The long list announced for the book award that celebrates the north of England


The books which “best evoke the spirit of the north of England” are in the running for a prize of £ 10,000.

he Portico Prize for Literature celebrates new works of fiction, non-fiction and poetry from the North.

This year’s long list of 14 books explores themes of family, friendship, class, race, identity, masculinity, sexuality, meaning of place and memories. the past.

The early writers made their mark this year, with five of the 10 shortlisted fiction novels being debuts, and of the four non-fiction titles, three are debuts.

James Corbett’s The Outsiders is one of the earliest fiction novels, set against the backdrop of the riots in Liverpool in the early 1980s.

Sairish Hussain’s The Family Tree about a multigenerational British Muslim family and Saima Mir’s The Khan, a crime thriller starring a British Pakistani protagonist, are also debuts on the list.

Benjamin Myers is in the running for his third nomination with the only collection of short stories on the long list, having been co-winner in 2015 and shortlisted in 2019.

Myers’ collection, Male Tears, accumulates over fifteen years of work addressing the nature of masculinity.

Non-fiction titles on the long list include I Belong Here by Manchester-born Anita Sethi, which was written after Sethi suffered racist abuse on a train trip from Liverpool to Newcastle and mixes it up. writing of nature, memoirs and current affairs.

Katy Massey’s second book, Are We Home Yet ?, takes place between 1935 and 2010 and is based on a girl who discovers that her mother is making money as a sex worker.

The long list was selected by the Portico Prize Readers and Writers Society, a nominated group of 21 book lovers and literary enthusiasts with ties to the north of England.

The prize, created in 1985, aims to raise awareness of the historical, cultural and literary heritage of the north of England.

The shortlist of six books will be announced on December 7 and the winner is expected to be revealed at a ceremony at Portico Library in Manchester on January 20.

Lynne Allan, President of The Portico Library, said: “The Society of Readers and Writers has outdone itself with the diverse and exciting choices it has made.

“Independent and larger publishers are represented and we are particularly pleased with the innovative mix of formats and genres, including fiction, creative non-fiction, memoir and biography.

“New and exciting voices rub shoulders with established authors.

“Each of the selected books has the power to engage and move the reader, whatever their origin, and to reflect the rich experience of Nordic life.

“Our distinguished panel of judges has a formidable task ahead of them. “

– The long list 2022:

Ghosted by Jenn Ashworth – Fiction
The Outsiders by James Corbett – Fiction
The Blind Light of Stuart Evers – Fiction
Mrs England by Stacey Halls – Fiction
Sairish Hussain’s Family Tree – Fiction
State of the Sea by Tabitha Lasley – Non-fiction
Are we still at home? by Katy Massey – Non-fiction
The Khan of Saima Mir – Fiction
Toto Among the Murderers of Sally J. Morgan – Fiction
The Private Joys of Nnenna Maloney by Okechukwu Nzelu – Fiction
The Ephemera of Andrew O’Hagan – Fiction
Male Tears by Benjamin Myers – Fiction (short story collection)
I Belong Here by Anita Sethi – Non-fiction
Ghost Town by Jeff Young – Non-fiction

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