Mantel favourite to win Costa Awards

Hilary Mantel is the bookies' favourite to win the Costa Book of the Year prize, announced tonight (29th January).

Mantel is William Hill's favourite at odds of 5/4. If the bookies get it right, it will mean a second gong for her Bring Up the Bodies, which also won the Man Booker Prize last year.

William Hill spokesman Graham Sharpe said: “Ms Mantel’s books are becoming a standing order for major literary prizes and if Bring Up The Bodies brings home the bacon for punters again she’ll have Costa fortune to William Hill.”

The Innocents by Francesca Segal is at 3/1 to win; Dotter of her Father’s Eyes by Mary and Brian Talbot is at 4/1; The Overhaul by Kathleen Jamie is at 5/1; and Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner is at 7/1.

The Costa Book Awards has five categories: first novel, novel, biography, poetry and children's book, with the winner in each category receiving £5,000. One of those books is then selected as the overall Costa Book of the Year, receiving a further £30,000.