BookLife Book of the Year 2017 shortlist

Vote for your BookLife Book of the Year

Article published on December 9, 2016.

Landskipping by Anna Pavord made the Wainwright longlist and was our first BookLife Book of the Month for 2016 – if you enjoy nature writing this is certainly one to check out and you can read an extract here.

Marian Keyes visits from her usual territory of BookDiva with Making It Up As I Go Along, a hilarious collection of essays on the perils of pretending you know what you’re doing when you don’t – does she have a head start having just won Popular Non-Fiction Book of the Year at the Irish Book Awards? Read an extract.

Hear from the Brontës themselves in expert Juliet Barker’s The Brontës: A Life in Letters alongside extracts from other contemporary sources and let them tell the story of their own lives – find out more, including the Brontë200 project, here.

Kate Summerscale returns with another historical murder case set in late Victorian Britain with The Wicked Boy, set to be just as compelling as The Suspicions of Mr Whicher. You can read the first chapter here.

Our Real Readers took on Shrill by Lindy West as a reviewing project and were pleasantly surprised – Gill Chedgey said, ‘I cannot remember the last time I laughed so much I was unable to continue reading’ and Nicolette Heaton-Harris declared it ‘a great book and a must read for everyone’. Read a selection of their reviews here.

The Outrun by Amy Liptrot not only won the Wainwright Prize 2016 but was a BookLife Book of the Month and nudge Recommended Read – Paul Cheney’s review convinced us before any of this had happened! You can also watch the beautiful Wainwright video here.

Jane Austen fans and aspiring writers alike will love Rebecca Smith’s The Jane Austen Writers’ Club – she should know what she’s talking about as the five-times great niece of Jane Austen herself. Find out how to write dialogue the Jane Austen way.

If the concept or feeling of happiness has eluded you then Happy by illusionist Derren Brown might just help you find a bit more peace of mind in this area – read the first chapter and see if this self-help book helps you.

Berwyn Peet called Bookshops by Jorge Carrión ‘a great celebration of them’ and Erin Britton described it as ‘an insightful and eminently readable tribute to books’Read the first chapter and find out why bookshops matter in a digital age.

The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulf had been shortlisted for The Science Book Prize 2016 when Paul Cheney reviewed it here – and went on to win. Could it take the BookLife Book of the Year as well?


And now you have to choose just one and tell us why!


Voting for the BookLife Book of the Year has now closed. Results will be announced on 10th March.




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Quarter Life Poetry by Samantha Jayne


Pause for Thought by BBC Radio 2

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