The Kills, Richard House's epic multimedia novel told in four parts, has been shortlisted for the Gordon Burn prize.

The prize was set up to pay tribute to Gordon Burn, who wrote several novels and non-fiction books as well as being a journalist before his death in 2009. An incisive, undaunted writer, Newcastle-born Burn was a literary polymath, writing forensically on subjects ranging from celebrity to serial killers, politics to contemporary art, sport to the media; the winner of the prize will be someone who follows Gordon's lead.

The judges – comedian, actor and musician Julian Barratt, poet John Burnside, artist Sarah Lucas, and novelist Benjamin Myers, winner of the 2013 Gordon Burn Prize – must choose between House's novel and five other books: 

The Valley by Richard Benson (Bloomsbury) 
The Wake by Paul Kingsnorth (Unbound)
The Trip to Echo Spring by Olivia Laing (Canongate)
American Interior by Gruff Rhys (Hamish Hamilton)
The Free by Willy Vlautin (Faber & Faber)

The winner will be announced on 10 October at a special event at Durham Book Festival at 6.30 p.m. in Durham Town Hall, with the shortlisted authors reading from their work.