Recent Prize Winner

Students need to read one recent prize winner or short list nominee. There are four prizes which are in this category:

Man Booker (
Pulitzer (
Costa Book Awards (
National Book Award (

Recent is seen as the last ten years. Any novel older than ten years will be automatically placed in the ‘Open Option’ category.

Nominees (short listed, finalists) will only be mentioned when a student has put it on his or her list. Complete lists of nominees can be found at their appropriate websites.

Man Booker

The Man Booker Prize for Fiction is a literary prize awarded each year for the best original novel, written in the English language, and published in the UK. The winner of the Man Booker Prize is generally assured of international renown and success; therefore, the prize is of great significance for the book trade. The Man Booker prize is awarded every October.

Man Booker (website)

2011 – Julian Barnes, The Sense of an Ending

2012 – Hillary Mantel, Bring up the Bodies

2013 – Eleanor Catton, The Luminaries

2013 – Jim Crace, Harvest

2014 – Richard Flanagan, The Narrow Road to the Deep North

2014 – Ali Smith, How to be Both

2015 – Marlon James, A Brief History of Seven Killings

2016 – Paul Beaty, The Sellout

2017 – George Saunders, Lincoln in the Bardo

2018 – Anna BurnsMilkman

2019 (1) – Margaret AtwoodThe Testaments

2019 (2) – Bernardine EvaristoGirl, Woman, Other

2020 – Douglas StuartShuggie Bain

2021 –  Damon GalgutThe Promise

2022 – Shehan KarunatilakaThe Seven Moons of Maali Almeida


Pulitzer Prize

The Pulitzer Prize for Fiction is one of the seven American Pulitzer Prizes that are annually awarded for Letters, Drama, and Music. It recognizes distinguished fiction by an American author, preferably dealing with American life, published during the preceding calendar year. The Pulitzer Prize is awarded every April.

A full list can be found here (including finalists, which are the ‘nominees’): Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

Pulitzer (website)

2011 – Jennifer Egan, A Visit from the Goon Squad

2012 – no award

2013 – Adam Johnson, The Orphan Master’s Son

2014 – Donna Tartt, The Goldfinch

2015 – Anthony Doerr, All the Light We Cannot See

2016 – Viet Thanh Nguyen, The Sympathizer

2017 – Colson Whitehead, The Underground Railroad

2018 – Andrew Sean Greer, Less

2019 – Richard Powers, The Overstory

2020 – Colson WhiteheadThe Nickel Boys

2021 – Louise ErdrichThe Night Watchman

2022 – Joshua CohenThe Netanyahus


Costa Book Award (discontinued)

The Costa Book Awards are a set of annual literary awards recognising English-language books by writers based in Britain and Ireland. They were inaugurated for 1971 publications and known as the Whitbread Book Awards until 2006 when Costa Coffee, a subsidiary of Whitbread, took over sponsorship. There are six awards,. Most relevant here are the Novel Award and the Book of the Year Award. If the Book of the Year (BotY) award is a novel, it is also mentioned. The Costa Book Award was discontinued in February 2022.

Costa Book Award (website) 

2011 – Andrew Miller, Pure

2012 – Hilary Mantel, Bring Up The Bodies

2013 – Kate Atkinson, Life After Life

2013 (BotY)- Nathan Filer, The Shock of the Fall

2014 – Ali Smith, How to be both

2015 – Kate Atkinson, A God in Ruins

2016 – Sebastian Barry, Days Without End

2017 – Jon McGregor, Reservoir 13

2018 – Sally Rooney, Normal People

2019 – Jonathan Coe, Middle England [goodreads]

2020 – Monique Roffey – The Mermaid of Black Conch: A Love Story [goodreads]

2021 – Claire Fuller, Unsettled Ground


National Book Award

The National Book Award for Fiction is one of five annual National Book Awards, which recognize outstanding literary work by United States citizens. Winners are announced in November.

National Book Award (website)

2011 – Jesmyn Ward – Salvage the Bones

2012 – Louise Erdrich – The Round House

2013 – James McBride – The Good Lord Bird

2014 – Phil Klay – Redeployment

2015 – Adam Johnson – Fortune Smiles

2016 – Colson WhiteheadThe Underground Railroad

2017 – Jesmyn Ward – Sing, Unburied, Sing

2018 – Sigrid Nunez – The Friend

2019 – Susan Choi – Trust Exercise

2020 – Charles Yu – Interior Chinatown

2021 – Jason Mott – Hell of a Book

2021 – Anthony DoerrCloud Cuckoo Land

2022 – Tess Gunty  – The Rabbit Hutch

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