Kitschies shortlists revealed

Kitschies shortlists revealed

The shortlists for the Kitschies, the annual prize for books containing elements of the “speculative and fantastic”, have been selected from a record 234 submissions, coming from over 50 different publishers and imprints.

The Kitschies, sponsored by The Kraken Rum, are now in their fifth year. The prizes of a total of £2,000 in prize money, one of the prize’s Tentacle trophies and bottles of The Kraken rum, are awarded in three categories: the Red Tentacle award for novels, the Golden Tentacle award for debuts and the Inky Tentacle award for cover art.

The shortlist for the the Red Tentacle (Novel) award includes two entries from Jonathan Cape: Red Doc by Anne Carson and Bleeding Edge by Thomas Pynchon. Ruth Ozeki's A Tale for the Time Being (Canongate), Patrick Ness' More Than This (Walker) and James Smythe's The Machine (HarperCollins / Blue Door) are the other titles selected by judges Kate Griffin, Nick Harkaway, Will Hill, Anab Jain and Annabel Wright, were .

Harkaway said that the entries for the award were "awe-inspiring" and that panel easily "could have built a shortlist composed purely of iconic names" but that they were strict in sticking to the Kitschies' cardinal values of "intelligent, entertaining, and progressive" work.

The same panel chose the shortlist for the Golden Tentacle (Debut) award, made up of Stray by Monica Hesse (Hot Key), A Calculated Life by Anne Charnock (47 North), Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie (Orbit), Nexus by Ramez Naam (Angry Robot) and Mr Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan (Atlantic).

Harkaway described the debuts as "breathtaking...broad in scope, deft and compelling".

Hot Key also saw Stray (art by Gianmarco Magnani) in the running for the Inky Tentacle award for cover art , selected by Craig Kennedy, Sarah Anne Langton, Hazel Thompson and Emma Vieceli. Angry Robot also made the shortlist with The Age Atomic by Adam Christopher, art by Will Staehle. The other shortlisted entries were Dreams and Shadows by C. Robert Cargill (Gollancz) with design and illustration by Sinem Erkas, Homeland and Pirate Cinema by Cory Doctorow (Titan) with design by Amazing15 and Apocalypse Now Now by Charlie Human (Century)  with art by Joey Hi-Fi.

The winners will be announced in a ceremony at the Seven Dials Club on 12th February. Previous winners include Patrick Ness, Lauren Beukes, China Miéville and Nick Harkaway.