The Rathbones Folio Prize announced the shortlists for the literary award, given annually to an outstanding work of literature “in which the subjects being explored achieve their most perfect and thrilling expression.”
For the first time since the U.K. prize was founded in 2014, the award’s organizers announced three shortlists for the prize, in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry; previously, there was just one shortlist that covered all genres.
Michelle de Kretser’s Scary Monsters, a Kirkus Prize finalist, made the fiction shortlist, as did NoViolet Bulawayo’s Glory, which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. The other fiction finalists are Sheila Heti’s Pure Colour, Daisy Hildyard’s Emergency, and Elizabeth Strout’s Lucy by the Sea.
Margo Jefferson’s Constructing a Nervous System, shortlisted for this year’s National Book Critics Circle Award for criticism, was named a nonfiction finalist, along with Will Ashon’s The Passengers, Amy Bloom’s In Love, Jonathan Freedland’s The Escape Artist, and Darren McGarvey’s The Social Distance Between Us.
In poetry, the finalists are Victoria Adukwei Bulley’s Quiet, Fiona Benson’s Ephemeron, Safiya Kamaria Kinshasa’s Cane, Corn & Gully, Zaffar Kunial’s England’s Green, and Yomi Sode’s Manorism.
The winners in each category will win a prize of about $2,465, with the overall winner taking home an additional $37,000. The category winners and overall winner will be announced at a ceremony in London on March 27.
Michael Schaub, a journalist and regular contributor to NPR, lives near Austin, Texas.