Bhattacharya wins Mo Siewcharran Prize

Bhattacharya wins Mo Siewcharran Prize

Santanu Bhattacharya has won Hachette's Mo Siewcharran Prize for his novel He Doesn’t Live Here Anymore.

The award was announced at a ceremony at Hachette's London office, Carmelite House, on 29th September. Bhattacharya will receive £2,500 prize money plus the offer of a publishing deal with Little, Brown/Abacus, subject to contract.

Ndelei by Memuna Konteh achieved second place, winning £1,500 alongside a book hamper and Jimmy the Food Thief by Rose Chen was chosen in third place, winning £750 alongside a book hamper.

The winner and runners up were decided by literary executive publisher Clare Smith, publisher Richard Beswick and publishing director Anna Kelly, alongside the inaugural winner of the prize, author Sarvat Hasin, agent Sophie Lambert and Ebyan Egal, co-chair of THRIVE.

Kelly said: "The judges were hugely impressed with the skilful characterisation, vivid language and vast ambition on display in Santanu Bhattacharya’s writing. He is an exciting talent and we are delighted to see him named as this year’s winner of the Mo Siewcharran prize."

The initiative, named in memory of Nielsen Book’s former director of marketing and communications, aims to nurture talent from underrepresented backgrounds writing in English and offers unpublished fiction writers from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds the chance to be published by the Little, Brown and Abacus imprints.

John Seaton, Siewcharran's husband, said: "Mo, was gentle, never militant, but, in her own way, I think, she would be thrilled that this prize, so necessarily outside the old publishing mainstream, bears her name."