegration of one village over the course of seven days. It is a hypnotic story of land pillaged and communities scattered, of the influences of myth, suspicion and the alarming encroachment of modernity.  

'Jim is a storyteller in the most consummate sense: we follow him wherever he wants to take us, and return with our own world that bit larger, too.' – Kate Harvey, editor of Harvest

If you're new to Crace's writing, here's why you should start reading him now!

 

In the Light of What We Know

Winner of the James Tait Black Prize for Fiction

Zia Haider Rahman's astounding debut novel roams from London to Kabul and New York to Islamabad as we listen to one man tell an old friend the story of his life since he disappeared. The characters wrestle with unshakeable legacies of class and culture as the novel pushes at the great questions of love, origins, science, faith and war.

Read the first chapter

 

A Little Life

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2015

A Little Life is a depiction of heartbreak, and a dark examination of the tyranny of memory and the limits of human endurance.

When four graduates from a small Massachusetts college move to New York to make their way, they're broke, adrift, and buoyed only by their friendship and ambition. There is kind, handsome Willem, an aspiring actor; JB, a quick-witted, sometimes cruel Brooklyn-born painter seeking entry to the art world; Malcolm, a frustrated architect at a prominent firm; and withdrawn, brilliant, enigmatic Jude, who serves as their centre of gravity. Over the decades, their relationships deepen and darken, tinged by addiction, success, and pride. Yet their greatest challenge, each comes to realise, is Jude himself, by midlife a terrifyingly talented litigator yet an increasingly broken man, his mind and body scarred by an unspeakable childhood, and haunted by what he fears is a degree of trauma that he'll not only be unable to overcome – but that will define his life forever.

Ravi Mirchandani, editor of A Little Life, talks about his first impression of Hanya Yanagihara

 

The Last Act of Love

Shortlisted for The Portico Prize for Non-Fiction

Cathy Rentzenbrink's memoir The Last Act of Love is the incredibly moving story of the accident her brother, Matty, was involved in just weeks before his GCSE results came out, and how it changed the life of everyone in her family forever.

It is unflinchingly honest and, in spite of the tragedy at the heart of the book, an uplifting story of family, love, grief and friendship. 

A Q&A with Cathy Rentzenbrink

 

The Beautiful Librarians

Shortlisted for the T S Eliot Prize

The Beautiful Librarians is a stock-taking of sorts, and a celebration of those unsung but central figures in our culture, often overlooked by both capital and official account. Here we find infantrymen, wrestlers, old lushes in the hotel bar – but none more heroic than the librarians of the title, those silent and silencing guardians of literature and knowledge who, the poet reminds us, also had lives of their own to be celebrated.

Read 'Long Wave' from The Beautiful Librarians

 

Tender

Shortlisted for the Bord Gáis Energy Irish Book Awards 2015

Catherine and James are as close as two friends could ever be. They meet in Dublin in the late 1990s, she a college student, he a fledgling artist – both recent arrivals from rural communities, coming of age in a city which is teeming – or so they are told – with new freedoms, new possibilities.

Catherine has never met anyone quite like James. He helps Catherine to open her eyes, to take on life with more gusto than she has ever before known how to do. While Catherine's horizons are expanding, James' own life is becoming a prison: as changed as the new Ireland may be, it is still not a place in which he feels able to be himself. Catherine desperately wants to help, but as life begins to take the friends in different directions, she discovers that there is a perilously fine line between helping someone and hurting them further. And when crisis hits, Catherine must face difficult truths not just about her closest bond – but about herself.

'Tender charts the marshy territory of friendship, obsession and love, and offers no easy path. McKeon’s immersive, unflinching yet humane portrait of Catherine makes Tender richly nuanced and utterly absorbing.' – Catherine O’Flynn, The Guardian

Read an extract