Jim Crace, Nikesh Shukla and Kate Summerscale have today been announced as the judges for the 2018 Rathbones Folio Prize. The Prize, which will recognise the best work of literature published in the UK in 2017, will be awarded at a gala ceremony on 8 May 2018 in London.

The inaugural Folio Prize was launched in 2013, but it was relaunched last year with a new sponsor, Rathbone Investment Management, and a wider remit that includes fiction, non-fiction and poetry. The Rathbones Folio Prize is the only literary prize in which all the books considered are selected and judged by an academy of peers.

Last year’s winner was Hisham Matar for his book The Return, which also won the 2017 Pulitzer Prize for Biography. The winner of the inaugural Folio Prize in 2014 was George Saunders for Tenth of December; he went on to win this year’s Man Booker Prize.

The Rathbones Folio Prize is the pinnacle of the Rathbones Folio Programme, which also includes the Rathbones Folio Mentorships for aspiring young writers and Rathbones Folio Prize Sessions at literary festivals across the UK.

The Rathbones Folio Prize is sponsored by Rathbone Investment Management, one of the UK’s largest and longest-established providers of high-quality, personalised discretionary investment services.


About the judges:

Jim Crace is the author of eleven books, including Continent, winner of the Whitbread First Novel Award and the Guardian Fiction Prize; Quarantine, Whitbread Novel of the Year and shortlisted for the Booker Prize; Being Dead, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award; and Harvest, shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and winner of the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and James Tait Black Memorial Prize. His next novel, The Melody, will be published by Picador in February 2018. He lives in Worcestershire.

Nikesh Shukla is the author of Coconut Unlimited, shortlisted for the Costa First Novel Award, and the widely acclaimed Meatspace. He edited the essay collection The Good Immigrant, featuring British writers of colour discussing race and immigration in the UK and, building on its huge success, has just crowdfunded and launched a new quarterly literary magazine, The Good Journal, and an affiliated literary agency.

Kate Summerscale is the author of The Queen of Whale Cay, winner of a Somerset Maugham award; The Suspicions of Mr Whicher, winner of the Samuel Johnson Prize and two British Book Awards; Mrs Robinsons Disgrace, a Sunday Times bestseller; and The Wicked Boy, winner of the Mystery Writers of America award for Best Fact Crime. She is a former literary editor of the Daily Telegraph and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. She lives in London.

Andrew Kidd and Kate Harvey, co-founders of the Rathbones Folio Prize, said: ‘We are thrilled that Jim, Kate and Nikesh have agreed to take on the exciting challenge of determining the very best book of 2017. Their own work reflects the extraordinary range of subject, theme, form and voice that make up the academy, and we can’t wait to see what emerges from three outstanding writers’ close reading and careful deliberation.’


For further information about the Rathbones Folio Prize please contact Minna Fry on minna.fry@rathbonesfolioprize.com or 07825 116 311

For further information about Rathbone Investment Management, please contact Matt Jamieson, Teamspirit on Rathbones@teamspiritpr.com


Notes for editors:

The Rathbones Folio Prize was established in 2013 as the first major English language book prize open to writers from around the world. It is the only literary prize in which all the books considered for the prize are selected and judged by an academy of peers. When new sponsors, Rathbone Investment Management, came on board, the prize was expanded to include all works of literature, regardless of form. Previous winners were George Saunders in 2014, Akhil Sharma in 2015 and Hisham Matar in 2017.

The Folio Academy is a community of 260+ writers who represent excellence in literature and who may be called upon to comment on literary matters in the media, to appear at festivals and public events and to volunteer to mentor young writers in association with the charity First Story. Academy members include Margaret Atwood, Carol Ann Duffy, Ian McEwan, Salman Rushdie and Zadie Smith; recently recruited members include William Dalrymple, Amanda Foreman, Andrew Marr, Jon Ronson and Alex Ross.


Rathbone Investment Management is one of the UK’s largest and longest-established providers of high-quality, personalised discretionary investment services. It manages over £37.5 billion* of funds (as of 30 September 2017) for individuals, charities and trustees, and is part of Rathbone Brothers Plc, an independent company with a listing on the London Stock Exchange. Investment management services are offered in Aberdeen, Birmingham, Bristol, Cambridge, Chichester, Edinburgh, Exeter, Glasgow, Kendal, Liverpool, London, Lymington, Newcastle and Winchester.  Offshore investment management services are offered by subsidiary Rathbone Investment Management International in Jersey.

*Includes funds managed by Rathbone Unit Trust Management


The Literature Prize/Folio Academy Foundation is a registered charity committed to bringing the most outstanding works of English language literature to public attention through the awarding of the Prize and other initiatives, including the Rathbones Folio Mentorships (the 2017/18 mentors being AL Kennedy, Ross Raisin, Kamila Shamsie and Evie Wyld). Overseen by its trustees, the Foundation seeks to engage readers and writers throughout the English-speaking world in cultural debate, the celebration and sustainment of the art of literature – which it believes has the capacity to enrich and change people’s lives – and the discovery and nurturing of new voices.