The Costa Book Awards are open to authors living in Britain and Ireland. Britain's Frances Hardinge became the first children's author since Philip Pullman 14 years ago to win the prestigious Costa Book of the Year award in London Tuesday, January 26, 2016.
Hardinge's 'The Lie Tree' is a 19th century detective novel in which teenager Faith tries to uncover the truth about her father's mysterious death.
‘Britain's Frances Hardinge became the first children's author since Philip Pullman 14 years ago to win the prestigious Costa Book of the Year award in.’
She saw off competition from rivals including Kate Atkinson with 'A God In Ruins' to snatch the Ģ30,000 (40,000 euro, $43,000) prize.
The last children's novel to do so was Pullman's 'The Amber Spyglass' in 2001.
Paying tribute to the book, the chairman of the judging panel James Heneage said, "I think this brilliantly articulates what goes in a clever 14-year-old girl's mind, particularly one who has this deep interest in science. Faith's search for answers was set in the context of a male-dominated society in which women were seen and not heard."
Hardinge is an Oxford University graduate who previously worked as a technical author for a software company. She has written six other books.
Previous winners of the Costa Book Awards include Andrew Miller's 'Pure' and Hilary Mantel's 'Bringing Up The Bodies'.
All five of the nominees for the book of the year had previously won Costa prizes in separate categories such as children's books, novels and debut novels.