On 15 November 2021 the Highland Society of London and Moniack Mhor Writers’ Centre announced the longlist for the 2021 Highland Book Prize.
The Highland Book Prize celebrates the finest work that comes from, or is inspired by, the Scottish Highlands. Presented by the Highland Society of London, and facilitated by Moniack Mhor Writers’ Centre, the prize seeks to recognise the rich talent, landscape, and cultural diversity of Scotland’s Highlands and Islands.
12 titles have been selected from more than 70 submissions for this important literary award, and include auto-fiction, environmental non-fiction, an exploration of Highland slave history, Gaelic fiction and poetry, and Shetlandic poetry.
Many of the submissions engaged with Highland culture, heritage, or landscape. Submissions were also invited from authors, writing on any subject, who were born or brought up in the Highlands or had settled in the area as their home. Each title was reviewed and scored multiple times by a volunteer panel of 180 readers from around the world.
The 2021 longlisted titles are:
- An Seachdamh Tonn | The Seventh Wave by Sandaidh NicDhòmhnaill Jones (Gaelic poetry, Acair)
- Ben Dorain: a Conversation with a Mountain by Garry MacKenzie (Poetry, The Irish Pages Press/Cló An Mhíl Bhuí)
- Borges and Me: An Encounter by Jay Parini (Autofiction, Canongate)
- Deep Wheel Orcadia by Harry Josephine Giles (Poetry, Picador)
- Hiort by Iain F. Macleod (Gaelic fiction, CLÀR)
- In a Veil of Mist by Donald S. Murray (Fiction, Saraband)
- Islands of Abandonment: Life in the Post-Human Landscape by Cal Flyn (Non-fiction, William Collins)
- Of Stone and Sky by Merryn Glover (Fiction, Birlinn)
- Regeneration: The Rescue of a Wild Land by Andrew Painting (Non-fiction, Birlinn)
- Slaves and Highlanders: Silenced Histories of Scotland and the Caribbean by David Alston (Non-fiction, Edinburgh University Press)
- The Stone Age by Jen Hadfield (Poetry, Picador)
- VEEVE by Christine De Luca (Poetry, Mariscat Press)
Each title on the list will now be considered by the Judging Panel, who will announce the shortlist in March 2022. The winning title will be awarded in May 2022.