The Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge has won one of the UK’s top literary prizes, the Costa Book of The Year 2015. Frances beat strong contenders with her children’s book, the first of this genre to win since Philip Pullman’s The Amber Spyglass from the trilogy, His Dark Materials.

Frances said she had not at all expected to win, but is pleased children’s fiction is gaining respect in literary circles. One judge described trying to select a winner as “choosing between bananas and chicken curry”.

Costa 2015 Category Winners

  • The Lie Tree Frances Hardinge (Children’s Novel Award)
  • A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson (Novel Award)
  • The Loney by Andrew Michael Hurley (First Novel Award)
  • The Invention of Nature: The Adventures of Alexander Von Humboldt, The Lost Hero of Science by Andrea Wulf (Biography Award)
  • 40 Sonnets by Don Paterson (Poetry Award)

Costa Book Award Prizes

Each winner receives £5,000 and the overall winner takes away £30,000. To be eligible, books must be already published and the publisher makes the entry. To do so they should contact the Booksellers Association for an entry form. Costa sponsors this prize with the aim of encouraging existing and new readers to sit back with a coffee and a book.


Cover Image supplied by Malcolm D. Welshman, author of Pets in a Pickle and other animal tales.