The British Book Awards

The British Book Awards Books of the Year 2019 Winners

It is with enormous pleasure that we present the winners of the British Book Awards or Nibbies led by none other than Waterstones’ Book of the Year 2018, Sally Rooney’s peerless novel, Normal People, which scooped the coveted Book of the Year award.

Normal People is fiction at its brightest and most relatable: clever yet unpretentious, literary yet highly approachable – it is that rare gift of a novel which can be enjoyed by readers of all tastes. Sally Rooney’s debut was a huge hit, but with Normal People Faber have cemented her reputation as the voice of her generation and one of the most exciting novelists around today.”

BEA CARVALHO, FICTION BUYER AT WATERSTONES

Rooney’s novel faced stiff competition for the accolade, including Michelle Obama’s inspiring memoir, Becoming – which won category awards for Non-Fiction: Narrative Book of the Year and Audiobook of the Year – and titan David Walliams, who won in the Children’s Fiction category with Ice Monster.

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Our Waterstones Book of the Year 2018, now available in paperback, is the ultimate contemporary, coming-of-age romance. Capturing the zeitgeist with all the skill and subtlety of her debut, Conversations with Friends, Sally Rooney’s Normal People follows the intersecting story of Marianne and Connell as they navigate the changing landscape of their relationship into adulthood. Both a study of how one person can irrevocably shape another, and a profound examination of love, power and influence, it is the novel of our time.

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Unique in rewarding books that are not only brilliantly written but expertly published, the British Book Awards are the leading awards for the book industry and celebrate the breadth of publishing across eight shortlists. Other 2019 category victors were the internationally bestselling, Prix Goncourt-winning novel Lullaby by Franco-Moroccan author Leila Slimani, which took Debut of the Year; former Waterstones Thriller of the Month, Our House by Louise Candlish which triumphed in Crime & Thrillers and Henry Firth and Ian Theasby’s hit plant-based cookbook BOSH!, which won Non-Fiction: Lifestyle. Newly introduced for 2019, the Children’s Illustrated and Non-Fiction category was won by Matthew Syed’s inspirational guide, You Are Awesome. There was also recognition for two leading lights of fiction, with Lee Child voted in as Author of the Year and Judith Kerr named as Illustrator of the Year.

Debut Book of the Year Winner

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Attracting rapturous acclaim and virulent controversy in equal measure Slimani’s uncompromising psychological thriller is the one of the most talked about debuts in years. When a chic Parisian couple engage an experienced nanny to look after their two young children, they appear to have found the perfect domestic solution. But as relationships become increasingly strained and burning jealousies explode into the open, events begin take a chillingly dark turn. A taut, terrifying snapshot of a privileged family in freefall which is simply unputdownable. ‘This tense, deftly written novel… will take your breath away’ – The Guardian

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Debut Book of the Year Shortlist

The Mermaid and Mrs Hancock
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Never Greener
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The Tattooist of Auschwitz
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Dear Mrs Bird
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Lullaby
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The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle
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Fiction Book of the Year Winner

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Our Waterstones Book of the Year 2018, now available in paperback, is the ultimate contemporary, coming-of-age romance. Capturing the zeitgeist with all the skill and subtlety of her debut, Conversations with Friends, Sally Rooney’s Normal People follows the intersecting story of Marianne and Connell as they navigate the changing landscape of their relationship into adulthood. Both a study of how one person can irrevocably shape another, and a profound examination of love, power and influence, it is the novel of our time.

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Fiction Book of the Year Shortlist

Transcription
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Milkman
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Still Me
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Normal People
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Tombland
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Why Mummy Swears
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Crime & Thriller Book of the Year Winner

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Our House is a tantalising marriage of pitch perfect premise and whip- smart structure that confirms Louise Candlish as one of the most compelling storytellers around. When a family attempt to move in to a house which is not even up for sale, a chain of events is set in motion that will lead to shocking revelations and devastating consequences. Pacy, disturbing and never predictable, Our House is the definition of a one-sitting thriller.   

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Crime & Thriller Book of the Year Shortlist

Our House
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The Woman in the Window
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The Wife Between Us
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Close to Home
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Macbeth
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In a House of Lies
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Non-Fiction Lifestyle Book of the Year Winner

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Bringing together 140 totally plant-based recipes - from show-stoppers to cocktails and one-pot crowd pleasers to delicious desserts - the first cookery book from food entrepreneurs Henry Firth and Ian Theasby demonstrates just why 1.4 million eager amateur chefs sought them out online. Revolutionising the world of plant-based cuisine, Bosh! features recipes that are quick, easy and fun to make as well as being completely meat-free. 

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Non-Fiction Lifestyle Book of the Year Shortlist

Slay In Your Lane
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BOSH!
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Lose Weight for Good
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Ottolenghi SIMPLE
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The Ordnance Survey Puzzle Book
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Non-Fiction Narrative Book of the Year Winner

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In a life filled with meaning and accomplishment, Michelle Obama has emerged as one of the most iconic and compelling women of our era.

As First Lady of the United States of America - the first African-American to serve in that role - she helped create the most welcoming and inclusive White House in history.

She also established herself as the most powerful advocate for women and girls in the U.S. and around the world, dramatically changing the ways that families pursue healthier and more active lives, and standing with her husband as he led America through some of its most harrowing moments.

Along the way, she showed us a few dance moves, crushed Carpool Karaoke, and raised two down-to-earth daughters under an unforgiving media glare.

In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her-from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world's most famous address.

With unerring honesty and lively wit, she describes her triumphs and her disappointments, both public and private, telling her full story as she has lived it-in her own words and on her own terms.

Warm, wise, and revelatory, Becoming is the deeply personal reckoning of a woman of soul and substance who has steadily defied expectations-and whose story inspires us to do the same.

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Non-Fiction Narrative Book of the Year Shortlist

Everything I Know About Love
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First Man In
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Becoming
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The Secret Barrister
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The Language of Kindness
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Fire and Fury
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Children's Fiction Book of the Year Winner

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The all-conquering David Walliams takes to the wintry wilds of the arctic for his most thrilling and epic novel yet. When Elsie, an intrepid Victorian orphan, hears tell of a 10,000 year old woolly mammoth being discovered at the North Pole it kick-starts the expedition of a lifetime. Written with the winning combination of humour and heart that Walliams has made his own, The Ice Monster is a modern children’s classic in the making.

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Children's Fiction Book of the Year Shortlist

Children of Blood and Bone
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The House with Chicken Legs
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Head Kid
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The Skylarks' War
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The Ice Monster
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My Mum Tracy Beaker
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Children's Illustrated & Non-Fiction Book of the Year Winner

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The two-time Olympian and bestselling author of Bounce and Black Box Thinking turns his expertise to inspiring the next generation with the confidence to really achieve their potential. Full of hands-on techniques and step by step guidance, it’s a powerful, positive tool to help children find their self-belief.

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Children's Illustrated & Non-Fiction Book of the Year Shortlist

Stories for Boys Who Dare to be Different
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Politics for Beginners
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Oi Duck-billed Platypus!
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You Are Awesome
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