Journalist and author Reni Eddo-Lodge has won the £1,000 Jhalak Prize for Book of the Year for her "incisive" non-fiction debut Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race (Bloomsbury Circus).
The title, described by prize judge Catherine Johnson as “a thunderclap of a book”, was chosen unanimously by an all-woman judging panel.
Author Sunny Singh, chair of the judging panel, described the title as “timely and essential, thought-provoking, complex and yet completely accessible. A must read for every Briton”, while Chok commended its “balance between important social impact and personal account”.
It was also nominated for the Foyles and Blackwell's Book of the Year last year and is shortlisted for The British Book Awards' Non-Fiction Narrative Book of the Year.
Eddo-Lodge's title triumphed from a shortlist which consisted of Nadeem Aslam's The Golden Legend (Faber), Kayo Chingonyi's Kumukanda (Chatto & Windus), Xiaolu Guo's Once Upon a Time in the East (Chatto & Windus), Meena Kandasamy's When I Hit You: Or, A Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife (Atlantic Books) and Kiran Millwood Hargrave's The Island at the End of Everything (Chicken House).
Along with Singh, who also co-founded the award, the judging panel conisted of YA author Johnson, novelist Tanya Byrne, multidisciplinary writer and performance maker Vera Chok, and travel writer and journalist Noo Saro-Wiwa. Eddo-Lodge was chosen as the winner at the Authors Club after "much discussion and in very close contest".
In its second year, the Jhalak Prize for Book of the Year by a Writer of Colour is an annual award seeks to celebrate books by British/British resident BAME writers, and the overall winner is presented with a prize of £1,000. It was founded by author Nikesh Shukla and Media Diversified, with support from The Authors’ Club and funds donated by an anonymous benefactor.
This year’s winner also received a trophy, especially designed for the Jhalak Prize by the acclaimed ceramics artist, Chris Bramble. The trophy has been made possible by the support of novelist, Dorothy Koomson.