The Rathbones Folio Prize is open to all works of literature written in English and published in the UK. All genres and all forms of literature are eligible, except work written primarily for children. The format of first publication may be print or digital.

The Prize will be awarded for books published in the previous calendar year.

The Selection Process


Each year, three or five members of the Academy will be invited to judge the Prize.

The sole criterion for judgment will be excellence: to identify works of literature in which the subjects being explored achieve their most perfect and thrilling expression.

The judges consider a total of 60 books, which will be nominated by the Academy. Further books will be called-in from publishers; from these call-ins, the judges can make a total of 20 selections, bringing the total number of books under consideration to 80. In 2023, the judges will create three distinct shortlists from these 80 titles in Fiction, Non-Fiction and Poetry.

Each category winner, selected from a shortlist of four, will receive a £2,000 prize. One book will then be crowned overall Rathbones Folio Prize winner, with the author receiving an additional £30,000.

The shortlist winners and overall winner will be announced at the annual Rathbones Folio Prize ceremony and presented with a cheque for their Prize money.

For full information download the Rathbones Folio Prize Constitution.



A Word from our Sponsors


Rathbones is delighted to support this important prize, which celebrates the best literary talent from the UK and around the world. We also support the wider work of the Folio Academy through a series of Rathbones Folio Prize lectures and debates.

Rathbone Investment Management is one of the UK’s leading providers of investment management services for individuals, charities and professional advisers. Rathbones has a long history of working with the community and is truly committed to supporting education, sports and the arts. Please visit our website to find out more.