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Women's Prize for Fiction Announces 2021 Shortlist

The Women’s Prize for Fiction – one of the biggest annual, international celebrations of women’s creativity – has announced its 2021 shortlist. Now in its 26th year, the Prize honours outstanding, ambitious, original fiction written in English by women from anywhere in the world.

The shortlist

This year’s shortlist has been selected by the chair of judges Bernardine Evaristo and her judging panel, author and journalist Elizabeth Day; TV and radio presenter, journalist and writer, Vick Hope; print columnist and writer, Nesrine Malik; and news presenter and broadcaster, Sarah-Jane Mee.

Chair of judges and novelist Bernardine Evaristo says:

“Coming up with a longlist of sixteen books for this prize was relatively easy compared to whittling the selection down to six novels, why by necessity demands more consensus. Sadly. we had to lose so many exceptional books that we loved. However, with this shortlist, we are excited to present a gloriously varied and thematically rich exploration of women’s fiction at its finest. These novels will take the reader from a rural Britain left behind to the underbelly of a community in Barbados; from inside the hectic performance of social media to inside a family best by addition and oppression; from a tale of racial hierarchy in America to a mind-expanding tale of altered perceptions. Fiction by women defies easy categorisation or stereotyping, and all of these novels grapple with society’s big issues expressed through thrilling storytelling. We feel passionate about them, and we hope readers do too.”

The winner of the 2021 Women’s Prize for Fiction will be awarded on Wednesday 7 July 2021.

The Women’s Prize will be hosting a Virtual Shortlist Festival on Monday 14, Tuesday 15, Wednesday 16 June, 7.30pm, featuring Live Q&As with the shortlisted authors. These events will be hosted by Kate Mosse, Founder Director of the Prize, and will present readings from well-known actors. Tickets can be bought via Eventbrite.

Get involved

See the 2021 Prize longlist.

What do you think of the 2021 shortlisted titles? Which have you read and what will be added to your TBR pile? Add your comments below, or click any title above to leave a review.

Share your thoughts with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #WomensPrize.

Keep up with all the latest news on the Women’s Prize website.

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