The Bath Novel Award 2023 Shortlist

We are delighted to announce The Bath Novel Award 2023 Shortlist.

Established in 2013, the Bath Novel Award is an international prize for emerging novelists writing for adults and young adults.

The author of the winning manuscript, as judged by literary Agent Kate Barker, will receive £3,000 plus our exclusive Minerva trophy inspired by the iconic statue in Bath’s historic Roman Baths. All shortlistees win a compilation of readers’ comments on their full manuscript plus feedback on their extract and synopsis from Cornerstones Literary Consultancy’s Head of Scouting and Editorial Director Monica Chakraverty.

From a record 2,370 submissions of extracts and synopses, 30 novels were longlisted and we have loved reading the full manuscripts of these books.

As the prize is judged ‘blind’ we will reveal the writers’ names when the winner is announced in late September. In the meantime, many congratulations to the writers of this year’s six standout manuscripts:

AFTER THE RAIN, EARTH HARDENS – A sweeping crooked love story about gender inequality in post-war Japan.

OUT OF NOWHERE – An Australian convict goes on the run, risking everything for the chance to hold his daughter once more.

SILVERFERN – The daughter of a missing orchid hunter and an exiled expert herbalist pursues botanical miracles in Victorian Liverpool.          

SOCIAL VAMPIRE – Nerdy LA teen reluctantly relocates to smalltown Montana and becomes the school vampire.

THE GIRL WITH THE LIGHT EYES – When her daughter goes missing in a wave of kidnappings, an unmaternal Lagos mother and a dogged police officer search for the distinctive child. 

THE LOST DETECTIVE – When his fiancée is accidentally killed by a fellow officer, a Norfolk detective quits the force then turns private eye for missing persons linked to a caravan park.

Bath Novel Award Recipients

2022 FRANCESCA ROBBINS for Victoriana (Nelle Andrews, Rachel Mills Literary Agency)

2021 AP FIRDAUS for Remember My Sharma (Hachette 2023)

2020 ANDREW J KING for The Arrow Garden (Aderyn Press 2023)

2019 KATE SIMANTS for A Ruined Girl (Viper Books 2020)

2018 ABI DARÉ for The Girl with the Louding Voice (Hodder & Stoughton 2020)

2017 SOPHIE DRAPER for Cuckoo (Avon Books 2018)

2016 KIM SHERWOOD for Testament (Riverrun 2018)

2015 CLARISSA GOENAWAN for Rainbirds (Soho Press 2017)

2014 JOANNA BARNARD for Precocious (Ebury Press 2015)