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Shortlist for Scotland’s National Book Awards announced

The shortlist for Scotland’s National Book Awards has been announced, featuring books on climate change, the importance of male friendships and King James VI.

The Saltire Society awards recognise work across six literary categories, from fiction to research, history and poetry.

The winners each receive a cash prize of £2,000 and go on to be considered for the top Award of Saltire Scottish Book of the Year, receiving a further £4,000.

The list features Ginger and Me by Elissa Soave which takes readers on a heart-wrenching and compassionate exploration of individuality, friendship and community.

‘What an honour to be shortlisted for Scotland’s National Book Awards for my first book,’ Elissa said.

‘Ginger and Me is a story that places young working-class women centre stage, and I am delighted that this shortlisting will help to take those voices to a wider audience.’

Kate Foster’s The Maiden, examines the fight to overcome class, gender and society. 

The Scottish Non-Fiction Award shortlist includes A Pebble In The Throat: Growing Up Between Two Continents, the moving and raw memoir from Aasmah Mir.

A behind-the-scenes tour of the produce aisle in Avocado Anxiety by Louise Gray reveals extraordinary and urgent stories about our everyday meals.

‘It means a lot to me to be recognised by Scotland’s Book Awards,’ said Louise.

‘My book is rooted in my family heritage as the great granddaughter of an Edinburgh greengrocer and asks questions about where our fruit and vegetables come from today. 

‘What we eat is so important to our health, but also to our environment. 

‘In Scotland and all over the world we need to know the impact of producing our food so we can make better decisions, and I hope feel a little less anxious about avocados.’

The winners of all six prizes, as well as the Saltire Scottish Book of the Year, The Lifetime Achievement Award, The Ross Roy Medal and three industry awards, will be announced at a ceremony in Glasgow on 7 December.

Michael Pedersen by Porty Books

‘The 2023 shortlists for Scotland’s National Book Awards show the outstanding talent, scale, diversity and excellence that we are so lucky to have in Scotland today,’ Sarah Mason, Executive Director of The Saltire Society said.

‘These Awards have a proud history of celebrating the extraordinary richness in the work of our authors, publishers and designers and we congratulate everyone who have been shortlisted this year.’

The ceremony will be live-streamed and tickets to watch online are available from 20 November on

Read more news and reviews on Scottish Field’s book pages.

Plus, don’t miss the November issue of Scottish Field magazine.