TASH AW WINS THE 2005 WHITBREAD FIRST NOVEL AWARD
CONGRATULATIONS to Tash Aw for winning the 2005 Whitbread Award for Best First Novel with The Harmony Silk Factory. Best Novel went to Ali Smith for her funny yet sad The Accidental, one of the best novels of 2005. Christopher Logue’s Cold Calls won for Poetry while Hilary Spurling’s Matisse the Master, the second and final volume of her biography of Henri Matisse, clinched the award for Biography. , And not forgetting Kate Thompson for the Best Children’s Book with her novel, The New Policeman. A good start indeed to another bountiful year of great literature. The 2005 Whitbread Book of the Year will be announced on January 24, 2006.
I believe the 2005 Whitbread Book of the Year Award would either go to Ali Smith’s The Accidental or Hilary Spurling’s Matisse the Master. Both are equally excellent in their own ways, though they are from different genres. The fact that they are from different genres and to compare them and choose one of them as the book to represent the best literature of the year is simply unjust. However, I will go with Ali Smith.
An impressive coup for Hamish Hamilton, a literary imprint of Penguin, for claiming the Whitbread Awards for Best Novel and Biography, with Ali Smith’s The Accidental and Hilary Spurling’s Matisse the Master.