The Women’s Prize for Fiction, the UK’s most prestigious annual book award celebrating and honouring fiction by women, today announces the 2019 longlist. Now in its 24th year, the Prize celebrates excellence, originality and accessibility in writing by women in English from throughout the world.

The longlist of 16 novels follow in alphabetical order by author’s surname:


The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker

Remembered by Yvonne Battle-Felton

My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

The Pisces by Melissa Broder

Milkman by Anna Burns

Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi

Ordinary People by Diana Evans

Swan Song by Kelleigh Greenberg-Jephcott

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Number One Chinese Restaurant by Lilian Li

Bottled Goods by Sophie van Llewyn

Lost Children Archive by Valeria Luiselli

Praise Songs for the Butterflies by Bernice L. McFadden

Circe by Madeline Miller

Ghost Wall by Sarah Moss

Normal People by Sally Rooney


The judges for the 2019 Women’s Prize for Fiction are:

  • Professor Kate Williams (Chair), author, historian and Professor of History at the University of Reading
  • Arifa Akbar, journalist and critic
  • Dolly Alderton, columnist, broadcaster and author
  • Leyla Hussein, campaigner and psychotherapist
  • Sarah Wood, digital entrepreneur

“The discussion amongst the judges was passionate and there were some really tough choices to make”, commented Professor Kate Williams, Chair of Judges. “I am thrilled to share this longlist – sixteen incredible books by a diverse group of women, from the UK and countries across the world, all brilliant stories that sweep you into another world. Each of them have been a privilege to read, and they have taken us into places a million miles from each other, exploring the lives of women and men in so many different but utterly compelling ways.”

This year’s longlist honours both new and well-established writers and a range of genres. There are seven debut novels on the list. The list features a previous winner of the Orange Prize for Fiction (Madeline Miller, for The Song of Achilles), a winner of Orange Award for New Writers (Diana Evans, for 26a) as well as one previously shortlisted author (Anna Burns, for No Bones).

Set up in 1996, to celebrate and promote international fiction by women throughout the world to the widest range of readers possible, the Women’s Prize for Fiction is awarded for the best full-length novel of the year, written by a woman and published in the UK between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019. Any woman writing in English – whatever her nationality, country of residence, age or subject matter – is eligible.

Last month the Prize announced it had achieved charitable status as the Women’s Prize Trust. As part of the mission to provide a platform for women’s voices, the Trust will work to grow the educational, research and engagement initiatives on offer. Individual supporters will have the opportunity to contribute to the important work of ensuring as diverse a range of women’s voices as possible is heard, and celebrated by everyone, through the Patron and Prize Circle Patron schemes.


A special Patrons’ event will take place this evening (4th March) to celebrate the announcement of the 2019 longlist and the week of International Women’s Day, with speakers including Prize Founder Director Kate Mosse, Chair of the 2019 Judges Professor Kate Williams and author, television presenter and Co-Founder of the Women’s Equality Party Sandi Toksvig.

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