Polari Prize 2023 Shortlist

What is the Polari Prize?

The Polari Prize is the UK’s only LGBTQ+ book prize. This year there are two prizes: for debut and non-debut books. The biannual Children’s / YA book prize returns next year. Founded in 2011, this year is the award’s eleventh year. Founded by author and activist Paul Burston, the awards celebrate LGBTQ+ books, fiction and non-fiction. This year, the awards will take place at the British Library on the 24th November.

2023 Polari Book Prize (non-debut)

Shortlisted for the 2023 Polari Book Prize are:

  • Our Wives Under the Sea by Julia Armfield (Picador)
  • All Down Darkness Wide by Seán Hewitt (Jonathan Cape)
  • Here Again Now by Okechukwu Nzelu (Dialogue Books)
  • Fire Island by Jack Parlett (Granta Books)
  • Young Mungo by Douglas Stuart (Picador)
  • The Schoolhouse by Sophie Ward (Corsair)

“This year’s Polari Prize shortlist reflects the complexities of contemporary LGBT+ lives in work that is nuanced, expansive, intimate and strange. History, futurism, crime, poetic memoir, and social commentary collide to create rich narratives that rewrite us even as we read.”

Joelle Taylor, Polari Book Prize judge and 2022 winner

2023 Polari First Book Prize

Shortlisted for the 2023 Polari First Book Prize are:

  • None of the Above by Travis Alabanza (Canongate Books)
  • Rising of the Black Sheep by Livia Kojo Alour (Polari Press)
  • The New Life by Tom Crewe (Chatto & Windus)
  • A Visible Man by Edward Enninful (Bloomsbury)
  • Love from the Pink Palace by Jill Nalder (Wildfire)
  • The Whale Tattoo by Jon Ransom (Muswell Press)

“The titles on the shortlist for this year’s Polari First Book Prize wrestle with history and the present moment in engaging and empathetic ways. I loved reading these books, and feeling the queer power in them and their authors’ visions.”

Adam Zmith, Polari First Book Prize judge and 2022 winner

I look forward to finding out who wins in November! Have you read any of the shortlisted books? If so, what did you think? Do get in touch and let me know your predictions!

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Published by Nick Taylor | Editor & Proofreader

Editor and proofreader specialising in LGBTQ+ writing, both fiction and non-fiction.

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