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Parliamentary Book Awards Shortlist Unveiled

Parliamentary Book Awards Shortlist Unveiled

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Ruth Davidson, Alan Johnson, Tessa Jowell and Yuval Noah Harari among shortlist. Shortlist highlights fight for gender equality in modern politics. 

London. 7 November 2018: Ruth Davidson, Alan Johnson, Tessa Jowell, Isabel Hardman and Yuval Noah Harari are among those on the shortlist for the 2018 Parliamentary Book Awards, the only political book awards voted for by parliamentarians.

Launched by the Booksellers Association and the Publishers Association in 2016, the annual awards champion the best of political writing and celebrate the link between politics and publishing.

The awards celebrate parliamentary writing across three categories: Best Memoir by a Parliamentarian; Best Non-Fiction by a Parliamentarian; and Best Political Book by a non-Parliamentarian.

Parliamentary Book Awards 2018 Shortlist:

Best Memoir by a Parliamentarian

  • In My Life: A Music Memoir by Alan Johnson (Transworld)
  • Confessions of a Political Maverick by Austin Mitchell (Biteback)
  • Confessions of a Recovering MP by Nick de Bois (Biteback)
  • The Power of Politicians by Tessa Jowell and Frances D’ Souza, edited and with an introduction by Claire Foster-Gilbert (Haus Publishing published with the Westminster Abbey Institute)

Best Non-Fiction by a Parliamentarian

  • Equal Power: Gender Equality and How to Achieve It by Jo Swinson (Atlantic)
  • Yes She Can: Why Women Own The Future by Ruth Davidson (Hodder)
  • Adam Smith: What He Thought, and Why it Matters by Jesse Norman (Penguin)
  • Eve Was Shamed: How British Justice is Failing Women by Helena Kennedy (Random House)

Best Political Book by a Non-Parliamentarian

  • 21 Lessons for the 21st Century by Yuval Noah Harari (Random House)
  • Why We Get The Wrong Politicians by Isabel Hardman (Atlantic)
  • Poverty Safari: Understanding the Anger of Britain's Underclass by Darren McGarvey (Picador)

Publishers were invited to nominate books and authors for the awards, and the shortlist was drawn up by booksellers. Voting is now open for parliamentarians to decide the winner in each category.

The awards will be presented by political editor and journalist Pippa Crerar at a parliamentary reception in the House of Commons on 4 December.

Stephen Lotinga, the Chief Executive of the Publishers Association, said: “Great political writing offers us a lens through which we can examine our society and the world around us. This year’s shortlist of authors provides us with many profound insights into the tumultuous events of the last year, touching on important themes of gender, equality and the nature of power. I look forward to celebrating all of these important books at the House of Commons in December.”

Meryl Halls, Managing Director of the Booksellers Association, said: “The Parliamentary Book Awards showcase the incredible range of political writing today, and we are looking forward to celebrating this year’s shortlist of interesting and important books. The shortlist, voted on by Britain’s booksellers, highlights some of the most pressing issues in 2018, exploring gender politics, poverty, and the responsibilities of politicians to the public. It is now up to our parliamentarians to vote for their favourites in the coming weeks.” 

2017’s awards saw a number of significant political figures emerge as winners, from Nick Clegg with How to Stop Brexit (And Make Britain Great Again), to Harriet Harman for her memoir A Woman’s Work, in which she discussed her career as Britain's longest-serving female MP. Best Political Book by a Non-Parliamentarian was won by Brendan Cox for his touching portrait of his late wife, murdered MP, Jo Cox.

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