Ken Clarke shortlisted for the inaugural Parliamentary Book Awards

25 November 2016

By Pan Macmillan

Ken Clarke's memoir Kind of Blue has been shortlsted for the Best Memoir by a Parliamentarian in the Parliamentary Book Awards

The awards celebrate parliamentary writing and have been launched by the Booksellers Association and the Publishers Association with the aim of highlighting the contribution made by the book and publishing industries to the economy and society. They span four categories: Best Memoir by a Parliamentarian; Best Non-Fiction by a Parliamentarian; Best Fiction by a Parliamentarian; and Best Political Book by a non-Parliamentarian.

Also on the shortlist for Best Memoir by a Parliamentarian:
Hinterland: A Memoir by former Labour MP Chris Mullin (Profile)
The Long and Winding Road by former home secretary Alan Johnson (Penguin)

Stephen Lotinga, chief executive of the Publishers Association, said: “The link between publishing and politics can be traced throughout history, from Winston Churchill winning the Nobel Prize in Literature to Baroness Ruth Rendell’s crime thrillers and murder mysteries. These awards celebrate this long tradition which remains strong today. This is an excellent shortlist and we look forward to seeing which works emerge as favourites among parliamentarians themselves.”

Members of Parliament have been invited to vote on the ultimate winner in each category, with the winners to be unveiled at an event at the House of Commons on 6th December 2016.

In Kind of Blue, Clarke charts his remarkable progress from working-class scholarship boy in Nottinghamshire to high political office and the upper echelons of both his party and of government. But Clarke is not a straightforward Conservative politician. His position on the left of the party often led Margaret Thatcher to question his true blue credentials and his passionate commitment to the European project has led many fellow Conservatives to regard him with suspicion - and cost him the leadership on no less than three occasions.

Clarke has had a ringside seat in British politics for four decades and his trenchant observations and candid account of life both in and out of government will enthral readers of all political persuasions. Vivid, witty and forthright, and taking its title not only from his politics but from his beloved Miles Davis, Kind of Blue is political memoir at its very best.

Read the first chapter