The shortlist for this year's Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction has just been announced, and here it is:
The Zone of Interest by Martin Amis
The Lie by Helen Dunmore
Viper Wine by Hermione Eyre
In the Wolf's Mouth by Adam Foulds
Arctic Summer by Damon Galgut
A God in Every Stone by Kamila Shamsie
The Ten Thousand Things by John Spurling
Chair of Judges Alistair Moffat said of the list, "[these] seven fantastic novels represent the diversity and breadth of style that the genre of historical fiction now encompasses – from the poetic to the experimental, and from satire to adventure, writing set in the past can challenge, excite and innovate in a hundred different ways."
It's worth noting also that the judging criteria include "originality and innovation, quality of writing, and a strong narrative," and for the purposes of the Prize, "‘historical’ means that the majority of the events described in the books must have taken place at least 60 years before publication. This definition comes from the subtitle of Sir Walter Scott’s novel Waverley; Or, ’Tis Sixty Years Since". So now we know!
Click here to see which of the longlisted books didn't make the cut.