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Nathan Filer wins Costa Book of the Year

Nathan Filer’s The Shock of the Fall beats off tough competition from bestselling novelist Kate Atkinson to win the 2013 Costa Book of the Year on Tuesday night.

After months of build-up and speculation, and with hundreds of books having been submitted and read by the judging panels involved, the 2013 Costa Book of the Year awards ceremony took place at Quaglino’s in central London on Tuesday night.

Nominated this year were: Life After Life By novelist Kate Atkinson, The Shock of the Fall by first-time writer Nathan Filer, Drysalter by poet Michael Symmons Roberts, The Pike by biographer Lucy Hughes-Hallett and Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse by author and political cartoonist Chris Riddell.

Following a judging meeting lasting several hours, the distinguished final judging panel, including Sharleen Spiteri, Richard Osman and Natascha McElhone, chose The Shock of the Fall as the 2013 Costa Book of the Year.

The Shock of the Fall tells the story of two brothers who are separated yet united by a tragic accident. It explores themes of loss, grief and mental illness, and was described by the judges as “so good it will make you feel a better person”.

The chairman of the final judging panel, author Rose Tremain CBE, further described the winning book as “exceptionally moving without being sentimental” and as having “stood out in a very good list”. She summed up by saying that “we’re very much hoping that there will be more from this writer!”

The 2013 Costa Short Story Award, judged separately to the main prize, was won by Newcastle writer and poet, Angela Readman, for her story, The Keeper of the Jackalopes.

The Costa Book Awards – formerly the Whitbread Book Awards – have been running for more than forty years and were originally set up to celebrate and encourage the very best of contemporary British writing. We at Costa are delighted to be able to carry on this legacy and are already looking forward to seeing the entries for next year’s awards!

You can find out more about the Costa Book Awards, as well as see images and video footage from last night’s ceremony at the Costa Book Awards website: /costa-book-awards/