Booker Foundation launches Beryl Bainbridge prize

Booker Foundation launches Beryl Bainbridge prize

The Man Booker Foundation is to award a special prize to the late author Beryl Bainbridge, who was shortlisted five times for the accolade but never won.

The Man Booker Best of Beryl invites the public to vote online for which of the five novels they believe should win. Bainbridge, who died last year, was shortlisted more times than any other author, for The Dressmaker in 1973, The Bottle Factory Outing in 1974, An Awfully Big Adventure in 1990, Every Man for Himself in 1996 and Master Georgie in 1998. Abacus publishes all of the titles in paperback.

Ion Trewin, literary director of the Man Booker Prizes, said: "Dame Beryl was a very gracious non-winner and no Man Booker dinner was complete without her.  She may have been the eternal Booker Bridesmaid but, with this special prize created in her honour, we are delighted to be able finally to crown her a Booker Bride by letting the public choose what they believe to be the best of her books."

Bainbridge's daughter, Jojo Davies, said: "Beryl did want to win the Booker very much despite her protests to the contrary. We are glad she is finally able to become a bride, no longer the bridesmaid."

The poll opens today [8th February], with the winning novel to be announced in mid-April.