London Book Fair award winners revealed

London Book Fair award winners revealed

The winners of the London Book Fair Awards 2020 have been revealed with the LBF International Excellence Awards, CAMEOs and UK Book Blog Awards all taking place online with the prizes posted to winners after the event was cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak. 

The winners of the London Book Fair’s International Excellence Awards, in association with the Publishers Association, have been announced, with Europe and Asia leading the way with five and four winners respectively.

Shortlisted in three categories, Karadi Tales (India) took home the Audiobook Publisher of the Year. The judges congratulated it on its “firm commercial focus on their future web-based strategy, and continued dedication to both educating and entertaining young people in India.” Maadi Public Library in Egypt was crowned Library of the Year, with judges praising the library’s “sheer energy, diversity and vibrancy”.

The Bookstore of the Year Award, sponsored by Gardners, went to Unity Books Auckland (New Zealand) and Indonesia’s Macassar International Writers’ Festival was awarded the Literary Festival Award, after Indonesia was the Market Focus country of 2019.

Praised for their Solar Homework Clubs initiative, Book Aid International won the Educational Initiatives Award while the Literary Translation Initiative Award went to Yiddish Book Center (USA).

European winners included the Literary Agent Award, which went to María Lynch from Casanovas & Lynch Literary Agency (Spain), the Rights Professional Award, sponsored by Sharjah Book Authority, was awarded to Tuomas Sorjamaa from Ferly (Finland) and Apicula Verlag, GMbH, took home the Educational Learning Resources Award.

This year’s Inclusivity in Publishing Award, supported by the Publishers Association, was conferred to Bonnier. The judges were especially impressed with “their efforts to provide accessible books for children from all socio-economic backgrounds is noteworthy, as is their efforts to diversify future talent pipelines. Bonnier has implemented admirable measures to improve equality in the workplace, and this is being reflected in the content of the books they publish.”

The Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Nigel Newton, founder and chief executive of Bloomsbury Publishing, for his outstanding contribution to the book industry, publishing international best-selling works by Khaled Hosseini, Margaret Atwood, J K Rowling and William Dalrymple.

Commenting on Newton’s award Paul Boateng, former MP and chair of Book Aid International, said: “Nigel Newton’s leadership in the publishing industry and his championing of the role of Books and Publishing not least in the field of International Development over many years has been of huge significance. He has made an outstanding contribution both professionally and personally. Book Aid International continue to value him as our Honorary President and join with many others in wishing him well going forward.”

Mark Bide was awarded the Simon Master Chairman’s Award. In his career spanning four decades, Bide has been committed to the creation of a modern, efficient supply chain for the global publishing industry. His ground-breaking work includes the introduction of standardised product metadata, identifiers, subject categories, and communication protocols—all of which the publishing industry relies heavily on.

LBF director Jacks Thomas said: “The International Excellence Awards always remind us of the innovative, important and inspiring work being done by all those in the global publishing and book community. From translators in India and librarians in Finland to literary festivals in Ukraine and literary agents in France, these awards show the breadth of talent working in the industry around the world today. The London Book Fair, is delighted to celebrate this global industry at this difficult juncture, and we look forward to welcoming everyone back to London for the 50th LBF in 2021.”

PA c.e.o. Stephen Lotinga said: “Congratulations to all the winners of this year’s International Excellence Awards. It’s inspiring to see the work and innovation in publishing around the globe. Although it is disappointing not be able to meet and congratulate everyone in person it’s fantastic to see the awards will be sent across the world—from Italy to India, Indonesia to New Zealand—a true reflection of the international nature of publishing.”

Four exceptional winners have been announced for the fourth annual Creativity Across Media: Entertainment and Originality Awards (CAMEOs). The awards recognise the best book adaptations across film, TV, audio and stage, celebrating books at the heart of the creative industries. Greta Gerwig's "Little Women" took home the Book to Film Award, while "Life of Pi", adapted by Lolita Chakrabarti for Wyndham’s Theatre scooped the book to stage prize. The Book to TV award went to "Elizabeth is Missing", adapted by Andrea Gibb, and Norse Mythology, adapted by the BBC, landed the Book to Audio prize. 

Thomas said: “From classic stories to modern novels, the past year has seen a wealth of fantastic adaptations across stage, audio and screen, that speak to the valuable role books play within the creative industries. We know that adapted works tend to attract more revenue and critical acclaim than their counterparts and this year’s wonderful winners also show how adaptations allow great books to be enjoyed again and again in new forms and by new generations.”

The London Book Fair’s UK Book Blog Awards 2020 saw Caroline O’Donoghue’s "Sentimental Garbage" win Book Podcaster of the Year, Leena Norms named Book Vlogger of the Year and Julia's Bookcase awarded Book Blogger of the Year.